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Navigating Adoption When the Father is Unknown

By: Noah Abrams

When experiencing an unplanned pregnancy and considering adoption in Missouri, you should know that you are not alone. It can be stressful in the midst of a difficult life situation. As the birth mother, you may have various concerns, worries, and emotions toward placing your child for adoption. This is especially true if the father is unknown, unsupportive, or uninterested during this journey. Though each adoption process is complex, reputable adoption agencies in Missouri can support and advocate for you. 

It is common for fathers to be unknown or unsupportive of birth mothers throughout their adoption journey. Because of this, you may feel anxious and second-guess placing your child for adoption. If this is the case, you should know that you can still go through with adoption without the father. It is a choice that is entirely up to you and the birth mother. Adoption Choices of Missouri can help you create your adoption plan and navigate this journey.

Definition of a Birth Father in Missouri and Their Legal Rights

If you are seeking private adoption services with an unknown, unsupportive, or uninterested birth father, they still have rights. In Missouri, the birth father is the biological father of a potential or currently adopted child. His role is essential in creating an adoption plan backed by legal protocols. The birth father’s rights and responsibilities depend on different factors. This includes the relationship between him and the birth mother, as well as how involved he is during pregnancy and making decisions. 

Have you thought, “How do I put my baby up for adoption?” If so, it is essential to understand that the birth father has rights. Before beginning the adoption process in Missouri, the birth father must agree to it. The exception to this is if a court has terminated his parental rights. Usually, if the birth father and birth mother are married, his approval is needed. If this is not the case, he would need to establish his paternity to consent to the adoption legally.

In Missouri, birth fathers must be notified when adoption proceeds. This allows the birth father to utilize his parental rights and engage in the adoption process if desired. He will have to take the necessary steps to establish paternity legally if he hasn’t already. This can be done through a legal procedure or by submitting to genetic testing.  

As mentioned, the birth father can be involved in the adoption plan and important decisions required throughout the process. This includes selecting the adoptive parents, the type of adoption, and other important decisions. If needed, birth fathers can seek support and counseling services to navigate their emotions. Understanding the circumstances, it is an emotional scenario for both the birth mother and father. 

Adoption in Missouri with an Unknown or Unsupportive Birth Father

Birth mothers typically can choose adoption without the birth father’s consent if he is unknown. Putative father registries are an option for birth fathers looking to exercise their parental rights. Though true, if you don’t know the birth father, he would not be aware of the adoption. If the birth father doesn’t complete a putative father registry, he does not have to be informed about it. 

It is important to emphasize to your child why you chose adoption for them if you remain connected. This is especially true when the father is unknown. Explaining this to your child can be difficult, as they will likely have questions that you can’t answer. Reinforcing your love for your child and the loving choice of placing them for adoption is essential. 

If the birth father is known but unsupportive, the adoption process can be affected. He can exercise his parental rights if he proves he can provide for the child. The adoption can proceed as desired if he fails to do so. If this is the case, the birth father couldn’t prove financial stability or is considered an unfit parent. A history of abuse or mental ailments are examples of potential factors in deeming him unfit. In this scenario, you would have authority over all significant decisions relating to the adoption plan. You can allow the birth father to have input, but you have the final say in what happens. 

Birth fathers may not understand your decision to choose adoption. It is essential to educate them and explain your decision. He should know whether you are financially unstable or mentally unprepared. Above all else, explain that your decision was made with the highest degree of love and care.

Contact Adoption Choices of Missouri to Connect with a Caseworker

If you are looking for adoption services and are pregnant, help can be given through a reputable adoption center. We serve as one, helping birth mothers regardless of their situation. We will answer any questions and address any concerns you may have. With knowledgeable counselors available 24/7, our goal is to ease any stress you may have throughout this journey.

We want you to maximize your adoption plan as you see fit. With all you will go through, it is only fitting that you have the primary authority over decisions. Having additional stress from an unknown or unsupportive father can alter your plans. Because of this, it is essential to acknowledge and understand the rights of the birth father. We will assist you in any way, regardless of the birth father’s presence or lack thereof. Connecting with a caseworker or counselor will be beneficial in understanding what affects your adoption plan and how.

If you are considering adoption in Missouri, please get in touch with us today! We also work with potential adoptive families. If you want to adopt a kid, we can also work with you. Whether you are placing your child for adoption or looking to adopt, help is available. Contact Adoption Choices of Missouri today to get any questions answered and use our private adoption services.