September 18th, 2006
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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 time I left him or he left me. Now, I try not to think of the leavings as “goodbye” but more of a “see you later.” That may sound trivial, but it has helped me.


Another thing I have noticed in my grieving process and dealing with the feelings of open adoption, is that when I “miss” Charlie, I miss the tiny newborn baby from the hospital, not the kindergartener I see running around today. I know they are one and the same but I don’t know the kindergartner as well as I did the baby.

In the first year, I had a lot of visits. I’d say almost monthly. I realized that was a little too much for me personally. There are some birthmoms who can handle that but I felt like I was stuck and not moving forward. I took a little space and was able to deal with my feelings and emotions and I actually started to enjoy the visits we did have when we had them.

So, once again, this question is not an easy one to answer with a definite yes or no answer, but there are my feelings on the subject and perhaps some other birthmoms can pipe in by commenting with their feelings.

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

  1. Marmy_4 says:

    The thing that makes my visits easier is knowing that it isnt goodbye, and thats one of the wonderful things about having an open adoption. Yes, I did relinquish my rights to be her mother but I am still going to be in her life. When leaving gets hard at the end of a visit, I simply remind my self…. This isnt goodbye.

  2. Heather Lowe says:

    I agree with all you have said here, but just want to point out that visits become infinitely harder when the adoptive parents will not tell you when the next time is gonig to be. If you don’t know when the next time will be, or if there will be a next time, you can’t view it as “see you later.”

    This is why it’s so important to make sure the adoptive parents are on the same page as you regarding the importance of maintaining ties.

    If they aren’t committed to an ongoing relationship, every hard-won visit is a struggle, and every new goodbye is heartbreaking.

  3. Coley S. says:

    That makes sense Heather. If I didn’t know when I’d see Charlie again or even if I’d see him again, “see you later” would be much more like a “goodbye.”

  4. lahdh4 says:

    They are hard. I hate leaving. But it makes it even harder when you are the one having to set up the visits.

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