• Message Us Now

Kansas Birth Parent Handbook Form

Kansas Birth Parent Handbook Form

Kansas Birth Parent Handbook

A Letter from Adoption Choices of Kansas

When faced with an unplanned pregnancy, many women don’t consider adoption because they don’t know much about it. However, once they become informed about the reality of adoption, they often view it as a wonderful solution to a challenging situation. Therefore, before making a decision, we encourage you to educate yourself about the potential benefits of adoption for both you and your baby.

We are here to assist you throughout this process because we genuinely care about you and your child. Rest assured, you have come to the right place! As a licensed adoption agency, we offer a perfect blend of modern professionalism and resources with down-to-earth local support from compassionate individuals who prioritize your happiness and well-being. Our approach to adoption aims to empower you to make informed choices, providing a solid foundation for your future success. Even after you have completed our program, we will continue to offer unwavering support throughout your lifetime.

It is natural to have concerns about adoption initially, fearing that it may imply abandonment of your baby. However, the more you learn about adoption, the more clear it becomes that this is not the case at all. Adoption means the best choice for your child. Ensuring they are placed with a loving family and provided with a beautiful life full of opportunities that you may not currently be able to provide. In other words, it means you are a good mother.

The most remarkable aspect of choosing adoption with us is that you retain control. Your baby’s adoption plan will be tailored according to your preferences and choices. You have the right to select the family based on detailed information about their background and the type of home they will offer your child. Moreover, you have the freedom to decide the level of contact you wish to maintain with the family, both before and after the birth of the baby. Whether you choose to get to know them well, simply meet them once, or never meet them at all, the decisions are entirely in your hands. We will be right beside you throughout, providing guidance and support.

We are excited for the opportunity to work with you and support through the adoption journey!

Adoption Language

EXPECTANT PARENT:
Prior to the baby’s birth, we use the term "expectant parent". Sometimes there are two expectant parents: an expectant mom and an expectant dad. But in the majority of adoptions, only the expectant mom is involved. Therefore, in most of the material and information we provide here, we will refer to the expectant mom or the birth mom rather than two expectant parents or birth parents.

BIRTH PARENT:
A birth parent is a parent who has placed a child for adoption. Before the baby is born, people sometimes use the term "expectant parent" or the term"birth parent" interchangeably. Birth parent, birth mother, and birth father are frequently used terms.

PROSPECTIVE ADOPTIVE PARENT:
An individual or family who hopes to adopt, but hasn't finalized the adoption yet.

ADOPTIVE PARENT(S):
An individual or couple who has finalized the adoption. Sometimes, people use the term "adoptive parent" when talking about a prospective adoptive parent.

PLACE FOR ADOPTION:
This is an important term that is used instead of "give up for adoption" or "give up the baby". When a birth mother places her child for adoption, she has made a conscious decision for her child's future. She hasn't "given up."

ADOPTION PLAN:
Adoption Plan: An adoption plan is the plan expectant parents put together (with our help) for their unique and individual adoption. It involves many different elements like picking a family, receiving support and emotional counseling from an Adoption Specialist, creating a birth plan for the hospital, the type of contact they will have with the adoptive family, financial support needed, and more.

MATCH WITH A FAMILY:
A match occurs when the expectant parents select a family to adopt their child. A match can also occur if the agency is asked to select a family on behalf of the expectant parent(s).

Open, Semi-Open, and Closed Adoptions

Adoption Choices of Kansas is dedicated to supporting your preferred adoption plan in collaboration with prospective adoptive parents. We prioritize your ability to make an informed decision that aligns with your own feelings and values, and we will assist you in exploring all available options. We strive to connect you with families who share your desired level of openness if you choose an open adoption. It is important to note that every adoption plan is distinct, and no two are identical. Some birth mothers may opt for openness before the placement, but prefer closedness after the placement. While post-adoption contact is not enforceable under Kansas law, we, the agency, encourage families to follow their agreed post adoption agreement. To give you an overview, we have provided general guidelines on the various types of adoption options below.

OPEN ADOPTION:
This is a common choice for many expectant mothers. The adoption is open because the expectant mother will get to know the family and she will have a plan for an ongoing relationship. With an open adoption, the expectant mother or the agency will select the family.

The relationship typically starts before delivery. A meet and greet face-to-face meeting will occur typically within 2 weeks after selecting a family. Depending on how the connection progresses, the expectant mother and the prospective adoptive parents may want to exchange direct contact information, such as phone numbers and email addresses.

After delivery, the birth mom may want to spend time with the adoptive family and the baby at the hospital, depending on how she is feeling. Then, she may want to keep up with the family through direct contact (phone calls, texts), and all might even later visit. In many open adoptions, the visits are annual.

SEMI-OPEN (SEMI-PRIVATE) ADOPTION:
This is another common option. The expectant mother (or the agency) chooses the family and may decide to meet the family and build a relationship before delivery. After the baby is placed, the contact is mostly through pictures and letters, and there are usually no personal visits or contact.

CLOSED ADOPTION:
In modern adoption, this is far less common. In many cases the expectant mother will ask the agency to choose a family on her behalf, although that's not the case every time. After the family is chosen, the expectant mom typically won't meet or have a relationship with the family. There are usually no updates, pictures, letters, nor contact between the birth mom and the adoptive family.

Alternatives & Options

PARENTING:
Being a parent is an incredible experience, but it also carries significant responsibilities. It is crucial to consider various factors before embarking on this journey. Are you financially prepared to afford the expenses of raising a child? How will being a parent impact your future aspirations and dreams? Do you have a solid support system comprising friends, family, or a partner who can offer the necessary assistance? These are just a few of the many important questions that we will help you in considering. Our goal is for you to make an informed decision about whether adoption is the right path for you and your baby. If you determine that it is, we are here to guide and support you in taking the next steps.

ADOPTION:
The adoption journey is undeniably beautiful, yet it also poses emotional challenges. Fortunately, the advancement in adoption practices today offers an array of options. We will assist you in designing your own adoption plan and connect you with families who are aligned with your preferences. This ensures that the family seeking to adopt your baby shares your aspirations. Whether you opt to choose the family or not and/or meet them before delivery or not, the decision is entirely yours. You are in complete control prior to placement, and we will provide unwavering support at every step of this journey, including after placement.

FOSTER CARE:
You have the option of temporarily placing your child under the care of Child Protective Services while you take necessary steps to become capable of parenting the child. This choice allows you the opportunity to secure employment, save up for an apartment, and obtain the financial means to afford necessities like diapers and childcare. However, regaining custody of your child will involve meeting specific state requirements, such as attending parenting classes and demonstrating your ability to provide a safe environment for them.

ABORTION:
Undoubtedly, abortion remains a highly controversial issue in American society, thereby making conversations surrounding it challenging and often uncomfortable. Should you want to explore this subject further or seek comprehensive information, it is recommended to consult with your healthcare provider. Ultimately, the choice of whether to undergo an abortion is an intensely personal decision that solely rests within your hands.

FRIENDS AND FAMILY:
Whether it be close friends or members of your own family, there might be individuals who are willing to take on the responsibility of parenting your child or providing short-term care until you are able to do so.

WHAT IF I'M NOT SURE? WHAT IF I CAN'T DECIDE?
If your pregnancy was unexpected, it's completely normal to initially feel overwhelmed and unsure about your next steps. However, take comfort in the fact that you have the power to regain control and we are here to offer support and empathy. By carefully examining your choices and considering your true emotions, you will find a resolution that brings you peace and tranquility. Trust your instincts and prioritize what aligns with your own aspirations and the future you envision for yourself and your baby.

About Us

WHO WE ARE:
Adoption Choices of Kansas is licensed by the State of Kansas to provide professional, full-service adoption assistance statewide. We understand that everyone faces different circumstance and has different needs.

For Expectant Parents: We are here to help you make an adoption plan that meets your needs.

CONTACT:
We have compassionate adoption professionals who work across Kansas to provide services to the birth parents and adoptive families we serve. Our office is located at:

Adoption Choices of Kansas 313 N. Seneca St. Wichita, KS 67203

Birth Parent Hotline: (316) 391-4904
(Call or Text 24/7)

Our Services

INTAKE SERVICES:
Our intake services are with qualified adoption specialists that are compassionate, understanding, and ready to start your choice of your adoption plan.

MEDICAL CARE:
Taking care of yourself during pregnancy is the most important thing you can do for the baby. We can help you get medical care for a healthy pregnancy.

CASE MGMT SERVICES:
Our Expertise Case Manager will be assigned to you to guide you through all adoption services that we provide. They work hand-in-hand with the Executive Director to provide a wrap around approach.

FINANCIAL STABILITY:
We can help meet your needs with approved living expenses during pregnancy.

A SAFE PLACE TO STAY:
If you are experiencing unsafe or unstable housing, we can provide a safe and comfortable place for you.

SUPPORT COUNSELING:
Our counselors are here to listen and to help. Call us now to start getting support and understanding your choices. We offer counseling both during the pregnancy and after the adoption. LEGAL SERVICES:
Our agency will arrange legal services for all your questions answered with an attorney for one-on-one service.

PLACEMENT AND POST PLACEMENT SERVICES:
Our Birth Service Professionals are qualified to help with your placement paperwork around a plan around your choices. We follow that up with post-placement support after finalization.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Why Choose Adoption?
The choice of adoption is a positive alternative to an unplanned pregnancy. Many women who find themselves in a crisis pregnancy situation do not search out all of their options. An adoption plan can be whatever you want it to be.

2. Will someone personally help me through the adoption process?
Yes! You will meet an adoption specialist who will work with you through the adoption process. Our adoption agencies are local in Kansas and our licensed staff will meet you in-person.

3. Who will help me understand this decision and deal with the loss of my child?
The decision to choose adoption is not an easy one to make on your own. Although it may be a difficult and painful choice, we will be there to provide support, including counseling if you would like.

4. Can I choose the adoptive family of my child?
Yes, you have the option of approving the parents who will be adopting your baby. Each family makes a picture profile, which is a mini-scrap book that tells you about their lives. The profiles we will present to you are filled with photos of the family, their vacations, their home and lots more. It will also include a “Dear Birth Mother” letter that addresses other frequently asked questions such as their likes and dislikes, hobbies, etc.

5. How do I know the adoptive family can provide a safe environment in which to raise my child?
All of our prospective adoptive parents go through extensive background checks. Social workers meet them in their homes to interview them. The couples are required to provide a State Bureau of Investigation report and a child abuse clearance report as well as birth certificates, a copy of their marriage license, physician’s reports that include HIV test results, etc. Adoptive families are carefully screened.

6. Will I be able to meet the adoptive family in person?
Yes, if you wish they can come meet you before the baby is born and you can have as much or as little of a relationship with the adoptive family as you want. You also have the opportunity to talk with them over the phone throughout the pregnancy. You can call to let them know how your doctor’s visits are going. If the family is able, and you are willing, they can even attend a doctor’s appointment with you. You will know as much information about the adoptive family as we can give to you without revealing their last names and addresses. However, if you prefer to have a closed adoption with the adoptive family, that is also available.

7. Can I make an adoption plan without the birth father’s consent?
If the birth father will not give his consent, or if you are unable to locate him, the attorney for the agency will attempt to terminate his parental rights.

8. Will I be able to receive help with transportation if I need it?
Your case worker will help you with transportation to and from your doctor’s visits and take you to pick up prescriptions. If further assistance is needed ,e.g., trips to the grocery store or a ride to work your case worker will be glad to help arrange that for you. We understand how important it is that you stay healthy and well taken care of.

9. How do I pay for the medical costs incurred by the pregnancy and birth?
The choice of adoption is always at no cost to the birth mother. We will help you find assistance in paying the medical bills. The portion of the medical expenses not covered by private insurance or by state funds will be provided by the adoptive family.

10. Can I have contact with my baby while I am in the hospital?
You can see your baby as often as you want while you are in the hospital. Your case workers will help you make that decision.

11. When will the adoptive family take the baby home?
In most situations the adoptive family are at the hospital while the birth mother is in labor. If you would like, the family can even be in the delivery room with you. The agency suggests they come to Kansas a day or two before your estimated due date. If you deliver early they will be on the next flight out of their home town.

12. Is transitional care ever involved?
In extreme cases, when the adoptive family is unable to arrive before the baby is released from the hospital, we will place the baby in state licensed transitional care. The families who watch the children for this short period of time are screened as intensively as the adoptive family.

13. How do I give my consent? Do I have to go in front of a judge?
No, the consents to the adoption are not taken in front of a judge unless (1) a child falls under the Indian child or (2) the birth mother’s mental capacity is questioned.

14. Will I have to find my own attorney for the consent?
Adoption Choices will provide you with a name of an attorney who you may interview to help you with your representation for the consent. The attorneys who have knowledge of adoption in Kansas are located at www.adoptionart.org and are Fellows with the Academy of Adoption & Assisted Reproduction Attorneys. The agency will cover all of your legal fees for the non-contested adoption consent process.

15. Will the agency help me with living expenses?
The agency will cover appropriate living expenses to birth mothers who need the help. We understand how difficult it is to get back on your feet and return to work after delivering a baby.

16. Will I be able to know about my child’s health and well-being after his/her their birth?
Ongoing correspondence is definitely an option for you as a birth mother. We require that the adoptive family be open to sending pictures and letters at least once a year until the child reaches the age of 18. You are also able to send the adoptive family letters and pictures for the baby through the agency.

Grievance Procedure

You have the right to file a grievance or appeal a decision at any time. The Agency is committed to treating all clients fairly and with the dignity and respect they deserve.
- To file a grievance or appeal, please submit a written grievance to your Adoption Specialist. They will respond in writing within three business days.
- If the matter remains unresolved, your Adoption Specialist will escalate your grievance to the Agency's Executive Director within one business day. The Executive Director will then provide a written response to you within three business days.
- If the issue persists, the Executive Director will forward the grievance to the Agency's CEO within one business day. The CEO will respond in writing to you within three business days.
- If a resolution cannot be reached, you have the option to take your grievance to the Licensing Representative assigned to Adoption Choices of Kansas.

Any alleged violations of licensing requirements can be reported to the Kansas Department for Children and Families at (785) 296-3271.

Kansas Adoption Laws

BIRTH MOTHER:
In Kansas, an expectant mother cannot sign relinquishment papers until at least 12 hours following the birth of her child. In this process the birth mother receives relinquishment counseling before and/or after birth of the child. It is crucial that you sign the relinquishment when you are physically and emotionally prepared and free from the influence of any medication. There are many documents that need to be reviewed and signed before placement of the child.

LEGAL COUNSEL:
Adoption Choices of Kansas ensures every expectant parent to receive free legal counsel. We will provide you with contact information for you to have your own independent attorney prior to the signing of your consent/relinquishments documents, to go over your legal rights and have the paperwork thoroughly explained.

BIRTH FATHERS (Not all fathers are the same):
Legal Biological Father a/k/a Presumed Father: If you are married to a man at the time of the birth of your child, the law presumes the child is your husband’s even if he is not the biological father. In Kansas, he may sign the same legal consent form as you do or he can do nothing. If he chooses to do nothing, the agency must provide proof to the court that he was notified of the adoption plan through proper legal service and the courts will terminate his rights. A presumed father can also choose to contest the adoption. Your attorney will go into this in more detail with you.

Alleged or Putative Father: This is the legal term for any potential biological father, who is not married to the birth mother, and has not acknowledged paternity of the child in the Courts. If the name of the potential biological father is known, and if he can be located, he can sign a relinquishment with his own legal counsel provided by the agency. If the alleged father is unwilling to sign a relinquishment, he will be served notice of the adoption letting him know what his options are moving forward. If he chooses to do nothing, and has been served adequate notice of the proceedings, his rights may be terminated in court by a Judge.

More information on this process can be discussed with Adoption Choices and your own independent legal counsel.

Post Birth and Post Placement Services

Adoption Choices of Kansas understands that this process has not been easy. From making the initial decision to place your baby for adoption, through the pregnancy, and following the birth of your child, we want to provide you with the utmost care, empathy, and respect. Our services do not stop after the baby is born! Adoption Choices will assist you after the birth of your child in the following ways:

POST BIRTH COUNSELING:
If you and/or the father of the child would like to participate in counseling, and we recommend you do, we will help you get established with an unbiased, third party therapist who will help you work through whatever emotions and feelings you may be having, whether those emotions are related to the adoption or something else.

POST BIRTH FINANCIAL SUPPORT:
Our agency ensures that birth parents receive financial support while they are recovering from the birth of the baby. Generally this means that we will continue to provide reasonable, court approved living expenses to you for 4-6 weeks following the birth.

POST BIRTH GENERAL CARE:
By the time your baby is born, you will likely have formed a lasting connection with your adoption specialist. This person will continue to be a source of support for you for the foreseeable future. They can help you with transportation to and from doctor’s appointments and make sure you have whatever resources you need available to you so that you can feel safe, supported, and cared for. They will also be available to you to answer any questions you may have or just to provide a listening ear.

CHILDCONNECT:
Whether you have chosen an open, semi-open, or closed adoption, you will be provided with an account on a platform called ChildConnect. This service is used exclusively to exchange pictures and updates between you and the adoptive parent and is available until the child reaches the age of 18.

Community Resources

Children/Parenting/Pregnancy Services:
- Abortion Services: Southwind Women’s Clinic: (316) 260-6934
- Adoption Services: https://www.adoptionchoicesofkansas.org | (316) 209-2071
- Crisis Pregnancy Center: A Better Choice: (316) 685-5757, Birthline, Inc.: (316) 265-0134
- SAFE KIDS (car seats): (316) 268-6760
- Union Rescue Mission (diapers & formula): (316) 687-4673

Food Assistance:
- Bread of Life: (316) 689-6866 Community Food Ministry: (316) 267-4201
- Giving Center: (316) 554-8924
- Grace Revolution: (316) 990-5819
- His Helping Hands: (316) 838-8528
- New Beginnings: (316) 267-6504
- Our Daily Bread: (316) 262-8898
- Salvation Army: (316) 263-2769

Domestic Violence Assistance:
- Harbor House: (316) 263-6000
- Wichita Family Crisis Center: (316) 267-7233

Drug & Alcohol Services:
- Alcoholic’s Anonymous: (316) 684-3661
- HealthCore Clinic: (316) 691-0249
- Higher Ground: (316) 262-2060
- Women’s Recovery Center: (316) 262-0505
- COMCARE Addiction Treatment Services: (316) 660-7877
- Miracles, Inc: (316) 303-9520
- Narcotics Anonymous: (316) (855) 732-4673
- Substance Abuse Center of Kansas: (316) 267-3825

Medical Assistance:
- Embrace (STD/Pregnancy testing: (316) 945-9400
- GraceMed Health Care Clinics: (316) 866-2000
- Guadalupe Clinic (St. Francis): (316) 264-8974
- Guadalupe Clinic (Hillside): (316) 201-1986
- HealthCore Clinic: (316) 691-0249
- Hunter Health: (316) 262-2415
- Sedgwick County Division of Health: (316) 660-7300

Housing/Shelter:
- Center of Hope: (316) 267-0222
- Salvation Army, Homeless Services: (316) 263-2196
- St. Anthony Family Shelter, Catholic Charities, Inc.: (316) 264-7233
- The Inn, powered by HumanKind: (316) 264-8051

Before You Go

We hope that this handbook has been helpful in providing you additional information about your options and also in helping you understand a little bit about what we do.

NO MATTER WHAT YOU CHOOSE, we want you to know that we are here for you and we are happy to offer you resources and support on your journey.

YOU ARE NOT ALONE.

Expectant Parent Handbook

I have read and reviewed the Expectant Parent Handbook with my Adoption Specialist. I have a copy that I can keep and refer to.
MM slash DD slash YYYY
Check Box to Acknowledge:(Required)
Contact Us 24/7