Unexpected Pregnancy

Joining Hearts helps women and couples experiencing an unexpected pregnancy. Our compassionate pregnancy specialists are available throughout Arizona to help women explore life-affirming birth options for their pregnancies. Our team is committed to helping women understand the facts about parenting, adoption, adoption law, birth parent rights and more to help them make the best plan for themselves and their child. We also connect mothers to community resources such as housing, food, and healthcare. Call or text 888-818-4445 for immediate help 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Tuesday, 18 October 2022

Couple Chooses a Loving Home with Open Adoption

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Any parent will say that having a child is the most challenging, yet rewarding, experience in life. However, not every person who becomes pregnant is ready to parent or has the resources to provide the life for their child they hoped and dreamed of.

That’s why the Joining Hearts program provides a free 24/7 pregnancy counseling hotline to help women and couples explore life-affirming birth options. Joining Hearts’ pregnancy specialists educate women about parenting, adoption, adoption law, birth parent rights and more. They also connect mothers to community resources including housing, healthcare, and parenting support.

Facing an Unexpected Pregnancy

At 20 years old, Sierra experienced an unexpected pregnancy. She lived at home and worked odd jobs, but lacked a steady income.

Rick, the child’s father and Sierra’s long-term boyfriend, also worked. However, his employer wasn’t one that he could see a long-term future with.

Sierra and Rick had a strong relationship but didn’t feel they were financially or emotionally ready to become parents. Both of them were still figuring out their career paths and the future of their relationship.

Connecting with Joining Hearts’ Pregnancy Specialists

Fortunately, a friend of Sierra’s was familiar with Catholic Charities’ Joining Hearts program and encouraged Sierra to give them a call. Sierra scheduled an appointment with a pregnancy specialist who helped her explore all her options.

After learning more about Joining Hearts, Sierra met weekly with her specialist and planned for an open adoption. (An open adoption is one that allows a level of communication between biological and adoptive parents that both parties are comfortable with.)

Choosing Adoptive Parents

Sierra and Rick looked at profile letters from potential adoptive parents and chose a family they felt was perfect for their child. The Joining Hearts team held a match meeting, where Sierra and Rick felt an instant connection with the adoptive couple they had selected.

During the remaining few months of her pregnancy, Sierra grew closer to the adoptive mother, inviting her to doctors’ appointments and meeting her occasionally for lunch. Rick and the adoptive father also built a relationship and got to know each other.

Maintaining Contact Through Open Adoption

When the time came, Sierra felt extremely comfortable with the adoptive couple and invited them to the hospital after the baby was born. They spent time in her hospital room and helped take care of the baby, allowing Sierra some time to rest and relax.

After their child was placed with the adoptive parents, Sierra and Rick maintained contact. They were able to receive updates and pictures of the baby, and have occasional visits.

Sharing Gratitude for Joining Hearts

Sierra and Rick are thankful for Joining Hearts’ compassionate pregnancy specialists and the services they received. They are grateful that their baby has loving, supportive parents and that they will always know how their child is doing.

No one should have to experience an unexpected pregnancy alone. Visit our website or text or call 888-818-4445 to receive assistance from a pregnancy specialist.

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Teresa Doud

Teresa Doud is a Pregnancy Specialist at Joining Hearts. Teresa earned her master’s degree in Social Work from the University of Illinois in Champaign/Urbana and has worked in the adoption field for over 15 years. She has been providing pregnancy, parenting and adoption support services to women and families through Joining Hearts, a program of Catholic Charities Community Services, since 2011.

In her free time Teresa enjoys spending time with her husband and two adult children. Teresa and her husband enjoy attending Blues music festivals in Arizona and California throughout the year. They also enjoy relaxing at the beach in Southern California. Teresa is an animal lover and has a dog and two cats from a local animal rescue group.


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