Lifetime recently celebrated Director of Adoption Services Diane Schafer's 18th year with us! We'd like to take this chance to recognize Diane for her service in building families through adoption. She's helped so many adoptive couples and birth mothers connect through open adoption.
Today, we're sharing an insider's look about how birth mothers pick an adoptive family for their baby! Diane made an appearance in a Facebook Live video for Lifetime, and answered some of the most frequently-asked questions that we get asked about this topic:
How does a woman choose the adoptive family for her baby?
"Women can get info on adoptive families in several different ways. They can request profiles to be sent to them and we can do that. They can also go on our website and they can actually view profiles of families. And there's even videos that our families have done, where the birth mother can actually see the family talking about their life and their lifestyle and what they have to offer.
The printed profiles we mail birth mothers do go into a lot more detail than what you see on the website. The profile has photos of the family, talks about their lifestyle, and has letters of recommendation from family and friends. It's nice for her to be able to see how others feel about the couple."
If a woman calls in and just wants to learn more about adoption, what is Lifetime’s #1 resource for her?
"We have a wonderful little book called So I Was Thinking About Adoption, and this book goes over the types of adoption; it talks about going into the decision-making process. It also has a little information about parenting and what to expect with that. Also, what type of adoptions and how to know if you even want an open adoption. A lot of great information about talking to adoptive parents, too, questions to ask. We send her info and this book in a plain envelope, so no one knows what's in it. If she doesn't have a mailing address or doesn't want to share it, we can email her a link to a free book download. The book is also a great resource for people who want to adopt, because it gets them in the mindset of a birth mother and the questions she has. Because sometimes, it’s hard to think of where that person is coming from of both sides of the adoption triad. So, it's really good to be able to have the information where you can consider what she’s thinking about."
(Lifetime encourages you to read So I Was Thinking About Adoption too, so that you can gain insight into a birth mother's perspective. Download an e-version by clicking here.)
Can a woman who says 'I'm not sure about adoption...' still see profiles of adoptive families?
"Definitely! Sometimes, just being able to read about the families and what they have to offer may allow something to just “click” and she thinks ‘that’s exactly what I was looking for.’"
When does a birth mother typically choose an adoptive family for her baby?
"Some birth mothers match as early as possible, which is 20 weeks along, while others don’t until they’re closer to 8 or 9 months along. The women who are contacting Lifetime are at different stages of what they want to do. Some women are unsure, but would like to learn what their options are with adoption, what type of adoptions are available. Not every woman who contacts us will be following through with adoption. We want to make sure that everybody has the info they need to make the best possible choice for their baby and themselves."
In her Facebook Live video appearance, Diane also answered these popular questions:
- Why is making an adoption video so important to our birth mother presentation?
- Do you ever get photos of birth moms considering adoption?
- What's done when a birth mother initially contacts Lifetime?
- How does Lifetime handle it when a woman says ‘thank you for all the info, but I decided adoption isn’t right for my baby’?
- How do birth mothers hear about Lifetime?
- What happens when a birth mom is matched with a family, and she changes her mind?
- Do birth moms need to see that the adoptive family have the nursery all set up and ready?
Learn the answers to these questions in the video below! Just click the "play" button to watch a recording Diane's Facebook Live session!
Have you missed Lifetime going live on Facebook? You can find the replays of our live events in the videos section of our Facebook page, Lifetime Adoption Center.
If you sign up to get alerts on our Facebook page, you'll be able to stay in the loop about future Facebook Live Videos. Plus, you'll then be able to attend LIVE and ask our adoption experts any questions you might have!