Okay, first, I need to clarify something. Though people still say “giving a baby up for adoption,” it isn’t really a phrase that should be used anymore. It makes it sound like the baby was carelessly given away, which is the farthest thing from the truth. The process of choosing adoption is a long, emotionally fraught one. Better phrases are “making an adoption plan,” “choosing adoption,” or “placing a baby for adoption.” While there is no perfect phrase that totally conveys the act of adoption, no one “gives a baby up” like they give up a cup of coffee or give up sweets for lent. It’s a conscious, difficult decision, very often made selflessly at the emotional expense of the birth mother. Giving a baby up for adoption pros and cons doesn’t convey the deep level of grief, fear, and, ultimately, love that goes into the process of choosing adoption.
Placing a Child for Adoption Pros and Cons
- The baby gets a loving family typically more prepared for a child than an expectant mother facing an unplanned pregnancy.
- A family who wanted but often could not biologically have a baby gets to have a family.
- The expectant mom has control over who the baby goes to.
- The baby has a chance to grow up in a family that is excited about his/her arrival.
- Adoptive families are thoroughly vetted to make sure they can be suitable parents.
- Expectant moms can receive counseling during pregnancy and after birth to help them work through their emotions about the pregnancy.
- Expectant moms can choose the level of openness in the adoption she is comfortable with.
- Adoption can be a beautiful, selfless act that puts the baby’s needs first.
- So much love.
- It’s an answer to prayers for someone vs. an unexpected fearful time for unplanned pregnancy.
- Financial stability.
- Emotional stability.
- There’s extra family to wrap around you in a difficult time.
- Birth mothers don’t get to see the child grow up the same way they would if they lived together.
- The child might struggle with feelings of abandonment.
- Fear of the unknown.
- Loss of control.
- A feeling of loss as the birth mom’s body recovers from pregnancy but has no baby to distract from the otherwise unpleasant healing process.
- The feeling of grief over what could have been.
- Fear of being forgotten by your child.
As I am not an expectant mother, I can only theorize and read about what one might be feeling as they process the potential of placing their baby for adoption. I read quite a lot, and I can gather information from sources, but the emotional work of making such a difficult choice has never been mine. So, as an adoptive mom, I may unfairly weigh in on the pros list. I could add dozens of more reasons to the pros list: The chance for a baby to have a stay-at-home mom to see their first steps, record their first words, give them their first foods; the extended, loving, open-armed family that is so excited to welcome a baby into their lives; a chance for both birth mother and adoptive mother to get to be a part of a beautiful child’s life in a meaningful way that impacts them all.
I may be viewing adoption through rose-colored glasses. I adore it. Despite all of the drama, the bickering, the trauma my kids have experienced, the self-doubt, I know these kids somehow get to be mine. It is a miracle. Furthermore, I wish for their sake that if their birth families couldn’t take care of them, they would have chosen adoption early on. My children came to me from foster care. From parents who thought they could parent or had the right to parent because the child was their “blood” despite doing nothing to care for them. Lest you think I’m exaggerating, my 10-year-old was 38 pounds when we met. He was ten and weighed the same as a small 4-year-old. He was neglected, abused, and tormented. Yet when CPS came to investigate, the birth parents hid them away because “they are our blood, they’re ours.” Yes, that is true. That will always be true, but these people could not be safe parents. I wish they had realized that early and chosen adoption instead of the years of resentment and pain they caused to their children.
Are you pregnant and scared? Are you worried that you won’t be able to provide a decent life for your baby? Are you wondering if you can choose adoption, even if it feels really hard? I think you can. I think you have a chance to make a difference for a child who might otherwise grow up feeling resented. I can’t make the choice for you. It is a difficult thing to choose either way. I think adoption is great, but maybe you don’t. Maybe you were adopted and resent your adoptive parents or your birth parents. Maybe you have an adopted sibling, and you resented them. I don’t know you. I do hope for your sake you have a chance to consider the pros and cons without being terrified you’re screwing up a child’s life one way or another. I promise you if you are this worried about making a decision, you are giving it much more thought than parents who just have a baby and ignore them. That happens more often than you think.
If you’re worried that your baby might not feel loved or that you don’t have the resources to care for them, you are already a step ahead of many parents of unplanned children. You care about how this baby feels, and that makes you an excellent parent, whether you choose adoption or to parent yourself.
Do you wonder about the pros and cons of placing a child for adoption? I’d like to introduce you to some people waiting for a baby to come into their lives through the gift of adoption. They are sincere people I would like to know. These are just a few blurbs from their adoption profiles that you can put into your “pros” list.
Jamie & Preston from Texas
Words can’t describe how excited we are to start this new chapter in our lives to love on and provide for a child.
Hailey from New Jersey
I will be forever dedicated to ensuring your child’s health, happiness, and success.
Melissa & Hunter from Texas
Hello! We love our God, we love life together, we love our family, we love our friends, and we love to travel!
Rebecca & Justin from Delaware
Although we may not know each other yet, we are in awe of the person you are and the love you have for your child.
Elyse & Sebastian from New York
We hope that this profile gives you a better picture of our home, our lives, and who we are as a family.
Morgan & Brian from New York
WE ARE READY TO ADOPT and give unconditional love to a baby and share our enjoyment of art, travel, food, and the outdoors.
Marcie & Matt from Texas
We cannot wait to meet you and learn more about you and your life!
Kelly & Warren from Texas
We know your love for your child is much bigger than difficult circumstances you may be facing, and we truly admire that.
Jebina & Andrew from Texas
You are an amazing woman, and for your selfless love, we will forever be grateful.
Ron & Angie from Ohio
It is our prayer that we are able to grow our family through adoption.
Carson & Kelsey from Idaho
We hope you land on our profile and slide into our DM’s. We can’t wait to get to know you!
Alyssa & Brian from New York
We know this snapshot of our lives may not answer all of your questions about us, we’d love to connect and tell you more…
Rossi & Ken from California
Doctors Rossi and Ken are happily married and would love to adopt [a] baby.
Lo & JJ from Texas
We’re a Californian/Texan family who loves to have FUN together! We chose adoption to form our family & want our kids…
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Jenny & Jon from Texas
IN OUR HOME: We laugh. Hard. We celebrate each other. We persevere. We talk about God. We help each other.
Maggie & Spencer from New Mexico
We believe you love and want the best for this little one, whatever you decide.
Chandler & Steve from Connecticut
Happily married, financially secure couple will LOVE & CHERISH your baby.
Monica & Jake from Oklahoma
There are many things in life that are not for certain, but what we know for sure is that we are destined to be parents.
Pria & Parthi from Texas
Our hope and desire is that you arrive at the decision that brings you most peace.
Ashley & Matt from Texas
We always put each other first and are excited to see where the next 10 years will lead us as we become parents!
Andrea & Chris from New York
Our highest priority is to show you that we can be trusted to provide a loving, safe, and secure life for your baby.
Hannah & Andrew from Texas
We want to make a promise to you that we will love and care for your child in every way.
These are just a small sampling of hopeful adoptive parents on Adoption.com. They are waiting with open arms to love a child. They are praying that you’ll choose them. Could your baby be the answer to someone else’s prayer? Could one of these families be the answer to prayers you’ve been looking for as you stare down your due date and don’t know what you’re going to do?
Perhaps I have been unfair to the cons side of the list. As I said, I don’t know what it is like to be a birth mother struggling to make these decisions. I know that there are stories of adoptions “not working out” that cause people to pause. I know some people look like one thing on paper but turn out to be something else in reality. I know a great deal of unknown goes into deciding to let someone else raise a piece of yourself. Knowing that you are surrendering control of your child to someone else is vulnerable and downright frightening. How could they possibly love your baby as much as you? How could they know what your baby needs? I don’t have answers to your questions, only more questions. What will you do if you don’t choose adoption? How will you parent by yourself? Is your family supportive of you? Can they help you to take care of the baby while you work? Do you have a way to take care of the baby? Would you breastfeed or formula feed? In the future, do you think you can provide the stability a child needs to really thrive? I don’t know the answer to any of those questions. Maybe you will be the best mom ever, and you don’t need to think about adoption. Or maybe you are desperate and can’t figure out what you’re going to do tomorrow, never mind, six months from now. I don’t have answers. Hopefully, you have people that can support you as you make these decisions. Don’t be afraid to reach out. People often surprise you.
If you are struggling to figure out the pros and cons of placing your child for adoption, I hope you reach out to someone who can help you. At Adoption.com, there are people ready to chat with you day and night to help you decide what you’re going to do and how you’re going to do it. There are so many reasons to choose adoption and probably an equal number of reasons not to. Only you and your partner can decide what the right choice for your child is. Best of luck in making hard choices, be it to parent or to choose adoption. You can do this.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.