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Placing Your Baby for Adoption in the Hospital: Last Minute Adoptions

An unplanned pregnancy is a very overwhelming time in a birth mother’s life. It can be messy and unpredictable. Although you may have had set plans for your pregnancy, things change. Adoption is common, whether you were unaware of your pregnancy or you’ve decided you no longer want the responsibility of caring for a child. The reason behind adoption varies from birth mother to birth mother. 

Remember that your reason for placing your baby for adoption in the hospital after birth is valid. You are committing one of the most selfless acts a birth mother can do. Having a last minute adoption isn’t the most common approach, but it’s still feasible. Here’s what you can expect to happen when choosing adoption while still in the hospital.

Why choose a last minute adoption?

The reason for choosing adoption at the last minute differs from birth mother to birth mother. Here are a few of the most common reasons why birth mothers choose adoption while in the hospital:

  • I didn’t know I was pregnant. Although this sounds far-fetched, it’s not unheard of. There have been many cases in which a birth mother was unaware of her pregnancy until she went into labor, or just days before. As a result, the birth mother had no plans or a chance to prepare for the arrival of her child. Due to the unexpected nature of her pregnancy, the birth mother may choose a last minute adoption at the hospital.
  • I couldn’t make a decision. The choice to place your baby for adoption is a difficult one. It’s an emotional rollercoaster and can be very taxing on the birth mother. Many women have a set plan on what they’d do if they became pregnant, but that often changes when the time actually comes. A birth mother may have plans to care for her child, but as more time passes she may realize she’s not in the best position to do so. Therefore, she’d choose adoption. 
  • My situation changed. Life is unpredictable and some things don’t always go according to plan. One hiccup can cause huge disruption in a birth mother’s plan. Some women lose their job during their pregnancy and can no longer financially afford to care for her child. Maybe she was evicted, or the birth father is no longer in the picture. Not having the means to care for your child is a valid reason for choosing a last minute adoption. 

How to choose adoption in the hospital

Making an adoption plan is possible at any stage of a birth mother’s pregnancy, including after giving birth. Whether you relate to one of the earlier stated reasons for choosing a last minute adoption, or have your own valid reason, last minute adoption is possible. This adoption process is the same as if you were still pregnant and considering adoption. The only difference is that it’s sped up a little. 

  • Make sure adoption is right for you. Going through labor and delivery is extremely emotional. Adoption is a life changing decision and you want to be confident in your choice. Take a moment and ask the medical staff to leave you alone so you can have a few minutes to yourself and think if a last minute adoption is right for you.
  • Creating an adoption plan. Once you’ve decided to place your baby for adoption, the first thing is to talk with a social worker. The hospital’s social worker will discuss with you your preferences in adoption agencies. They will then contact a professional from an adoption agency, like us, to come to the hospital and help guide you in creating your adoption plan. 

Creating this plan includes:

    • Selecting a level of openness in your adoption
    • Figuring out what kind of family you want for your child
    • Completing any adoption financial assistance
    • And more!
  • Finding an adoptive family. Your adoption specialist will compile a list of potential adoptive families based on your preferences. This is one of the most important decisions you’ll make as a birth mother. You love your baby and want what’s best for them. When your adoption specialist gives you all the adoptive families profiles, take your time to find a family. Look for anything that stands out, whether it be a picture of something funny they said in their profile. Who do you think you’d get along with, and who will care for your baby the best?
  • Placement of your child. When you choose the perfect adoptive family for your child, your adoption specialist will contact them with the good news. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the adoptive family won’t be able to see you at the hospital, but you’ll be able to talk to them on the phone or even video chat with them. With the assistance of a lawyer and your adoption specialist, you’ll consent to placing your baby for adoption. The adoptive family will then take custody of your baby. This can be a difficult time, but have faith in yourself and these selfless choices you’re making.
  • Post placement. Depending on the level of openness you chose in your adoption, this is not a final goodbye. If you choose an open or semi-open adoption, you still have the ability to maintain contact with your child and the adoptive parents. This ranges from in-person meetings, to exchange of photos, and even phone calls. Having this healthy contact will not only benefit the emotional wellbeing of yourself, but your child as well. 

Placing your baby for adoption in the hospital 

Adoption is not an easy decision to make, and we understand your final decision might not come until last minute when you’re in the hospital. Adoption Choices of Arizona is here to help you in whatever way we can. We will walk you through the process of placing your baby for adoption while still in the hospital. 

For adoption resources or to begin your adoption journey, birth parents can visit us at Adoption Choices of Arizona or call or text us at 1-480-900-5520. If you are an prospective adoptive family hoping to adopt a baby, please instead, visit us here!

Meet the author: Sarah Aguilera, a Northern Arizona University linguistics and creative writing graduate, is an aspiring author with a passion for influencing others through written words. She has a healthy ardor for all things literature and is often found with a book in her hands. 

When she’s not working, Sarah likes to spend her free time swimming, playing with her dog, going to concerts with friends and having crazy adventures with her family. Her love for her own family is what pushed her to join the adoption writing team. She looks forward to educating those hoping to grow their family through adoption.

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