Here in the Lone Star State, expectant moms considering adoption need a Texas Birth Mothers Guide just to help them through the maze of options and regulations. When it comes to adoptions here, though, mothers planning to place just won’t find better advice than they’ll get at Abrazo.
As a licensed nonprofit adoption agency, yes, Abrazo offers the best of adoption services. But as a center staffed by Master’s level counseling and social service professionals, Abrazo also offers FREE counseling and support for anyone facing pregnancy and parenthood challenges– adoption plan or no.
Because the women who work at Abrazo know that adoption is just one possibility. It’s not the only option. And it’s not going to be right for everyone. But for any adoption to be optimal, it has to be done the right way, and for the right reasons, by parents who are making a fully-informed decision.
(And that’s why the smartest mamas consider Abrazo to be the very best Texas birth mother guide.)
In Texas, Birth Mothers Guide Each Other at Abrazo
This is an adoption agency that finds loving homes for babies, toddlers and children already born, as well as matching expectant moms with infertile couples hoping to adopt. Abrazo birthmoms enjoy a sisterhood that offers support and encouragement before and after placement. Whether they attend support group meetings, participate in our private online sorority or come to the agency’s weekend Homecoming every other year, birthmothers who place at Abrazo have free and ongoing support for years to come.
Lauranda, the agency’s current counselor, is herself a birthmother who won the Abrazo/Mitchard Birthparent Scholarship years ago. She earned her college degree and her graduate degree in counseling, all while continuing to enjoy an open adoption with the daughter she’d placed and with the adoptive family. (If anyone is qualified to be a Texas birth mother guide, it’s our LaLa!) She makes it her mission to support all her clients as they decide whether adoption is right for them and their babies (and long afterwards, too.)
“Going through an open adoption, you feel a plethora of feelings, all of which are valid. If you were doing this for yourself, you wouldn’t do this at all. But making a good adoption decision means putting your child first and yourself last. Weigh out all the pros and cons. If you’re being honest with yourself, then trust yourself if the pros outweigh the cons. And if the cons outweigh the pros, then take more time to check things out. Ask questions, and seek out others who have experience on both sides. Take the time to be sure.”
Not All Texas Adoption Resources Are The Same
Texas law does require all adoptions that provide financial support for living expenses to go through licensed agencies. Yet there are still out-of-state facilitators and adoption lawyers who violate Texas’ babyselling statute, endangering potential birthparents and their children by offering unreliable advice and illegal payments. That’s how gray market or black market adoptions happen, and yes, those who do them can end up in big trouble.
Anyone exploring adoption options in Texas need to check out two things upfront:
- Is this a licensed Texas adoption agency?
- Is this a nonprofit adoption agency?
Then, do this: go check out any adoption resource being considered on AdoptChange.org.
One mother who recently placed through Abrazo had survived a harrowing experience with a sketchy Utah agency, before coming here. “They flew me and my boyfriend out there, no problem. But then they dumped us in an apartment and it was like they just forgot about us. When they were trying to get me out there, they were always available, but once they got us there, they were too busy to talk to me. So I told them I didn’t want to stay there, and suddenly, they got my boyfriend thrown in jail. I ended up getting myself back to Texas, but it was totally stressful. I wouldn’t wish that mess on anyone.”
Things Texas Parents-To-Be Need to Know
Parents-to-be need to know alternatives to placing, like single parenting, kinship or foster care. While financial hardship may impact someone’s ability to parent, money (or the lack of it) should never ever be the only reason someone chooses adoption. Anyone in Texas can dial 2-1-1 for help finding community resources for substance abuse, housing, childcare, food or crisis counseling.
No adoption decisions in Texas can be legally made until a baby is at least two days (48 hours) old. Ethical agencies offer free legal consults with independent attorneys, if placing parents need legal advice, and free counseling, too– before and after any adoption decision is made. All prospective birthparents need to be prepared for the emotional impact of giving up a baby or child for adoption, which can include separation, loss, grief and depression.
Irrevocable relinquishments sign a baby over to the care of a licensed Texas agency. These agreements are permanent and irreversible, once properly signed. (There’s no grace period or reclaim time in Texas, so be sure before signing.) It’s illegal for babies or children to be bought or sold in any state in the US. (No gifts of value are allowed either; however well-intentioned, these can land both the giver and receiver in prison.) Anyone who tries to influence, bribe, induce or coerce somebody into placing a child for adoption is breaking the law and should be reported.
Need More Guidance? Call Us.
Abrazo’s staff has been on-call, round-the-clock, since January of 1994. That’s a long time to be available 24/7, but as Texas’ birth mother guide, we know that questions (and crises) can come up any day and any hour. So if you want to talk with one of our degreed staff about placing a child for adoption, you can call 1-800-454-5683 anytime, for help you can trust. We’re here to help, and that doesn’t change after papers get signed.