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Considering Adoption For Your Baby

If you're facing an unplanned pregnancy, it's important that you spend some time and give a lot of thought to the options available to you. While we advocate for, and believe in, adoption, you need to make the best decision for both you and your baby. Some people place their children for adoption while others decide to parent or end their pregnancies. This is probably one of the most difficult choices you'll have to make and that's a huge weight to carry on anyone's shoulders.

At, you can learn about adoption, the process and issues involved as well as your rights and the laws about adoption in your province or territory. While we strive to provide our visitors with the most accurate information as possible, it's important that you speak with an adoption professional or social worker if you have questions and concerns about adoption. There are also organizations like "Planned Parenthood" that can offer you support services.

Is Adoption Right For You?

A lot of people have pre-conceived notions about adoption based on things they've heard in the media or through other people's experiences. Adoption has changed considerably over the last decade and birth parents have more rights and are able to take an active role in the process.

If you decide to make an adoption plan, you, as the birth parent, can:

  • review profiles of prospective adoptive families;
  • choose a family for your child;
  • meet with the family before your child is born;
  • have the adoptive family attend appointments and your labour/delivery;
  • hold your baby after the birth and spend time with him/her;
  • take a few days following the birth to think about and ensure adoption is the right choice;
  • sign consent forms and have the right to revoke your consent within a period of time;
  • have contact with the adoptive family and your birth child through photos, letters and visits (this all depends on what type of open adoption everyone has agreed to honour) You don't have to have an open adoption if you're not comfortable with that type of arrangement;
  • receive pre- and post- adoption counseling services for free.

As a prospective birth parent, you can never be forced, or pressured into, placing your child for adoption. Social workers and adoption professionals can counsel you about your options but no one can coerce you into signing consent forms. As well, it is illegal for any professional or potential adoptive families to offer you compensation or gifts in any form for placing your child for adoption.

Legal Issues - Things You Should Know

  • Adoption is forever. Once the period to withdraw your consent expires, your parental rights will be terminated and cannot be reinstated.
  • Openness agreements made between birth parents and adoptive parents are not legally enforceable in Canada. These open adoption agreements may be in written or verbal format and are based on trust and respect for everyone involved.
  • More information about your legal rights can be found in each province/territory's section on this web site. Or, contact an adoption professional with any questions or concerns.

If you're having any doubts about the adoption, now is the time to address these with your adoption worker. Most, if not all, adoption agencies offer free counseling services to potential birth parents. Don't be afraid to take advantage of these services and to address your uncertainties now. Maybe something has changed in your life and you've decided that you want to parent this child? Or, perhaps you're having second thoughts about the family you've chosen to adopt your child? Whatever the case, your worker will be able to help you navigate through these difficult times so that you can make the best decision possible.

Pros and Cons of Adoption for Birth Parents

The following are a few of the advantages and disadvantages of adoption for potential birth parents to consider:

Advantages of Adoption
Disadvantages of Adoption
  • You can review profiles of prospective adoptive families and choose one for your child.
  • Your parental rights are terminated once you sign the consents and the period to withdraw your consent expires.
  • You can have an open adoption with the adoptive family and your birth child through photos, letters and visits. Many families become quite close and have regular contact with each other.
  • You will experience feelings of loss and sadness even though you may still be involved in the child's life through open adoption.
  • You can continue your education or future career plans while still being involved in your birth child's life without having to deal with the daily parental responsibilities.
  • You may experience judgement from others about placing your child for adoption.
  • You can still be involved with and enjoy your birth child if you're not ready to become a parent.


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