Being a birthmother who is placing a child for adoption can be a very lonely position to be in. Frequently, women who have experienced an unplanned pregnancy and have chosen adoption say things like, “My family won’t speak to me because of my decision.” Or, “My friends all want me to keep the baby.” Or worse, “Everyone says to get an abortion.” They go on to say that if they made a choice other than adoption they would have much more support from family and friends.
Why is it that for many, adoption is the least desirable option? Is it really better to abort a child? To try to raise a child when the circumstances are far less than ideal? While there are many stories of women who are able to make it being a single parent sometimes at the early age of 14, most stories end in a cycle of poverty, unemployment and lack of education.
A woman that makes the decision to place her child for adoption should be able to feel the same amount of support as those who choose to parent or abort. After all, she is putting the needs of the child and the value of a child’s life above her own and giving so unselfishly of herself. She loves her baby so much….enough to carry the child for nine months, to feel the baby grow, move and even hiccup. She definitely bonds with her child during that time and then goes through the event of child birth. Love carries her through this process and her love for the child is what helps her then to do something that will be painful, yet right.
As a woman prepares for adoption, she must realistically think through her situation. Counselors at Act of Love will help her to process her decisions and plan for her adoption or provide resources for parenting. She should clearly ponder the alternative of parenting. She should think of every scenario in which it could work. She must think it through with her mind and not her heart. There are many that will help persuade a woman to parent with promises of help –both financially and through time. Unfortunately, however heartfelt, those promises were when they were made; the vast majority of them were unrealistic. Many women who ended up making the decision to parent because of loved ones who said they would help, have realized quickly that most of those promises never materialized.
Unfortunately, we live in a busy world, with many demands and most of us are working diligently to make the rent, put food on the table and barely make it. As much as we’d all love to help our friend or sister, we can give a little here and there, but it is usually not what is needed to help her raise and feed and provide for her child. And, in many cases there are already other children in the home that need the help, love and attention as well.
One birthmother said, “If I’m not making it with the children I have now, how does anyone think I’m going to make it when I add one more?” The best thing we can do is support her if she makes an adoption plan. Be willing to listen to her as she talks about adoption. Be willing to learn about the adoptive parent(s) she has selected. Be supportive when her emotions surface. Be the one she can lean on. Be the one that can help remind her of all the reasons she is placing and remind her that she made a great decision. Her child will love her and always be grateful she chose life and she chose adoption.
Let’s give the option of adoption a break! It is a beautiful decision to make and one that will have wonderful lasting effects on the child. Act of Love Adoptions honors and thanks all the women who choose adoption!