You are welcome to call/text/video chat with us at any point during your pregnancy or after delivery to learn about adoption. Contacting us does not mean that you are placing for adoption. You cannot legally consent to an adoption until the very earliest of 72 hours post-delivery and after a social and medical history (more on this below) is taken.
A Birth Parent Assessment occurs with a licensed adoption assessor, employed by Spirit of Faith Adoptions, with expectant parent(s) are in the process of considering adoption. This is when Social and Medical History is collected from both the biological mother and biological father—if he is not known then his information will not be gathered. A social and medical history is a state required form asking questions about you family's health history and social information. This means you will be asked about your parents and grandparents' health, your health and if you know any health factors of your baby. The social aspect of the legal forms is to find out more about you so your child can have access to this information if you do choose adoption. (E.g. if you’re an excellent basketball player, eloquent writer, you play the flute, etc.) During an assessment, the assessor will also explain adoption laws, including an explanation of how we can assist with living expenses, and a Laws and Materials Form is completed.
After you have completed the social and medical history, Spirit of Faith Adoptions will set up a meeting for you to look at profiles of hopeful adoptive parents, if you wish. During that meeting you will view books of families that best suit your child’s needs that you spoke of during the social and medical history. You can then request to meet the family(s) you would like to learn more about (more on that below).
4. Meeting Families
When you meet a hopeful adoptive family, it can be nerve wracking, like a first date. Spirit of Faith Adoptions will be there with you to help the meeting go smoothly. You are welcome to meet as many families as you would like. Looking for the right family to parent your child is an emotional task but we are here for you in any capacity that you need.
5. Matching with a Family
Matching with a family means you want to get to know them better as to potentially place your child in their care. Matching gives expactant/biological families that ability to get to know the hopeful adoptive family over the course of time. It is our agency policy that a match does not happen before twenty weeks of gestation. We have this policy to allow expectant/biological families the ability to process the initial shock of pregnancy and to be able to make choices based in thoughtful wisdom and not in shock or fear. This is not to say that you will be expected to place for adoption. No one will pressure you in any way. We are here to support you in whatever parenting plan you choose.
Spirit of Faith Adoptions will work with you to create a birth plan prior to delivery so that you can choose what happens and when. If you would like the hopeful adoptive family at the hospital, we will be there to facilitate that. If you would rather have the hospital time to yourself, we will certainly respect that and make sure your wishes are honored. We believe that this time with your child is critical to confirming your parenting plan, and we will honor your wishes. YOU have full custody of your child so no one can be in the room who you do not want to be there.
7. Temporary Custody
After you give birth, you will typically to be discharged within 24 hours unless you have a c-section. The law requires that expectant parents can not legally consent to their baby's adoption until 72 hours after birth. If you plan to leave the hospital within the 72 hour period after the baby's birth and continue with your plan for adoption, Spirit of Faith Adoptions will meet with you prior to discharge to sign a temporary custody form. That way, the adoptive parents could care for the baby at the hospital if you wish until the adoption is complete. Temporary custody is also an option after the baby is discharged if you need more time to make your decision to parent or to complete the adoption plan.
8. Consenting to the Adoption
If you decide you want to place your baby for adoption, you can meet with Spirit of Faith Adoptions at least 72 hours after the baby's birth and sign the Permanent Surrender form. (You do not have to appear in court.)
9. After Placement for You
Spirit of Faith Adoptions will help you to connect with a counselor at your request, SOFA Moms is a private Facebook group ran by Jennifer Mae, author, speaker and birth mother on staff, and you are welcome to join that. We also have a Christ-Centered Retreat called Fireweed for birth mothers at Beulah Beach in Vermillion, Ohio in September.
10. After Placement for Your Child
For six months after your child is placed with the adoptive family, the family will have an adoption assessor visiting them at their home to ensure that your baby is safe, healthy and happy. After a minimum of six months, the family will attend a court hearing in order to finalize the baby's adoption. What finalization means is that the adoptive family is taking full and complete legal custody of your child and the adoption process will be complete.