Facing an unplanned pregnancy can be an overwhelming and challenging experience. At Catholic Health, our maternity hospitals, Mercy Hospital of Buffalo and Sisters of Charity Hospital, are sensitive to the needs of women experiencing an unplanned pregnancy. We can tailor your hospital visit so that you are as comfortable as possible.
“We can make it exactly what you need,” said Mary Ann Murphy, Director of Maternal Child Services at Mercy Hospital of Buffalo.
Make a Plan for Adoption
If you are considering adoption, it is best to make arrangements in advance, by working with an adoption agency such as Baker Victory Services. Baker Victory Services will work with you to make an adoption plan that’s right for you and your baby. Whether it’s an open, semi-open or closed adoption plan, you’ll be able to decide the level of contact you’d like to have with the adoptive family and your child now and in the future.
“I like to be sure that the birth mother has received as much counseling as possible,” said Murphy. “With their emotional status at the time of the delivery and the hormonal changes taking place, it’s not the best time to make really important decisions.”
Of moms who make arrangements with adoption agencies, Murphy said, “They know what they want and how they want it to go. We can honor their wishes if we know what they are ahead of time.”
If you have not engaged an adoption agency in advance, a social worker at the hospital will talk to you about your options.
Tour the Hospital
If you intend to deliver at Mercy Hospital of Buffalo or Sisters of Charity Hospital, you can prepare for the birth of your baby by taking a childbirth class and tour of the maternity floor. These classes cover relaxation and breathing techniques and teach you what to expect throughout your pregnancy.
Classes take place in a group setting, but private classes and tours are available. Before your private tour, hospital staff will be notified of the upcoming adoption so that they can be responsive to your needs.
Click here for more information about childbirth classes and tours.
Make Your Wishes Known
Hospital staff will honor your preferences regarding virtually every aspect of the birth:
- who is present at the birth
- who supports you during labor
- if the adoptive family is present at the birth and in the hospital
- if you receive visitors
“It is an individual decision, and there is no right or wrong way to do it,” said Murphy.
Some birth mothers choose to have time alone with the baby to take photos, make memories and prepare to place him or her.
Others have the adoptive families present in the delivery room or at the hospital from the moment of birth. Birth mothers may have a handing-over ceremony in the hospital room, where they might read a poem or say a few words about their wishes for the child.
And others choose not to see the baby. In this case, after delivery, the infant is moved to a warmer outside of the delivery room. During recovery, the birth mother will likely stay in one of two private rooms, where she is still cared for by nurses who are compassionate to her situation and know what she needs physically and emotionally.
Whatever you choose, the hospital staff will accommodate you in any way they can. “The nursing staff and physicians do everything possible to empower the birth mother. We honor the birth mother’s preferences for everything,” said Murphy.
The staff at Mercy Hospital and Sisters of Charity Hospital will be with you throughout your stay to offer support and encouragement.
If you have any questions about your upcoming delivery, please visit the Catholic Health website to email our maternity staff.