The waiting period for a “healthy” newborn can be up to 8 years in a public adoption; prospective parents can have a child placed with them much sooner if they are willing to consider older and / or special needs children and babies.

Private Adoption
If a couple chooses to use an adoption agency or find a prospective birth mother on their own, this is called Private Adoption. There are two types of private adoption that happen most frequently in North America: Open Adoption and International.

  • Open Adoption

Women who have found themselves pregnant and are wanting to find their unborn baby a home will contact these agencies or place ads (where legally permitted) to find prospective adoptive parents. The birth mothers will choose the couple that they think will suit the child’s needs the best.

The average waiting period for a newborn is about 2-4 years. It is usually a much shorter wait than a public adoption. In a private open adoption, after a couple is chosen, and the baby is taken home, the birth mother has a short period of time to change her. These situations do happen are quite heartbreaking for everyone involved.

If the baby remains with the new parents, the birth mother (and birth father) can make arrangements to stay in contact with the family and the baby.

A big advantage with open adoptions is that prospective couples have access to the birth family’s social and medical history. A disadvantage for most people is the $10,000 - $20,000 cost.

Couples looking into open adoptions should be aware of the cost and the fact that the birth mother will most likely become part of their extended family. Some people forget that they may need to walk away and that may be too much to handle emotionally for some couples.

  • Private International Adoption

International adoption has recently come to the forefront of North American adoption options due to its popularity with celebrities in the past couple of decades. International adoption is done privately with a domestic agency.

The waiting time in an international adoption is typically only a couple of years. A child is usually chosen from an orphanage by officials residing in the country the child resides in.

Adoptive parents will have to travel to the country and fill out masses of paperwork to obtain the rights to adopt, and the fees can be up to $50,000; this includes travel and lodging.

Whether a couple wanting a child goes the public or private route, there are pros and cons to both. When looking at options, be sure to be wary of not only cost and time, but also emotions and reactions. The reality of adoption is harder than people want to believe; when thinking about human lives, it isn’t desirable to look at things logically – people tend to think with their hearts.

The hope is that an unplanned pregnancy or previously unwanted child finds joy and love in the arms of a healthy, happy couple. When a child finds love and acceptance that is the greatest happy ending.

Author's Bio: 

Lilly Gordon is a freelance author and web publisher. She writes on a variety of topics and is an avid supporter of educating children about safe sex and unplanned pregnancy and is currently writing about unexpected pregnancy in Edmonton, Alberta.