Can You Put a Baby Up for Adoption? [And Are There Requirements?]

Religion, Unplanned Pregnancy & Adoption [Guide]

Choosing adoption is difficult, confusing and stressful. There once was a stigma around adoption, but societal changes have made adoption far more accepted and respected. Still, as prospective birth mother practicing her religion and living her life by religious beliefs, you may be asking yourself these questions:

  • How does my religion view giving up a child for adoption?
  • Is giving up my baby for adoption a sin?
  • How will my family and community view giving up a child for adoption?

These are all difficult questions surrounding your potential adoption when factoring in religious views, but it’s important to remember that no matter what, you’re not “giving up” your child. Regardless of what your religion says about adoption, you are the only one that can determine whether placing your child for adoption is right for you. It’s also completely up to you to decide how your religious views fit in with your specific adoption plan.

This article will discuss adoption and specific religions, the benefits of choosing adoption and how choosing the right family can positively impact your concerns about adoption.


Religious views on “giving your child up” for adoption differ. Some religions may view unplanned pregnancy as sinful. There’s also the possibility that peers in your church or community may view an adoption negatively, even if your God or religion’s history do not. The choice of adoption is difficult enough without how religion plays a role. Understanding how your religion impacts your decision to adopt, as well as knowing adoption agencies can help you create an adoption plan sensitive to your views and beliefs, is an important first step.

Below, find more information about some of the common major religious views used in the adoption process.


Some common questions for a Christian woman experiencing an unplanned pregnancy can include:

There’s plenty of information available online about a Christian woman “giving her child up” for adoption, but one of the first steps you might consider taking is sitting down with a religious leader in your community, such as your pastor or someone whom you respect, and discussing the subject. It’s important to know that adoption is never wrong. Finding the best possible situation with a loving and caring family for the good of your child is not a sinful decision.

“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future.” – Jeremiah 29:11

Scriptures such as this should bring peace of mind in knowing that helping to provide a safe, healthy, loving and prosperous environment is very much Christian in nature. If the concern over whether or not adoption being a sin is weighing on you, consider the benefits of adoption:

  • Giving a family the chance to have a child or add to their family
  • Finding a stable living environment for your child
  • Ensuring financial stability for your child
  • Educational resources, counseling and financial assistance during and after your pregnancy
  • Staying involved and important in your child’s life through an “open” or “semi-open” adoption.

Many Christian women find that Bible verses about giving up a child can help them better understand the decision in front of them and take comfort in knowing they are ultimately making a decision that is best for them and their baby.

Here are some helpful scriptures about “giving up” a child for adoption:

  • “But they wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.” – Isaiah 40:31
  • “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knows, the door will be opened.” – Matthew 7:7-8
  • “You are the helper of the fatherless. Lord, you have heard the desire of the humble; You will prepare their heart; You will cause Your ear to hear, to do justice to the fatherless and the oppressed, That the man of the earth may oppress no more.” – Psalms 10:14,17-18
  • “And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty.” – 2 Corinthians 6:18
  • “To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive adoption as sons.” – Galatians 4:5


Every Christian mother that’s experienced an adoption has her own unique journey and story to tell. Talking to God about your own situation, feelings about your pregnancy and the emotions associated with it can be extremely beneficial. Many Christian women thinking about adoption have found it helpful to say a prayer for “giving a baby up” for adoption, such as this one:

Dear Merciful Father

I ask for your blessing. Please give me

Hope for a bright future, filled with abundant blessings; 

Please give me

Peace of mind and heart for the sacrifice I am thinking about making for my child;

Please give me

Respect from others for this decision;


Grace for choosing life.

I ask you Lord Jesus to

Bless me with a positive relationship with my child’s adoptive parents.

Please bless us with

Clarity in our communication;

Faithful gratitude;


Unconditional love.

May the Holy Spirit bless me with

Endurance during difficult times;

Optimism for the road ahead;


Confidence in Divine Love.



Once you’ve decided adoption is right for you, knowing who to contact and how to find the right family for your adoption are likely your two biggest questions. Private adoption agencies work with families of different Christian denominations, as well as non-religious families. Many Christian birth mothers want to place their child with a family of the same religious beliefs and values. Once you’ve contacted an adoption agency and created your adoption plan, it’s time to search for available families. Here are some important considerations in choosing a family:

  • Does the adoptive family need to have the same values as you?
  • Are their specific lifestyle choices you prefer?
  • Do you want a family that already has children?
  • Is the location of the family important?
  • Is the family involved with their Christian community?
  • How frequently do the parents attend church?
  • What other religious activities is the family involved in?
  • Why is Christianity important to these parents?
  • Is baptizing children important to this family?
  • How do they plan to teach you’re their children about Christianity?

During your first initial conversations with the adoptive family, you can ask questions like these to get a better feel for how they speak to your wishes and expectations. This is the beginning step to building a lifelong relationship and bonding over your Christian values, or, if you’ve selected a non-religious family, bonding over any other common interests.

Here are several Christian adoption agencies (as well as large agencies that work with many Christian families) to contact for more information:


Religious views on “giving up” your child for adoption can differ greatly. In some cases, religious tradition puts a strong emphasis on lineage. In Judaism, adoption has a long and honorable place in its tradition, according to a 2018 article. As of 2018, five percent of Jewish households were raising at least one adopted child, which is double the average in non-Jewish homes.

In the Talmud, you’ll find many statements supporting and respecting adoption and those who choose to adopt and serve as the adoptive family. Scripture on adoption in the Jewish religion references adoptive parents as a true extension or near equal to the biological parent. “The one who brings up a child is to be called its father (or mother),” according to the Talmud.

Many women of faith worry about the perception of adoption. How will their peers view such a decision? Will their God and church judge them? Is giving up a child for adoption a sin? Conversely, in Judaism, is adoption a mitzvah? An interesting but slightly confusing reference in Jewish tradition is the idea that Moses was raised by Pharaoh’s daughter, who named him and raised him as her own, but Moses later led a revolt against his adoptive family’s dynasty. The great Jewish heroine Esther was adopted by Mordecai after the deaths of her biological parents. The Bible also recounts the story of Oded, a child adopted by his grandmother.

In some cases, certain Jewish households may view adoption completely differently, but generally, the Jewish community is very open to adoption. As such, a prospective birth mother experiencing an unplanned pregnancy or considering adoption for a newborn or young child, can usually find a support system amongst her friends, family and faith. Private adoption agencies can help women considering adoption find families of Jewish faith. Your adoption choices are 100 percent yours, and by working with a licensed agency, you are in control of your adoption plan and the family you choose.

When meeting the adoptive family for the first time, consider some of these questions regarding their Jewish faith and how it fits in with your expectations for your child’s new home.

  • How involved are you with your Jewish community?
  • Do you celebrate Jewish holidays?
  • Do you observe Shabbat?
  • Do you live life by the prosperity of The Torah?
  • Do you make it a point to teach your children about Jewish traditions?

Here are a few adoption agencies to contact for more information:


Adoption in different religious faiths can be tricky. As it relates to “giving a Muslim child up” for adoption, it can be complicated. Islamic countries practicing Shari’a Law place restrictions on the treatment of orphans and abandoned children. Western countries such as the United States have Muslim families that likely follow those same views. However, The Qur’an encourages its followers to care for orphans as one’s own child.

How does this relate to a pregnant Muslim woman considering putting her baby up for adoption? Orphans and abandoned children tend to get included in the conversation of adoption, which is why placing a child with another family that believes that child should be treated with care can give a prospective birth mother peace of mind.

Islam believes strongly in lineage, meaning not recognizing a child’s biological parent by the adoptive family is actually illegal under Islamic law. This fits in well with the choice of “open” or “semi-open adoption” in America, which is the preferred adoption choice of most birth mothers and adoptive families. With the Islamic community mostly welcoming the idea of adoption, prospective birth mothers worried about their peers accepting their decision becomes less of a factor.

Pregnant Muslim women putting their child up for adoption may want to find another Muslim-born family to place their baby with. This is certainly an option when working with adoption agencies. No matter what a particular religion believes, the choice of adoption is always yours. By working with large, national agencies such as American Adoptions, you have the ability to control every aspect of the process, from your adoption plan to the family you select and their lifestyle choices, interests, age, religious beliefs and location.

Speak with an adoption specialist today to find out more about your adoption options. Here are a few agencies to consider for putting your Muslim child up for adoption.


Adoption in the Buddhist faith isn’t necessarily spoken of. That’s not to say it’s looked at positively or negatively; rather, it simply isn’t a commonly spoken topic. There are some texts in the Theravada Buddhist Canon — scriptures of Buddhist tradition — that tell a story of two cousins wandering aimlessly and crying after their parents’ death having been found by Ananda, the first cousin of Buddha, and taken into the Monastery to study. These stories in Buddhist tradition can help a prospective birth mother that’s considering “giving” her Buddhist child up for adoption some peace of mind that her religion and community won’t be likely to judge her.

When it comes to adoption and religion, many faiths do not support the idea of “giving up” a child. But, when it comes to adoption, it’s important to remember that you are never giving up on your child. Pregnant women or women struggling with parenting a young child have different reasons for why adoption might be a better option than parenting. In the Buddhist faith, compassion, loving and kindness are practiced every day. Those acts and behaviors move in harmony with the purpose of adoption, which is to find the perfect adoptive family and home to care for and love a child as his or her mother would.

“Can I give my baby up for adoption in Buddhism?” 

The answer is yes. Large, secular adoption agencies like American Adoptions will work with you to create a birth plan that reflects your religious beliefs. When it comes time to choose an adoptive family, your adoption professional will work hard to show you adoptive families practicing Buddhism.

As a birth mother considering putting your child up for adoption in Buddhism, the steps you’ll take once you’ve chosen adoption are as follows:

  1. Contact an adoption agency and create your adoption plan
  2. View available family profiles and choose your adoptive couple
  3. Meet the family via email, phone call, video chat or in person with the support and mediation of your adoption professional
  4. Develop your hospital birth plan
  5. Sign your consent to finalize the adoption and continue building a shared relationship with the adoptive family through an open adoption

An “open” or “semi-open adoption” allows you to remain an open and active member of your child’s life by keeping you connected with the adoptive family using a variety of communications. Email, letters, phone calls, sharing pictures and get-togethers are all common ways birth mothers stay in touch with their child’s adoptive family. You are in the driver’s seat for your adoption. The family you choose, the type of contact you wish to have and your experience for labor and delivery is all completely up to you.


Prospective birth mothers considering putting their Hindu child up for adoption may have concerns about whether or not their religion and community will judge such a decision. Knowing what’s right for your child and whether you have the ability or desire to parent based on your circumstances can be very difficult and emotionally draining. It’s important to know you have options, and adoption is one of them.

Ancient Hindu law (The Dharmashastras, or ancient law books of Hindus) views adoption not so much as welfare for the child, but rather a fulfillment of spiritual instincts of the adopters. In ancient Hindu tradition, only males were allowed to be adopted, and their adoption into a new family granted them full rights of that family.

It all changed in 1956 with the enactment of the Hindu adoptions and maintenance act. The two most significant alterations to Hindu law surrounding adoption were:

  • Girls could be adopted but not obligated to take part in the funeral
  • Datta homam ceremony was not essential to an adoption, and only a physical transfer was essential to complete the adoption

Prior to the 1956 adoptions act, adoption could only be confirmed by the male taking part in the datta homam ceremony, where burning the clarified butter is offered as a sacrifice to fire by way of religious propitiation or oblation. It could be performed at any time, even after transfer of the child or the death of his biological parents. With the change in laws, this ceremony was no longer practiced by modern Hindus, and both boys and girls were eligible for adoption.

Religion is important to many birth mothers considering putting their Hindu child up for adoption, and large, secular agencies like American Adoptions work to find available Hindu families ready to adopt. When creating your adoption plan as a part of the first step in your adoption journey, you will list out the needs and wants for a family, allowing your adoption professional to locate the perfect available adoptive parents for you to consider.


As a woman experiencing an unplanned pregnancy and considering her options, the stress and emotions of knowing what to do can be overwhelming. There are different factors for why a prospective birth mother may feel as though parenting isn’t an option, such as:

  • Financial stress
  • Unsafe living environment
  • No desire to parent

The realization that parenting isn’t an option can be difficult. Add in fears that your community and religion may pass judgement on you for being a Jehovah’s witness wanting to put a child up for adoption, and you may feel overwhelmed at the potential challenges you could face.

It’s important to first understand that no matter what circumstances you’re in or what religion you practice, the choices involved in your pregnancy are yours. No one can make you feel like you should be a parent to your child if you don’t feel ready or able to do that right now.

Large, secular agencies like American Adoptions can help you take the important needs and wants for your adoption and help you find the perfect family to adopt your child. They can even help you find an adoptive couple that are also Jehovah’s Witnesses. For women fearful of any backlash for their decision, Jehovah’s Witnesses are very open and accepting of adoption, viewing it as legitimately making someone a member of the family to which they have been adopted. The process of adoption can be smooth and safe by choosing the right agency. Once you’ve decided to put your Jehovah’s Witness child up for adoption, you’ll begin your adoption journey in the following steps:

  • Create an adoption plan – You get to call the shots for your adoption plan. How you want your adoption to go is completely up to you and your needs. Your adoption specialist will work to implement an adoption plan that makes you feel most comfortable and respects your religious beliefs.
  • Locate Jehovah’s Witness adoptive families – The desire to find a Jehovah’s Witness family to adopt your child is something your adoption specialist will strive for. Wanting your child to be raised with the same religious beliefs is important to many women, and ensuring your belief system has a daily impact on your child’s life is important.
  • Get to know the adoptive family – By choosing an open adoption, you can immediately begin to bond with the adoptive family. The first meeting (usually a phone call or in-person meeting) will be mostly about asking questions, such as, “Why did you choose adoption? Why is adopting a child important to you? Why is the Jehovah’s Witness important to you? How do you plan on teaching your children about Jehovah’s Witnesses?” Once you’ve had an initial meeting, you can begin to progress your relationship forward by bonding over the pregnancy and adoption process. You may also discover many more common interests that further connect the both of you
  • Plan your hospital stay – It’s important that you and your adoption specialist put together a plan for your stay in the hospital during labor and delivery. Who do you want in the room with you? Do you want the adoptive family with you? Do you want alone time with the baby? Do you plan to nurse your baby? These are all questions you and your specialist will work through to ensure your experience goes as planned.
  • Stay in contact with the adoptive family – Openness in the relationship between you and your child’s adoptive parents is highly encouraged. As in any relationship, it can evolve over time. You initially may feel as though space is needed after the pregnancy and naturally increase the amount of communication you have over time. It’s completely up to you and the adoptive family.


For a woman considering “giving her child up” for adoption as an atheist, the first important questions to ask are:

  • Does my current situation or circumstances allow me to provide for my child?
  • Do I want to be a parent?
  • Can I put my child up for adoption with an atheist family?
  • How do I put my atheist child up for adoption?

If you’ve come to the difficult conclusion that parenting isn’t an option for you and you’re considering adoption, the first decision you need to make is that adoption is indeed what you want and what’s best for you and your child. Consulting with the birth father (if he is involved), family and friends is a good way to talk out the pros and cons of adoption. However, you are ultimately the only one that can decide what is best for you. Once that choice has been made, your adoption process can begin!

  1. Choose adoption: You’ve made the decision to put your atheist baby up for adoption; now it’s time to contact an adoption agency and speak with a licensed adoption professional to help gain a better understanding of the adoption process and what it means for you.
  2. Create your adoption plan: You are in complete control of your adoption. The entire process will be tailored to your wants and needs to ensure your experience is safe and fits what is best for you and your baby. Your adoption professional will ensure that everything you wish for in an adoptive family is applied to the available family profiles you will search through, including respecting your desire for a non-religious family.
  3. Choose the adoptive family: Because you’re in control of your adoption, you will be the one to choose which family you feel is best for you. You’ll have access to family profiles which have been customized to fit your ideal qualities given that were given to your adoption specialist.
  4. Get to know the adoptive family: More than 90 percent of domestic infant adoptions are “open” or “semi-open,” meaning you and the adoptive family are choosing to have an open relationship with each other. Developing consistent and trusted lines of communication helps build a strong relationship with your child’s adoptive parents that results in a life-long bond.
  5. Hospital planning: How do you want your labor and delivery experience at the hospital to go? Who do you want in the room with you? Do you plan to nurse the baby? How much time do you want with the baby? These are all questions you’ll go over with your adoption specialist as you piece together your adoption hospital plan.
  6. Post-placement contact: You may find that initially after you’ve left the hospital and signed your consent for the adoption, some space is needed. It’s an emotionally challenging time. When the time is right, your contact with the adoptive family can increase to whatever level is most comfortable for you. Oftentimes, birth mothers prefer to exchange emails and text messages, which allow each party to respond whenever it’s most convenient. The types of communication are completely up to you. Your relationship with the adoptive family may ebb and flow, but moving forward and staying in touch is important in developing the life-long bond you’ll share over your child.

Choosing adoption isn’t easy, but the benefit of being in control of your adoption and the decisions being made for the care of your child can provide you with peace of mind that you’re making the best possible decision for you and your child. No matter what religion you practice, adoption is always an option for you.

Here are a few adoptions agencies to contact for more information:

Are you ready to begin your open adoption journey? Get free information and advice from a trained specialist now. Contact us any time to be connected with a helpful adoption professional.

Ready to get started? Contact an adoption agency now to get free information.

Get Free Info