Years ago, if you had gone to an adoption agency as a single person, you would have been turned down. It just wasn't done. There were even laws against single parent adoption in some states.
Today, thousands of children in the United States and other countries are living with single men and women who have chosen to become parents. The outlook for single parent adoption is very encouraging. Studies have shown that children raised in single adoptive parents do just as well as, if not better than, children adopted by couples.
LifeLong Adoptions is proud to support single parent adoption. We’ve had many successful single parent adoptions over the years. Here are some things to consider when beginning your adoption journey as a single parent.
The “Traditional” View of Parenting
Despite the greater acceptance of single parent adoption, the “traditional” view of parenting — that a child needs both a mother and a father for healthy growth and development — is still out there. Some may not understand why you would willingly assume the responsibility of raising a child alone. If this happens to you, a single parent who experienced this situation has some advice to share: "Be strong! You can't let people around you tear you down. They may be negative. If this is your choice, then don't let people influence you. Wait until the child comes and you'll see how involved some of your friends will get!"
All parents need support, and having a strong support system is even more critical for single parents. Think about your family and friends and who would be able and willing to help you and provide some relief from the constant role of a parent. For example, who could you trust to provide childcare, pick up your child from school if you unexpectedly can’t, or even serve as a guardian if needed? Even though you are a single parent, when armed with a solid support system, you won’t be raising your child alone.
As a single parent, it’s likely you will be working while raising your child. Consider your current work schedule and your future career goals. Does your employer offer a healthy work-life balance? What about medical or adoption benefits? As a working single parent, think about how you will handle childcare while you’re at work, job-related travel, after-school care, your child’s activities and sporting events, medical care and emergencies, and other life events. Make sure you have a specific plan in place for after you bring your baby home and a general idea of what you’ll do as your child gets older.
These issues may seem overwhelming, but the good news is that many single parents have had successful adoptions and gone on to raise happy and healthy children. It may be difficult, but most will agree that the challenges that come along with being a single parent are far outweighed by the dream come true of welcoming a child into your home and the joy of being a parent.