What are My Rights as a Birth Mother in Arizona?
A lot of your focus as a birth mother is probably going towards the emotional side of your adoption. However, it is important that you know about the legal side of your adoption journey as well. Laws on adoption may differ from state to state, presenting different and unique challenges across the United States. In the state of Arizona specifically, this is no different, and there are some key facts to keep in mind as you go through the adoption process. You should take some time to learn about your rights as a birth mother in Arizona.
At Adoption Choices of Arizona, we aim to provide resources and inform you to the best of our ability. This includes covering some of the important rights that you have as a birth mother in the state of Arizona while looking to put a child up for adoption. Being aware of your rights is paramount to any citizen; but, especially so for birth mothers who are placing their child for adoption.
Your Right to Choose
One of the most basic rights you get as a birth mother is your right to choose. If you are facing an unplanned pregnancy, you have three options to research and choose from to determine what it is best for you and your child. These options are: parent your child, terminate your pregnancy or place your child for adoption.
There is no right or wrong choice to make with this. Only you know what is best, and it’s entirely your decision how you want to move forward with your unexpected pregnancy. No can or should make this decision for you. If you go through any counseling to help you make a decision — state-mandated or not — you may be asked whether or not anyone is forcing or persuading you one way or the other. This question is only to make sure you are the one in control. That you are of sound mind and understand the choices laid out before you.
As a woman, you have the right to choose. This is something that no one else can take away from you.
Your Right to Contact
Simply put, having put your child up for adoption does not disqualify you from having a relationship with your child. At our adoption agency, we believe that your best wishes regarding the communication you hold with your child and your child’s adoptive family are to be respected. Because of this, we strive to provide you with as much control over your adoption journey as possible.
You have the option to choose how much or how little you will communicate with the family; in fact, all families that are considered for adoptive homes are required by Adoption Choices of Arizona to be open to sending letters and pictures in some sort of correspondence with the birth mother. Your control over this communication will come in the form of what level of openness you choose to have with the adoption as well as the relationship you share with the adoptive parents.
Your Right to Consent
In Arizona, the birth mother is legally responsible in making any decisions regarding the birth and placement of her child. In other words, you have the final say in as your child’s biological parent until you relinquish your parental rights. The same is true for whether or not you want your child’s birth father involved in the adoption process. If he is supportive and known, he has the option to be a part of the decisions that go into the adoption process. However, in all things, you have the ultimate say. The choices you make take precedence no matter what.
In Arizona, this right is held strong by the law. So long as an expectant mother has her child’s best interests at heart, there isn’t much that can stop her. Even a pregnant woman under the age of 18 still retains her right to decide what is best for her child. This is a very important right to be aware of as a birth mother, because it gives you full control over your child’s future. Others — friends, family, partner or spouse — may voice their thoughts and opinions; yet in the end, the only opinion that matters is yours.
Understanding Your Rights as a Birth Mother in Arizona
Some of your rights as a birth mother in Arizona are guaranteed to you by law, while others are enforced in conjunction with our adoption agency policy. No matter where these rights come from, though, they are put in place to ensure that your adoption experience is positive, empowering and safe.
Always remember that no one can take these rights away from you. No one can take away you being a mother to your child. No matter what, you have rights and the choice is always yours.
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: Josh Drogemuller is a Senior at Grand Valley State University and has interests in writing and digital studies. A relative newcomer to the field of professional writing, Josh has spent the last eight years of his educational career honing his skills on the page. Josh is currently working towards a Bachelor of Science in Writing.
Living in the Midwest, Josh looks forward to long baseball games and longer sentences.