What do I do if I don’t want to keep my baby?
By Jaclyn Prasa
It is life-altering to find out that you are pregnant. Maybe it’s even a little scary, considering it’s an unplanned pregnancy. As you think over your options, you might not feel ready to parent your child. That is OK. Don’t worry. If you are pregnant or have already given birth and you don’t want to keep your baby, you have options.
Options for an Unplanned Pregnancy
1. Baby Safe Haven
The state of Arizona has passed a Safe Haven Law. As a result, a person will not face any criminal charges for surrendering an infant to designated Safe Haven places.
There are conditions. It must be within the first 30 days of birth. The baby must be unharmed. You must physically hand over the baby to someone and indicate it’s under the safe haven law. Safe haven locations include any hospital, any on-duty fire station, any on-duty EMT, and any church indicated as Safe Haven. Adoption agencies in Arizona can also be safe haven locations. Adoption Choices of Arizona is a state-registered Baby Safe Haven.
There exist safe haven drawers which require no contact. Some locations include Banner Thunderbird Medical Center, HonorHealth Scottsdale, and Maricopa Medical Center. After you place your baby in the drawer, an alarm will alert the emergency department. After that, you can freely walk away. Someone will be on their way to get the baby.
After safely surrendering your baby, the Safe Haven provider will immediately send the baby to a hospital for examination. The Department of Child Safety (DCS) will be notified. Private adoption agencies in Arizona have 24 hours after examination to claim the baby. If, however, no adoption agency claims the baby within 48 hours after the exam, DCS will take custody of the infant. The baby will then enter the foster care system.
You can contact Arizona Safe Baby Haven Foundation for more information. Their 24/7 hotline is completely anonymous: 1-866-707-2229.
2. Private Adoption
You can choose to place your baby up for adoption at any point during your pregnancy or after birth. Adoption Choices of Arizona always has families waiting to love your child. Some are ready for immediate placement. You can change your mind at any point during the adoption process, up until the adoption is finalized, which is once you sign over consent.
You’ll work with an adoption counselor who will help you to understand the process. There are several types of adoptions. If you seek closure, you may not want further contact or updates. A closed adoption would be right for you. On the other hand, if you want to contact and get updates, you’d want an open adoption. Ultimately, it is your choice.
Additionally, at Adoption Choices of Arizona, we can assist you with resources: such as financial stability or emotional support. That will be part of your adoption plan. The adoption journey is unique to each person, and we are always here to help you.
By choosing adoption in Arizona, you are choosing life, love, and hope for your baby. At Adoption Choices of Arizona, we treat you with respect and dignity and ensure you receive the birth mother benefit you need.
Should I Choose Adoption or a Baby Safe Haven?
If you have decided you don’t want to keep your baby and you are considering dropping him/her off at a Baby Safe Haven or anywhere else for that matter, please consider calling our Arizona adoption agencies first. We can meet you and accept the baby as a safe haven drop-off, no questions asked, or we can help you create an adoption plan.
At a Baby Safe Haven you are surrendering your parental rights, no questions asked, and you will never have contact with your child again. If an adoption agency is not made aware of the drop-off, your child will enter the state foster care system. If you choose this option, please contact our adoption agency and we can make arrangements to ensure your child is placed with an adoptive family. Alternatively, you can create an adoption plan with us and choose and open or closed adoption with the possibility of future contact. You are still choosing to relinquish your parental rights.
If you need adoption help now, please call us at 480-900-5520, text us at 602-922-0408 or visit us at Adoption Choices of Arizona. For adoption resources or to begin your adoption journey, birth parents can visit us at Adoption Choices of Arizona or call us at 480-900-5520 or text us at 602-922-0408. If you are a prospective adoptive family hoping to adopt a baby, please, instead, visit us here!