By Moki Murillo
Birth mothers are essential to the adoption process. There is a reason why many adoption agencies center their websites around them, including ours. After all, mothers are the ones to give birth to the children the adoption process revolves around. However, it is common knowledge that birth mothers can’t get pregnant on their own.
Unfortunately, there is not nearly enough information about birth fathers compared to birth mothers. Despite this, birth fathers are often also important to the adoption process. For better or for worse, they have the power to help or impede the process.
If you are having an unplanned pregnancy and considering adoption, it is crucial that you know this information. The actions that a birth father can take will decide whether or not your child gets to be adopted.
Basic Adoption Information
If you are unfamiliar with the adoption process, then you first need to know how to begin it.
The first step to begin the adoption process is to contact one of your local adoption agencies. To contact Adoption Choices of Nevada, you can call or text us using the number on our website. While adoption is our agency’s specialty, we will talk to you about all your available options.
If you choose adoption, then your next step would be to arrange a meeting with an adoption counselor. Your adoption counselor will help you form an adoption plan that best suits your needs. Through this adoption plan, you can screen through adoptive families and choose the best one for your baby. You can also choose the adoption type, which is based on what relationship you want with the adoptive family. If you are eligible, your adoption plan can even cover reasonable living and medical expenses, such as prenatal care. Other adoption services can include a customizable birth plan and mental health support post-placement.
These are the basic steps in every adoption process. As stated before, however, the birth father has the power to help or hinder this process. There are also legal steps in the process that can require the birth father.
Adoption Information About Birth Fathers
1. What is the Role of Birth Fathers in the Adoption Process?
Ultimately, the role of the birth father depends on if they are present.
If the birth father is present, their consent would be needed for the adoption process to proceed. Assuming this is granted, the birth father would then provide information for the adoption plan. Birth fathers often have to provide their full name, address, and contact information. In some cases, they might even need to submit a DNA test to prove the paternity of the child. Additionally, the birth father could be required to give financial assistance to the birth mother. This requirement, however, varies on a case-by-case basis. The birth father, however, does not get to choose the child’s adoptive family. When it comes to adoption in Nevada, that right is reserved for you, the birth mother.
If the birth father is absent, then steps must be taken to legally terminate or restrict their paternal rights. The adoption agency should provide you with legal options that would lead you to that end. Even if the birth father is never found, we often just need to provide evidence of a thorough search. In that case, the adoption can proceed.
2. What if the Birth Father Tries to Prevent the Adoption Process?
The adoption process can get complicated if we don’t have the birth father’s consent. In that case, you would likely need to settle the issue in court before the adoption process can proceed. If that should happen, then there is a real possibility that the adoption process could be halted entirely. Thankfully, we at Adoption Choices of Nevada can provide legal aid and cover legal expenses. If you are eligible, we can help you through a potential hearing and explore legal options.
3. Can the Birth Father Raise the Child at the End of the Adoption Process?
In our experience, adoption opportunities can be found in all manner of places. It is possible for the birth father to take custody of the child should a court judge them worthy. If you trust your child’s birth father, you can choose to proceed in this course of action. Adoption Choices of Nevada can even offer co-parenting options and facilitate dialogue with the birth father should you wish.
While this scenario sounds like a conventional nuclear family, there are key differences. In this case, the birth mother is not a part of the birth father’s immediate household. As the birth mother is unable to raise the child herself, the birth father chooses to take the responsibility.
Although this may look selfish to an outsider, birth mothers often have circumstances that prevent them from raising children. They could be low-income, have an unstable living situation, or have a demanding occupation.
You know your circumstances better than anyone. If you feel unable to raise your child, then find someone who can be what’s best. Whether it is the birth father or someone else, you have the right to secure your child’s future.
Birth Fathers, Adoption, and You
Your child’s birth father can either be a blessing or a hindrance, assuming he is present at all. Ideally, the birth father should be your ally. They should support you through pregnancy and help you find a new home for your child. Alternatively, the birth father can even be the one to raise your child if you are unable to do so on your own. Should the birth father contest, however, Adoption Choices of Nevada stands ready to help fight for your child’s future.
If you (and possibly your child’s birth father) are interested in adoption, contact Adoption Choices of Nevada today.