Although most women with crisis pregnancies who choose adoption are in their late teens or early twenties, there are also women in their late twenties and thirties and even forties who choose adoption for their children.
They may be married and already have three, four or more children. Faced with an unplanned pregnancy but morally opposed to abortion, they view adoption as a loving solution. Other mature women may be divorced or divorcing, or they may be single women.
Few adoption agencies are structured to deal with mature women; instead, their informational packets and counseling are more oriented to teenagers with crisis pregnancies. There are, however, agencies that offer separate living quarters and specially designed programs for this age group.
Social workers should realize that mature women with unplanned pregnancies also need positive support and do not desire patronizing attitudes.
Some mature women have asked agencies for help only to be turned away and told to come back in their last trimester if they still want help. Such action does not allow the woman a chance to receive counseling and other services. If she is turned away, she is deprived of needed assistance to plan for her child's future and her own future as well, and this action can severely inhibit the success of an adoption plan should the birthmother desire adoption.
Whether they are considering adoption or not, such women need information and assistance to help them gain necessary prenatal care. They may also need income and shelter to avoid the plight of homelessness or physical abuse by the father of the baby.
The Nurturing Network was formed by Mary Cunningham Agee to assist college age and career women facing a CRISIS PREGNANCY. Founded on Mother's Day in 1987, Agee and her network of families and individuals nationwide provide housing, financial assistance, medical assistance, prenatal classes and other needs.
Agee founded her organization when she realized women over age 20 faced the greatest difficulty in obtaining assistance during a crisis pregnancy. Some of the women Agee has assisted have made adoption plans while others have chosen to parent their children. Agee and her fellow networkers have helped over 700 women since the inception of the program.
For further information about the Nurturing Network, contact
The Nurturing Network
1235 University Blvd.
The Campus of Franciscan University of Steubenville
Steubenville, OH 43952
Find more information on mature women planning adoption
©2000 by Christine Adamec and William Pierce, Ph.D. Reprinted from The Encyclopedia of Adoption, 2nd Edition (2nd Edition) with permission of Facts On File, Inc.
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