What Are the Pros and Cons of Placing a Baby for Adoption?

When it comes to making an adoption plan for a baby, you, as an expectant mother, might have many questions on whether it’s the right choice for you. There are always pros and cons to think about, as well as multiple life factors to consider. In this article, I’ll go through each pro and con and discuss positive adoption language. 

 Why Do Mothers Consider Adoption?

So what are the reasons mothers place a baby for adoption?

There are a lot of things to consider when it comes to placing a baby for adoption: Financial situations, living arrangements, health issues, and relationship situations are the most common reasons parents have in making this decision. Some more specific examples include: 

Mothers want what’s best for their babies.

Mothers might not have the financial means to raise their babies.

The birth father isn’t in the picture, and the mother doesn’t want to be a single mother.

Mothers might not feel ready to raise their babies. 

Mothers have different plans for the future. 

Mothers want to give their babies a chance at a good life.

So now you’re most likely thinking, can I go through with placing a baby for adoption? The choice is yours alone, but it’s wise to seek the help of an unplanned pregnancy counselor or an adoption specialist. 

When Placing a Baby for Adoption, Should I Work with an Adoption Agency or Attorney?

Well, that depends. Both adoption agencies and adoption attorneys strive to make sure to do what’s best for you and your baby. Both respect you and your decisions, but some agencies and attorneys will take advantage of you, so it’s essential to look for the warning signs. When it comes to placing a baby for adoption, it’s very beneficial to find a reputable adoption agency with both you and your baby’s best interests at heart. 

Let’s Talk about Positive Adoption Language 

The most crucial thing you should know is that you’re not “putting” or “giving your baby up” for adoption. You’re not giving up on parenting and certainly not giving up on your baby. You’re willing to place your baby in a loving adoptive family, and that is in no way giving your baby up. What is positive adoption language, and why is it important? 

Positive Adoption Language is adoption terminology used when talking about adoption. 

Positive adoption language includes phrases like, “placing a baby for adoption,” “making an adoption plan,”  and “choosing adoption.” Some other positive terminology includes “expectant mother,” “birth parents,” “birth families,” “parents,” “child,” “my child,” “international adoption,” “child with special needs,” and “failed placement.” These terms show respect for everyone involved in the adoption triad.

Someone asking you why you’re “giving a baby up for adoption” can be part of a short inquiry about an unexpected pregnancy, or you just have read or even heard about the terms. Positive adoption language is essential today and for the future, because no birth parents should feel like they’re just giving their baby up. Words matter and do hurt, even if not intentionally, so it’s best to learn about the positive adoption language. You’re making a selfless choice to give you and your baby a better life by thoughtfully making a plan, choosing an adoptive family, and exploring your adoption options

The Cons of Placing a Baby for Adoption

There are some problematic cons when it comes to placing a baby for adoption that every expectant parent should be aware of when considering their options.  

You have to sign away your rights as a parent: Unfortunately, one of the hardest things about placing your baby for adoption is facing the fact that you have to terminate your parental rights

You won’t be the legal guardians to your baby: Termination of parental rights leads to the adoptive parents becoming the legal mom and dad. You might feel resentment and jealousy towards the adoptive parents because they’re the ones raising your baby. Talking to an adoption counselor about this will help. 

If you choose a closed adoption, your child can’t have contact with you: Choosing a closed adoption means that your baby can’t find out anything about you until they reach adulthood. It also means you can’t receive updates and visits.

There will be many complex emotions: You’ll have many feelings of grief, resentment, sadness, anger, anxiety, and even depression. However you’re feeling, your feelings are valid, so feel free to discuss them. The key to this is to find a great support system through your adoption journey

The people in your life might not be supportive: If you find that your family and friends don’t support your decision to place your baby for adoption, don’t take it to heart. The people in your life might feel as if they’ll be missing out on their grandchild’s/sibling’s/neice’s/nephew’s life, but assure them that the decision to place your baby is your choice, not theirs. 

The Pros of Placing a Baby for Adoption

While there are some challenging cons, let’s now focus on the pros. 

There are many pros to placing a baby up for adoption. You may feel like choosing adoption means you’ve failed as a parent, but that’s not true at all! Adoption is a fantastic, life-changing journey that you’ll never have to face alone. Adoption doesn’t have benefits just for the baby, but there are benefits for the adoptive parents and you. 

You’re providing a way for your baby to have a good life: By placing your baby for adoption, you’re giving your baby a better life. You undoubtedly love your child, but perhaps you’ve realized that you’re not ready to raise a baby. You should never feel ashamed of this. You should be proud that you’re going to be placing your baby with a beautiful family. 

You get to choose your adoption options: An adoption professional can help you choose your options and explain the difference between an open, semi-open, and closed adoption

You get to make an adoption plan: You can make the adoption plan that works best for you and your baby, and an adoption professional can help you do so. You’re in complete control of the plan, and you can make it as straightforward or as complex as you’d like. 

You can find a great adoption agency or adoption attorney to help you place your baby for adoption: You can research the best adoption agencies and learn about what to look for in an adoption attorney. Whichever one you choose to work with, be sure that they have both you and your baby’s best interest in mind and are more than willing to help you find the best family to adopt your baby. 

You get to choose the adoptive family: Another pro is that you get to choose the adoptive family for your baby. You can find a family via word of mouth, social media, or through an adoption agency. You get to find out about the hopeful adoptive family through adoption family profiles and even meet the family to ask questions before placing your baby.  

You don’t have to meet the adoptive family if you don’t want to: You have the option of not meeting the adoptive family and have the adoption specialist be the facilitator between you and the adoptive family.

You can visit your baby if you choose an open or semi-open adoption: Placing your baby for adoption doesn’t have to mean goodbye. By choosing open adoption, you can receive updates from the family with photos, letters, emails, and visits. Preparing to visit your birth child can be a fun experience that’ll last for a lifetime. 

You can have privacy if you choose a closed adoption: There are benefits when choosing a closed adoption. Whatever your reasons are for choosing a closed adoption, you’ll have the utmost confidentiality to do so. A closed adoption also provides closure. 

You’ll have the support of other birth parents: I mentioned earlier that you don’t ever have to feel alone when placing your baby for adoption. There are fantastic birth parents support groups that you can attend in person or online. You can even read and listen to inspiring birth mom stories and watch Birth Mothers Amplified on Youtube. 

Birth fathers have more involvement in adoption: Before the 1970s, birth fathers had very little participation in placing their babies up for adoption. Birth fathers have rights when it comes to placing their baby for adoption, and any birth father must be aware of their rights. Birth fathers are becoming more involved in adoption, now more than ever. The adoption community has become more accepting of birth dads

You can accomplish any future goals: Whatever plans you had for your life before expecting a baby, placing your baby for adoption has made goal-reaching easier. If you had plans to go to college, move up in your career, and maybe even save up money to buy a home, you can do this without worrying about how you’d do it while raising a baby.

You’ll know that your child is safe: One of the best pros is never having to worry about your baby’s safety. Placing your baby with a great adoptive family can give you peace of mind knowing that you’ve made the right decision and that your baby will live a happy and fulfilled life. 

You have time for self-reflection: You can think about your life choices and how a baby could affect your plans. Self-reflection is also essential before placing your baby because you can talk to a trusted person about positively navigating your feelings. 

Instead of Giving a Baby Up for Adoption, You’re Placing a Baby for Adoption

The most important thing to remember is that you’re not giving your baby up for adoption. You’re not a failure as a parent, and don’t listen to those who want to put you down about your adoption choice. Words have a significant impact on everyone, so it’s best for all involved to use positive adoption language. After going through the pros and cons when placing your baby for adoption, I genuinely hope you weigh your options and think about how a baby will impact your life. While there is the possibility of post-adoption depression, there is hope. You can talk to other birth mothers, speak to an adoption counselor, listen to birth mother podcasts, and surround yourself within the adoption community. There are pros and cons with any life event, but the pros should always outweigh any cons when it comes to adoption.

Are you considering adoption and want to give your child the best life possible? Let us help you find an adoptive family that you love. Visit Adoption.org or call 1-800-ADOPT-98.