Pregnancy isn’t the same for everyone. Neither is considering adoption. At The Cradle, our counselors can support you through this critical decision-making time with privacy and respect. Our services are free to you, as an expectant parent.
Cradle Counselors are available to talk with you and help you explore all your options related to the pregnancy. Your counselor will not pressure you into choosing adoption. Instead, your Cradle Counselor’s goal is simple: to make sure you understand all your options, rights and responsibilities. If you decide that adoption is not the right plan, your counselor will support you in that decision.
Choosing an Adoptive Family
The Cradle has many prospective adoptive families who have been carefully screened. You can talk with your counselor about what type of family you’re hoping for, and she will work with you to help you choose an adoptive family. You’ll also have the option of meeting the family to be able to get to know them better and have the opportunity to ask them additional questions. View some of our waiting families here.
All of the families hoping to adopt through The Cradle are ready for ongoing contact with the child’s birth family. Click here for more information regarding open adoption.
Choosing, meeting, and having ongoing contact with an adoptive family are all options available to you, but are not required. You can choose what feels right for you. The Cradle can identify an adoptive family for you, if you prefer.
Making Your Final Decision
Adoption is a big decision. In fact, in Illinois, you cannot sign the legal papers making your decision final until the baby is 72 hours old. After the baby is born, your counselor will check in with you to see how you’re feeling about your decision. It is very common to rethink your decision after the baby is born. The Cradle Nursery is available to you if you need additional time to make your final decision, or to wait until you are able to sign legal documents. Click here to see a virtual tour of the Cradle Nursery.
If you decide to move forward with adoption, your Cradle Counselor will help to facilitate your plan and be with you to sign the legal documents so your baby can be placed with the adoptive family.
If you decide to move forward with a parenting plan instead, we will support you in that decision. Your counselor will talk with you about your plan and can help connect you to community resources if needed.
Finding Support When You Need It
The Cradle can continue to provide counseling to you after you’ve made your adoption decision final. It is very normal to feel sadness or a sense of loss. You can continue to meet with your Cradle Counselor to get support regarding these feelings of grief and loss. She can also help connect you to other resources that may be helpful to you.
The Cradle can also support you as you build your relationship with the adoptive family, whether you are in regular communication or if you have never had contact.