Unplanned Pregnancy – What to do Next?

A hundred thoughts and emotions can threaten to overwhelm a woman when she finds out she’s pregnant. Multiply that by a thousand if the pregnancy is unplanned. When you’re not expecting to have a child yet, what should be a beautiful, joyous thing suddenly becomes terrifying. There are so many worries flying through your head that you can’t keep up. How can I raise a child? Will I have to do it on my own? Does this put my future on hold? Can I afford it? What will my friends and family think? What do I do?

First off, take a deep breath. 

It’s going to be okay. We know this is an overwhelming experience, so even though it might sound silly and obvious, it’s important to remember to breathe. Calming, deep breaths can center your mind and help you focus on one thing at a time. Because you do have options, and looking at each option with a clear head can help you understand which is the best path for your future, and the future of your unborn child. 

Second, look at your options. 

When dealing with an unplanned pregnancy, there’s nothing more important than fully understanding the positives and negatives of each of the following options. You can do so by asking yourself questions and then seeking the advice of a professional. 

  1. Parenting 
    • Am I ready to raise a child? 
    • Do I have the finances to support the child? 
    • Will my child have a father figure in his or her life?
    • Who can help me raise the child?
  2. Abortion
    • What are the health risks of an abortion? 
    • What will my friends and family think of this decision? 
    • Is it really the best solution? 
    • How much does it cost?
    • Will I regret this decision?
  3. Adoption
    • What’s the process of adoption? 
    • Will I get to see my child after they are adopted? Can I be involved in their life? 
    • Does it cost anything? 
    • What will my child think of me?
    • Do I want another family to raise my child? 

Some of these questions only you can answer. However, many of them can and should be answered by a healthcare or adoption professional. 

Third, talk to doctors, counselors, and professionals.

Go to your doctor, a clinic, a therapist–anyone who either has the knowledge to help you through this experience. They can properly walk you through each question and decision you have to make by providing you with information about each option. 

If you’re looking at adoption as a possible path, there are many adoption agencies out there, like St. Elizabeth Foundation, that will guide you through the process of adoption with a warm and welcoming hand. Our priority is to your unborn child, and to you. To find the best home they could possibly ask for, with the best chance for a bright future. Learn more about what to expect here. 

Finally, come to terms with your decision. 

It can be a struggle to come to terms with your decision. No matter what, you might always wish that things would’ve been different. But time heals many wounds, and knowing that you’ve done what’s best for you and your child is the comfort you need. 

Are You Wondering How to Adopt a Baby in Louisiana?

Parents come in all shapes and sizes. We know that well in St. Elizabeth Foundation. But not everybody qualifies to be an adoptive parent. Discover more and find out how to adopt a baby in Louisiana from the professionals at St Elizabeth. 

Requirements to Adopt

As with many things in life, there are certain requirements you have to fulfill to take part in them. The same thing goes for adoption. In the state of Louisiana, potential adoptive parents must meet the following requirements:

  • Potential adoptive parents must have enough bedroom space for an incoming child. Of course, there are some loopholes to this. For example, a child may share a bedroom with another child of the same sex. However, they cannot share with anyone over the age of 18.
  • Potential parents must also have enough income to meet their family’s needs. Some people may see this as discriminatory, but trust us when we say that it isn’t. It is to ensure that the family can afford to raise a new child and that they have the best quality of life possible.
  • In the state of Louisiana, adoptive parents can be single, married, divorced, or widowed. However, at St. Elizabeth, we choose couples who have been married for at least five years. Like with everything else, we do this because we want children to have their best shot at life. 
  • Did you know that foster/adoptive parents cannot have more than five children under the age of 18? And this includes foster children and their own children. While it may seem odd at first, it ensures the children have the best quality of life.
  • Has someone residing in your home been convicted of certain criminal offenses? If so, you may not be able to adopt.
  • Adoptive parents must also be healthy and mentally stable. Every adult in the home has to provide a medical statement completed by a physician. This statement should indicate they are free of communicable diseases such as tuberculosis. If you or someone else in the home does have a communicable disease, don’t worry—it’s not the end. All you need is a note from a physician saying that you are compliant with your treatment.

If you have any questions about the requirements to become an adoptive parent in Louisiana, don’t be afraid to get in contact with us. We’re more than happy to help you, especially if you’re looking for a new bundle of joy in your life.

St. Elizabeth Process

Want to see if you qualify for St. Elizabeth? All you have to do is go through our simple process. After filling out a formal application, we review it and begin a home study. If you pass our home study, we move you to our education program. This program helps you learn more about adoption and how to become the best adoptive parent you can be. After all, adoption isn’t only about your interests—it’s also about the child. After, we go through any legal necessities and help the birth mother choose the right family for her. At this stage, she is shown a family profile book and can choose the perfect family. 

Simple, right? Of course, every adoption situation is different, so your experience may have differences from others. But that’s why we’re here every step of the way.

Getting In Contact With St. Elizabeth

There are several ways to go about adoption in the state of Louisiana. If you choose us, we’re more than happy to help you with every step in your adoption journey. So, why wait? Begin the process today, and get in touch with one of our representatives.

The Open Adoption Agency New Orleans Trusts

At St. Elizabeth Foundation, we specialize in open adoptions involving infants. However, we know that no two adoptions are alike as they each bring unique circumstances. Each one of our adoptions represent a new birth mother and a new family dynamic. Together, these people decide what’s best for them and their baby. We are here to facilitate the conversation, ensure the legal steps are followed the right way, and shepherd all the participants through the process. We have helped numerous families in New Orleans, Baton Rouge, Lafayette, and North Louisiana through this process.

That not only includes attending to legal paperwork and fielding calls, but also acting as confidants and advisors. We take this responsibility seriously and want nothing more than to ensure a smooth process for everyone. 

Are There Open Adoptions in Louisiana? 

Rules for adoption differ from state to state. Even though Louisiana is a closed adoption state, we have the ability to set up an open adoption plan for you as an agency

Even if you choose to have an open adoption, there are still more decisions to be made. Every single adoption looks a little different, but all open adoptions with us fall into two main categories – semi-open or open. In both cases, these adoptions have guidelines that all parties must adhere to. 

Semi-Open Adoptions

This type of adoption involves the agency facilitating all communications. The respective parties can mutually agree to open things further. However, the understanding is that all interaction occurs through the agency.

Open Adoptions 

Because no two open adoptions are quite alike, this relationship can be whatever both parties want it to be. This can include periodic letters, monthly phone calls, weekly emails, and annual visits.

Closed Adoptions

Closed adoptions are not open at all. Of course, this is still an option because St. Elizabeth wants what is best for your unique situation. Sometimes this is the best choice. 

Which Kind Of Adoption Is Right For You?

Like we said earlier, no two adoptions are the same. Every birth mother has her own reasons for choosing adoption. Because our birth mothers are making such an incredibly loving choice, they determine the type of adoption they want for their baby. For most families, open adoptions are the most successful and rewarding. Many people find that open adoptions only result in more people loving their baby. At the end of the day, everyone wants the same thing. Everyone wants the best possible life for their baby. 

Your Open Adoption Agency In New Orleans

Over the past 32 years, St. Elizabeth Foundation helped place more than 600 babies with loving and safe parents. But most of all, we’ve helped hundreds of pregnant women decide what was best for them, and for their babies. Even if you’re not sure if you want to make an adoption plan, you can still reach out to us to ask questions and learn more. We’re here for you with open ears and open hands to help you through your unique journey. To get started, contact us here on our website or call us at 225-769-8888. Every conversation is 100% confidential. 

What A Baby Adoption Agency Can Do for YOU

How Do Adoptions Work? 

Adoption is the legal parenting of a baby by parents other than the birth parents. As far as how they’re arranged, the families have some options. Adoptions can be done independently with an adoption attorney. These specialized lawyers can match birth parents with adopting parents and handle all of the paperwork. However, many people choose to work with a baby adoption agency instead. 

In addition to the legal requirements, adoption agencies can offer birth mothers more. St. Elizabeth Foundation is a baby adoption agency serving New Orleans and the rest of the state. We offer birthmothers emotional, financial, and medical assistance during their pregnancies and beyond. 

What Birth Mothers Need To Know

If you have an unexpected pregnancy, you might be considering adoption. Adoption is an incredibly loving choice. What’s more, it’s often the best decision for both the baby and the birth mother. If you choose to make an adoption plan, you’ll have to decide between an adoption agency or an adoption attorney. Legally, you technically just need a lawyer. However, choosing a baby adoption agency can give you the help and support you might not even know you need.  

The Adoption Process

While every birth mother’s journey is unique, most follow a basic process. You’ll notice that it’s the birth mother who is the main character in every step. That’s because at our baby adoption agency, YOU are the one in charge. The seven main steps are:

The birth mother contacts St. Elizabeth. Even if you’re still unsure that you want to choose adoption, you can still contact us. There’s no pressure—we’re here to help you decide what’s best for you and your baby.

The birth mother meets with a counselor. We understand how difficult this decision is. Many of our birth mothers might not have support or approval from their families. That’s why we have counselors on staff to make sure you have the emotional support you need. 

The birth mother chooses a family. We have many caring families ready to parent your child. Every family goes through a long and detailed screening process. It’s our job to make sure they can provide your baby with a safe and loving home. 

The birth mother gets pregnancy assistance. St. Elizabeth Foundation can help you with living, medical, legal, and counseling costs. 

The birth mother delivers the baby. You get to make the choices about your birth plan and at the hospital. We want you to feel confident and comfortable with the process. 

The birth mother finalizes the adoption plan. You choose whether you have an open adoption or a closed adoption. Whatever your decision, we help you and your chosen family finalize your adoption plan. 

The birth mother has post-placement counseling. We understand that a birth mother’s journey doesn’t stop after the baby is born. That’s why we’re here for continued counseling and emotional support.  

Baby Adoption Agency For New Orleans And Baton Rouge

As an adoption agency, our main priority is taking care of our birth mothers. Get in touch with us to see how we can help you. Remember, there is absolutely NO pressure. We’re just here to help YOU decide what’s best for you and your baby. Additionally, every conversation we have is completely confidential. We’re here to answer all of your questions. We can explain the adoption process to you as well. Overall, we want you to know that you’re in control, you have options, and you’re stronger than you think.

You can contact us online through this form. Also, you can call us at 225-769-8888 or email us at info@stelizabethfoundation.org. We’re based in Baton Rouge, but we help women and families throughout Louisiana—including the New Orleans area.

Find Out More About The Adoption Process

We understand that the adoption process can seem overwhelming. There are so many steps, a lot of paperwork, and of course, many emotions. So if you’re considering making an adoption plan, you need someone who knows all about it to help guide you through it. Learn more about the adoption process in Baton Rouge with St. Elizabeth Foundation

As A Birth Mother, You’re The One In Control 

Do you have an unplanned pregnancy? Then you need to know that you have options. Adoption is one of those options. It’s a loving, unselfish, and empowering choice. While making your decision, St. Elizabeth’s caring staff is here to listen. And, if you do choose to make an adoption plan, we can help you through your pregnancy, birth, and afterwards. And remember, all of our services are completely free.

Choosing Adoption 

Though we’re here to help you through the adoption process, every choice is still yours to make. As the birth mother, you’re the one in control of every decision—no matter how big or small. We’ll help you with educational, financial, and emotional support at every step. We’re here to hold your hand as you make the best choice for you and your baby’s future. YOU are the one in charge. 

You choose the family that will parent your baby. 

St. Elizabeth Foundation screens all prospective adopting parents. We make sure every single couple can provide your baby with a safe and loving home. All of our couples have been married for at least five years. That means your baby will have two parents—a caring mother AND a present father. All of these parents fill out a formal application for our staff to review. Then, they go through a lengthy home study process and background checks. Additionally, we make sure they’re emotionally stable and have a strong relationship. We also discuss their parenting philosophy. 

You choose the type of adoption.

Once you select a family, the next step in the adoption process is choosing the type of adoption. St. Elizabeth works with attorneys. They help determine and finalize your rights and the birth parents’ rights. There are three types of adoptions in Louisiana: open, semi-open, and closed. The state of Louisiana is a closed adoption state. They only recognize the adoption as “closed”. The agency is the one that makes it semi-open or open.

  • Open adoptions mean birth parents and adoptive families communicate directly with each other. These can be scheduled meetings, phone calls, or letters. Open adoptions are the most common and regarded as being the most beneficial. 
  • Semi-open adoptions mean an adoption agency facilitates communication. Through the agency, birth parents and adoptive families share information and arrange meetings. 
  • Closed adoptions mean the adoptive family and the birth parents do not communicate at all. Their identities are sealed in court records. 

While St. Elizabeth Foundation specializes in open adoptions, we can help you, whatever your preference. Because remember, YOU are the one in charge.  

Do You Have Questions About The Adoption Process in Baton Rouge?

Whatever your decision, we want you to feel good about it. Part of feeling good about your decision is getting all of your questions answered. Get in touch with us by calling 225-769-8888 or contacting us online. We’re here for you. 

Closed And Open Adoptions In Louisiana

Do you have an unplanned pregnancy? Choosing adoption is a loving and unselfish choice. As a birth mother, you’ll get to make all the decisions about your adoption plan. One of these choices is whether to have a closed or open adoption in Louisiana. Birth mothers considering adoption often have questions. What’s the difference between closed and open adoptions? How do I know what kind of adoption is best for my baby? Who can help me? 

Differences Between Closed And Open Adoptions In Louisiana

Adoption is always a loving choice. But birth parents can choose to arrange their adoption plan in many different ways. At St. Elizabeth Foundation, our experienced and caring staff can provide resources and answer questions. We’re here to help birth parents decide which situation is best—for them and their babies.  

Open And Semi-Open Adoptions

Birth and adoptive families exchange information with each other in open adoptions. This way, birth parents can maintain a connection with the child. The exact terms of each open adoption can differ for each situation. Because everyone’s situation is unique, there are many different options and arrangements. In open adoptions, birth parents and adoptive families communicate directly with each other. With a semi-open adoption, the agency facilitates communication. 

In fact, open adoption is the most common type of adoption in the United States. Many studies and experts agree it’s the most beneficial. St. Elizabeth Foundation can help birth mothers through every step of an open adoption. We can even offer a place for adopting families and birth parents to meet. 

Closed Adoptions

In closed adoptions, the identities of a baby’s birth parents are sealed in agency and court records. Therefore, the adopting family and the birth parents do not interact or communicate. Physical characteristics and medical history of the parents may be provided, however. St. Elizabeth Foundation specializes in open adoptions. But we understand a closed adoption is sometimes the best situation. 

Adoption Is NOT Foster Care

Some birth mothers are concerned that choosing adoption means their baby will be in foster care. This is not the case. Making an adoption plan means a loving family will parent your baby and provide them with the best possible care. In fact, adoption can be the best way to help children avoid the foster care system. Foster care children often come from birth parents who weren’t ready or able to parent them. However, St. Elizabeth’s adopting families all go through an extensive process. Each couple has to demonstrate they can provide a safe and loving home. 

Why Choose St. Elizabeth Foundation?

Over the past 32 years, we’ve placed more than 600 babies with caring and supportive families. We not only can help birth mothers through their medical and legal needs, but also their emotional ones. What’s more, we can offer support to the birth fathers as well. To get more information and ask us questions, contact us online or call 225-769-8888. You can also follow us on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter to see more of our stories. We’re here for you, how ever you need us.

Should I Use An Adoption Attorney Or An Adoption Agency?

For both birth parents and adopting families, the adoption process can seem overwhelming. Not only is it emotional, but the legal and medical needs can be confusing.  There are so many necessary steps to take, and big decisions to make. They need supportive, understanding, and knowledgeable people to help guide them. After making the loving choice of adoption, they need to decide whether to use an adoption attorney or an adoption agency in Louisiana. 

Why Choose Adoption? 

Families choose to adopt a baby for many different reasons, but infertility is a very common one. These couples are looking for a baby to love and parent. Therefore, a birth mother choosing adoption is an incredibly loving choice. It can be a difficult decision, but birth moms who choose adoption do love their children. These mothers want to give their baby the best possible care to have the best possible life. Every woman has her own reasons to consider adoption. But here are some of the most common situations birth mothers are in: 

  • She isn’t ready to be a mom.
  • She can’t afford to take care of a child.
  • She doesn’t have the support of her family.
  • She doesn’t have a good relationship with her baby’s father.
  • She wants to finish her education. 
  • She wants to go further in her job. 

Choosing adoption is a decision only a birth mother can make for herself and her baby. Similarly, she gets to make every following decision—including which loving family will get to parent their baby. Another one of these decisions is whether to use an adoption agency or an adoption attorney. 

Adoption Attorney Vs. Adoption Agencies 

In Louisiana, adoption is defined as “a legal arrangement in which a new set of parents raise the child.” State law allows adoptive parents to pay the medical costs of prenatal care and childbirth. Adoption attorneys can match adopting families with birth mothers. They also help oversee the required paperwork and finances and define the terms of the adoption, such as whether it’s open or closed. 

An adoption agency such as St. Elizabeth Foundation provides all this necessary legal assistance. But it also offers many more resources and much more support.  In addition to the legal and medical needs, an agency can help birth mothers with living and counseling expenses. Caring counselors give birth mothers emotional support before and after the birth. What’s more, all this help is confidential and free of charge.

Contact An Adoption Agency With Absolutely No Pressure 

If you’re pregnant, we understand how hard and scary it can be. But remember—you have options, you’re in control, and you’re stronger than you think. 
We know you probably have a lot more questions. That’s why St. Elizabeth Foundation is here to help. We’ve placed more than 600 babies in loving homes. We’re here to hold your hand and help you make the best choice for you and your baby. You can get in touch with us to get more information and answers. And remember—just because you call us doesn’t mean you have to choose adoption. All our conversations are private. You can call us at 225-769-8888 or contact us online