You may decide to place your child for adoption. This loving decision is often made by women who first thought abortion was their only way out. Adoption laws have changed in recent years. In confidential adoptions, birth and adoptive families do not exchange any identifying information. With semi-open adoptions birth parents and adoptive parents will know each other by first names only, but an adoption agency or third party mediates all communication between families. Open adoptions permit the most contact between both families, which aids adjustment and eliminates the need for searching for birth parents later in life if the adopted child chooses to eventually do so.

Consent to adoption cannot be given until sixteen days after the birth of the child. The adoption agency provides a counsellor to discuss all your options and the long term consequences for you and your child. Before the adoptive placement arrangements can be made for the temporary care of your child before you give consent to adoption.

When adoption consent is signed and becomes final, you give up all your rights and responsibilities as a parent. You can then express in writing your wishes about the religion, race and ethnic background of the adoptive parents. The adoption agency must carefully consider your wishes and try to find a suitable family for your child. At the end of the period for withdrawing consent, you may, if you wish, express a preference for a family from a small number of non-identifying descriptions of approved families suggested by the agency.

The final decision is made by the adoption agency. If you wish, prior to the child’s placement, you may meet with the adoptive parents who are selected for your child.

Having your child adopted is an important and life-long decision. You are given the opportunity to change your mind within a period of twenty-eight days after the day you gave consent to adoption.