All parents agree: deciding what’s best for our children is a heavy responsibility. All of us wonder at times whether someone else could raise our children better than we can. And some of us have discovered the answer is “yes.”
That’s when it makes sense to make an adoption plan. Being a good parent may mean giving our beloved children to families who can be there for them in ways we just can’t.
Are you wondering if adoption might be best for your child? If so, here are some questions to think about.
#1: Am I willing to do what’s best for my child, even if it makes me sad?
Good parents know that meeting their children’s needs may mean putting aside their own desires and dreams. Maybe their dreams are unrealistic, or maybe they lack the resources they need to make those dreams come true.
When it comes to your child, can you put his or her needs before yours? Whether you choose adoption or not, sacrifice will always be part of good parenting.
Choosing to entrust your child to other parents may be the most courageous and loving sacrifice you can make for the good of your child.
#2: Can I muster everything needed to raise a child?
Take stock of the resources you have in place:
- Parenting partner. Studies show that children with both mothers and fathers have a strong advantage. Do you have a trustworthy, loving partner? Are you married or preparing to be? How important is it to you to provide a two-parent home for your child?
- Supportive people. When you need practical and emotional support (and all parents do), who else will be there for you? Your family? Reliable friends? Your church? Dependable neighbors?
- Material resources. Do you have income from a steady job, with flexibility that allows you to care for your child? Do you have community connections that can help if sudden needs arise? Can you get the baby supplies and equipment you need?
- Have you finished the level of school you planned to? If not, can you see a way to finish? Parents with at least a high school diploma tend to be more successful in providing a stable and nurturing home for a child.
- Parenting skills. What do you already know about parenting? What can you learn—and where can you learn it? Did you pick up any harmful patterns during your own childhood that you need to drop? Who can help you learn healthier patterns?
- Inner strength. Can you make yourself do hard things? Do you deal with stress and frustration in ways that solve, not create, problems? Do you have any addictive behaviors that could keep you from giving your very best to your child?
#3: Do I see adoption as “giving up” or as “making a plan for” my child?
Sadly, there was a time when mothers had no say in what became of their children once an adoption agency stepped in. Today, however, it’s entirely different. A birth mother today can choose to be as involved as she wants in designing her child’s adoption experience—and in her child’s future life.
Open adoption now allows a birth mother to choose her child’s future family from among the many who are waiting for a child to love. She can also decide how much contact she wants to have with her child and the adoptive family in the future.
With that much openness, you don’t need to fear your child will doubt your love. One birth mother, Kate, addressed that concern by writing her son a letter on his first birthday:
“I explained that I wanted nothing more than to hold him forever and parent him myself, but that I knew I wouldn’t be able to give him what he needed… my love for him transcended my own needs and wants and that out of this love, I chose adoption… If he ever wonders those things, he knows he can ask me about it.”
-Kate, birth mother
#4: Who can I talk to about adoption without committing to it?
If you want to explore the possibility of making an adoption plan, a pregnancy resource center is a great place to start. (Near Redwood Falls, Minnesota? Check out Choices Pregnancy Center.) If you need help finding a pregnancy center near you, go here.)
Today’s adoption agencies know you need time and space to think the whole thing through. So they’re good at informing you and answering your questions without pushing. You may want to talk to someone at one of these* agencies in Minnesota:
- Adoption Minnesota: http://adoptionmn.com/
- Bethany Christian Services: https://www.bethany.org/
- Catholic Charities of Southern Minnesota: https://www.ccsomn.org/pregnancy-parenting-and-adoption/placing-a-child-for-adoption/
- Children’s Home Society of MN and Lutheran Social Service of MN: https://chlss.org/pregnancy-services/open-adoption/
- Christian Adoption Services: https://www.christianadoptionservices.org/
- New Horizons Adoption Agency, Inc.: https://www.nhadoptionagency.org/
- New Life Family Services: https://nlfs.org/
*Choices Pregnancy Center does not endorse any adoption agency. We provide this list as one resource for parents considering making an adoption plan.
Take Your Time
The future of your child can be a bright one, in many different circumstances. Take time to fully consider all the possible pathways you can map out for yourself and your child.
At Choices Pregnancy Center, we know adoption is one of many good options for expectant parents. We’ll listen to your concerns and help you learn all you want to about those options.
We believe you can make the best decision for yourself and your child.
Give us a call or text us today.
 Kate is a real person, and you can ask her your adoption questions at email@example.com. Her complete quote can be found in a brochure published by Bellis, an organization that provides adoption education and support.