ItsAboutLove.org is LDS Family Services’ newly redesigned pregnancy and adoption counseling services Web site. The site helps expectant parents consider all options for their unborn child.
LDS Family Services redesigned the site to add more in-depth information and resources, as well as to improve its aesthetic appeal and organization. They segmented the Web site to reach four key audiences: expectant parents and their families, couples who are hoping to adopt, professionals, and Church leaders.
The Web site has information on single parenting, marriage, abortion, and adoption. It gives information about the pregnancy trimesters, answers frequently asked questions about pregnancy, dispels several myths, and connects people with counselors and birth mothers.
Among its many new features, birth mothers talk about why they chose adoption for their babies. Throughout the site, you’ll find 16 video clips of birth mothers telling their stories, along with the responses to questions from actual birthparents, birth grandparents, and professionals.
If an adoption plan is made, the Web site provides an internal search engine that allows expectant parents to find a family that fits their desires for their baby. The site has phenomenal search capabilities, including the ability to search for adopting families by specific criteria (education, location, children in family) and keywords (music, art, pets). This can help connect expectant parents with more than 800 couples. These couples can make online profiles with a letter to the expectant parents, a photo album of their family, and information about themselves. Expectant parents can save their favorite profiles and put adopting families on hold (shown in the “my stuff” page on top of left side bar).
The primary audience for the It’s About Love site is expectant parents–those who are pregnant and unprepared or unsure about what to do. They are often single, in crisis, feeling alone and scared, concerned about being judged, and searching for understanding and hope. With this in mind, it goals of the site are the following:
- Attract to the site more expectant parents (those in a crisis pregnancy).
- Instill site visitors with hope that they can make the right decision for themselves and their child.
- Highlight and educate about options that may not usually be considered.
- Portray adoption as a viable option for expectant parents and resolve misconceptions about adoption.
- Encourage people to come into LDS Family Services and receive free options counseling.
- Give a positive first impression of LDS Family Services.
- Offer education and support to adopting families, Church leaders, and other professionals.
- Give people a fresh look at what LDS Family Services offers.
In the “Hoping to Adopt” tab, current and potential adopting families can find education and support. Since the decision to adopt is fraught with fear and uncertainty, this section features adopting couples sharing their thoughts about how they knew they were ready to take this step.
The “Professionals” tab explains how LDS Family Services can supplement the services that other professionals offer.
The “Church Leaders” tab provides support to Church leaders who have an important role in the lives of their members. This section includes the experiences of two bishops who worked closely with LDS Family Services.
Referring people to ItsAboutLove.org is the best way to help someone involved in a crisis pregnancy. It provides many decision-making helps for expectant parents and their families. It provides support, information, and options for those facing a crisis pregnancy.
Why is this site so important? The following are some national statistics:
- 1.21 million abortions in 2005 (single women: 83% of all abortions)
- 1.6 million nonmarital births in 2006 (38.5% of all births)
- Within 3 years after birth, 15% of dating parents marry; 21% of cohabitating parents marry
- 1.6% place for adoption
And a few more thoughts:
- A third of all babies born in America have been born to unmarried women. Although teenage pregnancy is a serious problem, young women in their twenties are even more likely than teens to become pregnant out of wedlock. More than half of all out-of-wedlock births are to women in their twenties.
- Societal values overwhelmingly encourage unwed parents to choose single parenthood or abortion. Many programs, such as Planned Parenthood, exist to promote these values. With LDS Family Services, the Church has a program to counteract these values and to enable informed consideration of other options.
- In 2005, nearly 37 % of all births were to single mothers. This resulted in over 1.5 million children being born to an unmarried mother.
- In 2005 roughly 350,000 children were born to unmarried teen mothers. On the other hand, over 1 million children were born to single mothers ages 20 and over (23% vs. 77%). In other words, in the USA, non-marital births are not just a teen problem, and in fact, the age structure of unwed mothers has been getting older for several decades.
- Not only are more single women getting pregnant, pregnant single women are becoming more interested in keeping their babies. Therefore, abortion rates are down and adoption rates are declining.
- When abortion is readily available, single women take more sexual risks. They are less likely to use effective forms of contraception, and they tend to have more numerous, more frequent, and less committed sexual relationships. They tend to think, “Suppose something did happen, I could always get an abortion.” The result is that when abortion is readily available, more single women get pregnant.