by Focus on the Family
Stop for a moment and consider this truth: In most states, the only people who have to jump through any hoops to “qualify” for parenthood are adoptive parents! In fact, the screening procedures for prospective adoptive parents are so tough that they usually include extensive interviews, paperwork, home visits, criminal background checks and psychological screening.
With approximately 40 qualified couples waiting for every baby available, you can be quite selective about the parents you pick for your child; and you can get to know them personally before making a decision. Also, in many cases, adoption plans include financial assistance with your pre-natal and childbirth expenses. Secondly, most adoptive parents come from a middle-class to upper-middle-class socioeconomic background and, therefore, can provide your baby with the security and advantages that children raised by single mothers often lack.
As an unmarried mother in the 21st century, you have a great advantage over women who released babies for adoption in previous eras. Now, with the prevalence of open adoptions (if that’s what you desire), you not only can choose your baby’s adoptive parents, you can get to know them and stay informed about where (and how) your baby is. Depending on the specific arrangement that you and the adoptive parents agree to, you can have varying degrees of news and contact as your baby grows up. In the meantime, you can be getting on with your life without the major commitment of time and money required to responsibly raise a child to adulthood.
As wonderful as your parents may be (or not be), they’re not the ones who will pay the ultimate price for rearing your baby. They undoubtedly have their own parenting flaws and may actually be relieved if you make a decision that “gives you back your life” while preserving the life of your baby. Moreover, there aren’t very many middle-aged parents who want to go through the entire process of child-rearing again! Ultimately, however, remember this: You are the mother of this baby, and it is you – not your parents, friends or the baby’s father – who should make the final decision.
“If I keep my baby, maybe my baby’s father will … (marry me, stay with me, come back).”
Sorry, but babies RARELY have that effect on guys … especially guys who have sex with you before saying “I do.” Moreover, it’s not a baby’s job to turn some guy who’s possibly self-centered, immature and irresponsible into your ideal partner. Statistically, you’re much more likely to meet and marry Mr. Right later on (and avoid another out-of-wedlock pregnancy) if you release your baby to loving adoptive parents than you are if you choose single motherhood.