Safe Haven or Adoption?

Hearing a story about a baby being found abandoned in a dumpster, in a bathroom, or by a creek bed is so very sad. When you think of the mother who must be in such pain and feeling so hopeless and afraid breaks your heart. Then, the thought of that poor little baby, all alone and in peril, a tragic beginning and sometimes ending to a life, is painful to think about. There are many stories of women feeling so desperate that they abandon their baby in an unsafe situation.

Because of these stories, the first Safe Haven laws were created in 1999. Since then, 4,000 infants have been surrendered, 1,465 babies were abandoned illegally, and 827 were found deceased. These laws vary from state to state. While the laws are very similar, there are differences such as where you can leave a baby and how old the baby can be when surrendered.

Carrie* was in an abusive relationship and couch surfing when she found out she was pregnant. She hid the pregnancy because she was afraid and had no idea what to do. She went into labor while alone at a friend’s apartment and gave birth in the bathroom. Not wanting anyone to find out, she wrapped the baby up and walked down the street, and left the baby on a front porch of a nearby house. Fortunately, the baby was found before any great harm came to her. Carrie is now in jail for abandoning her baby. *Name changed for privacy

Stories like this one do not need to happen. Mothers who are pregnant and scared need to know they have options. They can keep their baby safe while keeping their pregnancy and birth private. They can either drop their baby off to a staff member at a Safe Haven location or they can call an adoption coordinator who will find adoptive parents right away. Abandoning your baby in an unsafe location can just lead to more problems as it did for Carrie.

Whether you have just given birth or you have come to realize that parenting your infant is not realistic for you at this time, you can always call or text an adoption coordinator for help. Twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, you will find a kind, non-judgmental voice on the other end of the line. She will talk with you about your options, and this will all be done in confidence. Every situation is unique, and our experienced coordinators know how to handle every situation. She can arrange the resources you need and create an adoption plan that is right for you and your baby. If you want a closed adoption at this time, she can make that happen. If you want to get updates or visits with your baby, she can arrange that as well. You and your baby’s well-being will be her top priority.

Don’t make the unfortunate situation of an unplanned pregnancy worse by not taking care of yourself and endangering your baby. There are so many couples that pray for a baby every day. They have done all the hard work of qualifying to adopt. They have had background and financial checks, interviews by social workers, and created profiles for birth mothers to view. They are ready to bring a baby into their family at a moment’s notice. Whether you want the adoptive parents and your baby to know who you are or not is up to you. Just make the right decisions and make sure you and your baby are safe.

I never knew where I came from, but I always knew where I was meant to be.

Mogli from the Jungle Book Movie

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