Adoption: The Struggle is Real

Adoption: The Struggle is Real

Adoption: The Struggle is Real

I’m here to clear up one of the misconceptions about adoption that tends to make my blood boil. What I’m referring to is the idea that any part of adoption is easy. I hear such cavalier lines thrown at birthparents as, “Oh, you took the easy way out. You get to have a life now without the responsibility of a child.” I see the way people flippantly act toward adoptive parents: “You didn’t have to struggle with a pregnancy. You got to go pick up a baby!” Adopted children aren’t even left out of this nonsensical charade. “You’re lucky that your parents adopted you from what I can only assume were drug dealing, prostituting teenagers that didn’t want you.” But I won’t delve into that of the child struggle. While my examples may seem extreme, in all reality, lines similar to this are thrown around about the adoption equation on a daily basis. Something that has been around since the dawn of time is still made to be such a taboo exchange, and while I am just a pebble in the pond of the adoption community, I would like to lend some of my experience for educational purposes.

Sam & baby Liam (Guest Blogger)

The Birthparent Struggle

This is the struggle that I indeed have the most experience with. As the calendar ticks closer to April 25th, my birthson Liam’s first birthday, I am becoming more and more of an out of my mind, hormonal mess. There was nothing easy about his emergency c-section, feeling like he was ripped from my body 5 and a half weeks too soon. There was nothing easy about the whispers from NICU nurses about the two sets of parents that were coming to visit him, the ones who bore him and the ones who’d raise him. Leaving him at the hospital and signing the relinquishment papers made me cry and shake so hard that I was sick, already having fallen in love with his mom and dad but trying to mentally reason how I could make taking care of him work up until the last minute.   Every day, even a year later, I wake with the thought that my heart lives outside of my body and I don’t hear his morning coos, play trucks with him, or rock him to sleep each night. There are days the guilt and shame rattle me, and I feel awful being so sad when I’m still included in so much. I was unbelievably lucky when I found his mom and dad, the ones that love and include my boyfriend and I, send us pictures, let us visit and participate in his big moments. Even with every dose of appreciation and gratefulness, there is still a huge tug in my gut that wishes I could be his mom. There is the struggle of ignorant questions asked by rude individuals, such as if I’m going to get him back or does he know I’m his mom. There’s the thought process of how I’m going to have to explain to him and his future siblings why he needed a different mommy and daddy to love him. So, if anybody thinks that being a birthparent is easy, I really hope they think again.

The Adoptive Parent Struggle

Not too long after Liam was born, I discovered I felt very passionately about adoptions and those within the triad. I started reaching out to perspective couples and birthmoms in an effort to build community and pass on anything I had learned so far. Soon after, I made a good friend over the inter-webs, who was hoping to privately adopt with her husband. From our first conversation, I knew that she was one of the sweetest people I had ever spoken with and all I wanted was for her parenting dreams to come true, praying for her every chance that I got. One night a few months into our online friendship, she messaged me with a saddening update from her life: they had had a baby placed with them and the birthparents had changed their mind after a few days. Understanding both sides of the situation, I still felt absolutely crushed for them. Few people talk about the pain and rejection of this side of the situation, the one where families put their hearts and lives on the line, only to be disappointed and hurt. The thing that struck me was how ridiculously awesome my friend was about it, that even through her pain she was happy if everyone else was happy. I’ve heard horror stories about adoption scammers who lie and say they are pregnant just for money or to lead someone on. I know adoptive couples who have literally been waiting for years for someone to pick them out of a line up or to receive a phone call. Once they get a baby, I know parents who struggle with wanting to celebrate and be happy, yet want to remain sensitive and understanding to grieving birthparents. Time and again they are asked questions about how their child will react to finding out about their ‘real parents’ or if they are going to tell them their story. People even have the nerve to tell them, “Oh I’m sure you’ll conceive now that you got one,” like they picked up a puppy at Petland. In such an intimate process, adoptive parents have to set their privacy aside and I can’t imagine what that struggle consists of.

While I could list a thousand ways that the adoption triad creates a struggle, I should also mention that it creates blessings. Because of placing Liam, I have figured out what I want to do for the rest of my life (helping babies and parents in need), I’ve realized how important motherhood is to me, and I found one of my best friend’s in Liam’s mom, Heather. While I’ve had many ups and downs in the last year, looking at the pictures and videos she sends to me on a daily basis always puts a smile on my face. I am happy knowing that Liam won’t face the struggle I did of having parents who weren’t ready, and happy that his family has been completed because of him. Not much of this may be easy, but with a little respect and a lot of love, it can certainly be worth it all.

I am a wife, mother of two, and love anything and everything adoption. I am an avid adoption supporter and love to help others complete their family through adoption. If you love adoption too, Like and follow our blog! <3

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