Birthmothers often wonder, how and when do I tell a new boyfriend that I placed a baby for adoption? There is really no right or wrong answer to this question because, as we all know, we are so different that what is right in one situation could be wrong in another.
But, what most birthparents believe is that it does need to be shared. Many birthmothers also believe that sooner rather than later is better. For those who have a very open adoption, the subject may have to be addressed very early on. For instance, if a birthmother’s social media contains pictures of her child she placed for adoption or posts about her placement, it would be much better for her to tell someone she has a relationship with, in person rather than have that person read or see it on-line. It also clears the air for an open and honest relationship. If the person decides not to pursue the relationship based on the adoption information, it wouldn’t be a good relationship anyway……better to end before it begins than to have an ugly breakup about it months or years later.
In talking about their experiences, some birthmothers have also found that by talking about it early on, they’ve found amazing adoption stories experienced by the other person. For instance, one guy had been adopted himself and has a fabulous adoptive family. Another guy’s mom was an adoption counselor, so he knew all about adoption and what birthparents go through. He had a greater respect for this woman who told him. Another man expressed his amazement at the courage it took for her to place her baby and told her how much he appreciated her confiding in him.
All birthmothers interviewed agree that it is important to tell that “special person” in an open and honest way. They also agree that if it turns that person off then the relationship was not right in the first place. Some boyfriends and spouses become part of the open adoption and jump right in, getting to know the adopted child and offering support to the birthmom.
Adoption should not have to be a secret. Choosing life for a baby is one of the noblest things a woman can do. Choosing a better life for her baby than she can give is even better. Sharing that experience with someone who will keep it tender and sacred is a wonderful experience.
As adoptions continue to become more open, more stories will be shared. Facebook continues to have adoptees and birthparents reaching out for each other to learn more about the other. As these stories are seen by millions who use social media, talk of adoption becomes more commonplace. When two people searching for each other are re-united, it becomes big news! Sometimes for the mere fact that after dozens of years of searching, it happens in a few hours on social media!
As birthmothers have the courage to make their stories known, it is hoped that more significant others will respond with the love and respect that birthmothers deserve. She has made a noble choice and deserves to be treated as such.