We are living in unprecedented times. Along with so many others around the state, country and world, we are navigating this uncharted territory one day at time. Fear and anxiety are natural reactions to the Covid-19 pandemic. We are right there with you, walking through these complex emotions. We are also filled with hope and anticipation as we watch people come together to fight this thing and protect the most vulnerable.
What does all of this mean for adoption? Earlier this week, the state of Indiana declared a “shelter in place” order. This means outside of seeking medical care, running essential errands like the grocery or drug store, or conducting essential business, you should stay home. The goal is to stop the spread of the virus. Adoption services are considered essential, allowing us to continue this work. However, we are staying home and staying put as much as possible. Luckily the virtual world is allowing us to do much of our work from home so we can do our part to social distance and hopefully flatten the curve.
If you are an expectant mom, birth mother, prospective adoptive family or recent adoptive family, you may be wondering, how is this going to affect my adoption process!? We don’t have all the answers, however, we can assure you we are going to continue this work we are so passionate about and we will support each of you to the best of our ability amidst all of this uncertainty. Hopefully you find some answers below to potential questions you may have!
What if I am an expectant mom considering adoption and I’m just starting this process!
Call us! Our phones are still answered 24 hours a day! You’ll be met by a friendly voice who can help you start this process. When you’d usually meet an adoption coordinator in person, right now you’ll likely meet them first over the phone. You’ll even have the option to video chat with them! We can mail or email you information about adoption, your options, our agency, and prospective adoptive family profiles. And when you’re comfortable, we can come and meet you in person!
What if I am an expectant mom already in the process of considering adoption but I haven’t met the prospective adoptive family yet and I am ready to do so?
Don’t worry! If you are ready to meet a prospective adoptive family but we are still social distancing, you can meet them via phone or video chat to start! We actually had 3 of these meetings this week and they went great! Your coordinator can still be “with you” on these calls for support and help just as they would be in person. And when you’re comfortable, you can meet the family in person as well!
What if I am an expectant mom considering adoption, I already met the prospective adoptive family, and now I’m wondering, can I continue to see them during my pregnancy? What are my options?
We’re so glad you got to meet them before “shelter in place” went into effect! For now, we recommend you continue to get to know them via phone and/or video chat. Based on everyone’s comfort level you’ll hopefully be able to meet up with them in person again soon!
What if I am an expectant mom and delivery is very soon? Who can be at the hospital with me?
Right now, most hospitals are only allowing one person to be with you. No other visitors. This could change again at some point, but this is what we are experiencing right now. You are in charge. You get to pick who is with you. It might be a family member or friend. It might be one of the adoptive parents. It could even be birth father or maybe you want to labor on your own. The important thing to know is you get to make this decision. You may be thinking, but I want both my family and the adoptive parents with me. Sadly, that may not be able to happen right now. We get this is hard. Know we will support whatever decision you make.
I am an expectant mom and I just delivered my baby. I want to continue with my adoption plan. Am I still able to sign consents? What if the adoptive family isn’t with me right now? Can I still do an adoption?
If you just delivered or will soon deliver your baby, and want to proceed with an adoption plan, you still can. Maybe you’ve already been in contact with us. Maybe not. Either way, we are here. Hospitals are continuing to allow the attorney to come and meet with you to sign adoption consents. In some cases they are allowing our adoption coordinators to come in as well, in some cases they are not. Either way, you can still continue with your adoption plan. If the adoptive family is not able to be at the hospital during labor/delivery with you or in the days after, you can still proceed with an adoption. We will work out the details of how and when you meet adoptive family and baby is placed with them on a case by case basis.
What if I am a birth mother and I recently placed my baby for adoption? Can I still get post placement support?
Yes! Yes! Yes! Whether you placed your baby a week ago or years ago, we are here for you. We offer post placement support services and counseling. The first step is to reach out to our post placement team at either 317-255-5916 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Our post placement team answers these calls and emails on Fridays. They will be able to support you and connect you to a counselor if desired. Post placement counseling is continuing as well! Counseling sessions are taking place virtually right now either by phone or video. We will resume in person counseling when able.
What if I am a birth mother or an adoptive family and we have a visit coming up? What should we do?
Right now, we are recommending birth and adoptive families postpone any visits currently scheduled. This is not canceling a visit, rather it is rescheduling it a little bit out. We have no idea when in person visits should resume. It could be a few weeks, it could be a month or two. We’ll follow the lead of our community leaders on social distancing and shelter in place recommendations, and when able, we’ll encourage you to have that visit you postponed! In the meantime, it might be a great time to catch up via text, phone, or video chat!
What if I am an prospective adoptive family thinking about adoption, however, we haven’t attended your seminar yet or signed on with you? Do we need to wait until all this is over to take next steps?
No, call us! We are still accepting new adoptive families and can start the process for you. We may even hold informational seminars via Zoom!
What if we are a prospective adoptive family already signed on with you, but still in the middle of our home study process? What does this mean for us?
We will continue to walk with you as you complete your home study. Classes, meetings and interviews may be held via video conference for now, and then, when able we will make our way to your home for required home visits.
What if we are an active adoptive family with you? What does this mean for us?
You profile is continuing to be shown to expectant mamas considering adoption. If you are chosen during this time, you will likely be meeting your expectant mom via phone or video chat for the first time. Your coordinator will likely still be present for that call for help and support. Their may be restrictions at the hospital when expectant mom delivers. We will walk with you through that time and guide you best we can based on the wishes of your expectant mom and restrictions at that time.
What if we are an adoptive family and our baby was placed with us recently in the last few weeks or months? What will this mean for finalization?
If you already completed your post placement visit and class, you’ll likely still be able to finalize in the time frames we estimate. You’ll likely be finalizing from home over video! Your attorney will guide you through that process. If you haven’t completed your post placement home visit or class yet, we’ll be reaching out to you on a case by case basis to help you with next steps.
Hopefully, some of the information above has been helpful to you! There are still a lot of unknowns and things that may change. The above is our best answer right now. Please know some of this may continue to change as circumstances evolve over the next few days, weeks. We’ll continue to do our best to keep you informed and updated, and know we will be here to support and guide you every step of the way! It’s our honor and privilege to continue to serve you. Thank you for trusting us in your adoption journey. As so many have said, we are in this together.