Adoption After Sexual Assault
With one American getting sexually assaulted every approximately sixty-eight seconds, according to the Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network (RAINN), now more than ever we need to ensure that all cases of sexual assault are properly addressed and heard. Part of this mission involves supporting victims who become the mothers of an unplanned child. At Adoption Choices of Arizona, we are dedicated to providing the utmost care and solace to anyone grappling with the aftermath of sexual assault.
Why Adoption Might Be The Best Choice For You and Your Child
When it comes to unplanned pregnancy options, no matter the cause, there are always three main choices for the birth family to choose from, adoption, abortion, and caring for the child. While the latter two are possibilities for every mother to choose from, they are not always viable. Here are a few reasons why:
Childcare: Many mothers of unplanned children, especially those born of sexual assault, do not have the resources required to care for a child. From time and money to proper housing and educational systems, there are plenty of reasons why someone may not be equipped to keep the child. While some might suggest having a relative or friend care for the baby, this is not always available and can strain relationships. In addition, victims of sexual assault may be upset by the idea of raising the child of their assailant. Recovering from sexual assault is difficult enough without having to worry about caring for an unplanned child.
Adoption: Adoption, however, allows the mother to be free of any childcare or hassle while still allowing the child to have the chance at a bright future. And with Adoption Choices of Arizona, it is as easy as can be. We guarantee that the entire adoption process from birth to placement will be carried out with the love and support of our team of adoption experts. Adoption can be the first step in allowing you to heal from the tragedy you have experienced.
Abortion: In Arizona, while abortion is legal for those who are victims of sexual assault, this is only an option for up to around eighteen weeks into pregnancy. Also, a variety of laws complicate the abortion process for sexual assault victims, such as the universal required speech and ultrasound that must be administered 24 hours prior to the procedure, as well as required fetal tissue and documentation that must be provided to the courts as evidence for the assault case. There is also an immense lack of abortion clinics available in Arizona. It is estimated that eighty percent of Arizona clinics do not contain a clinic, with only about eighteen percent of women living in those counties. Abortion, in general, is also a process that can be emotionally and physically taxing for many. Needless to say, abortion in Arizona is a complicated and frustrating process.
Will the Arizona Adoption Require the Consent of the Father?
A man is considered the legal father of a child in Arizona if he:
- Has been married to the birth mother during the ten-month period before birth
- Is proven to share ninety-five percent paternity with the child
- Has signed the birth certificate or other legal document stating that all parties acknowledge him as the father.
Being the father of the child would typically grant him equal rights over the child as the mother. However, given the unlawful circumstances under which the child was conceived, any parent convicted of sexual assault or rape has their parental rights terminated. This means that if the offender is proven guilty and charged, they can no longer have any custody over the child. Therefore, under these terms, the required consent from the father to allow the child to be placed up for adoption would be void.
In order to learn more about the possibility of putting your child up for adoption without the father’s consent, reach out to Adoption Choices of Arizona who will put you into contact with a local adoption attorney. Through a combination of diligence and justice, we will ensure that you and your child are kept safe and content.
Getting The Support You Need As a Victim of Sexual Assault
Sexual assault, no matter the form, can be emotionally and physically debilitating for most victims. As awareness increases, so must support. This is why Adoption Choices of Arizona will do everything in our power to connect victims of sexual assault with the resources they need to recover and heal. In addition to reaching out to our agency, here are a few national and local resources to consult:
- National Sexual Assault Hotline: Call 800.656.HOPE
- National Sexual Assault Online Chat and list of resources can be found here
- Arizona Coalition to End Sexual Abuse and Domestic Violence: various sexual abuse resources available
- Southern Arizona Center Against Sexual Assault resources can be found here
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 a prospective adoptive family hoping to adopt a baby, please instead, visit us here!
Meet the Author: Peter is a writer and editor based in New York. Currently studying at Binghamton University, Peter is majoring in English Literature and Rhetoric. Whether working with Marketing Choices or the mental health blog, Runaway, Peter seeks to provide comfort and warmth to those around him through his writing. A huge advocate for change, Peter looks to promote adoption, mental health awareness, disability awareness, and environmental improvement. Forever looking to make meaningful connections, Peter can be found with a group of friends or going on walks and waving to anyone he passes.