The number of adoptions completed in the U.S. is increasing as financial problems continue to affect more single women and families. The loss of jobs, along with cuts to free services for low income families is also causing growth in the amount of requests for adoption help.
Many adoption centers have seen the number of birth mothers planning to place their babies for adoption tripled since the drop in the economy. Some women already have two or three children and just can't afford to feed another mouth.
Adoption doesn't take time off during financially challenging times. Women facing adverse times are looking at options for unplanned pregnancies and for children they feel they cannot afford to care for.
Others are just looking at their dire situations and want a better life for their children. Not only has there been a tremendous increase in newborns placed for adoption, but parents of toddlers and some older children are seeking out adoption as well.
Today, women have more options than abandoning their children or turning them over to the state for foster care. Open adoption is a resource that makes it a win-win situation for all involved in the adoption triad: birth parents, the child, and adoptive parents.
In 2011, many women call into adoption centers to ask about the steps to adoption. A common occurrence are women in their twenties seeking to find adoptive parents for their older children that they cannot afford to parent any longer.
With no help from their child's birth father, these women are supporting their children with only one income. In these occurrences, the loss of her job can be the final straw.
Many times, people may assume that women choosing adoption don't love their children. In fact, it is just the reverse. They love their children deeply and don't want to see them suffer in poverty.
Those calling toll-free hotlines of adoption centers ask questions, find out what their options are, seek support, request counseling, identify legal referrals, and get the help they need and want.
With state and county social services programs being cut throughout the country, adoption centers are now sending out more than just adoption material to hurting families and pregnant women in need.
When the U.S. has experienced similar mini-recessions in the past, adoption centers had always seen increases in calls and adoptions. But this time, adoption centers are experiencing a much greater volume of calls each week.
Currently, many centers are actively providing services for over 400 women, often including their children...they need to help them at their place of need and answer their questions as they determine their options at this difficult time.
Mardie Caldwell, C.O.A.P. is a Certified Open Adoption Practitioner, an award winning author of 5 adoption books: Adopting Online, Adoption: Your Step-by-Step Guide, So I Was Thinking About Adoption, The Healthcare Professional's Adoption Guide, and Called to Adoption. Mardie is also the talk show host of Let's Talk Adoption.com with Mardie Caldwell and the founder of Lifetime Adoption in 1986.
She travels and speaks nationwide on adoption topics, family topics, infertility and writing. She has been quoted in and consulted for Parenting and Adoption magazines and has appeared on CNN, CBS, ABC, BBC, NBC, and Fox. Featured in Parade Magazine, Caldwell is an adoptive mother living in Northern California.
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