Adoption isn’t a straight and narrow path for every birth mother. Some women know right off the bat that adoption is the right choice for them, and don’t hesitate to make an adoption plan. Other women, maybe women like yourself, feel unsure that adoption is the best possible choice for their baby until the day they actually meet their new bundle of joy. If you’re at the hospital right now contemplating your options, you may be wondering, “Can mothers choose adoption at the hospital if they’ve just given birth?”

The answer is yes; even at the very last minute, a hospital adoption is still a possibility. If you have a gut feeling that adoption might be the best choice for your baby’s future, there’s a lot to consider before making this brave and selfless decision.

Can I Give My Baby Up for Adoption at the Hospital?

Yes. Many prospective birth mothers decide on adoption at the hospital, and this is an option for you, too. But even if you are considering “giving baby up” at the hospital, it’s important to remember that adoption is in no way “giving up” on your baby or “giving your child away.” Adoption is a brave, selfless decision made out of love, and if you want to give up a baby at the hospital, you deserve to feel good about this decision.

The biggest difference between placing your baby for adoption at the hospital and early in your pregnancy is how quickly everything can move. You won’t ever be rushed during your adoption by your adoption professional, but the process can be completed within a matter of hours or days, depending on your comfort level.  They will guide you through every step of how to give baby up for adoption in the hospital and put you in charge of every decision throughout the process.

Here are the steps you should take if you are wondering, “What is the process for giving a baby up for adoption at the hospital?”

Step 1: Contact a professional.

First and foremost, the most important step is to contact an adoption agency while you’re at the hospital. Adoption agencies and adoption specialists have plenty of experience with hospital adoptions, so you don’t need to be worried that they won’t know how to handle your situation.

It’s important to make sure that you find a reliable and trusted adoption agency to complete your adoption. As you can imagine, a last-minute hospital adoption will go a bit quicker than a normal adoption. But your adoption agency should still be able to provide the attention and care that every birth mother receives during her adoption.

Step 2: Make an adoption plan.

Once you’ve found an adoption agency that you feel safe and comfortable with, it’s time to start filling out some forms. You’ll be asked to fill out your social and medical history forms when you’re “giving a baby up” at the hospital, which will give your specialist a little bit more information about yourself and your baby. At the same time, you’ll be asked to fill out a list of preferences that you’d like to see in an adoptive family.

Step 3: Select an adoptive family.

Once the forms are completed, your adoption specialist will send you different adoptive family profiles to choose from. There are lots of loving families to choose from, so you may feel overwhelmed at first.But even when you’re at the hospital,you shouldn’t feel rushed to pick an adoptive family.

You want to pick a family that can provide your baby with the same love and attention that you’ve always wanted to. While you’re browsing the adoptive family profiles, you should be thinking about what kind of education you want your child to have, where you want them to grow up, if you want them to be an only child, and so much more. A hospital adoption doesn’t prevent you from taking the time to pick the perfect family for your child.

Step 4: Connect with the adoptive family.

As soon as you pick the perfect family, you can start getting to know them. For a hospital adoption, you’ll get to know them over the phone with your adoption specialist as a mediator. If you’re ready and you feel confident in your decision, the adoptive family will fly out to see you — likely on that same day. Once they arrive, spend some time getting to know them. Even during hospital adoptions, you still have plenty of time to get to know the adoptive family.

Step 5: Legally consent to the adoption.

Even though every adoption has its own unique situation, they all follow similar legal guidelines. Before your child can be placed into the arms of their new family, you’ll need to terminate your parental rights. This process is legally binding, so once you’ve signed the necessary papers and any applicable revocation period has passed, you won’t be able to change your mind. It’s important to make sure that you’re absolutely certain before you sign away your rights and that you’re prepared for life after a hospital adoption.

Even at the very last second, no one should be able to choose adoption for you. If at any point you feel that you’re not making the right decision for yourself and your baby, talk your adoption specialist. Their job is to make sure that you have everything you need to make your experience a success, even if you decide to change your mind. Before you make this life-changing decision, you should consider all the adoption factors with your specialist.