What are my options?
Contacting the agency does not mean you have to make an adoption plan. Our agency offers “Decision Making Counselling”. Your options include parenting the child, either together as a couple or on your own, or with support of extended family. You may want to explore the resources in your community such as daycare and community programs with the counsellor. If the pregnancy is in the early stages, abortion is also an option. You may also want to place the child with a relative or someone you know.
There are also some other important steps you will need to take, such as giving the adoptive parents information on your medical and social history.
To discuss these options in more detail, please contact our agency at 1-866-582-3678 both during business hours and after hours.
We offer services in languages including Mandarin, Punjabi, Hindi, Cantonese, Spanish and Urdu.
How do I choose an adoptive family?
You will discuss with a counselor the kind of family you would like to raise your child. You may want your child to be in a family with siblings for example, or in a family that shares your religion. The counsellor will then give you home studies (link to info on Home Studies) which are consistent with your request. You will read about the family and will have the opportunity to see pictures of them. Many parents also write a ‘Dear Birth Parent’ letter to you, where they describe their family in their own words and convey what becoming parents’ means to them. We will also make every effort to find a family that shares your cultural heritage.
Who are the adoptive families?
Our agency has many wonderful families with approved homestudies who want to give a child a loving home. The families are very diverse in ages and backgrounds. Some have children and some do not. Some live in the country and some in the city. Some are very clear that one parent would stay at home with a child and some intend for both parents to continue working.
So I have chosen a family, what happens then…?
After you have selected a potential family, you and the adopting parents can decide whether you want to meet. You will also decide with the adopting parents (and with the help of counsellors) on the level of openness you are comfortable with and develop an openness agreement together. You will be asked to give the adoptive parents information on your medical and social history.
Once the baby is born, you will decide how much time you want to spend with him/her before you sign the consents.
Do I have to be sure that I want to make an adoption plan?
No. A counselor will spend time with you to help you make the right choices and help you to review your options. If you decide not to plan an adoption, we will help to link you to community resources and people who can help you (such as other birth parents and those who are parenting their children).
Is there any cost for your services?
No. Services to birth parents are free and you can also receive free legal advice.
What is open adoption?
Openness describes the level of contact between a child’s birth family and adoptive family. It can take many forms, including annual letters and pictures via our agency, to a fully open adoption, where the child develops a one-on-one relationship with you and your extended family. You will decide the level of communication you want with the adoptive family after the adoption. You may want pictures and letters sent to you, or you may want to have visits with the family.
Can I change my mind after the birth of the child?
Though most birth parents don’t change their minds about the adoption plan, some do. A birth mother has 30 days after her child is born in which to change her decision. Birth fathers cannot change their decision after the consents to the adoption are signed.
Can I name my baby?
You will give your child their birth name, which will appear on their original birth certificate. You can discuss with your counsellor and the adoptive family your wishes regarding the child’s name. Ultimately, it will be the adopting parent’s decision about the name of the child, but many adoptive families respect the wishes of birth parents, or include the name as a middle name for example.
What are the pros and cons of openness?
Openness can give you reassurance that your child is healthy and happy in their adoptive family. It also gives your child the opportunity to have information about his/her birth family history, what his/her birth parents look like and, in some cases, to have an ongoing relationship with you. There is no ‘cookie cutter’ for openness. It is difficult to predict exactly what openness will look like, even if you have an openness agreement in place. This agreement is not legally binding, so the adoptive parents have the final say in whether you see your birth child.
All our services to birth parents are free and respect your privacy.
WHERE TO FIND US/REACH US:
Family Services of Greater Vancouver – Licensed Adoption Agency
301 – 1638 E Broadway, Vancouver BC V5N 1W1
Call 604-736-7613 or toll-free 1-866-582-3678 to learn more about adoption.
General adoption inquiries