Archive for Unplanned Pregnancy

“I’m a Birth Father…Do I Have a Say in Adoption?”

what are my rights as a birth father?Has your girlfriend just told you she’s pregnant and going to place your baby for adoption? Or maybe it’s your wife who wants to do adoption, after years of struggling to make ends meet. In any case, you might be wondering, “does the father have a say in adoption?”

The answer is definitely “yes”! Here at Lifetime, we encourage birth fathers to be a part of the adoption planning. The term “birth father” refers to a man whose baby or child is placed with an adoptive family. Today, we’re giving you info about your choices and rights in modern adoption!

We believe that it’s just as important for you to know your adoption rights as it is for her. Right now, your family might be pressuring you to “step up” and be a man, to fight the adoption.

Adoption Isn’t Giving Up

Lifetime has heard many men say they feel like adoption is a “cop-out.” They don’t want to admit any weakness, including the fact that they might not be able to provide for a child. These men say that they feel like adoption isn’t the best choice because it means they’re “giving up.”

People choose adoption not because they don’t love (or want) their child. Adoption is the choice they make because they love their child so much that they want to give him or her a bright future, something that they might not be able to provide at that point in their lives.

Adoption Isn’t Saying Goodbye

With open adoption, you’re able to remain a part of your child’s life and see them growing up. So, adoption definitely isn’t goodbye forever! Birth fathers are able to feel pride in the decision, and see the blessing that adoption is for their child. “Adoption was the best choice we could have made for our child…we were able to give our daughter a mom and a dad who are excited to provide her with everything she needs and wants,” says one birth father. By playing an active role in the adoption plan, many birth fathers have shared that they are glad they put their child’s needs above theirs.

Learning Your Rights

As a birth father, you have the same rights that the birth mother does. You can fully participate in the adoption at whatever level you want to. Just like your baby’s mother can, you’re able to interview adoptive couples and ask them questions. What kinds of questions?
You could ask about their parenting style, jobs, family structure, lifestyle, and even about their hobbies. You’re able to interview several adoptive families and meet with them, too.

Birth fathers have rights, too. Each state has their own laws and requirements about your responsibilities and rights. So it’s best to speak with an attorney who specializes in adoption law if you have questions.

Lifetime recognizes that the adoption decision can be as difficult for you as it is for your baby’s birth mother.

To talk with an Adoption Coordinator about an adoption plan for your child, just call Lifetime at 1-800-923-6784.

“I’m SO GRATEFUL to have found such an AMAZING adoption agency!”

Lifetime birth mother posts on Facebook Lifetime provides continued pregnancy and adoption support to birth moms from all over. This includes birth mothers right here in Florida, like Terri. Last year, she posted on Facebook about how much she loves her baby’s adoptive mom. And then recently, Terri posted on Facebook:

“I want to take a minute to be thankful for something a lot of people may never understand. I am SO GRATEFUL to have found such an AMAZING adoption agency!!

Lifetime Adoptions, and their case workers ESPECIALLY Tiffany, are the most kind, and caring people you could ever meet !! And I can NEVER thank them enough for finding and bringing to me, my son’s AMAZING adoptive parents Cassie and Matt !!! I am FOREVER thankful !!”

Terri posted on Facebook about Lifetime Adoption Agency Florida

Adoption is a loving decision that pregnant women and moms make with their child’s best interests in mind. Every woman has her own unique circumstances, goals, and hopes for her child’s life.

Here at Lifetime, we’ll never pressure you to parent OR to make an adoption plan for your baby. Instead, we encourage you to plan ahead for your child’s future, and your own.

If you’re considering adoption, we want you to know that you have a say in each part of the adoption process. Some of the many options you have with open adoption include:

  • Selecting your baby’s adoptive parents from hundreds of couples of all races, who are ready and excited to adopt.
  • Getting to know the family you chose before the adoption happens.
  • Planning how things go at the hospital when you give birth.
  • Personalizing the amount of contact you have with the adoptive family and your child in the future.
  • Receiving free licensed third-party counseling, expert legal assistance, and support both before and after the adoption.

We want you to know that adoption answers and help are just a text or phone call away, at 1-800-923-6784.

How to Talk About Adoption With Your Baby’s Father

texting at nightLearning that you’re pregnant unexpectedly sure brings up a lot of emotions. You might be worried about how to tell your boyfriend you’re pregnant and thinking about adoption. You might be thinking about keeping your pregnancy a secret to him then keeping him in the dark about the adoption process. Today, we’re going to talk about why that’s not such a great idea.

When you’re making an adoption plan, it’s important to be honest with your baby’s father. But know that if you’re not comfortable with talking to him, Lifetime can help.

Some women worry that they won’t be able to choose adoption because of their baby’s father. Know that Lifetime can help you out, whatever your situation is. That includes if:

  • You aren’t sure who your baby’s father is
  • He’s in jail
  • You don’t know where he lives or what his name is
  • He isn’t open to the adoption
  • You’re married, but not to the baby’s father

You might be wondering how in the world you’ll tell him you’re pregnant. It seems like life would be easier if you kept your adoption plans a secret from him. Well, here’s 4 reasons why it’s a good idea to be honest with your baby’s father:

1. Your Child Will Know Their Birth Father

As they grow up, your child will wonder about his or her birth father. By identifying him now, you’re providing your child with this vital info they’ll be asking for in the future.

2. Gives Your Child a Medical History
The more background info that’s known for your child’s medical history, the better. They’ll need this medical history info throughout their life; just think of how often you’re asked for yours at the doctor’s office! By being honest with him about your adoption plans, he’s then able to share his family’s medical history too, allowing your child to have a completed medical history.

3. Allows the Adoption to Happen
We know it’s not easy to tell him you’re pregnant and are making an adoption plan. But it’s way better than him learning he’s a dad years down the road! So, make sure to be honest with him now.

If you need help telling him you’re pregnant, Lifetime can help you find the words. Or, you can rely on us to inform him of your adoption plans.

Some birth mothers work with their baby’s father at picking the adoptive family. If you’d like to learn more about working with him throughout the adoption planning process, check out: “Adoption Truth: Guys Can Be Involved, Too.”

4. Helps the Adoption Go Smoothly
By revealing his identity, his rights are recognized during the adoption. This helps your adoption plan happen more easily. If you’d like to learn about his rights, here’s a quick link: Birth Fathers’ Adoption Legal Rights.

7 Things to Know About Your Unplanned Pregnancy

positive pregnancy test? here's what you should know!Lots of us have been there: standing in line to pay for a pregnancy test. It doesn’t matter if the test is for a friend or a “friend,” it’s as if you can feel the panic in the air.

If you’ve just gotten a positive pregnancy test, you might be freaking out. Nothing in makes sense, and it’s like your stomach has fallen to your feet. You wake up the next few mornings with anxiety, realizing it wasn’t all a dream and you’re actually pregnant.

Here are 7 things to be aware of about your unplanned pregnancy:

1. It’s fine to be scared
The fact that you’re freaking out makes you human. It doesn’t matter if you’re 17, 27, or 37: an unplanned pregnancy is a shock. It’s also OK to be angry or sad. You might be sad for a version of your life that you’ll have to let go of. Know that no matter how you’re feeling, it’s okay. If you don’t allow yourself to feel these emotions now, they’ll eat you alive.

2. Nobody can tell you what to do
Lots of people might give you their opinions. But nobody can tell you how your decision will affect your life. No matter how many Google searches you do, it won’t predict your future. So try to cut through all the noise in your ears. Your heart knows which choice is best for you.

3. You’re not totally alone
Facing an unplanned pregnancy might make you feel alone, but that’s far from the truth. Nearly 50% of women in the U.S. will face an unplanned pregnancy by the time they’re 45 (source: the Guttmacher Institute). The reality is that there are tons of women who know how you feel because they’ve been there themselves.

4. Avoid using fear or anger to make a decision
While the emotions you’re feeling are real and OK, they might be getting in the way of your thinking. Once you’re calm, you’ll be best able to make a decision. Then, consider if the reason for your choice is love or fear.

5. Get a support system
This can be difficult to find, especially if you’re thinking about adoption. It will be an important part of moving forward. You might find a support system online if no one in your life has your back.

Lifetime has peer counselors that you can talk with. They’re women who’ve been where you are now and want to hear you out and give advice if you’re open to it. Just call us at 1-800-923-6784 if you’d like to talk or text with a birth mom.

6. You’re more than a statistic
Feeling ashamed, embarrassed, or even disappointed in yourself is normal. But we want you to know that you’re so much more than a just a statistic. An unplanned pregnancy doesn’t have to define you; it doesn’t make you stupid or irresponsible.

7. You can choose adoption anytime
You don’t have to make an adoption plan while you’re pregnant. Lifetime helps lots of women with adoption after their baby’s been born and when their child is a few years old. We’re not here to pressure you or rush you into a decision. Call Lifetime whenever you’re ready to learn more: 1-800-923-6784.

Modern Adoption vs. Safe Haven: How Do They Compare?

modern adoption or safe haven?Wondering what exactly is a “safe haven”? Safe Haven laws allow a parent give up their unwanted baby privately. With these laws, moms can drop their baby off at a safe haven location, as long as their baby hasn’t been abused. Safe Haven laws began so that babies wouldn’t be left in places like dumpsters or public toilets.

Regardless of what their life situation is like, a woman can make a private open adoption plan just as quickly and easily as she can drop off her baby at a safe haven. Just take a look at the benefits of creating an adoption plan instead of dropping off your baby at a Safe Haven:

  • Your baby won’t go into the crowded foster care system; they’ll be able to go home with a stable, loving adoptive couple of your choosing right away.
  • You’ll know what happened to your child (even if you end up choosing a closed adoption after placement.)
  • You can get access to no-cost counseling and support.
  • Adoption is free to choose, and it comes with no legal risks to you.
  • You can remain confidential with your situation
  • You’ll never be judged for making an adoption plan.
  • Adoption gives both you and your baby more stability and security in the long run.
  • If you choose open adoption, you’re able to stay in touch with your child and the adoptive family.

You can make an adoption plan for your baby at any time, even after they’re born. It’s never too late to choose adoption! Every child is wanted and adopt-able at Lifetime. To learn more about the advantages of modern adoption, just reach out to us.

Lifetime’s hotline is staffed 24 hours every day! You can call or send a text to 1-800-923-6784.

Telling People You’re Pregnant

The shock has started to wear off. You’ve taken a minute (or two or even a week!) to think about what your pregnancy will mean. Maybe you’ve decided against abortion, and are stressed out about becoming a mom.

how to tell people about an unplanned pregnancyTons of questions pop up. Who can you tell? Who can help you through the next few months of your pregnancy? What will people say? Will they be happy for you or disappointed in you?

Some women feel relieved once they tell people they’re pregnant. Once you tell people about your pregnancy, you’ll get a wide variety of reactions. Everyone will probably have an opinion to share—whether it’s helpful or not.

The bottom line this: it’s your body, your baby, and your pregnancy. Yours to talk about, yours to experience, and yours to decide about. And after your pregnancy, the baby is yours. So the opinion that counts the most is your own.

This doesn’t mean you have to go through it all alone. Tell people who are going to have your back, even when they don’t agree with you. Tell those who love you, know you, and know your situation. Don’t be scared to share how you’re feeling. If you have someone there by your side, things might not seem as scary or overwhelming.

Would you like to talk about your pregnancy and how you feel about having a baby, but can’t find the words to tell your family or friends? Lifetime is familiar with unplanned pregnancies and the decisions that come with them. Reach out to our caring and compassionate coordinators by texting or calling us at 1-800-923-6784. We’re here to listen, not judge, and can help you find the words you need to tell your parents and your baby’s father. You’re not alone!

Is a Last-Minute Adoption Possible?

learn about your rights and choices in making a last-minute adoption planIf you know that adoption is the best choice for both you and your baby, then having an adoption plan in place before you go into labor is a good idea. But what if you don’t decide until really late in your pregnancy that adoption is best? Or what if you go into labor and then decide on adoption?

With Lifetime, you’re able to make an adoption plan at any time during your pregnancy. We’ve even had women call us from the hospital, in the early stages of labor! Adoption is always a possibility.

When you make a last-minute adoption plan, you still have the same rights and choices as you would if you’d done adoption earlier on. With modern open adoption, you choose the adoptive parents for your baby. An open adoption allows you to talk to and meet the adoptive parents. And, you’re able to stay in touch with the adoptive couple and your child in the future. Birth mothers we’ve worked with stay in contact in a wide variety of ways: through emails, photos, social media updates, phone calls, Skype, and in-person visits.

If you need help money-wise, the adoptive parents you choose can usually pay for your prenatal visits, hospital stay, and living expenses. You have the power to decide how things go at the hospital. What do we mean by this? Your hospital preferences can include stuff like:

  • Who you’re OK with being at the hospital when you deliver
  • Whether you want your baby in the room with you, or if you’d like him or her to stay in the nursery with the adoptive parents
  • If you want to stay in another area of the hospital after you deliver, away from Labor & Delivery
  • How much you want the adoptive parents to participate in the birth (for example, some women are fine with the adoptive mom being in Labor & Delivery. Or maybe you want them to stay in the waiting room)
  • If you’ll want the newborn pictures that are taken of your baby

No matter how early or late you are into your pregnancy, adoption is always a choice you can make. You can even choose adoption after your baby is born.

Lifetime Adoption Agency Florida is here to help you as you go through this decision. Call us whenever you have questions or are ready to learn more: 1-800-923-6784.

“How do I know my baby is going into a good home?”

get Lifetime's answer to the question '"How do I know my baby is going into a good home?'Question: “Right now, I’m 30 weeks pregnant, and I’m looking at adoptive families on your site. They all look friendly, and I like what they write, but how do I know my baby is going into a good home? How do I know the parents are good people?”

Answer: Lifetime Adoption Agency Florida is fully licensed and we do an in-depth screening of each of our adoptive families. That’s how we know that they’re financially secure and stable couples in a solid marriage. They’ve passed criminal background checks, have proven their income via tax records and payroll stubs, and have been declared healthy by doctor physicals.

Couples hoping to adopt also have to be asked lots of questions from a social worker, who visits their home to make sure it’s ready for a baby and to interview them. We do all of this so that you can be rest assured that the adoptive couples you see on our site are approved, screened, and questioned. They also attend adoption courses, so that they understand your need for future communication in what’s known as an “open adoption.”

When is it Too Early or Too Late to do Adoption?

Lifetime has been asked many different questions about when’s the right time to make an adoption plan. The truth is, it’s never too late or too early to look into adoption for your baby! Here are some answers to common questions women ask when they’re thinking about adoption early in their pregnancy as well as late in their pregnancy:
“I’m not that far along in my pregnancy – when can I choose adoption?”
“I’m not that far along in my pregnancy – when can I choose adoption?”If you’ve just learned that you’re pregnant or aren’t that far along, know that you can start the adoption process now. Most women aren’t 100% sure adoption is right for their situation when they call Lifetime. You don’t have to be committed to adoption before you contact us.
Contacting Lifetime early in your pregnancy gives you more time to learn about the adoption process, get emotional and financial support, and search for the right adoptive family for your baby. Contacting us doesn’t force you to choose adoption: you have the right to change your mind at any time until the legal paperwork has gone through.
“My due date is coming up quickly! – when is it too late to find adoptive parents for my baby?”
“My due date is coming up quickly! – when is it too late to find adoptive parents for my baby?”Choosing adoption isn’t an easy decision to arrive at. Some women don’t contact Lifetime to learn about adoption until the final weeks or days of their pregnancy. We have women call us from the hospital in the beginning stages of labor, more often than you’d think! If your due date is near, you might be wondering, “Is it too late to give my baby up for adoption?”
It’s never too late to choose adoption. You can even make an adoption plan after trying to parent your baby. Lifetime can help you begin the adoption quickly if that’s what you’d like. Within a matter of hours, we can have the adoptive parents you select there at the hospital waiting room while you deliver.
No matter how far along you are, you’ll have the chance to review and get to know a pre-screened adoptive couple. They’re ready and excited to commit to you and your baby. In many cases, the adoptive parents can cover your medical, counseling, and living costs.

Learn more about how to get started with your modern adoption plan by calling or texting Lifetime at 1-800-923-6784 today!

We Reveal the Truth About 5 Adoption Myths

learn the truth about these 5 adoption mythsToday, we’re sharing honest answers to 5 adoption myths about choosing adoption for your baby:

1. Adoption is selfish
This adoption myth is the biggest one out there! Really, adoption is about the least selfish choice that you can make for your child. It doesn’t mean you don’t love your baby. It means the opposite: you love them so much that you want them to have the life they deserve. When you don’t have the needed resources to care for a baby or aren’t ready to become a parent, choosing adoption for your baby is the most selfless thing you can do.

2. I’ll be giving my baby away to strangers
With a modern, open adoption, you have the power to choose your baby’s adoptive parents, and meet them to interview them too. You can pick a family who would raise your baby exactly the way that you wish. You also have the right to decide how much future contact with your child and family as you would like, whether it’s emails, letters, photos, or even visits.

3. I can’t do adoption without my parent’s approval
Some parents don’t understand modern adoption and how it works, so they might get angry and try to change your mind. The truth to this adoption myth is that no matter how young you are, no one can force you to a pregnancy choice, whether it’s parenting, adoption, or abortion. The law is on your side, and your parents typically don’t have rights to your baby. If your parents aren’t supportive, you might try writing down your adoption plan so they can see you’ve put a lot of thought into this.

4. If I use drugs or alcohol, no one will want to adopt my baby

Whatever your life situation is, there are adoptive families ready to provide your baby with a loving home. Lifetime is here to support and help you as you make an adoption plan, even if your baby has been exposed to drugs or alcohol. It’s important that you’re honest with us about any tobacco, drug, or alcohol use during your pregnancy. That way, your doctor is able to best take care of your health, and the health of your baby.

If you’re using drugs and are near your due date, your baby may test positive for drugs at birth. If these cases, the hospital must notify Child Protective Services, and your baby may be placed in foster care. By having an adoption plan in place, you’re able to choose where your baby will go, and the level of contact you want to have with your child as they grow up. So, if you think your baby may test positive for drugs at birth, call us at 1-800-923-6784 for help and info.

5. My baby is almost a year old! It’s too late to do adoption
It is never too late to choose adoption, and you can begin at any time. Maybe you’d thought about adoption and put it on hold. You can still go forward at any time. Even if you’ve been trying to make parenting work and are struggling, it’s not too late. You’re never making a bad choice for your child by loving them enough to give them the life you know they deserve, when you know you can’t provide it.

If you’re thinking of adoption, you can call Lifetime today to learn more: 1-800-923-6784. Contacting us doesn’t mean you HAVE to choose adoption. It just means you’re learning more about it.