Understanding Expectant Moms Who are Considering Adoption

Who are the expectant moms who place their babies for adoption? What factors influence their decision to place their babies? We talk with Stephanie Rider, a birth mom who placed her daughter in 1997, and Chantilly Wijayasinha MSW, MPH, and the Supervisor of the Domestic Adoption Program at Vista Del Mar Child & Family Services.

Hit the Highlights
  1. Stephanie’s story.
  2. Who is a “typical” birth mom?
    1. Age
    2. Income level
    3. Marital Status
    4. Number of children
    5. Housing situation
    6. Alcohol/drug use
  3. What are the reasons you hear for women and couples deciding to place their baby for adoption?
  4. How often is poverty a factor? How often is it the main factor?
  5. At what stage in the pregnancy do you see women coming in?
  6. At what stage do they decide on whether to match with an adoptive family?
  7. What type of counseling is typically provided for moms to help them decide if adoption is the best plan for them?
  8. How do you educate expectant moms on open adoption? Do many moms come in with pre-existing ideas about the degree and type of openness that they want?
  9. How do you educate adoptive parents on open adoption? Do many adoptive parents come in with pre-existing ideas about the degree and type of openness that they want?
  10. Stephanie’s story: Walk us through the emotions you experienced during your pregnancy? Were you involved with the selection of your baby’s adoptive parents? How did you choose? What was important to you? Did you meet with them in person? How did the relationship develop?
  11. What are the different approaches to the process of helping expectant parents choose the adoptive parents? What type of information is typically important to expectant parents?
  12. Are single moms and single dads at a disadvantage in being chosen by expectant parents in adoption?
  13. Stephanie: What did you look for when choosing adoptive parents for your daughter?
  14. After being selected by an expectant mom or couple, some adoptive parents struggle with the lack of control they feel. How much control do prospective adoptive parents have? Some adoptive parents view the expectant mom more like a surrogate that is carrying their child.
  15. What type of counseling is provided to birth parents after the adoption and for how long? This is a question that adoptive parents should ask when deciding on an adoption service provider.
  16. What are some of the typical emotions and struggles expectant parents and grandparents experience after the adoption?
  17. Stephanie’s story: What was your experience of leaving the hospital without your daughter? How were the first months? What was helpful? How was your open adoption experience?
  18. Stephanie: If you could tell adoptive parents one thing about being pregnant and trying to decide on whether to place your baby for adoption, what would it be?

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Music credit: Michael Ashworth

Photo credit: freestocks.org from Pexels