(The following is part of an actual conversation with a birth mother who recently placed her baby for adoption through A Angel Adoptions. She is aware that this is being posted on social media. Some identifying information has been deleted or altered due to confidentiality concerns.)
When did you first start thinking about making an adoption plan for your baby?
I was several months into my pregnancy when I found out I was pregnant. Looking at where I was in my life, I knew I wasn’t able to raise this baby. I also knew that it wasn’t fair to keep this baby when I would be struggling financially and emotionally. I knew that there were so many families waiting to become adoptive parents who could give this baby the life he deserved.
How did you choose an adoption agency?
Well, I did a lot of praying that God would lead me down the right path! I went online and read about adoption agencies. Because I live in Alabama, I wanted to work with an Alabama agency face-to-face and get to know them. I also wanted to be sure that I felt comfortable; I was really nervous at first!
After several weeks, I finally decided that the adoption agency I wanted to work with was A Angel Adoptions. On their website, I listened to the testimonials, videos, and read all the positive comments from adoptive parents and birth mothers like me. Everything was very welcoming to me. I felt that you, Suzanne, and your agency were very sweet!
After I finally got the courage to call the agency, you were the one I talked to – for a really long time! I don’t know what I was expecting but the first thing that comes to my mind is that you were a good listener and didn’t judge me! You don’t know how much better I felt after talking to you. It was like a weight had been lifted off of my shoulders. I remember you using the word “bittersweet” to describe the adoption process but you were honest and took a lot of time walking me through the process. I truly felt a connection with you and knew I had chosen the right agency! This was where I was meant to be…
One of the adoption topics we discussed was closed versus a more open adoption plan. It’s all about what feels right to you. There is no right or wrong. Why did you choose a more open adoption plan?
Well, at first I really thought that I wanted a closed adoption. I didn’t really think that emotionally I could handle picking and meeting the family, getting to know them during the pregnancy, having them at the hospital when I gave birth, and maintaining contact with them and the child through the years. After you spent a lot of time counseling with me, Suzanne, I was able to make an adoption plan that felt right to me.
I liked that you asked me to describe what my “Magic Wand Family” would look like. I remember telling you about very specific qualities that I wanted to see in the parents for my baby! I know that you told me about really nice photo or profile books that I could look at too. Maybe I’m different than other women but I just felt more comfortable having you tell me about families that had all the boxes I had mentally checked in my head and heart. I still can’t believe my baby has such a great family!! Thank you so much, Suzanne!
Even though I didn’t want to meet the adoptive family at this time, I do know that many birth mothers do meet the adoptive family and get to know them during the pregnancy. I also didn’t think that I wanted to see the baby at the hospital but I did spend time with him. Although I was crying off and on when I held him, which I knew was very normal, I did talk to him and tell him how very much I loved him, forever! I told him that he was going to have a great life with a chance to have all of the things in life that I could not give him at this time in my life. I also gave him a blanket, books and some stuffed animals.
I want other women to know that my time at the hospital and especially after coming home, was the hardest time of my life!! I’m glad you spent so much time counseling with me during the pregnancy and after. Ongoing counseling, face-to-face and by phone, have really helped me deal with what you call loss and grief. However, my focus has always been and will be that I couldn’t give my baby the life and future opportunities that he will experience with his adoptive family. Adoption for me is all about giving him the best life possible and I did not believe I could give him all the things he needed in life.
At the hospital, I also decided that I wanted to get ongoing pictures and updates from the adoptive family. At first, I thought getting pictures and hearing about my son’s little life would make me sad and be depressing. However, for me, and I know everyone is different, I have found ongoing pictures and updates from the parents to be comforting and reassuring. It makes me happy to see that he is happy!! I have also sent them lots of pictures of me which they were so excited to get!
Since I may decide to have visits with my son and his family in the future, I also picked an adoptive family who would keep the door open for future visits. I know they would be fine with seeing me now but I’m just not ready.
One of the real fears a woman who is considering adoption may have is the fear of regretting that she placed her baby for adoption. I know this is a tough question to ask but what would you say to this woman? If you are not comfortable answering this question that’s fine!
No, I’m glad you asked that question because if friends or family know you are pregnant and making an adoption plan someone will probably say that to you! I also know that some women hide their pregnancy and adoption plan because they don’t want to have to defend their decision to place the baby for adoption.
For me, I have not regretted my adoption plan. Is it the hardest decision and experience I have ever made in my life? Yes!!!! Were there times at the hospital and after I came home that I cried really hard and didn’t want to get out of bed?? Yes!! Do I wish my life were different and I was able to raise this baby? Of course! Are there days when I even feel a little bit jealous that I don’t have the life the adoptive parents have so I could keep this baby! Yes! Suzanne, I’m glad you kept reassuring me that all of these feelings are Normal!
What I tell myself is that with adoption I chose to put my feelings aside and focus on my baby and the life he deserves! I couldn’t give him the life he has now or will have in the future.
Is there anything else you would like to say to the readers?
I guess that I want anyone considering an adoption plan for their baby to know that I love my baby so much!!! For me, adoption is giving him the chance to have a better life. Suzanne, you say that life isn’t fair and you’re right! The reality is that I’m struggling in a lot of ways and for me it wasn’t fair to put this child in the middle of all of that!
I also want to thank you for really listening to me and my feelings! Everyone at A Angel Adoptions has been so nice to me! I am taking life day by day but really am super happy about my decision. Everything unfolded so perfectly and I know my son is healthy and happy! I love getting pictures of him and hearing about his little life. I feel his adoptive family is perfect and we are all very blessed!
If you are a woman considering adoption in the state of Alabama, please call 205-621-0316 day or evening 24/7 for additional information on our agency and services. We would love to work with you!