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“What does adoption mean to a child?”

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What if I Haven't Chosen Adoptive Parents?

It's Never Too Late to Find an Adoptive Family for Your Baby

Some women who are later in their pregnancy have panicked and asked us, “What happens if I don’t find an adoptive family by the time my son’s born? What happens if you don't find an adoptive family at all?” If you’re worried about the fact that you don’t have adoptive parents ready for your baby, or that you may not find adoptive parents that live up to your dreams for your baby, don’t be! That’s where we can help.

“When Do I Need to Have an Adoptive Family Chosen?”

No matter what stage you’re at in your pregnancy, or even if your baby has already been born, you can still choose your child’s adoptive family. You always have the right to pick parents who you feel are best for your baby, so even if you feel like you’re in a rush right now, we’ll do everything possible to help you connect with an adoptive family that feels right to you. It is never too late to choose adoptive parents. 

You can choose adoptive parents for your baby:

The benefit of choosing an adoptive family earlier is that you’d have more time to get to know them and feel comfortable with them and your decision. But sometimes things don’t always work out that way! There’s no real “deadline” by which you need to have your baby’s future family chosen, so don’t panic. You can start looking here and now.

“What If I Don’t Have an Adoptive Family Picked When I Give Birth?”

Many parents don’t choose adoption for their babies until after they’ve given birth, often while they’re in the hospital or even after they’ve taken their child home.

Sometimes, you find that you simply don’t feel as prepared or as excited to be a parent as you thought you might be once the big day arrives. Or perhaps you just hadn’t found the right adoptive parents until the last minute. Whatever the reason, adoption is still 100 percent possible, even if you don’t have a family picked out right now.

We can have an adoption specialist show you adoptive family profiles that match what you’re looking for in an ideal family while you’re in the hospital recovering from your delivery, and a family for your baby can be there to meet you as soon as you’re ready.

If you choose an adoptive family while you’re still in the hospital, we’ll simply speed up the adoption process. We’ll tell the waiting parents to travel to your hospital, and you’ll be able to spend some time with them and introduce them to their baby once they arrive. You’ll be able to sign your consent to the adoption once the state-mandated waiting period has passed (at a minimum). This consent is a voluntary termination of your legal parental rights, meaning you’re permanently placing your baby with the adoptive family. A legal representative will be there with you to walk you through this consent process to ensure that you understand everything, and that you’re confident in your decision.

“What Happens if Nobody Adopts My Baby?”

A fear that some expectant parents have expressed is, “What if I don’t have parents picked out, and then nobody adopts my baby? Can you give your child up for adoption even if a family doesn’t want to adopt it at the moment? What happens if you don't find an adoptive family that meets your criteria?”

This fear is perfectly understandable. You’re choosing adoption for your baby because you love them and you want the best for them. Prospective birth parents want their baby to have a loving family from day one. So, is it possible that no one will adopt your baby if you place him or her for adoption?

With us, the answer is no. Your baby will always be immediately adopted by parents who have been waiting and hoping for your child. They will go straight to their “forever family.” There is no foster care involved when you contact a private adoption agency like American Adoptions.

If this is something you’ve worried about, you can relax. Adoption is different than foster care. Even if you don’t have adoptive parents picked out right now, we always have waiting adoptive families to choose from, so your baby will always be adopted by a loving family. And if you’ve ever wondered, “Can parents give children up for adoption before someone wants them?” know that there’s no such thing as an unwanted child — American Adoptions has hundreds of hopeful adoptive families who have been waiting and longing to become parents for years. No matter your or your baby’s circumstances, there is a family out there who would be thrilled to adopt your child.

Our adoption specialists will do everything we can to help you find the perfect adoptive family you've been looking for. If you don't see the right adoptive parents' profile listed on our website, you can call our adoption specialists any time at 1-800-ADOPTION to talk about your needs and goals for your baby. We have many more families at different stages of the process whose profiles aren't listed on our website, and we have a national network of professionals we can partner with to ensure you find the adoptive family that is right for you and your child.

Find Adoptive Parents Now

Whatever you’re looking for in a future family for your baby, we can help you find it, even if you have limited time. No matter what stage you’re at in your pregnancy, or even if your baby is already born, we can help you create an adoption plan and find the right family for your child if you’re committed to your adoption decision.

Contact us now online or by calling 1-800-ADOPTION. We’re available 24/7, and adoption is always free for prospective birth parents. Start browsing profiles of waiting families here, or call us to view more waiting adoptive parent profiles. Your baby’s perfect family is out there! We’ll help you find them. 

Information available through these links is the sole property of the companies and organizations listed therein. America Adoptions, Inc. provides this information as a courtesy and is in no way responsible for its content or accuracy.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Why is American Adoptions the right adoption agency choice for many birth mothers?

American Adoptions is one of the largest licensed adoption agencies in the United States. Each year, we work with thousands of women who are facing an unplanned pregnancy and offer assistance to these women. Our large, caring staff is able to assist you seven days a week and provide you with one-on-one counseling about your pregnancy and available options.

You should choose an adoption agency where you feel completely comfortable with their services and staff. With American Adoptions, you will work with an Adoption Specialist who is on-call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The Adoption Specialist will be your advocate and will provide support and guidance as you create an adoption plan that is right for you.

How will the family tell my child about me and the adoption when my child is older?

Each family has their own style of introducing adoption to the child. When you are matched with an adoptive family, you can ask them this question. If you would like your Adoption Specialist to discuss it for you, just let her know. He or she can share your wishes or provide good ideas from other adoptive families.

You will also be able to share what you want your baby to know about you. You can complete a keepsake booklet to share hobbies, stories, photos of you and your family and a letter to your baby. The adoptive family can provide this to your child as he or she grows older. Be as creative as you like! Some birth mothers have even knitted a special blanket as a gift to their baby or given a similar symbol of their love.

The father of your baby can fill out the birth father's keepsake booklet or write a letter too. You may have other family members who would also like to share photos or a letter to the baby. This is your opportunity to pass on your and your family's love and to share your personality, history and reasons for choosing adoption. The adoptive family will treasure whatever information you provide and will share it with the baby at an appropriate age. In most adoptive homes, the word adoption is in the child's vocabulary early on, and adoption is celebrated in their lives.

Additional Resources

Teen Pregnancy - Information for Young Women

While not every woman who chooses adoption is a young mother, many are. Through adoption, many young women have found an ability to give their babies the best life possible, while finding the opportunity to realize their own dreams, as well. Call American Adoptions today at 1-800-ADOPTION.

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Adoption Glossary

Do adoption terms and phrases leave you feeling confused? Learn the meaning to key adoption words and phrases with our comprehensive adoption glossary.

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