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How Do I Tell the Birth Father About My Adoption Plan?

Methods of Telling Him and When You Don't Have to Tell Him

Some pregnant women are unsure of how to talk to the birth father about placing the child for adoption. We're here to help. Call 1-800-ADOPTION if you need immediate advice. 

In the meantime, here are three ways to tell him that you want to place this baby for adoption – each with their own pros and cons:

1. Talk to the birth father in person or by telephone

If possible, directly speaking to the birth father is the best way of informing him of your adoption plan. This way, you can inform him delicately and answer any of his questions about your adoption plan or the adoption process.

You can also tell him about the benefits of adoption and how he too can be involved in your adoption plan or can even create his own birth father adoption plan.

If you need guidance about how to start this tough conversation, an American Adoptions specialist can talk you through it. Call us at 1-800-ADOPTION now.

2. Write a letter, text, or email to the birth father

Sometimes it is easier or necessary (for a variety of reasons) for the birth mother to tell the birth father about her adoption plan by writing him a letter, text, or email.

If you choose this approach, be careful to spend some time thinking about how you want to tell him. 

Be honest with him and as descriptive as possible. Explain why you are choosing adoption, why you believe adoption is best for your baby, what the next steps of the adoption process are, and what kind of relationship you are seeking with the adoptive family.

Be sure to choose your words carefully, so your thoughts are accurately conveyed in the letter. If you need help finding the right words to express yourself, an American Adoptions counselor can help - contact us at 1-800-ADOPTION.

3. Have your adoption specialist or attorney talk to the birth father on your behalf

If you are not comfortable speaking with the birth father, your adoption specialist or adoption attorney may be able to talk to him for you, depending on your state’s laws.

Before contacting the birth father, your American Adoptions specialist or your attorney may talk with you about your adoption plan. He or she will then talk to the birth father about your adoption plan and his rights moving forward, and will offer the opportunity to create his own adoption plan.

When You Do Not Have to Tell the Father of Your Pregnancy

The law in many states does not require a woman to advise a man of her pregnancy. If the father is abusive, she may have reason to fear telling him. A woman may also be uncomfortable advising a man that she is pregnant, considering adoption, and is unsure of whether he is the father.

While the law does not require you to tell the father of your pregnancy, the law prohibits you from lying to him about your pregnancy or the baby in any way, including the expected due date. So, if the birth father asks you if you are pregnant and when the baby is due by email, text, Facebook, Twitter, etc., you must either tell him the truth or ask your adoption specialist or your attorney to give him truthful information.

If the birth father asks questions about a possible pregnancy, know that you have a right to financial support from him during the pregnancy. You can request it, but don’t make a request if it will endanger you. Let your adoption specialist or attorney make the request for financial support if you are afraid of him.

If the father offers you financial support, talk to your adoption specialist about it. State laws vary with respect to the effect of such financial support.


An adoption specialist can help you with any method of telling the birth father about your adoption plan. Whether you want to tell him in person, in a letter or on the phone, your adoption specialist can coach you on how best to approach it.

Call 1-800-ADOPTION to talk to an adoption specialist about telling the birth father about your adoption plan, or read the following to request free adoption information.

Information available through these links is the sole property of the companies and organizations listed therein. American Adoptions, Inc. provides this information as a courtesy and is in no way responsible for its content or accuracy.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Why is American Adoptions the right adoption agency choice for many birth mothers?

American Adoptions is one of the largest licensed adoption agencies in the United States. Each year, we work with thousands of women who are facing an unplanned pregnancy and offer assistance to these women. Our large, caring staff is able to assist you seven days a week and provide you with one-on-one counseling about your pregnancy and available options.

You should choose an adoption agency where you feel completely comfortable with their services and staff. With American Adoptions, you will work with an Adoption Specialist who is on-call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The Adoption Specialist will be your advocate and will provide support and guidance as you create an adoption plan that is right for you.

How will the family tell my child about me and the adoption when my child is older?

Each family has their own style of introducing adoption to the child. When you are matched with an adoptive family, you can ask them this question. If you would like your Adoption Specialist to discuss it for you, just let her know. He or she can share your wishes or provide good ideas from other adoptive families.

You will also be able to share what you want your baby to know about you. You can complete a keepsake booklet to share hobbies, stories, photos of you and your family and a letter to your baby. The adoptive family can provide this to your child as he or she grows older. Be as creative as you like! Some birth mothers have even knitted a special blanket as a gift to their baby or given a similar symbol of their love.

The father of your baby can fill out the birth father's keepsake booklet or write a letter too. You may have other family members who would also like to share photos or a letter to the baby. This is your opportunity to pass on your and your family's love and to share your personality, history and reasons for choosing adoption. The adoptive family will treasure whatever information you provide and will share it with the baby at an appropriate age. In most adoptive homes, the word adoption is in the child's vocabulary early on, and adoption is celebrated in their lives.

Additional Resources

Teen Pregnancy - Information for Young Women

While not every woman who chooses adoption is a young mother, many are. Through adoption, many young women have found an ability to give their babies the best life possible, while finding the opportunity to realize their own dreams, as well. Call American Adoptions today at 1-800-ADOPTION.

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Adoption Glossary

Do adoption terms and phrases leave you feeling confused? Learn the meaning to key adoption words and phrases with our comprehensive adoption glossary.

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