Women from many different walks of life consider adoption for their babies. Whether for financial reasons, lack of support or pursuit of other goals, choosing adoption can be a brave decision that benefits both the mother and the child.
Can you put your child up for adoption while in the military? If you’re asking this question, you’re not alone. You may have a different stereotype of what birth mothers are like, but there’s no one category for birth mothers who choose adoption. Young and old, professional and blue collar, military or not — women choose adoption from all different places.
But, how does it work? How do I put my baby up for adoption if I’m active duty military? What kind of resources might be available, and who can help with the adoption?
These are important questions, and knowing the answers will greatly benefit any expectant mother in the military considering adoption.
Can You Put Your Child Up for Adoption While in the Military?
Adoption is always an option for you. This choice isn’t always easy, and the adoption process can be challenging at times. But as you know from your service in the military, things that are worth doing are rarely easy.
You may feel alone in making this decision, but there are other military members giving kids up for adoption — and really, there is no “giving up” in this choice. As a member of the military, you may be especially averse to the idea of “giving up.” You’ve been trained to do the opposite in every instance. Adoption, however, is giving a chance at life. It’s taking action and making a brave decision from a place of love, and you can always choose adoption.
How Do I Put My Baby Up for Adoption If I’m Active Duty?
The adoption process for prospective birth mothers is not the same across the board. There will be unique nuances to your adoption. Everyone is different, and no two adoptions are exactly the same. However, the big steps required are the same.
Step 1: Find an Adoption Agency to Work With
There are several different types of adoption agencies, and each come with distinct advantages and disadvantages. When you decide that giving your baby up for adoption in the army, navy or other branch of the military is best for you and your baby, the first step is finding the adoption agency with the most obvious advantages for you. Your adoption agency will guide you through each of the following steps to complete a successful adoption.
Step 2: Create an Adoption Plan
With the help of an adoption specialist, you can create an adoption plan that lays out how you would like this process to go. If you are active duty and stationed overseas, don’t worry. You don’t have to meet face-to-face with your adoption specialist, especially when working with a national adoption agency whose staff is used to communicating long-distance with prospective birth mothers.
Step 3: Choose an Adoptive Family and Pre-placement Contact
You get to choose the family you think is best when giving your baby up for adoption in the army, navy, air force or marines. You’ll be able to look at adoptive family profiles and pick the best fit for your baby. After choosing a family, you will have the opportunity to get to know them through pre-placement contact. This is a time to begin feeling comfortable with the adoptive parents and confident that they are going to be amazing for your baby.
Step 4: Hospital Stay and Placement
Depending on your situation when giving your baby up for adoption in the military, this step could be different. If you are an active duty military member and stationed overseas, you would need to return to the U.S. to give birth. If you are active duty and already in the U.S., then this step will follow usual protocol. Once you give birth, you will need to officially consent to the adoption. Depending on which state you give birth in, there may be a mandatory minimum waiting period until consent can be given, ranging from 24 hours to 72 hours. After you have given consent, the baby will be placed with the adoptive parents.
Step 5: Post-placement Contact
Depending on how open you would like the adoption to be, you have a chance for continued communication with the adoptive parents and your child post-placement. This happens in many different ways, like letters and photo or phone calls. Some open adoptions even include in-person visits.
Your adoption process when giving your baby up for adoption in the army, air force, navy or marines will be unique, but it will still follow these basic steps. All along the way, you’ll have guidance and assistance from your adoption agency.
How Do You Get Adoption Hotline Phone Number in the Military?
There are many adoption hotlines and other resources available to you. You could consider resources like: