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What Are Some Adoption Terms and What Do They Mean?

What Are Some Adoption Terms and What Do They Mean? 

By Shaina Santagata

Embarking on the adoption journey as a birth mother involves navigating a challenging time that can be overwhelming. At Adoption Choices of Missouri, we understand the importance of clear communication and respectful language throughout this experience.

Learning adoption terminology opens doors to making informed and confident decisions for you and your baby. Together, we can dive into the essential adoption terms that every birth mother should know. Whether you are considering adoption, currently in the process, or exploring post-placement options, this glossary will be a valuable resource.

Understanding adoption terms will empower you to communicate effectively with adoption professionals and navigate the adoption process with confidence as you go through this life-changing journey. Let’s explore the language of adoption together, ensuring that you have the knowledge and tools to make the best choices for yourself and your child.

Birth Mother and Birth Father:

A birth mother is the biological mother of the child who is placing the child for adoption. The birth father is the biological father of the child. Both birth parents can play key roles in the adoption process. Their rights and involvement are based on individual circumstances and state laws.

Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children (ICPC): 

ICPC is a legal agreement among all fifty states (including the U.S. Virgin Islands and the District of Columbia) regulating children’s placements across state lines in foster care and adoption. This ensures that placements comply with the laws of both the sending and receiving states.

Relinquishment:

Relinquishment is the voluntary termination of parental rights by the birth parents, allowing the child to be legally adopted by another family. This process typically involves legal procedures and varies by state.

Adoption Etiquette:

Adoption Etiquette refers to having respectful and sensitive behavior and communication practices when discussing adoption-related topics or interacting with adoptive families, birth parents, and adopted children.

Open Adoption:

With open adoption, the birth parents and adoptive parents have ongoing contact and share varying degrees of identifying information. Openness can include letters, pictures, visits, and more, depending on the preferences of those involved.

Semi-Open Adoption:

Semi-open adoption involves some communication and interaction between the birth parents and the adoptive family. Contact is facilitated through a mediator such as the adoption agency. This type of adoption allows for updates and information sharing while still maintaining some privacy and boundaries.

Closed Adoption:

A closed adoption occurs when the birth mother decides to have no communication with her child once the adoption process is finalized. Any identifying information is typically sealed.

Post-Placement:

Post-placement refers to the period after a child is placed with the adoptive family but before the adoption is finalized. During this time, social workers may conduct follow-up visits and provide support to ensure the well-being of all involved.

Adoption Agency:

An adoption agency is a licensed and specialized organization that enables adoptions, providing counseling, home studies, matching (between birth parents and adoptive families), and legal support for all involved.

Adoption Process:

The adoption process involves steps such as home studies, legal procedures, matching, and finalization. Agencies like Adoption Choices of Missouri help guide families through these steps with care and expertise.

Adoption Plan:

An adoption plan is a personalized outline created by the birth mother outlining her preferences for the adoption. This includes the type of adoptive family, level of openness, and post-placement communication.

Adoption Support Services:

Adoption support services include counseling, support groups, and resources. These are offered to birth parents, adoptive parents, and adoptive individuals to address emotional, financial, and practical needs related to adoption.

Termination of Parental Rights (TPR):

Termination of parental rights (TPR) consists of a legal process that will permanently end the legal parent-child relationship. This step is necessary for the child to be legally adopted by another family.

Adoption Profile:

An adoption profile is a document or presentation created by prospective adoptive parents to introduce themselves to birth parents. It typically includes photos, written descriptions, and information about their lifestyle, values, and parenting approaches.

Home Study:

A home study is an assessment completed by a licensed social worker. The social worker evaluates the prospective adoptive family’s suitability and readiness to adopt. This is when interviews are conducted, background checks are completed and verified, and home visits are conducted.

Unplanned Pregnancy:

An unplanned pregnancy refers to a pregnancy that occurs when it is not intended or expected. Adoption is one of the options available to women facing unplanned pregnancies.

Local Adoption Agency:

A local adoption agency operates within a specific area and provides adoption services to families and birth parents within that region.

Adoptive family:

An adoptive family has welcomed a child into their home through the process of adoption. This family is legally the child’s new family and is there to provide love, care, and support just like the biological parents would. These families are made of individuals who have chosen a child to create a lifelong bond beyond biology.

Birth Plan:

A birth plan is a document that a birth mother creates to outline her preferences and wishes regarding her labor, delivery, and postpartum care during childbirth. Birth plans communicate the information to healthcare providers and adoption agencies in Missouri (if she is considering adoption for her baby), and they ensure that the birthing experience aligns with the birth mother’s desires and values as much as possible.

Adoption Disruption:

Adoption disruption refers to interrupting or halting the adoption process before it is legally finalized. This can occur for various reasons, such as changes in circumstances for either the birth parents or the adoptive family or challenges that arise during the post-placement period. This can be emotionally difficult for all parties involved and may require additional support and guidance from adoption agencies and their adoption professionals.

Addressing the Adoption Process with Adoption Choices of Missouri

At Adoption Choices of Missouri, we believe in empowering birth mothers with knowledge and support throughout the adoption journey. If you are considering adoption and seeking guidance, contact us today! We have helped hundreds of birth mother’s just like you. Let us help you create a personalized adoption plan that meets your needs and honors your choices. Our compassionate team is here to support you every step of the way!

Birth Mother Blog Putting baby up for adoption

Taking Care of Yourself and Your Baby “Even Though” Placing a Baby for Adoption

Taking Care of Yourself and Your Baby “Even Though” Placing a Baby for Adoption

By Noah Abrams

Considering and ultimately choosing adoption is one of the toughest decisions one could make. Specifically for birth mothers, it comes with a whirlwind of emotions that can be hard to navigate. Because of the emotional toll the adoption process can have on you, it is important to prioritize yourself. With the help of your loved ones, you should address and maintain your well-being throughout this journey. 

Additionally, there are external resources available to you that can assist as well, including reputable adoption agencies in Missouri.

If you are considering adoption in Missouri, let Adoption Choices of Missouri lend a helping hand in your adoption journey. With all of the direct and indirect stresses caused by this emotional time, you will need all of the support you need. We have adoption specialists who are available 24/7 for any questions you need to be answered or concerns you need to be addressed. Additionally, we are here to emotionally and mentally be there for you. Continue reading to learn methods of self-care throughout your adoption journey.

Why Self-Care is Important Throughout Your Adoption Journey

Each birth mother will have a specific, nuanced experience. Though each experience will look different, a key similarity is the need for an army of support. Throughout the adoption process, you will be responsible for making various decisions and going through different standard protocols. In doing all of this, it is normal for mental and emotional fatigue to set in. Also, you may get lost in what is required of you while dealing with an unplanned pregnancy. Whether creating your adoption plan, choosing the adoptive family, or creating your birth plan, it can be very overwhelming.

That is where the support of your family, friends, and other intimate support groups you may have to lean on. An adoption agency like Adoption Choices of Missouri can provide the same support. In conjunction with emotional and mental support, we provide adoption-specific information, and we are advocates for you. 

Knowing this, it is important not to push your feelings to the back burner. Addressing all negative emotions that may be evoked is key, as neglecting them can cause a negative domino effect. Everything may not be resolved through the support you receive, but it will definitely make your journey more seamless.

What Self-Care Could Look Like in Your Adoption Journey

Now that you know the importance of self-care, we will dive into techniques to stay mentally and emotionally sharp. Some of those techniques include:

  • Counseling: This may be required, as a mix of emotions may be felt throughout your experience. Seeking counseling or therapy can be extremely beneficial for birth mothers who need emotional relief. This allows you to verbally release the thoughts and feelings you have, improving your mental and emotional state. We also offer private counseling through our private adoption service.
  • Support Groups: This is another method similar to counseling or therapy. The main difference is that you will be able to interact with mothers who are dealing with similar experiences. If you feel alone or like the only one in your position, this can be very helpful. 
  • Personal Time: Though the support of others is important for you at this time, you also need time to yourself. Spending alone time doing your personal favorite hobbies. You may also want to pick up new hobbies. In any case, taking personal time can enhance your experience.
  • Maintaining Your Health: Maintaining your health is very important for you during this time. This experience can be mentally, emotionally, and physically draining. Because of this, you should prioritize things like proper rest and eating healthy. 
  • Don’t Smoke or Drink: This goes without saying, but not smoking or drinking throughout your adoption journey matters. This can negatively impact your health and that of your child. 

These are just a few examples of things you can do to keep you and your child safe throughout your adoption journey. There may be things not listed that you find helpful in your personal self care. Please do whatever works for you and the things that are essential to maintain your health in all ways.

Self-Care Education Through Adoption Choices of Missouri 

If you are experiencing an unplanned pregnancy and considering adoption, having a village of support can be very beneficial. This can look different depending on the situation. Some birth mothers may need more than others, and others may not need much. In any case, it’s important to utilize all resources around you that are available to you. This includes a trusted adoption agency that can educate you on the process, as well as advocate for you.

In saying that, Adoption Choices of Missouri is one of the most reputable adoption agencies in Missouri. We offer private adoption services and help birth mothers daily throughout their adoption process. We want all women that we work with to deal with a minimum level of stress. Additionally, we prioritize the safety and well-being of you and your child. You have the support of our licensed counselors, who are available for you at any time. Contact us today if you don’t know where to start with self-care and finding support throughout your adoption journey.

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Preparing for Birth When Placing Your Baby for Adoption

Preparing for Birth When Placing Your Baby for Adoption

By Noah Abrams

Placing a child for adaptation after an unplanned pregnancy is a difficult and emotional process. Because of this, it is important to think about how you want your hospital stay to go. Considering things such as the support you’ll need and who you want accompanying you are greatly beneficial. If you are not aware, these are factors you’ll include in your birth plan or hospital plan. This is to mentally and emotionally prepare you for what is to come in your journey of giving birth.

It may seem stressful and overwhelming, but partnering with reputable adoption agencies in Missouri can relieve these feelings. At Adoption Choices of Missouri, we offer private adoption services and are to support you in any way. In relation to your hospital experience, we will assist you create your birth plan. We are here to educate you so you can make informed decisions about your adoption journey. Here, we will discuss the stages of labor, pain management options, and creating a birth plan that reflects your desires.

Creating a Birth Plan with Adoption Choices of Missouri

We want the adoption process to be as seamless as possible for all parties involved. Much like an adoption plan, a birth plan ensures there are no surprises to you at that time. A birth plan is put in place for the birth mother to decide how her hospital experience goes. Specifics such as who you desire to accompany you and the type of delivery you have will be detailed. You can determine whether you want to embrace and take pictures of your child. You can decide what you need for maximum comfort, including a change of clothes. 

However you envision your ideal hospital experience going, you will want to include it in the plan before delivery. Keep in mind that whatever you include in your plan can always be revised at a later date.

Additionally, you should discuss pain management options with your practitioner prior to delivery. This educates you on the various options you have to deal with any pain, even if it is minimal.

Labor Preparation with Adoption Choices of Missouri

If you are considering adoption in Missouri, it is important to be mindful of the labor process. There are three stages of the labor process:

  1. The first stage begins when labor begins. At the end of this stage, full cervical dilation will be complete. This will likely be the most painful and intense, as cervical dilation rapidly reaches 10 centimeters.
  2. The second stage begins when the cervix dilates fully. You will be assisting by pushing to deliver your child through the birth canal. By the end, your child is born.
  3. The third stage begins after the baby is born. Your uterus will still contract, which will help detach the placenta from the uterine wall. By the end, the placenta is delivered, completing the labor process.

Pain Management Options with Adoption Choices of Missouri

Additionally, you should consider the various pain management options available to you. Those options are:

 

  1. Epidural: Probably the most used pain management option, an epidural is injected through a tube in the lower back. You may lose feeling in the lower half of your body, but you will be fully conscious. You will still be able to move, but you may not be able to walk.
  2. Medication: This will be either analgesics or anesthetics. Analgesics lower pain, but doesn’t completely eliminate it. You also won’t lose feeling or muscle movement completely. Anesthetics takes away all feeling, including pain. General Anesthetics will put you to sleep, while local anesthetics won’t. 
  3. Natural techniques: These would be based on your preference. You may like massages, bathing, using a birth ball, changing positions frequently, or other options. It is completely up to you the method, and it is encouraged to choose whatever works for you.

All are viable options as long as you consult with a medical professional and they are administered by them. This is important, especially if you are allergic to certain ingredients in the drug options available. Also, your doctors can make note of the drug needed in your chart and check the stock. 

Discussing these options with your OB/GYN is very helpful in planning for your delivery. It is also important to know that all deliveries don’t go according to plan, which is fine. Either way, you will have the support from your medical team, family, friends, and Adoption Choices of Missouri!

Having Support Throughout Your Adoption Journey

If you are considering adoption in Missouri, you should have a strong support system in place. This will help you get through this difficult time, filled with mixed emotions and stress. Professional support is available, as we have adoption specialists ready 24/7 to be the emotional support you need. We can also get your professional help with a counselor if need be.

We also offer counseling before, during, and after your adoption journey. We understand the complexity of an adoption and the toll it takes for birth mothers. For some, emotional triggers may exist even after the adoption process is over. Because of this, we want to be there for you as much as we can and in any way possible.

There are birth mother support groups available to you as well. In these groups, everyone is encouraging and uplifting one another. Advice is often given and received, and you all will bond over this shared experience. Support group customs, activities, and schedules vary, so it’s important to choose one that fits your needs. Though these support groups are safe spaces, you should only share and do what is comfortable to you. You will never be pressured into saying or doing something that makes you feel uncomfortable.

Contact Adoption Choices of Missouri to Start Your Birth Plan!

Each step along your adoption journey will come with a mix of emotions and feelings. It is important to surround yourself with loved ones and professionals to navigate these emotions. No one should have to deal with such a life-changing event alone. Utilize all of the important people in your life and professionals who can support and educate you.

If you are looking for adoption agencies in Missouri that offer private adoption services, look no further! At Adoption Choices of Missouri, we aim to assist birth mothers as much as we can. Understanding adoption and the effects it can have, we want to inform you and support you in any way possible. Contact us today if you need more information on birth plans, support options, or any general adoption questions!

References:

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What is an Adoption Plan and How do I Create One with Adoption Choices of Missouri?

What is an Adoption Plan and How do I Create One with Adoption Choices of Missouri?

By Samantha Bradley

Adoption is an emotional journey that touches the lives of individuals and families in profound ways. It’s a process filled with hope and the promise of creating loving bonds for the birth mother, child, and adoptive family. In Missouri, ethical adoption agencies like Adoption Choices of Missouri play a crucial role in guiding and supporting you, the birth mother, through this journey. Giving a child up for adoption may feel overwhelming at first, and that’s why our agency is here to help you in every step of the process. Perhaps the most important step of this process is creating your personalized adoption plan. 

What is an Adoption Plan?

An adoption plan is a written detailed description of what kind of family and environment you’d like for your unborn baby. For birth mothers, completing the adoption plan is a huge milestone in the adoption process. This document will outline your preferences and values regarding the family you’d like your baby to grow up with. Culture, religion, and education of the adoptive parents are all important qualities to consider for your baby’s adoptive family. You will also decide what level of openness you’d like for your adoption: open, semi-open, and closed adoption. Your counselor, whom you will meet through our agency, will help guide you with your plan. Keep in mind that the adoption plan can change with time, and your counselor can help with any adjustments. 

Why is an Adoption Plan Important?

When considering adoption, birth mothers like you may be concerned about what kind of family your baby will grow up with and if you have any say in the matter. At Adoption Choices of Missouri, we are all about giving the birth mother the utmost freedom and control when deciding on her baby’s future. By creating an adoption plan, you clarify your preferences in writing, which helps your counselor understand and ensure a good fit for your child. The plan provides emotional clarity so that you’ll find the perfect family match. 

Steps to Creating an Adoption Plan with Adoption Choices of Missouri

1. Initial Consultation and Needs Assessment 

Your adoption journey begins with a free first consultation with our agency. During this first meeting with a counselor, you will discuss your hopes, concerns, and questions about your plan. Your counselor will go over options for unplanned pregnancy and help identify your needs and values. Once you are clear on how you would like to continue with the adoption process, your counselor will help you write up the document. 

2. Choosing the Type of Adoption

Once you have decided to proceed with adoption and start writing your plan, you will also decide on the level of openness for your adoption. There are three options with our adoption services: open, semi-open, and closed adoption. With open adoption, you and the adoptive family would share contact information and check in via email, phone calls, and in-person visits. If you choose a closed adoption, you would have no contact with the adoptive parents, and you would not know much about each other.

A semi-open adoption is a middle road – you may meet the parents once before birth but not stay in touch after, or you could stay in touch after through a third party. With a semi-open adoption, you would not have direct communication with your child, although you would get to know the adoptive parents beforehand. Remember that you can decide to change the level of openness later in the process.

 

3. Creating a Vision for the Ideal Adoptive Family

Our agency guides in the process of matching prospective adoptive families with children in need of loving homes. Using a thoughtful approach, our adoption specialists consider factors such as the adoptive family’s preferences, the child’s needs, and the potential for a strong emotional connection. But before considering the adoptive family, our counselors first go over your own vision for your child’s adoptive family. Together, you and your counselor will go over what kind of values, cultural and religious background, and overall environment you would like to see in an adoptive family. Writing down the details will help you when looking through family profiles. 

4. Discussing Communication Preferences and Level of Involvement 

You and your counselor will go over what kind of communication you would like to uphold post-adoption. Some birth mothers like to communicate with the adoptive parents directly through phone calls, emails, and face-to-face meetings. Other mothers prefer the agency to act as a mediator between mother and family. Some mothers find that, after starting out with an open or semi-open adoption, they would like close communication with the family. No matter what you end up deciding, our agency will be there to support you. 

Benefits of Working with Our Adoption Agency

If you find yourself with an unplanned pregnancy and you’re seeking pregnancy help, a local adoption agency like ours can help. Our experienced and supportive counselors are here to offer personalized guidance and tailoring of your adoption plan. At Adoption Choices of Missouri, your voice is heard and takes precedence throughout the entire process of constructing the adoption plan. Putting your baby up for adoption may feel overwhelming at first, but know that you have compassionate support from our agency if you decide on adoption in Missouri.

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Choosing Adoption and Considering Potential Regret

Choosing Adoption and Considering Potential Regret

By Maleah Adams 

Embarking on the journey of adoption is a profound decision filled with both hope and apprehension. While the prospect of choosing adoption is courageous, it’s natural to ask yourself: If I put my baby up for adoption, will I regret it later? Acknowledging this possibility of regret is not a sign of weakness but rather a testament to the weight of the decision. 

However, amidst this uncertainty, it’s crucial to recognize the inherent bravery that you possess in considering adoption for your child. It’s a testament to the strength of character, compassion, and selflessness that supports your decision. At Adoption Choices of Missouri, we provide you with the counseling you need in order to come to terms with the reality of this tough decision. We also make sure to discuss with you all of the available options for unplanned pregnancy

Addressing Your Adoption Concerns 

Exploring any potential regrets allows for thorough introspection and informed decision-making. By confronting these doubts head-on, expectant mothers can gain clarity and find peace in the knowledge that their decision was made with careful consideration. Listed below are some of the concerns that you may face throughout the adoption process.

  • Loneliness and Judgement: Though the thought is completely untrue, there are many people who still believe that giving a child up for adoption is something to be ashamed of. If you fear that sort of neglect or judgment, we offer many supportive services that can assist you in overcoming your anxieties and listen to you when there may be no one else who will.   
  • Financial Burden: The financial strain of pregnancy can be a huge concern for many pregnant mothers, but especially for those mothers experiencing an unplanned pregnancy. At Adoption Choices of Missouri, we provide need-based assistance for qualified individuals. 
  • Regretting Decision: Despite how it may feel, having regret is completely normal and is not a singular emotion that only you experience. That’s why coming to terms with your loss and acknowledging the assuredness in your choice can assist you in overcoming that uncertainty. 
  • Lack of Control in Adoption Process: There are many “what-if” questions that you may have regarding the entirety of the adoption process. You may feel like because you have lost control over your body that you have also lost control over your choices. But here at Adoption Choices of Missouri, we make sure that is not the case. If you decide adoption is the best option for you and your baby, we will get started working alongside you to create your personalized adoption plan

Embracing the Choice of Adoption

Despite what society has told you, choosing adoption for your baby is not something that should be shameful. Not only are you providing them with a better life, but you are giving that life to a family that you know will love them.

Working alongside our agency will allow you access to our many adoption services that are available. You also will have direct control over choosing the adoptive family for your child. This will ensure that they will be placed in a home that you approve of. You will also get to choose the level of openness (open,semi-open, closed) that exists during your pregnancy and after the child is born.

  • Closed Adoption: In a closed adoption, the adoptive family and the birth parents share little to no contact with one another. This can often mean that identifying information about both parties is limited or completely unavailable. 
  • Open Adoption: This type of adoption allows for the birth parents and adoptive families to keep in contact throughout the birth mother’s pregnancy and/or throughout the child’s life. The term “contact” can mean different things to different families and is fully up to the discretion of the birth parents. 
  • Semi-Open Adoption: Many adoption agencies will provide a counselor as a method of communication between the birth parents and the adoptive family in semi-open adoptions. They will act as the point of contact and pass on items like photos, letters, drawings, etc.

Knowing that your baby is being raised in a loving home can bring you a sense of closure and peace of mind. You can give your baby the opportunity to grow up in a stable and loving family environment that you might not be able to provide for them presently. 

Choosing Adoption Choices of Missouri 

At Adoption Choices of Missouri, we believe in empowering birth mothers through streamlined support and comprehensive guidance that you may not find at your local adoption agency. Adoption isn’t an easy choice to make and we recognize the strength that it takes to go through with it. We work alongside the birth parents to provide a safe and nurturing environment where they can make informed decisions regarding their child’s future. 

Through our personalized assistance, we strive to alleviate any uncertainties and help you see past any regrets you may have. We commit ourselves to respecting the unique desires of birth mothers, ensuring that you feel empowered every step of the way. We provide tailored resources for birth mothers like adoption counseling and pregnancy support. 

With Adoption Choices of Missouri, you can find solace in knowing that you are not alone in your decision. Our dedicated team will work alongside you on your journey to create a brighter future for yourself and your child. If you need pregnancy help and are considering adoption in Missouri, feel free to reach out to our agency today.

Birth Mother Blog Putting baby up for adoption

What Role Does Race Play When Choosing Adoption? 

What Role Does Race Play When Choosing Adoption? 

By Sarah Ford 

There are many challenges and obstacles faced when seeking pregnant help and choosing adoption. Finding the right adoption agency for you in Missouri can be extensive. Several questions and concerns emerge, especially when forming an adoption plan. One of these concerns that can spark worry is race. Does race matter in adoption? Is an adoptive family of the same race right for my child? Will my child get the love and support they need in a family of a different race?

These are relevant areas to consider when seeking adoption agencies near me. At Adoption Choices of Missouri, you have control of decisions regarding your child’s adoption. Your adoption plan will fit all of your desires and preferences for your child. Our adoption specialists are here to provide information and answer questions in this process, including those about race. 

Is Race An Important Factor For Me To Consider When Choosing Adoption? 

When forming your adoption plan, you can choose the specific adoptive family for your child. This includes choosing an adoptive family of the same or different race. But what makes race a factor in adoption? The acknowledgment and celebration of your child’s ethnic background are important. A comfortable environment for racial identity and heritage to thrive is part of a loving home. You might also have specific preferences for your adoptive family, making discussions around this topic worthwhile in your adoption process.

There are many societal expectations and unconscious biases surrounding race in adoption. Pressure from family and community can further influence this decision. People might assume that a family of the same or different race is the better choice. At Adoption Choices of Missouri, the decision is yours only. Your wishes for your child are significant, and expectations and social pressure can be hard to navigate. This is why we offer counseling and resources to assist you in your decision, whatever that decision is. 

How Can Transracial Adoption Work? 

What if the adoptive family you have chosen for your child meets all of your preferences but is of a different race? Though there are challenges, transracial families can thrive. But what does that look like? Your child’s racial identity should never be ignored, making the representation of cultural and ethnic heritage in the home paramount. Involving traditions, holidays, and cultural practices in everyday life can help accomplish this. A safe and conversational environment is also valuable when celebrating and nurturing racial identity. We encourage this in transracial families to promote a space for connection and identity to thrive. 

Transracial families face unique struggles. They have the job of navigating social biases while ensuring a safe place for racial identity to flourish. Although there is social pressure and expectations for these families, their differences can bring people together. Incorporation of diversity in a family is a beautiful process and can be embraced rather than feared. Though there may be difficulties in transracial adoption, a loving and supportive home that embraces racial identity is possible. We support open conversations within transracial families through these challenges. Celebration of ethnic heritage within the home is priceless, and there are resources to help transracial families do so. 

What Is The Right Decision To Make Regarding Race In Adoption?

At Adoption Choices of Missouri, your values and wishes for your child drive your adoption plan. If your preference is for your child to be in an adoptive family of the same race, then your adoption plan will reflect this. If your preferences for your child align with a family of a different race, then that is ok! The right decision will vary for everyone, and your confidence and comfort in making your adoption plan are vital to us. We will provide support, resources, and counseling to help you along the way. 

Your preferences for your adoption plan matter, making these conversations valuable as you choose the right home for your child. Discussions around race in adoption can be complex and scary, but they don’t have to be. Each of your questions and concerns is valid, and our adoption specialists are here to answer them. We want your child to be in a loving and nurturing home, regardless of the race of the adoptive family. 

Why Is This Important At Adoption Choices of Missouri? 

Seeking pregnant help can be overwhelming, and so can choosing adoption. Adoption Choices of Missouri will work with you and your wishes for your child to create an adoption plan. A loving and nurturing home is significant, and so are your preferences. For these reasons, we promote open discussions about various factors in your adoption decision. This includes the topic of race in your decision. We want you to be assured and secure in your plan. Our adoption specialists are committed to supporting and providing information for you in this process. 

If you’re considering choosing adoption in Missouri and have questions, don’t hesitate to contact our caring team. Navigating the challenges of an unplanned pregnancy isn’t easy to do alone. For this reason, we are committed to being the support system you need. We want to be part of your journey, supporting and helping you with every complexity and concern you may have. 

Birth Mother Blog Putting baby up for adoption

My Missouri Adoption Story

My Missouri Adoption Story

By Samantha Bradley

When I had an unplanned pregnancy at sixteen and didn’t want to become a parent so soon in life, I wasn’t sure what to do at first. I knew I wasn’t ready to raise a child when I myself was still technically a child. Luckily, after doing a quick internet search on adoption agencies in Missouri, I was able to find Adoption Choices of Missouri, a local child placing adoption agency. After reaching out to the adoption agency, they gave me the friendly support, comfort, and direction I needed to make the best decision for the health of my baby. The agency advocated for me in every part of the adoption process and assured me my rights, even as a teen birth mother.

Why I Choose Adoption in Missouri

The thought of placing my baby with an adoptive family scared me at first. Half of me wanted to keep the baby, and half of me knew I wasn’t ready to raise a baby financially, physically and emotionally. The love I had for my unborn baby took over. I knew I had to sacrifice raising my own child for her own sake. When I started my internet search, I looked up “adoption agencies near me”. I found a page about adoption in Missouri, which gave me the information I needed to feel more comfortable and guided in my adoption journey. I found and filled out the pregnant help form online. This made it easy to contact the agency, explain my situation, and start my adoption plan. 

Completing the Adoption Process

Although I knew I wanted to do an adoption, the process overwhelmed me at first. How would I know my baby was going to a good family? Would I be able to see my baby again when she’s older? So many questions raced through my mind with such a big decision to make. Once I started the adoption process, though, the adoption agency put my mind at ease.

After first contacting the adoption agency by completing the online help form, I was matched with a counselor who walked me through the adoption plan process. They explained that the agency offers financial and medical help as well as housing, all of which is offered for all eligible birth mothers. We looked through family profiles and eventually matched with a family I felt comfortable with. The counselor went over the birth plan that would happen at the hospital, and I felt reassured that there was a plan after I gave birth.

Placing with an Adoption Family

I sure wasn’t prepared for my unplanned pregnancy, but the right family out there was. Many mothers choose adoption in Missouri because so many families want to adopt a child. I found it easy to find a good family for my baby with the adoption agency. First, I explained to my counselor that I wanted a family with a similar background to mine.

I wanted a family from around the same area who shared values similar to mine. My counselor also told me about the different levels of openness with the adoptive family: open, closed, and semi-open. An open adoption is the most common type that entails staying in touch with the adoptive family during pregnancy, birth, and post-placement. With an open adoption, the adoptive family and I would share contact information and check in via email, phone calls, and in-person visits.

If I choose a closed adoption, I would have no contact with the adoptive parents and we would not know much about each other. A semi-open adoption is the middle road – I may meet the parents once before birth but not stay in touch after, or I could stay in touch after through a third party. I wouldn’t have direct communication with my child, although I’d get to know the adoptive parents beforehand.

Once we looked through a few family profiles, I chose a family and called them. Everything felt right during the phone call, so we decided to meet in person. I explained to them that I wanted a semi-open adoption to know what was happening in my child’s life while also giving them space with their adoption family. Talking with the family over the phone and then in person helped me feel secure and happy with where I was placing my baby. 

Receiving Post-Adoption Support

After my baby’s birth and adoption, I stayed in touch with the family as well as my counselor. My semi-open adoption allowed the adoption parents to give me updates on my child while still respecting each other’s privacy. I bonded with my child and the adoptive family from a distance, and I felt so happy to stay involved in my child’s life while being able to graduate high school and apply to colleges. Knowing that the agency mediated communication between me and the family and allowed me to keep talking with a post-placement counselor reassured me. I didn’t feel so alone in the adoption process, both before and after the adoption happened. Adoption Choices of Missouri was there with me every step of the process and gave me the care and support I needed.

If you are a birth mother considering adoption in Missouri, look no further than Adoption Choices for information and support. The adoption agency has several locations in Missouri and offers virtual help through online contact. Looking back on the adoption process years later, I know my life would be completely different had I not sought out the support of an adoption agency, and I also know that life of my baby is in good hands thanks to this agency. You don’t have to figure out your unplanned pregnancy on your own — Adoption Choices of Missouri can help. 

Birth Mother Blog Putting baby up for adoption

Why Do We Say “Give Up Baby” for Adoption?

Why Do We Say “Give Up Baby” for Adoption? 

By Eric Somarriba

It’s likely that when someone is talking about adoption, they’ll say something like: “she gave up her baby for adoption.” This is some of the default language used when talking about the adoption process, but it’s something that can change. The phrase “giving up” has a negative effect on the perception of adoption. What is a deeply personal decision made from love can suddenly sound callous and uncaring with only a few words. We’re here to challenge those words and instead encourage the use of positive adoption language, or PAL.

Adoption Choices of Missouri is an adoption agency that will always advocate for the adoption process. We understand the amount of courage it takes to make the choice to place a baby for adoption. It isn’t an easy decision to come to, and we want to empower that choice with positive language.

Why is “Giving Up” Negative Adoption Language?

Using the phrase “giving up” or anything similar misrepresents adoption in Missouri.  Adoption overall is a more positive process. Saying a birth mother gave up their baby for adoption makes it sound as if they simply abandoned their baby. This isn’t truly representative of the adoption process. A birth mother chooses adoption due to the love they have for their child. More often than not, they know that they don’t have the means to support a family. They choose adoption to give their child the opportunity to have a better life. It’s an emotional sacrifice for many, not simply handing off a baby and not caring what happens to it. While every birth mother has their own unique circumstances, a unifying element is that they do love their children. Even with an unplanned pregnancy, a mother still has a deep love for their baby.

There’s long been a level of stigma towards the adoption process due to a variety of reasons. Some see birth mothers as uncaring; they worry adoptees will suffer or are just generally uninformed. The use of negative adoption language, even if not done purposefully maliciously, continues this stigma even today. Giving up is only one of many phrases that negatively affect the perception of adoption. The good thing about language, however, is that it is always evolving, and often for the better.

Positive Adoption Language to Use and Negative Language to Avoid

Different words can have different meanings from person to person. There isn’t always one perfect set of words to use in every situation. When talking about adoption, we encourage acknowledging the unique circumstances one might be in, and changing your language accordingly. There are certain words and phrases we try to avoid, and positive adoption language we substitute it with.

Instead of saying that a birth mother gave up their child, we say that they placed their child for adoption. It seems like an insignificant change of only a few words, but now it carries a different meaning. Hearing that someone gave up their baby might make you think of abandonment or that a birth mother failed their child. Saying that they placed their baby for adoption carries, at the very least, a more neutral tone. 

A term we don’t use when referring to the action of performing an adoption is facilitation. This is because, in the context of adoption, it’s linked to adoption facilitators. These are unlicensed adoption professionals who often don’t have the best interests of each party in mind. There are many ethical concerns involved with them, so much so that many states outlaw them entirely. To avoid any kind of association with them, we try to exclude the word from our adoption vocabulary.

These are ultimately just a few examples out of many. When discussing adoption, keep in mind who you are talking to, and what kind of connotation your words may have.

Positive Adoption Language with Adoption Choices of Missouri

We hope you’re now informed on positive and negative adoption language and that you’ll keep it in mind. Words have immense power, and just changing a few will have a big impact on those you discuss adoption with. Together we can continue to shift the frame on adoption and change its perception for the better. Birth mothers don’t simply give up their children and move on. They go through the long process of creating an adoption plan, all for the sake of their child. We want to create a positive environment for every member of the adoption process. Proactively changing our language for the better will go a long way in supporting future adoption in Missouri.

If you need pregnancy help or are looking to adopt, contact us right away. You can search “adoption agencies near me” and connect with our adoption agencies in Missouri. Our goal is to help birth mothers in need and to connect them with a loving adoptive family. We’ll work together to create a happy life for everyone involved.

Blog Putting baby up for adoption

The Birth Father’s Role in The Adoption Process

The Birth Father’s Role in The Adoption Process

By Alexis Watson

Considering adoption in Missouri can be a very traumatic experience for birth families. Considering adoption for an unplanned pregnancy can be an emotional whirlwind to navigate. Birth mothers’ pregnancy journeys are individually unique. Birth fathers’ support throughout the pregnancy can offer a great sense of relief. Their support can be really meaningful throughout the adoption process as well. Though most agencies focus on the priorities and needs of the birth mother, the birth father is important. It’s important that you, as the birth mother, know your rights and the birth father’s rights. 

Adoption Choices of Missouri is an open adoption agency educating birth mothers on the adoption process. Our adoption counselors are here to advise birth mothers of their rights and the rights of the birth father. We provide adoption services and resources like medical care and support counseling. 

Coping With The Emotional Impact Of An Unplanned Pregnancy

Navigating an unplanned pregnancy can be difficult. There aren’t any life guidelines or protocols that tell anyone how best to handle the pregnancy. Each family and birth mother has to make the best decision for themselves. However, making that decision can be hard for a number of reasons. The main reason is understanding how you and the birth father feel about the pregnancy. 

As the birth mother, you will experience a whirlwind of emotions. You might experience shock, joy, anxiety, gratitude, worry, or sadness. You might feel each feeling independently, or you might feel them all at once. These emotions might intensify as you search for adoption agencies near me. Either way, whatever you feel is completely normal.

It’s also important that the birth father understands how he’s feeling about the pregnancy and fatherhood. It’s important that he communicates his feelings so he feels heard. It’s also important to understand where he stands. The birth father expressing his emotions will help with determining the next steps. As the birth mother, you should know how he’s feeling and his interest in being involved. 

Being faced with an unplanned pregnancy can be an initially shocking discovery. It’s critical that you and the birth father move past the shock and communicate your emotions about the pregnancy. This communication will help in determining the next steps for the pregnancy and each person’s interest levels of involvement. Having the birth father help during your pregnancy can make the process less stressful.  

The Birth Father’s Role During The Adoption Process

Being informed about the birth fathers’ rights for adoption in Missouri is crucial information for the birth mother. As the rights of the birth father can vary, it’s important to discuss their rights with your adoption counselor. Your adoption may be dependent upon it. 

There are many determining factors to consider when placing a child for adoption. Especially the birth father role. If the birth father is present, it’s important to know his view on moving forward with the adoption process. 

Birth fathers have the right to:

  • Be made aware of the adoption if identity and whereabouts are known.
  • Legally consent to adoption.
  • Contest the birth mother’s decision of adoption.
  • Support the birth mother during the adoption process.

The rights of the birth father are complex and unique to each adoption. If the birth father consents to adoption, then the adoption process can move forward. If he consents and chooses not to be involved in the adoption process, legal documentation should be signed. However, if he disagrees with adoption, then the next steps will need to be discussed with your adoption expert. If he disagrees with the adoption process, there is a possibility that the adoption won’t move forward. However, based on certain circumstances, adoption might still be possible. 

Normally, both parents must consent to adoption for the adoption process to move forward in Missouri. However, depending on the circumstances and the situation, the adoption process can proceed without the birth father’s consent. It’s important to talk to an adoption expert to learn the role of the birth father in your adoption journey. 

As each adoption journey is different, our experts at Adoption Choices of Missouri are here to help. Our counselors will meet with you, learn about your circumstances and inform you of the birth fathers’ rights. 

Adoption Resources

As the birth mother, it is important to know the rights of the birth father. Knowing their rights can help them move the adoption process smoothly. If you are unsure of what your rights are, contact one of our adoption experts at Adoption Choices of Missouri. We are an agency that educates, demystifies adoption stereotypes, and is considerate of your concerns. We provide our birth mothers with financial support, support counseling and medical care. Our counselors will help develop an adoption plan and, if eligible, connect you to additional resources. 

If you are pregnant and need assistance, give us a call today. Our experts are excited to work with you. 

Adoptive Family Birth Mother Blog Putting baby up for adoption

All About the Benefits of Choosing Adoption

All About the Benefits of Choosing Adoption

By Brendan Finegan

When some people think about adoption, they often picture the birth mother as the only significant factor in the process. However, the adoptive parent and child play just as equal roles. You will have to consider what the best plans and options are for your child and the adoptive family during the adoption process. If you’re feeling anxious and hopeless trying to balance everyone’s needs during your unplanned pregnancy, do not worry. Adoption Choices of Missouri is here to help you understand the best choices for your child, the adoptive parents, and yourself.

5 Ways to Make Adoption Work for Everyone

Finding the right adoption agency will give you the best choices for both the adoptive parents and child during an unplanned pregnancy. It’s tough satisfying all the needs of every person included in the adoption process, but through careful planning and support, you’ll find exceptional choices for adoption in Missouri. Adoption Choices of Missouri will provide you with the high-quality professional counseling needed to select a successful adoption plan. If you’re worried giving up your child won’t align with their and the adoptive parents’ needs, take some time to familiarize yourself with your options.

1. You Get to Choose Your Adoptive Family

You will be able to closely coordinate with your adoption specialist to choose your child’s adoptive family. Rest assured your baby will be cared for before, during, and after the adoption process; the choice of what happens to your adopted child is entirely yours. You get to decide if the adoptive family has local roots within your community, has a similar ethnic background as yourself, and possesses the same lifestyle and religious beliefs. After you’ve found the adoptive family that you believe will suit your child’s needs, you’ll have the opportunity to meet the adoptive family. You will have the final choice of moving forward with the adoption process.

2. Find the Type of Adoption that will Work for Everyone

You will have the opportunity to decide between three types of adoption for your child: open adoptions, semi-open adoptions, and closed adoptions. With open adoptions, information such as names, phone numbers, and contact info are shared with the adoptive family. You will get to decide the varying degrees of openness with the adoptive family after the adoption process is finalized. The level of contact post-placement typically includes emails, letters, pictures, phone calls, and in-person visits. 

In a semi-open adoption plan, non-identifying information is shared between you and the adoptive family. You can still exchange letters, photos, and emails during a semi-open adoption either directly or through a third party, but in-person visits with the adoptive family usually do not take place. Your child will typically have no direct communication with you.

If you choose a closed adoption, you will never meet with the adoptive family and will know very little about them. Adoption Choices of Missouri will choose the adoptive family for your child. Keep in mind that the adoption agreement made between you and the adoptive family is only enforced until your child reaches adulthood and can make decisions for themselves.

3. You Will be Able to Ensure that Your Child Has the Best Possible Circumstance

Take comfort in the fact that your child can have the home and lifestyle that you believe is necessary after adoption. If you’re worried about financial security for your child, you’ll be able to find an adoptive family that can provide the support for a quality upbringing. Your child can have a home life and stable family. In return, the adoptive family that you select can provide the life for your child that fits both your criteria.

4. You can Gain the Financial Assistance Needed Throughout the Adoption Process

With your adoption plan, you will bear no cost for the adoption. If eligible, you can coordinate with the adoptive family to cover your living expenses. This way, you will gain support from the adoptive family throughout the adoption process. Your child will be going to a family that understands the difficulties of working and possibly lacking family support while pregnant. Have assurance that your child will be going to a loving home that supports you during your pregnancy.

  1. Get the Medical Services that you Need During the Adoption Process

Adoption Choices of Missouri will ensure that you receive timely and effective prenatal care through our adoption services. It is crucial that you have the necessary healthcare for a healthy and successful delivery. Your baby’s health and safety is essential not just for themself but also for the adoption process with your selected adoptive parents. 

Start your Adoption Process

After carefully choosing what will be most beneficial for yourself, your child, and the adoptive parents, you can begin the adoption process. Taking the time to consider what option is best for every party involved will create the smoothest and most effective adoption process possible. Take a look at the steps outlined below if you’re unsure how to start the adoption process. An unplanned pregnancy can be stressful and overwhelming, but we’re here to help.

  1. Contact Adoption Choices of Missouri at (816) 527-9800 to have all your questions and concerns answered.
  2. Meet with an adoption specialist to discuss options, information, and support.
  3. Select an adoptive family for you based on your preferences.
  4. Create a hospital and birth plan so that your baby can leave with the adoptive family after birth.
  5. Receive post-placement counseling after the adoption.

Giving your child up for adoption is not an easy decision, but after selecting the best possible plan, your baby will have the life that will bring you comfort and relief after adoption. Pick from the adoption agencies near you that will get rid of the worries and anxiety of an unplanned pregnancy.