10/05/2022 AWFC

Can You Adopt a Child as a Single Parent?

Can you adopt a child as a single parent? One common misconception about adoption is that prospective guardians must be married if they want to adopt. Not only is this false, but more than a quarter of foster care children were adopted by single people in 2017. While households with married couples provide some advantages, adopting a child is about establishing a prosperous life and a thriving environment for a child in need.

If you are a single person looking to bring a child into your life, you’ve come to the right place! In this guide, we will go over all the factors to consider when going through a single-parent adoption process and the challenges you may face.

History of Single Parent Adoptions

The stigma surrounding single-parenting adoption has been pervasive throughout our society. Even though single parents were allowed to adopt before the 1960s, it was common for state welfare officials to enact regulations that made it increasingly difficult for single individuals to adopt. At one point, in 1958, the Child Welfare League of America stated that adoptive families should include both a mother and a father. 

By 1968, the league had redefined its stance and stated that single-parent adoptions were permissible under exceptional circumstances. These conditions involved situations where a child would not otherwise be adopted. Today, there are no regulations that prevent you from adopting a child as a single guardian.

Every state in the country allows single people to adopt, provided they meet several state and agency requirements. In the next section, we will dive deeper into those essentials. 

Adoption Requirements in Texas

The qualifications to adopt will vary depending on several factors, including state requirements, agency regulations, and the type of adoption. That said, both single and married applicants must comply with the same rules. Here are the general requirements to adopt a child in Texas:

  • Must be 21 years of age or older.
  • Must be in good health (physically and mentally). 
  • All adults residing in your household must consent to interviews.
  • Provide references in the form of letters from relatives and non-relatives.
  • Adults in the household must submit to background checks.
  • Provide a suitable home environment with enough space for the child.
  • Be financially stable.
  • Provide vaccination records of all pets in the household.
  • Submit to a home study session.
  • Attend training to learn more about concerns involving neglected children.

Single-Parent Adoption Considerations

Not surprisingly, adopting a child as a single guardian is a difficult undertaking. Single guardians must consider the personal, financial, and lifestyle implications of raising a child in a single household. Here are some considerations to make before beginning an adoption process: 

Domestic or international adoption?

Are you hoping to adopt domestically or internationally? If you are hoping to adopt a child from another country, keep in mind that you may face restrictions. Each country determines adoption eligibility for single parents. Some countries prioritize married couples, while others impose eligibility restrictions based on gender. 

Financial stability

It may become difficult to handle the financial challenges of raising a child by yourself. Even if you have a full-time job, expenses can quickly add up, leaving you scrambling to find a solution. Do you have an emergency fund to tap into in case of unexpected expenditures? Are you financially capable of handling healthcare, preschool, babysitting, and other child-related expenses?  

Lifestyle changes

Raising an adopted child as a single parent can significantly alter your relationships, friendships, and personal lifestyle. Are you prepared to handle the social and personal implications of single parenting? More importantly, are you capable and willing to make the necessary sacrifices in your life to establish a better future for your adopted child?

Do you have a support system?

No matter how self-reliant you are, every prospective guardian needs a support system that they can rely on when problems arise. Single parenting is an uphill battle with challenges and unexpected setbacks. Can you rely on friends or family members for parental, financial, or emotional support? If your support base is non-existent, you may want to reconsider your decision to adopt as a single parent.

Can you handle a prolonged process?

Single-parent adoption remains a difficult process. For example, a birth mother can decide that she wants her child raised by two parental guardians instead of just one. In other words, you may be turned down as a candidate because you are single. Getting approved for adoption as a single person can take longer than usual. When this happens, remain calm.

Eventually, your time will come. But you have to be willing to go the extra mile and demonstrate that you are determined and capable of establishing a family. 

Contact a World for Children

Can you adopt a child as a single parent? As you can see, the answer is yes. Here at A World for Children, we’re committed to changing the lives of children in need. With the help of our selfless and dedicated staff, we seek to turn adoption into a beautiful, lifelong experience for all parties involved.

Contact us, and help us change the world one child at a time. 

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