You’ve thought hard, you’ve considered your options, and you’ve decided that adoption is right for you and your child. What happens next when you’re putting a baby up for adoption? When you’re looking into adoption as an option for your child, there are many steps before you make a final decision. One of the most important steps is to choose a family who will love and care for your child as his or her adoptive parents. How do you make contact with an adoptive family?
Make a Plan
Part of your adoption planning process involves deep consideration of the family you’d like to adopt your child. Before you make contact with an adoptive family, think about the values and lifestyle that you’d like your child to have. For example, it may be very important to you that your child grows up with specific religious values, is cared for by family members, or that the family you choose has a frugal lifestyle. You may prefer that your child grow up in a rural area with a lot of room to play or in an urban area with access to many different educational opportunities. Remember to think about your parenting values. If you’re feeling stuck, looking through profiles of adoptive families online can help you clarify what you feel is important.
It’s helpful to work with an adoption agency or law firm during this process. They can help you make your adoption plan, clarify your values, and interact with prospective adoptive families.
Look at Family Profiles
As you look at family profiles or independent websites, start to make a list of questions you have or themes that you’d like to discuss with these families. There may be a few families that strike you as a possible fit for you. Make a note about why you think they would be a good fit and a list of general and specific questions you have for the family. If you’re adopting through an agency, you may find these family profiles through the agency. If you’re adopting independently, you can find many family profiles online as well, since families often create their own adoption websites.
Plan Your Introduction
If you’re contacting families independently to pursue an independent adoption, an email may be your first contact with the family. If you’re working with an agency or law firm that has waiting families, you may also want to write an introduction. You can put as little or as much information as you wish into your introduction to a prospective adoptive family.
Your first contact may be very simple, letting people know that you’re a birth mother who’s considering adoption and that you’re intrigued by their profile. You don’t need to discuss why you’re choosing adoption if you don’t want to do so. It can be helpful to outline some of your wishes and values in your introduction. If you’d like to set up another contact, you can ask for a phone call. When you’re asking the questions that are most important to you, a conversation can clarify your questions and answers better than an email might.
After you’ve made contact with a family, take some time to think about your connection. While you may feel like you need to confirm whether or not you’ve chosen a family, you don’t need to decide right away if you’re unsure.
I am available to talk with you and answer your questions whether you have decided on open adoption or not. I am an attorney and a birth mother and have been in your shoes. Feel free to contact me anytime.
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Images Courtesy of Family Formation: Client photos printed with permission.