This Is Kind of a Big Deal…I Need a Maybe Family!

“My mom’s mad, the father doesn’t believe the baby is his, and life is falling apart. Maybe I can do this, but maybe it’s time to look into adoption.”

Jessica remembers writing this in her journal. She remembers the feeling of being completely and totally overwhelmed. She called herself “dumb” (she’s not!) and wondered what to do.

Sometimes when you decide to look into adoption, a “maybe family” jumps into your mind. Or falls into your lap. Your second cousin once removed has a friend who knows of a family trying to adopt. You’ve talked to your second cousin once removed a few times and trust him up to a point. You agree to talk with the cousin’s friend who puts you in touch with the family trying to adopt. They tell you they have been trying to adopt for years, that birth mothers have scammed them and taken lots of money from them and they want you to sign something RIGHT NOW that will guarantee you will hand over your baby to them. Your heart goes out to them, and you WANT to help them.

But that feeling in the pit of your stomach is letting you know that this doesn’t feel quite right. There’s something about that signing anything RIGHT NOW that doesn’t sit well. So you start looking through Facebook. And Instagram. You google “adoption”. And you see countless pictures of smiling families from all over. Some have other kids. Some have dogs. Some are single. Some are paired up and seem cute and sweet. That overwhelming feeling starts to take over. They all promise to love your child. They all promise to provide your child an education, vacations, and holiday traditions. All those smiling people promise they will stay in touch with you long after the adoption is over. Letters. Pictures. Texts. Facebook posts. Visits. “But will they?” you wonder to yourself. And that feeling in the pit of your stomach is back.

Adoption does not have to be that way. You have control. You have the right to learn all you can about the maybe family that tells you they would love to adopt your baby. You can make choices for yourself and your baby. Now is the time to find an expert…someone who knows about adoption. Someone who knows about the laws that are about adoption. Someone who has completely checked out the maybe family, and knows that they are truly safe and stable. Think about letting a licensed, reputable adoption agency or an adoption attorney do some of the hard work of checking out the maybe family.

This is the time you are looking for an expert. To say an adoption attorney is an attorney who does adoptions sounds silly, but an adoption attorney is one who really has specialized in this field, and really gets how important this decision is for you and your baby. Now is not the time to use the lawyer who got your brother’s girlfriend out of her drunk driving charge. Licensed agencies know how to dig deep into the maybe parents’ world and check them out. This means the families they are working with are secure, safe and stable. A good agency also understands that adoption involves relationships—relationships between you and the maybe family, you and your baby, and the maybe family and the baby. That agency also knows that relationships change over the years, and they will be around for the long haul.

The Adoption Support Center is one of those licensed, reputable agencies that has done the hard work of checking out people who want to adopt. The women who work there passionately care about what happens to you and to your baby. Let the Adoption Support Center help you get rid of that sick feeling in the pit of your stomach. Contact them anytime—no question is too big or too small. Remember, you have options and you are in control!


I’m Telling!

The shock has worn off. You’ve taken a minute (or two or ten or a week!) to try to absorb what this will mean. You’ve decided there is no abortion in your future and this baby will someday be a part of this world.

Suddenly a world full of decisions presents itself. Who is going to help you navigate the next few months? Who should you tell? What are people going to say? Are they going to be happy for you or disappointed in you? Who should you tell first? The baby’s father? Your parents? Your best friend? Maybe it feels more comfortable sit with this a little while longer, and not tell anyone.

Some women find a sense of relief once they let others in. Sometimes the only way through a situation is just through it. Leah remembers telling her parents after holding on to the knowledge she was pregnant for just a few days. She says she was afraid to disappoint them, but it was worth the telling because she knew they were on her side.

Telling other people about your pregnancy is guaranteed to bring a wide variety of responses and reactions. Even though this is YOUR pregnancy, it’s likely everyone in your world will have an opinion—whether it is good or bad. Even people you don’t know are likely to have an opinion! The bottom line is this pregnancy is yours. Yours to experience, yours to talk about and yours to decide how things will go. And at the end of the pregnancy, the baby is yours—you are the mother. So the opinion that matters the most is your own.

This does not mean you have to go through the next few months alone. Tell the people who are going to stand by your side—even if they do not always agree with you and your decisions. Tell the people who love you, who know you and know your situation. Don’t be afraid to share your emotions. It often seems that things are not as scary or overwhelming when you have someone to help you through them.

If you would like to tell someone about your pregnancy and feelings about having a baby, but can’t quite bring yourself to tell your family or friends, reach out to a caring place that is familiar with unintended pregnancies and all the decisions that come with it. The Adoption Support Center has caring, compassionate women willing to listen and help navigate the relationships around you. Remember, you are definitely not alone!