How much does pregnancy counseling and adoption planning cost for birth parents?
It is FREE. There is no cost for counseling and related services for you and your family
Does choosing adoption mean I don’t really love my baby?
Women and couples who explore adoption are motivated by their love and concern for their child. Typically, women who make an adoption plan are doing so because they feel the child’s needs will best be met through adoption.
How could I possibly give away my baby?
Adoption is not about giving away a baby. Adoption is about making a plan for a child’s life. Babies need and deserve stable environments where they can receive the emotional and financial resources to equip them for a bright future. If a young woman or couple is not prepared to parent, adoption is a loving solution to an unplanned pregnancy.
Will my family and friends think badly of me if I choose adoption?
Many people are unfamiliar with open adoption. We can help you to educate your friends and family. If you feel comfortable and confident in your open adoption plan, that will set the stage for how they perceive your decision.
Is open adoption confusing for the child?
Secrets are confusing and unhealthy for children. Open adoption removes the mystery and allows the child’s questions to be answered openly and honestly. With the love and support of their birth and adoptive families, children develop high self-esteem and a healthy sense of identity.
Will you tell my family or friends I’m pregnant?
Your information is always confidential.
What if I choose adoption?
Hand in Hand will provide you with counseling and support and will help you make an adoption plan for your child including:
- Selection of a loving adoptive family for your child
- An agreement with the adoptive family to see the child, not only when they’re born but throughout their lifetime, if you choose
- Assistance with pregnancy-related needs and expenses, including maternity clothes, housing, medical care, and transportation
- Access to experienced legal counsel
- Housing and transportation assistance
- Emotional support during the adoption planning process and beyond
- Grief counseling
- Education and career planning
- Connection to other community resources
Does the adoption agency offer assistance with medical and living expenses while I am making an adoption plan?
Assistance with medical and living expenses is available through Hand in Hand Pregnancy Services. For details about how your agency can help you in your particular circumstances, contact your pregnancy assistance counselor.
How can adoption be a good thing for my baby and me?
Even if you are not yet ready to be a parent, you can still give your baby the gift of life by choosing adoption. You can plan positively for your baby’s future by selecting a stable, loving family to care for him or her. After birth, you can see your baby, name your baby, and spend time with your baby. If you so choose, you may be able to receive updates on your child’s progress or have ongoing visits throughout your child’s life while you continue your education or career goals. Finally, and most importantly, you can find peace and joy in the fact that you chose life for your baby.
How soon will my baby be delivered to the family that I choose?
- Many birth parents want their baby placed with the adoptive family directly from the hospital. Some women prefer to place their baby in temporary care while they consider their adoption decision. Hand in Hand Pregnancy Services can help you pursue either option.
- The timing of your child’s placement depends on three factors: (1) Your preference for the timing of the placement, (2) legal aspects of the adoption, which may vary from state to state, and (3) the cooperation of the birth father.
Does the birth father have any rights to the child?
Both you and the birth father have rights to your child. If you disagree about adoption or you no longer have a relationship with him, Hand in Hand Pregnancy Services will work with the birth father and/or the courts to notify him of his rights.
How can I be sure my child will be well cared for?
Adoptive families go through an extensive home study process and must be approved by the agency and Arizona’s juvenile court. Prior to finalizing the adoption, a caseworker will make home visits to ensure the child’s well-being. In an open adoption, you will be able to see for yourself how well your child is cared for and how much he or she is loved through your ongoing relationship with your child and the adoptive family.
Do I need a lawyer? What will adoption cost me?
You do not need an attorney and there are no costs charged to you. The adoption agency will handle all the legal details of the adoption.
How much contact can I have with my baby?
You may have as much contact with your baby at the hospital as you desire. When planning your child’s adoption, you can choose an open adoption plan—one that allows ongoing visits with your child, or you can choose a less open adoption that keeps you informed about your child’s progress through letters and photos. Adoptive families respect the need of birth parents to know that their child is loved and happy. Finally, if you decide you would not like to have any ongoing contact with your child and the adoptive family, confidential adoption plans are also possible. The choice is up to you.
Can I choose a family for my baby?
Yes! Hand in Hand Pregnancy Services has adoptive couples who come from a variety of backgrounds, and they have been carefully screened and approved to adopt. There are additional options such as choosing a family member, friend, or someone who has been recommended to you. Hand in Hand Pregnancy Services will discuss all of these options with you.
How much will my child know about me?
- That depends on what type of adoption plan you choose: open, semi-open, or confidential. Hand in Hand Pregnancy Services will ask you to provide your complete medical and social history for your child. No matter what type of adoption plan you make, this is required by the state of Arizona. You may choose to share your identity and where you live with the adoptive family. If you’ve made an open adoption plan, you may have ongoing, direct contact with your child and the adoptive family. You will have opportunity to share information with the child and family directly.
- The information your child will know about the birthfather depends on his relationship with you and your counselor. Most birthfathers give their complete medical and social history, recognizing how important it is for the child. In some cases though, the only information available about the birthfather is what the birthmother provides.
Can my child find me if he or she wants to search for me someday?
The law in your state determines when and how your child may access the information in the adoption file. Your pregnancy assistance counselor will explain the current laws as they apply to your particular adoption plan.
Can I change my mind about placing my child for adoption?
- This is your decision and you need to make the decision that is best for you and your child. You can change your mind anytime up until you sign the adoption consent. In Arizona, once you sign consents the consents are irrevocable; which means at that point you can no longer change your mind.
- If the birth father is considered a “legal” father, you are married to him, or his name is on the birth certificate, then he does have rights the same as you. If you are not married to him, then he will have to establish or begin paternity action in order to have rights.