Choosing a family to adopt your child will be one of the most difficult if not the most difficult decision of your life. How can a person possibly choose and be confident that he or she has made the right choice? The anxiety in this decision is understandably real and palpable. Unfortunately, there is no magic ball and really no person who can guarantee that one answer is the right one. The only thing you can do is to make your decision based on the information you have available to you. There are three areas you should focus on when deciding who to place your child with that may provide some confidence and reassurance in your decision.
1. Your Child’s Needs
This may be the easiest area to navigate when it comes to choosing a family for your child. What will this family be able to provide? You may want a family who is financially secure and has time for your child. You may also want a family who can provide your child a chance at a good education. Does this family live in a safe part of the country? What opportunities will your child have if you placed with this family? This is the area where you decide what needs your child might have and try to find a family that might be able to provide for those needs most efficiently.
2. Your Wants and Wishes
Regardless of your decision to place your child for adoption, it is normal for you to have wants and wishes for your child’s future. You may have dreams for them that you hope get fulfilled even though they are placed. One great aspect of being able to choose a family for your child is that you can ask questions and express your hopes and wishes to prospective parents. You may want to look for a family who shares your religious beliefs or cultural traditions. You may also have wants regarding how your child is disciplined and the type of home in which your child grows up. Have you always imagined your child having siblings? There might be a family to choose from with other children and a family dog that seems perfect for what you imagined. You can ask questions of the family regarding their discipline style and future plans to see if their nature matches with your hopes.
3. Your Desires for Openness
Open adoption has become increasingly popular and has been shown to be more healthy for all involved in a majority of adoption situations. Open adoption options have also grown and developed through the years to offer a multitude of arrangements to fit most situations. These arrangements can range from yearly updates to quarterly visits. What are your hopes for openness? Would you like updates or do you hope to see your child from time to time? Some also choose a closed adoption for a multitude of reasons. Once you have decided what level of openness (or lack thereof) you want, you can make a decision on placement based on the hopeful adoptive family’s level of comfort in an open adoption as well.
Are you considering placing a child for adoption? Not sure what to do next? First, know that you are not alone. Visit PregnancyHotline.org or call 1-800-GLADNEY and speak to one of our Options Counselors to get compassionate, nonjudgmental support. We are here to assist you in any way we can.