The Adoption Process for an Expectant Parent
Step One: Options Counseling
Our counselors can provide you with information about all of your options including parenting, adoption, abortion, kinship care, or state foster care. We can make plans for multiple options at the same time and it’s ok to change your mind.
Step Two: Consider Your Level of Openness
Your adoption counselor will help you decide whether open (annual visits and photos/letters), semi-open (photos and letters), or closed adoption (no contact) with your child/the adoptive family is right for you. Ask your counselor about the pros and cons of open adoption. It’s ok to not make a final decision about this until after your child is born.
Step Three: Choose an Adoptive Family
Most birth parents choose from a group of vetted and qualified families waiting to adopt a baby. Families create a profile book, video, and website describing themselves and their values. All of our families live in Maryland, Washington, DC, or Virginia. We can set up an in-person or virtual meeting to learn more about them.
Step Four: Prepare for Your Hospital Stay
You are in charge of your hospital stay. The hospital plan will outline your intentions about bonding with your baby, breastfeeding vs bottle feeding, etc. Your counselor may send the birthing plan to the hospital social worker to communicate your desires. Ask your counselor about our doula program!
Step Five: Hospital Stay
Once you are feeling rested after baby’s birth, your counselor will arrive at the hospital. If you still wish to move forward with the adoption plan, you will fill out adoption paperwork. This is such an emotionally difficult time and you’re welcome to spend this time with your baby by your side or separately in the nursery. Depending on your wishes and specific circumstances of your situation, your baby may be discharged directly to the adoptive family’s home or to a licensed interim care family. Daily communication with you during this time is welcomed.
Step Six: Post-Adoption
Our counselors provide counseling directly after placement. We provide referrals to birth parent support groups, case management resources, and life-long support while navigating your open adoption.