The US to See More Catholic Adoptions in Light of Coronavirus
Mardie Caldwell COAP
In light of the novel coronavirus, there is now an extra need for adoptive parents, especially Catholic couples, wanting to adopt in all states.
It is common during recessionary times or challenges that an increased number of women turn to adoption because they want to provide more in life for their children and babies than they can currently offer. Adoption is a decision based on love of their children and wanting the best life for them.
Most interesting is the increase in number of expectant mothers specifically requesting Catholic adoptive parents more than in recent times. Most prefer married couples with infertility problems or inability to have children who are fairly young (late twenties up to 50 years of age), financially stable, and able to provide a safe home. They also request parents with no arrests or convictions.
These domestic independent adoptions are typically adoptions of newborn babies to toddlers, as well as some children under nine years old and a few sibling groups. We see all races including Caucasian, African American, Hispanic, bi-racial as well as multi-cultural, with a variety of both of boys and girls.
Birth mothers are requesting that Catholic families raise their children in the Catholic faith with sacraments such as baptism, holy communion, and confirmation.
I recently spoke with Beth, six months pregnant, and she shared her thoughts with me. “Almost immediately after I found out I was pregnant I knew the father and myself were not going to be together and I decided I wanted something better for my child. Choosing adoption was the option I wanted. Abortion was never on the table.
“My faith is important to me and I knew I wanted my child brought up in the Catholic faith with two parents. It didn’t take me long to get the help I needed from Lifetime Adoption. It is difficult at times, with the coronavirus going on. I want to meet the adoptive parents before I deliver but with a ‘shelter in place’ order here in California, I knew it would be hard. I basically had to do everything by phone.
“Lifetime sent me a few Catholic family profiles to choose from, I chose a couple from Texas. I had lots of emotions but knew what I really wanted. I was clear on that. The adoptive parents and I spoke on the phone, then texted and decided to set up a Skype call. I wanted to learn more about them. It was a little awkward at first, but they made me feel comfortable, they never judged or pressured me. I feel they will be perfect parents for my baby. It is just the details with the coronavirus we have to work out.
“We stay in touch and hopefully they will be able to come to the birth. I just don’t know if the hospital will allow others in. I’d like the adoptive mother in the delivery room if the hospital allows it. Right now, the hospital said they aren’t allowing anyone to be with me. That scares me, but the family has assured me they will drive to be here for me. I could never have imagined all the twists and turns this virus has caused. I get a lot of support from my adoption coordinator at Lifetime and I’m grateful for the Lifetime counselor I speak with by phone too.”
There are more stories of adoptions going through the steps during this trying time. Babies will be born, and women will still be requesting adoption help and looking for just the right adoptive parents. I’m finding now that more birth mothers are seeking adoptive parents in nearby states, close to their own hometown within driving distance. We are making it work but limited in adoptive families in some states that we can present to birth mothers within their requirements. Expectant mothers’ common requests include adoptive families of a specific race, without children or with siblings. They want to choose the adoptive parents and have contact.
We recently had six adoptions in seven days in the middle of this outbreak. And the calls we are getting increase with each passing day.
If you are interested in learning more the women working with Lifetime to place a child for adoption, you may visit their Birth Parents Seeking Families listing. Another good resource for families thinking about adoption is the book Called to Adoption.
For Catholic families that are interested in adopting, they may complete the free online application for Lifetime Adoption’s program. Once approved, you’ll have a phone conference to discuss adoption, your hopes and share the process. If you have any questions, contact an adoption coordinator at 530-271-1740.