I’d like to write some happy news about adoption…
But if I did that, not only would I be remiss in my responsibility to do whatever I can to ensure that the tragedy that has befallen me not befall someone else in the future, but I would also be adding another layer to the already polluted mountain of deceit in the broader base of information that’s out there regarding adoption and how “wonderful” it is. Therefore, what I will do is the only thing I can do, which is work through this unrequited motherhood right here for all to see, in front of God and everybody, and let whosoever will see what the real deal is about adoption.
Please, if you have a child on the way and are unprepared for it, and you are considering relinquishing that child to prospective adopters, please, if you know anything at all about unrequited love – even if only in storybooks and/or Shakespearean plays – take what you know of that anguish and multiply it infinity times infinity, and you will have a more honest look at what the future holds for you if you go through with it.
If you have any desire for children at all in the future, then consider this upcoming birth you are preparing for to be your future. The future is inside you right now. Chances are, your future as this child’s mom is a whole lot brighter than you’re able to comprehend right now, and that beautiful, unknown person you are carrying is probably someone you are going to want to know – and that time may come much sooner than you might think.
There is no guarantee of open adoption – even if you get it in writing. Adoptive parents have been known to make all kinds of elaborate promises to keep you in the loop and/or in your child’s life, but I’m here to tell you that promises just like the ones you may be hearing get broken every single day. If you’re not sure about whether or not this is true, I will unhesitatingly introduce you to people who were given such promises by people they very much loved and trusted only to have that trust betrayed, and they’ve no idea where their children are, how they are, and they hear no news at all.
And even if you’re thinking of closed or semi-closed adoption, and you’re thinking you’re not going to want to know this person who is inside you, let me assure you of this one thing: Giving birth to a child is a twofold event. You will be bringing a child into this world, an inescapable reality, but you will also be giving birth to a mother, and you are that mother. You haven’t known yourself in this light before, you haven’t known yourself as a mother, so before you shut the door on this person who is about to be born, this mother you are becoming, I encourage you to allow your mind to drift and imagine yourself as that very person, that mom. Go to the park and watch mothers with their children and let your heart do the talking about what is TRULY right and TRULY in the best interests of your child. The good, the bad, and the scrubby little ugliness of motherhood will all be there and will give you a pretty well-rounded viewpoint, but what you do not – indeed, cannot – know right now is that even the ugly parts are all part of it, and it’s okay (love covers a multitude of sins).
Your baby doesn’t need the frills and advantages that prospective adoptive parents can provide. Your baby just needs one thing, and that is you, his/her mom. That is all the universe is asking of you at this time is to be your child’s mom. You are irreplaceable, and the child you are carrying is irreplaceable. No matter how many children you may have in the future, no one will ever be able to do away with or fill the loss you are about to experience if you give him or her away – no matter how good the promises may sound of a better life than you think you can give to your child.
And if you are naively hoping that you will someday have your child back in your life, let me also put that in a new light: there is no guarantee that your child will want to know you or know anything about you if you give him or her up. I didn’t have adoptive parents who skipped out on their promises to keep me informed; they faithfully sent letters with plenty of pictures every year, just like they promised. I naively thought I would have my son back in my life when he came of age. I know where he is. I know how to find him. I have contacted him. Apparently, he wants nothing to do with me. This happens too. If you think it can’t happen to you, I’m here to tell you, I thought that too.
There just are no guarantees in this life – about anything…including one’s next breath. Whatever it is that is compelling you to look to adoption as an “answer” to what you are struggling with, please let me assure you that adoption is a permanent “solution” to a very temporary set of circumstances. Whatever it is you are going through, it will pass, and you will move on. However, my own experience – which is eerily similar to multitudes of birthmothers/first mothers/whatever you choose to call us whose accounts I’ve read, whom I’ve met personally, or whom I’ve come across in passing, and whom I currently know intimately (and not in a sexual way, lol) – has proven that there is no moving on from relinquishing a child to adoption. As soon as you sign the papers and hand your baby over, you are stuck right there, in that moment, that awful, awful moment, potentially for the rest of your life. Instead of thinking about adoption, just think about unrequited love. Think of those star-crossed lovers, Romeo and Juliet. I’m no stranger to unrequited love, either, and I can tell you that unrequited motherhood is far more tragic than unrequited love’s outcome – multiplied by leaps, and by bounds, by mountains, and by earths, by stars, and by planets – hell, by whole UNIVERSES!
If you’ve any questions, just email me: firstname.lastname@example.org. I’m here all day in my own unrequited motherhood, not going anywhere. I’m busy, but I’ve got all the time in the world for you, and I mean that with every fiber of my being.
You’re pregnant. It happens. Every day. And, guess what: It’s not the end of the world, not by a long or even a short shot. It may be hard for you to believe this right now, but it’s going to be alright. Your baby is inside you – and not inside the potential adoptive mother – for a reason, and if you choose it, you get to live out the next few years finding out what that’s about. And it’s going to be okay. Your perspective on children is about to drastically change over the next few weeks and months – and it’s a beautiful thing! It’s a huge and a very scary thing you are facing, true, but you don’t have to face it alone.