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A Comprehensive Guide to Placing a Newborn for Adoption

newborn baby wrapped in blue, cradled by two hands

If you’re considering making an adoption plan for your baby, you’re probably feeling a range of emotions. It’s not unusual to have questions and concerns, especially if this is your first pregnancy. 

This guide will walk you through the process, from choosing adoptive parents for your newborn to finding supportive counseling resources.

Understanding the Adoption Process for Newborns

Once you’ve decided to put a baby up for adoption, the adoption process is pretty straightforward. You will receive a dedicated social worker who will answer any questions you have and have the opportunity to speak to a legal advisor. Each of these services is provided at no cost to the birth parents.

However, the process can sometimes be challenging from an emotional standpoint. Open Arms Adoptions is committed to standing by you every step of the way, ensuring you are prepared and always supported.

Types of Adoption for Newborns

There are a few different options when it comes to choosing adoptive parents for your newborn:

a couple holding their baby
  • Open adoption: An open adoption allows for an agreed-upon level of communication between the birth parents and yourself. This can range from maintaining contact with the adoptive family through texts, phone calls, or visits to using the adoption agency as a mediator to receive updates about your child. In the latter, the adoptive parents send letters, photos, etc., to the adoption agency, who then passes them on to you (or vice versa), with no actual contact between you and the adoptive family. 
  • Closed adoption: Sometimes, birth parents decide they’d rather have a closed adoption. In this case, you won’t have contact with the adoptive parents or your child.

Your social worker will work with you and the adoptive parents to establish modes of contact that both parties are comfortable with and agree upon. Mutual respect and understanding boundaries are essential to ensuring the child’s best interests. An open adoption can be an enriching experience for all parties involved, but it requires planning, commitment, and communication.

Legal Rights and Responsibilities for Birth Parents

If you decide to place your child for adoption, it’s essential to understand your legal rights and responsibilities. The primary legal responsibility you have during the newborn adoption process in Ohio is understanding that you are relinquishing your rights to your child. Once the adoption is complete, this is usually irrevocable.

You will need to sign paperwork that relinquishes your parental rights. Ohio law requires a waiting period of 72 hours after the child is born to sign these documents, ensuring you have time to make a thoughtful decision. You may change your mind at any time prior to signing these documents. 

Your legal consultation and pre and post-placement counseling in newborn adoption are free of charge. You will have a social worker you may contact at any time, even years after adoption.

Emotional Considerations for Birth Parents

The decision to make an adoption plan for your child is one that is emotionally complex. Many birth parents experience grief, guilt, and anxiety, while others feel relief, hope, and a deep sense of love, knowing they made the best decision for their child. Many birth parents experience both ranges of emotion. 

At Open Arms Adoptions, you will have your own personal social worker who will provide free counseling to you before and after the baby is born. They will help you navigate your emotions, whatever they may be, answer your questions, and support you on your journey.

Choosing Adoptive Parents for a Newborn

We know how important it is for you to know your child will grow up in a loving, stable home that upholds your values. There are many different aspects to consider when choosing an adoptive family for your newborn, but we walk you through the process and ensure you find the perfect family for your little one. You may want to consider the following:

a couple sitting in an office
  • Do the family’s values, beliefs, and philosophies align with yours?
  • Consider the lifestyle, environment, and community of the adoptive family. Does the life you envision for your child fit there?
  • Is it important to you that your child has the opportunity for a good education? Look for adoptive parents whose educational values mirror your own.
  • Do you want your child to be raised in a home that celebrates diversity and honors your child’s heritage?
  • Do you want your child to grow up with brothers and sisters? Have the support system of a large, extended family? Look for families who are loving and nurturing and trust your instincts.

Post-Placement Considerations

After your baby has been placed with their adoptive family, you will experience an array of emotions. Your mental health is a priority for us, and we want to support you in every way.

Our compassionate social workers are specially trained to talk you through your emotions before, during, and after your baby is born. If you make an open adoption plan, they will help you navigate the relationship with the adoptive parents and support you as long as you need it. Our social workers provide resources and support for years to come. 

a couple working on their budget

Financial Considerations

There are no legal or agency fees for you if you choose to make an adoption plan for your baby in the state of Ohio. Birth mothers can receive assistance with living expenses to alleviate financial stress during the pregnancy and for a short time post-partum. This can include housing, utilities, food costs, maternity clothing, and hygiene products. Your social worker will talk more with you about the assistance available. 


The decision to make an adoption plan for your newborn baby is complex and emotional. We want to be there for you, support your emotions, and provide you with the information and resources you need to make loving and thoughtful decisions for your child. We are here to guide you through every step, from complimentary pre-birth counseling to helping you choose the perfect family for your baby. We are committed to answering any questions, never with obligation, never with judgment. 

Open Arms Adoptions wants to help you consider all aspects of making an adoption plan and empower you to make the best possible decisions for you and your baby. Contact us today and speak with one of our caring professionals.

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Open Arms Adoptions is 501(c)3 non-profit agency licensed by the State of Ohio.

Our mission is to provide a loving, stable home to every child in need. We work tirelessly to create an environment that embraces the unique set of circumstances each of our birth parents, prospective adoptive parents and children bring to us. 
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11 River St., Ste. B
Kent, OH 44240
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Canal Winchester, OH 43110
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18 E. William St.
Delaware, OH 43015
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