They say money can’t buy happiness. While that might be true, having money and knowing how to budget can ease feelings of stress and uncertainty. A plan for how to manage your money for unexpected blessings will save you from a lot of stress and anxiety.
One of those unexpected blessings can come in the form of a baby growing inside of you. Planned or unplanned, babies are expensive, even when they haven’t arrived into the world yet. You may need money for doctor visits, vitamins, clothes for yourself as your belly grows, food — not to mention all the utility bills you have already.
Deciding to place your child for adoption can make the monetary part of the journey a bit easier. With so many things that you already have to worry about, Adoption Choices of New York wants to help alleviate as much stress as we can so that you can focus on nurturing your health and your baby. Here are some financial ideas for birth parents.
Financial Ideas for Health Insurance
For as important of a role as it has in today’s society, health insurance can be quite confusing. Because of the abundance of health insurance available in New York, we have compiled a short list of affordable coverage options for pregnant women.
If you are a New York resident, you may qualify for this government-sponsored program. Medicaid, generally speaking, is available for low-income families who have no medical insurance or inadequate coverage. All states offer Medicaid or a similar program to help pregnant women with their prenatal and postpartum care. Women or teens who meet the income and residency guidelines could receive pregnancy care and other health services through the NY State of Health Marketplace. Babies are subject to receive the benefits for at least one year after birth.
Some qualifications for pregnant women are as follows:
- Proof of pregnancy
- Proof of citizenship
- Proof of income
You will need to contact your local Medicaid office to determine your eligibility according to your specific circumstances.
2) Private Insurance Plans
Private insurance is most often covered either through your employer or through your parents. However, because not all employers must supply insurance through their company, you may need to research the available plans on the New York State of Health Marketplace to receive financial help. Check your eligibility by browsing insurance programs on the marketplace. Coverage is not guaranteed for every pregnant woman, it will depend on family size and income.
If a mother-to-be is uninsured when she begins her adoption journey with us, Adoption Choices of New York will assess her financial needs and do the best we can to ensure that she gets the appropriate coverage. The adoptive parents also play a part in this through covering her co-pays and any other qualifying expenses. For more specific information on this regarding your particular circumstances, be sure to bring any and all questions and concerns you have to your adoption professional. Keep in mind that the agency will assign the birth mother with an attorney to represent them, and who will work with her accordingly (covering costs, etc).
Financial Ideas for Food Stamps
Food stamps, also known as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), provides cash benefits to purchase food. They provide financial assistance to, among others, low-income individuals or through a card, similar to a debit card. This is a great way to get a little extra cash for healthy food and vitamins for both you and your baby. It is important to note that only qualifying individuals will be given the extra support because the process is very restrictive.
SNAP benefits can provide support with food at qualified retailed/grocery stores. Pregnant women may qualify for SNAP benefits depending on the size of your family and household income. However, that doesn’t always guarantee acceptance. The only way to find out if you qualify is to apply. Check out the SNAP website to learn more. Adoption Choices of New York will also be able to help you with the application. If you are wondering what type of food you should or shouldn’t consume during your pregnancy, check out our blog on What to Eat When You’re Expecting and Alcohol, Tobacco and Drug during Unplanned Pregnancies.
Financial Tips for Maternity Leave
Even when you have decided that placing your child for adoption is the right choice for you, you will still need time off after birth to recover physically and emotionally. Check with your employers to learn about the maternity leave options available and make sure they know of your circumstance. New York offers paid leave for families. While you might not need time to bond with your new baby, your body will need a large amount of time to heal properly.
Financial Tips for Utilities
Bills for utilities, such as electricity, water, and garbage disposal, are monthly expenses that you cannot avoid. There is no easy way of getting around such bills. One idea for saving money includes allocating a few dollars from your checks every month into separate envelopes designated for a specific utility bill. This way, you won’t be tempted to spend more money than you have and you will know exactly where your paychecks are going to.
At Adoption Choices of New York, we may also be able to help you with some of these expenses. Once you have matched with prospective parents, they will be able to help you pay for rent, utilities and groceries for the 8th and 9th month of your pregnancy and the month after your baby has been placed as well as medical expenses for your entire pregnancy and a one-time maternity outfit. It is important to note that all payments are made directly to the providers so that you won’t have to worry about anything aside from your health. We will need to assess your current bills to see what your financial needs will be for those three months.
Remaining Happy and Positive
We understand that life can throw curve balls at you, even if it’s an unplanned blessing. At Adoption Choices of New York, we are committed to providing support and assistance while you are on this journey. Know that you are not alone and we hope these financial budgeting ideas and tips for birth parents have eased your mind a bit about your monetary future. Don’t hesitate to reach out to us for any questions, we are only a click of a button away.
Adoption Choices of New York
For more information on adoption or if you are currently in the process of adopting a baby and have any questions or concerns, feel free to contact, Adoption Choices of New York.
Support Adoption Choices
Adoption Choices, Inc. is partnering with Crowdrise, a fundraising website for nonprofits, to help our adoptive parents and birth parents with much needed financial assistance. We understand that expenses keep clients from fulfilling their dreams. Both with birth parents making a plan for adoption, and with adoptive parents growing their family. It is our mission to provide financial assistance through grants and scholarships, awarded annually in November, in honor of National Adoption Month. Funds assist adoptive parents with matching and placements, adoption finalization and helping birth mothers improve their lives through higher education — and much more.
However, we can’t do it alone. Please read up on our programs and donate money where you are able. Your donation will make a huge impact.
About the Author
Lisa Truong is an undergraduate journalism major at the University of Denver. She is minoring in writing and Chemistry. She has been commended by professors for her news stories as well as creative writing.
During her freshman year, her essay “See Ya on the Other Side” was displayed at a writing exhibition sponsored by the University of Denver. That essay later went on to be published in Many Voices One DU, a book also sponsored by the university.
Lisa frequently volunteers to be a leader at the Daniels School of Business for their quarterly Ethics Boot Camp where students learn about the importance of character in business. In her free time, Lisa enjoys watching animated movies with her mother, listening to music, going for bike rides, and eating breakfast food.
Capalad, Pamela. “How to Budget for Baby, from a Positive Pregnancy Test to Labor Delivery.” Motherly. Motherly, November 13, 2019. https://www.mother.ly/work/how-to-budget-from-pregnancy-test-to-babys-birth.
“Department of Health.” Medicaid. Accessed February 21, 2020. https://www.health.ny.gov/health_care/medicaid/#trusts.
New York State Office of Temporary. “Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).” New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance. Accessed February 21, 2020. https://otda.ny.gov/programs/snap/.
Renter, Elizabeth. “Preparing for a Baby? Tackle These 15 Financial Tasks.” NerdWallet, February 20, 2019. https://www.nerdwallet.com/blog/health/15-financial-must-dos-to-prepare-for-a-new-baby/.