I know things right now are scary. I’ve been in your shoes. I know how you feel.
You’re afraid of judgement on your situation. You’re afraid your child will grow up and hate you for placing them. You might be afraid that the adoptive parents will break their promises down the road.
I heart stories about all kind of different ways adoptions turned out. I know there is no way to predict how things will go down the road, so all you can ready do is hope for the best.
My daughter was placed when she was ten days old. Her parents didn’t have any kids before, so we’re all navigating open adoption for the first time together. But now I want to share some things I’ve learned along the way.
If your adoption agency allows you to have a hand in choosing the family to place your child with, do it. It can be overwhelming, but I highly suggest following your gut. You’ll know the right family when you see them.
When you go into labor and deliver your baby, there will be lots of emotions. You may cry, and that’s totally okay. See your baby when you feel ready. Don’t let anyone rush you or tell you you shouldn’t.
Take pictures of your baby. Take pictures of you together. Send them to the adoptive parents if you can. Those moments with him/her in the hospital are precious memories. Having those pictures and memories are a help when you’re having a bad day – or at least they have been for me.
Don’t be afraid of the social worker who comes in while you’re in the hospital. It’s standard procedure, and they just want to make sure you weren’t pressured into choosing adoption for your child.
You are not less of a person because of the choice you made to place. I know you might feel that way, but I promise you are still such an amazing person. Do not let anyone make you feel bad about the decision you made.
You are giving the family you choose such an amazing gift. You are giving them a baby! You are gaining a new family through your child’s adoption. Enjoy your new life to come!
It’s never an easy thing to navigate through open adoption, especially if it’s the first time for all involved.
My birth daughter’s adoptive parents and I are currently navigating our open adoption. We are always re-evaluating things as she grows up. For example, our visits for the first two years were lunches in restaurants. Then we realized that that wasn’t going to work since she was more active an independent. So our most recent visit also included letting her run around a play area in the mall.
Things will continue to change as she gets older, and that’s how it should be. What works now when she’s a toddler won’t be the same as whatever works when she’s eleven or twelve.
I’ve seen other open adoptions through social media that are very different from mine, but that’s the nature of the situation. Every adoption, every family, every birthmom, they all vibe differently and their structures vary.
I was originally scared of open adoption, and didn’t think that I wanted one. I had heard so many horror stories about adoptive parents who would go back on their word about updates and visits and communication. Leaving the birthmom or birthparents hurt and clueless and wondering what happened.
But now, two and a half years into my open adoption, I honestly love it. We don’t have one where we talk or see each other all the time. We get together twice a year. They send updates halfway between visits. If something major happens, I know I can email them and they’ll respond within a few days. I’ve done it when family members were very ill or passed away.
At this point, I couldn’t imagine if I had gone with a closed adoption. The pain of not knowing what my daughter looks like or who she’s growing up to be. It would be too much to bear.
I know that it’s not for everyone one, and that’s perfectly fine. But it is definitely something that I would encourage birthmoms to think about when making an adoption plan for their child.
Sometimes you want to write but you just don’t know what. There’s nothing you can do except sit there staring at the blank paper (or computer screen) thinking about a million different things…
What’s gonna be easy to write about right now?
What’s gonna take time to put into words?
What’s something other people would want to read?
What’s not gonna be too overwhelming?
There are several things I could write about right now, but, the one I have the most to say about I have the feeling would be overwhelming for me right now. Although, maybe that would be good for me right now. Maybe not going into everything, but just to start acknowledging what I’m feeling and dealing with. Continue reading “Brain Spill”→