How Do You Tell People?

March 20th, 2013

pregnantEither you've gotten the two pink lines,  or your doctor has just informed you that you are indeed pregnant. Your mind is awash with the fact that this wasn't a planned situation. Your heart beats a little faster, maybe you cry a little. Perhaps you are confused because you were safe and had used contraception. Whatever the case, you are now informed that you are pregnant. What's next?  Before you figure out what you want to do regarding your pregnancy, I suggest finding someone to talk to about your pregnancy. This could be a therapist, a family member or a friend. Find someone who will support you unconditionally and won't rush you into making a decision that isn't yours. At this stage of… [more]

Confusion Regarding the Legalities of Open Adoption

February 23rd, 2010
Categories: Common Questions

HandcuffsA reader emailed me and asked why open adoptions were "illegal in some states." I thought this would be a good time to disspell that rumor and clear up confusion on the matter. Here's the truth: open adoption is never illegal. The confusion comes in when you factor in the point that open adoption agreements are not legally binding in all states. Confusing, isn't it? Let's break it down. I'll reiterate: open adoptions are not illegal. No state has a law, rule, ammendment or other such legal mumbo-jumbo that makes open adoptions against the law. No matter where you live, you have a right to request and follow through with an open adoption plan. What that means, of course, is up to you… [more]

Should You Ask Controversial Questions?

July 17th, 2009
Categories: Common Questions

As you begin to talk with potential adoptive parents, you will have a slew of questions to ask of them in order to make the best possible decision. You may have been given a list of questions by your agency or printed one off of the Internet as you did your research on the topic. Know that such lists are only suggestions. You are free to ask any and every question that comes across your mind. You may be instructed by your agency to avoid overly personal questions or anything that hints at controversy. I encourage you to throw this advice by the wayside and listen to your heart. If there is a question that you feel you need to ask in order to make the… [more]

Should Your Friends or Family Throw You a Baby Shower?

March 27th, 2009
Categories: Common Questions

You're experiencing an unplanned pregnancy. You're currently deciding whether or not you want to parent or place your child for adoption. Questions hang in the air. Nothing is decided or final until the baby is born and papers are signed anyway. So, what do you do? More importantly, what do you say when asked by friends or family the following question: "Do you want a baby shower?" My default answer is always, "Say yes!" However, I'm going to discuss the reasons for and the reasons not to do so. I had to tell you first, though, that my default answer is always "Say yes!" Why? A mother experiencing an unplanned pregnancy often debates the decision of parenting or placing for numerous reasons. One of the most common reasons is… [more]

What surrender feels like

July 7th, 2007
Categories: Common Questions

In the terrible years of the Yezhov terror, I spent seventeen months in the prison lines of Leningrad. Once, someone recognized me. Then a woman with bluish lips standing behind me, who, of course, had never heard me called by name before, woke up from the stupor to which everyone had succumbed and whispered in my ear (everyone spoke in whispers there): "Can you describe this?’" And I answered: "Yes, I can. Then something that looked like a smile passed over what had once been her face." - Anna Akhmatova in the preface to her poem, Requiem Akhmatova’s preface expresses the survivor’s sense of duty to tell the world, accurately and with precision, what it feels like to undergo something terrible. And the loss of a child is always terrible… [more]

Does it get any Easier?

June 12th, 2007

A common question I hear from new birthmothers is “does it get any easier?” It in that question is referring to the immense emotional pain and grief a new birthmother feels. I un-fondly remember being a new birthmother. Those first few days home from the hospital were so incredibly hard. All I really did was lie around and cry. Your body is still tired from just having given birth and in my case my body was healing from a c-section as well. So aside from just being physically exhausted and worn out, I was on emotional overload. Being at home and recuperating was terrible. I came home from the hospital on a Sunday and J (hubby now, boyfriend then) had to go… [more]

Are you a Birthmother?

June 1st, 2007

As an expectant mother considering adoption you may be reading letters addressed “dear birthmother,” looking at areas on agency websites that say “for birthmothers,” and hear the word birthmother used in regards to you. I imagine it might all be a little confusing to you. Are you a birthmother? No, not yet! And you may not become one at all if you do not follow through with an adoption plan. Technically, you do not become a birthmother until you sign the relinquishment papers terminating your parental rights. Until that moment, you are simply a good mother or a good expectant mother considering the adoption option for her child. Some people may think that insisting on not calling an expectant mother considering adoption a… [more]

What if I Change my Mind?

May 17th, 2007

This question recently came to me via email from an expectant mother considering adoption and I thought it was important enough to bring to the attention of all expectant mothers considering adoption. I am considering placing my child for adoption and am wondering how long I have to change my mind and get my daughter back once I sign papers? Ok, first of all, if you are already thinking that you might want to take your daughter back, don’t sign those papers! Do not let an adoption agency, a family member, friend, partner, boyfriend, husband, prospective adoptive parent, or anyone else talk you into signing those papers either! If you are already thinking that you might want to take her back once you sign… [more]

Sincerity?

October 27th, 2006
Categories: Common Questions

I have been browsing the forums again and came across a question that pregnant women considering adoption have asked many times before. I keep hearing stories of open adoptions closing as soon as the adoption is final and so it makes me wonder... how could a pbmom evaluate whether or not aparents are sincere about wanting to keep the adoption open? Are there signs (good or bad) pbmom could look for? Red flags? For bmoms in adoptions that promised openness but were later closed, when you look back on the months or weeks leading up to placement, do you see any warning signs? Is hindsight 20/20? This is a very good question! But a hard one with no definite answer. How do you know anyone… [more]

Common Question: Is it hard to see your baby at visits then leave without him or her?

September 18th, 2006
Categories: Common Questions

I’ve written a few posts that pertain to common questions I am asked by pregnant women considering adoption. Another question I get asked a lot, especially by those considering open adoption, is – “Is it hard to see your baby at visits and then leave without him?” That’s a good question but has a complex answer. To clarify, this question is usually referring to the post relinquishment visits. The visits you may have in the future with your child and his or her adoptive family. I am not going to sugar coat things – it is very hard. As Charlie gets older, I think leaving gets easier. The first few visits after he was born were the hardest. I would cry each… [more]