Putting a Special Needs Child up for Adoption [How it Works]

If you are considering placing your child for adoption, we know that you want what is best for your child.

But, is the adoption process different for children with disabilities?

We’re here to answer that question and provide you with the help you need. To get free adoption information now, you can fill out our online contact form at any time.

We have assembled this guide that explains all that you need to know about putting a special needs child up for adoption.

How Does “Giving up” a Special Needs Child for Adoption Work?

There is a hopeful adoptive family for every child, and adoption could be an option for you in some circumstances.

Depending on the extent of your baby’s needs, your adoption agency may network with a specialized agency to find the right adoptive family. In other words, if you are asking, “Can I ‘give a child up’ with special needs for adoption,” the answer is yes, in some situations.

You may have noticed, though, that we use the phrase “give up” in quotes, and that’s for a good reason. 

“Give up a baby for adoption” is one of the most common phrases that people use when they talk about adoption, but this phrase completely misses the point. That’s because, when you choose adoption, you are never “giving up.”

Instead, you are giving your child a life of love and opportunity, and that is beautiful.

Can You Put a Disabled Child up for Adoption?

Yes, putting a disabled child up for adoption is possible. There are hopeful adoptive parents that would love nothing more than to add your child to their family. Many adoptive parents are open and accommodating for children with disabilities, and you can meet with families that are specifically prepared to provide for the baby’s needs.

But, can you put your autistic child up for adoption? What about “giving up” a child for adoption with Down syndrome?

Not all adoption agencies may be the best resource, but there are many resources out there for you to check out. To help you find the best option possible for your child, we have included some of those resources below:

  • National Down Syndrome Adoption Network: If you are “giving up” a Down syndrome baby for adoption, then this is an excellent resource for you. This website also includes some information about parenting a child with Down syndrome. Even if you are choosing adoption, this can be educational and informative for you to look at.
  • Special Angels Adoption: This organization consists of adoptive parents raising children with disabilities. This means that the people in charge have firsthand experience with both adoption and children with disabilities, the perfect intersection for prospective birth mothers in your particular situation.
  • Spence-Chapin: Spence-Chapin’s specialty is “giving up” a child with disabilities for adoption. They can help prospective birth parents like you with placing your child with disabilities up for adoption. For instance, they specialize in placing children with specific neurological disorders, addiction, genetic conditions and much more.

Each of these agencies is well-equipped to help you place your child with disabilities for adoption. All of the above are specialized professionals ready to help you whenever you’re ready.

How “Giving up” a Special Needs Baby for Adoption Can Work for You

When you choose adoption, you can create a better future.

All prospective birth mothers deserve the opportunity to be in control of their adoption plan, and that includes parents who are “giving up” a child with disabilities for adoption. Following that line of thought, your adoption process will look like any other prospective birth mother’s, from a general standpoint. To give you a better idea of what your process and benefits entail, here is what you need to know:

  • Complete control over your adoption journey: One of the most significant benefits of adoption for prospective birth mothers is the degree of control you have. You are in 100% control of your adoption journey from start to finish. In other words, you get to call all the shots while your adoption professional does all the heavy lifting for your adoption plan.
  • The right adoptive family for your baby: Another one of the benefits of adoption is that you get to choose the perfect adoptive parents for your child. When you are putting a special needs child up for adoption, you can pick a family that you know will tend to those needs. Your trusted adoption professional will show you profiles of hopeful adoptive families that match your preferences. This way, you can guarantee that the family you select will take proper care of your baby.
  • The ability to pursue an open adoption: If you’d like, then you can choose open adoption. The vast majority of adoptions today are open, which means that you can stay in touch with both your child and their adoptive parents long after placement. Adoption doesn’t have to be “goodbye.” Rather, it can be “see you later.” Because you have 100% control over your adoption plan, you can choose what method of communication you all use, such as:
    • Handwritten letters
    • Text messages
    • Emails
    • In-person visits
    • Zoom or Skype
    • Phone calls
    • Or whatever you feel comfortable with

Alternatives to Adoption

Although we’ve listed some information about adoption, we also recognize that, sometimes, it may not be an option for you. With that being said, there are still some things that you can do. To help give you a solid start, we have listed some extra parenting resources in case adoption is not viable in your situation:

Remember, you are never alone. Even if adoption is not an option for you, there are other avenues that you can explore and resources that are available to you.

Building a Support System When “Giving up” a Child with Disabilities for Adoption

As a prospective birth mother, you will learn that adoption is a journey brimming with emotional highs and lows. Because of this, it’s important to build a support system of close friends and family members who you can lean on right now.

Putting a disabled child up for adoption is not simple, so it can be helpful for loved ones to offer their support. You can also check out some support groups for parents who have children with disabilities for further guidance.


This can be a lot to take in at once, so we understand if you have some more questions. That’s why you can always fill out our online contact form to get more adoption information now.

About the Author

Lindsay Arielle has been a proud birth mother since placing her son for adoption in 2011. Her post-placement agreement has always been an open adoption. She loves the time she gets to spend with her son and his parents during visits. Lindsay truly believes that for herself and her family, adoption has been a blessing, and she enjoys writing about spiritual healing for birth mothers.

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