There’s no doubt about it. Raising a child is one of the most challenging, rewarding experiences you could ever have. Parenting is difficult, regardless of whether a child is raised by one parent or two. Single parents, however, are often surrounded by a negative stigma because of an idea created by our society that says children should be raised in a two-parent, mother-father home.
As society has progressed, many still feel this “traditional” way of raising and parenting a child is best, but this couldn’t be further from the truth! When it comes to raising children, it only matters how you’re raising them, not how many people are raising them!
So, if you’re a single person considering adoption, or a birth mother wanting to place your child with single adoptive parents, don’t let anyone’s negative perception of single parents impact your decision. It’s inevitable that you will face scrutiny from others, but that doesn’t change that you will love, care for and support your child no matter what!
Success Tips for Adopting As a Single Parent
Do Your Research - If you’re considering adoption, one of the first things you need to do is research! Learn as much as you can about adoption. It’ll only help you more once your adoption process has started. As you’re doing your research, it’s important to understand the three types of adoption: open, semi-open and closed. Each of the three types has its own advantages and disadvantages, so knowing the differences will be helpful as you’re deciding which type of adoption you want and what is best for you!
Examine Your Situation - As a single person considering adoption, it’s critical to assess where you’re at in your life, especially in terms of your career and your financial situation. Raising a child is expensive, as is the adoption process, so your career and your ability to make money is essential when you become a parent! At the same time, you must also maintain a work-life balance. When you become a parent, that is and should be your first priority, so make sure you’re taking time to be a parent!
Take Classes - It might be helpful to take special courses on both parenting and adoption. This is actually a great idea for any new parents, single or couple, but as a single parent it’s especially important to have a strong support system! Single parents, unlike couples who adopt, don’t have a second parent to rely on for support in the more challenging moments of parenthood. If you decide to take classes on parenting and/or adoption, this is an excellent way to meet other parents who might be facing the same or similar challenges as you! Remember, parenting isn't easy, especially if you do it alone, so it can be a relief to know that there are other parents out there who are feeling the same way as you!
Have a Support System - On a similar note as the above statement, know when and how to ask for help. Independence as a single parent is a must, but if you have a strong support system, it’s OK to take advantage of it! If you don’t have a strong support system, find one. Get to know your community better, seek out resources for single parents. Just because you’ve chosen to raise a child alone doesn't mean you’re not allowed to ask for help. When you have a strong support system behind you, they - your family, friends, support group, etc. - should WANT to help you!
Be Patient - If you’re single and considering adopting a child, keep in mind that your adoption process may take longer than the normal time frame. It’s unfortunate, but true, that it’s more common for birth parents to choose a couple over a single parent for their child. If you choose to adopt, you must remain patient as you go through the adoption process. That being said, it’s also important for you to never give up and to stay positive! Through the tough times, remember that the best things in life take time. You will reach the end of your adoption process, you will become a parent and you will be great at it!
Balance, a Strong Support System and Shaking Off Negativity
As a single parent, some of the biggest challenges you’ll face will likely revolve around balance and discrimination. Because of these things, at times, you’re going to feel overwhelmed or like you’re not a good parent. If you experience either or both of these feelings, chances are you’re a great one! Don’t let the narrow minds of others make you feel like you’re any less than you are. Parenting is hard! The fact that you’ve chosen to be a parent on your own speaks volumes to who you are. If you can raise a child by yourself, you’re pretty much unstoppable!
That said, it’s still important as a single parent to surround yourself with people who are supportive and willing to help you out. Yes, you’ve chosen to raise a child alone. But again, that doesn’t mean you’re not allowed to ask for help every now and then! Remember, even though you’re a parent, you’re a human, too. Asking for help doesn’t make you weak or a bad parent, it just makes you human!
Our adoption specialists are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week to answer your questions, discuss your options, and help you make the decision that is best for you and your baby. Call, text, chat, or email us anytime, day or night!