The Facts About Adoption
7 Surprising Adoption Statistics [Especially #6]
Most people have false ideas about adoption.
- Wrong: Only young, single women choose adoption.
- Wrong: Parents who choose adoption never see their baby again.
- Wrong: Most adopted children don’t know they’re adopted.
It’s not their fault. Over the years, pop culture has done a pretty bad job at portraying how this process actually works. It’s given people incorrect stereotypes about who birth parents are, what growing up adopted is like and more.
We want to set the record straight with these surprising statistics about adoption.
These 7 statistics on adoption will show you how those stereotypes are mostly false, and how the process is totally different from what you’ve learned. If you’re a woman considering adoption right now, these adoption facts might help you see how adoption could be the right choice for your life.
Adoption Facts vs. Fiction
These facts about adoption are all backed up by research and experience, as opposed to the myths about adoption that many have come to believe.
Adoption Fact No. 1: Anyone Can Choose Adoption
Think of a woman who places her baby for adoption. What’s the image in your head?
If you’re like most people, it’s a young woman — probably a teenager. She’s alone and scared, with no resources. And she probably seems helpless, leaving her baby with an orphanage or fire station.
That’s the false image of birth parents we’ve been given by pop culture depictions of adoption. The truth? Anyone can choose adoption.
Most prospective birth mothers are between the ages of 25–35. This is just one of the adoption statistics that can reshape your idea of adoption. There are plenty more:
- The majority of birth parents have at least some college credit
- More than half of birth parents already have other children
- Close to 10% of birth parents are married
These adoption statistics make it clear that women from many different walks of life can choose adoption for their babies.
Adoption Fact No. 2: Adopted Children Know that They Are Adopted
It’s true that adoption used to be kept secret from many adoptees. This was a misguided attempt to make the child feel “normal.” In reality, it only reinforced the stereotype that adoption was a lesser way to be a part of a family, and it caused serious harm when children did eventually learn their own story.
But, here are the true adoption facts about this situation today: 99% of adopted children ages 5 and younger know they are adopted, and adoption agencies educate all adoptive parents on the importance of being open about adoption with their children.
Research has clearly shown that talking about adoption early (at an age appropriate level) can help a child think of adoption in a positive light. This allows a child to see adoption as a good part of their story as they grow up and form their own sense of identity.
Adoption Fact No. 3: Most Adoptions Are Open
Are you afraid that adoption means goodbye forever? It’s a very common fear, and it’s totally understandable. Thankfully, it’s not the case.
There are many adoption statistics about open adoption, and here’s the most important: 95% of all domestic adoptions are at least semi-open.
When a prospective birth parent chooses adoption, they get to set the level of openness in their adoption plan. This means that you will choose how much contact you’d like to have with your child after placement, and your agency will only show you adoptive family profiles of potential parents who have already agreed to this level of openness.
The domestic adoption statistics make it abundantly clear: You will have the opportunity to stay connected with your child after placement.
Adoption Fact No. 4: Adopted Children Are Loved and Cherished
There’s an idea — it’s been around for a long time — that adopted children aren’t loved as much as biological children. This is simply not true. Adoption statistics show how much adoptive parents cherish their children.
Here are just a few:
- 75% of adopted children under the age of 5 are read or sang to every day, according to the NSAP
- 90% of adoptive parents say their relationship with their child is “very close”
- 90% of adoptive parents say they would “definitely” make the decision to adopt again
Beyond statistics on adoption, it’s clear from many stories that adoptive parents are deeply committed to providing their children with a loving, safe home full of opportunity.
Adoption Fact No. 5: You Don’t “Get Paid” for Adoption
There are plenty of rumors flying around about getting paid for adoption. It’s important to understand that these are not true. At all.
Let’s get the adoption facts straight: getting paid for adoption is illegal. There’s no ambiguity around this in adoption law. So, where do those false ideas about getting paid for adoption come from?
It’s a misunderstanding of adoption financial assistance. Financial assistance comes in the form of covering pregnancy-related expenses during the adoption process. This assistance is provided primarily by the adoptive family, and the funds are sent straight to paying off bills by the adoption agency (or the other professional facilitating the process).
The domestic adoption facts in this situation are clear. Adoption financial assistance can be extremely helpful for prospective birth parents, but nobody gets paid for adoption.
Adoption Fact No. 6: Adoptees Have Positive Feelings about Their Birth Parents
Every adoptee’s journey is unique, so it’s impossible to say how your child will think of their own adoption story. However, the idea that adopted children will hate their birth parents is false.
Child adoption statistics show that more than 90% of adoptees ages 5 and older have positive feelings about their adoption. The increase in open adoption and in the way the adoptive families share the adoption story with their children are likely responsible for this.
While it’s completely understandable to be worried about your child not understanding why you chose adoption, the child adoption facts show that most children will think positively of their birth parents.
Adoption Fact No. 7: Prospective Birth Parents Are in Charge
Did you know that you are in charge of the process when you choose to place your baby for adoption? It’s a surprise to many.
There’s a myth that birth parents simply “give up” their babies, but the facts about adoption paint a different picture. Instead of “giving up,” prospective birth parents are proactively involved in leading the adoption process.
Birth parents create their adoption plan, choose the adoptive family, set a level of openness, map out a hospital plan and more. All of this is done with the help of an adoption agency.
Learn More about Adoption
We hope these adoption statistics and facts about adoption give you a better idea of what adoption is really like. If you’re interested in learning more about how you could begin the adoption process, you can contact us today to be connected with an adoption agency.
Ready to get started? Contact an adoption agency now to get free information.