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When to tell family/friends that you’ve been selected by a birthmother?
Posted: 28 September 2009 10:56 PM   Ignore ]  
Total Posts:  16
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I’m in the waiting stage and wondering when we’ll tell our family that we’ve been matched with an infant.  Mu husband and I feel at peace with the possibility of the birth mother choosing to parent at the last minute.  I know it would be upsetting at the time but we have strong faith that the child that’s meant to be in our care will find us, even if that takes a few go-rounds.  However we’ve realized that our family’s primary concern about our adoption is this very scenario - and they are especially apprehensive knowing that we want as open an adoption as possible.

Because of this I’m thinking that we won’t tell our family (even our parents and siblings) that we’ve been matched with our child until the birth mom has relinquished her parenting rights (in our state that’s 4+ days after delivery).  This means that we could potentially have our child in our arms for a week or longer before our family even knows we’ve been selected.  This sounds crazy given how close we are with our family, but I’d rather avoid them knowing about a “failed adoption” should that occur - the less negative or scary thoughts they have about adoption the better, no?

Has anyone out there handled their match in this way - by keeping it quiet until the birth mom’s relinquishment was finalized?  Did it turn out well or pose problems / ill feelings with your family that you didn’t anticipate?  Thanks!

Posted: 29 September 2009 09:17 PM   Ignore ]  
Total Posts:  3
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I have to agree with waiting to tell parents and immediately family.  They get their expectations UP and also ask about all THEIR doubts and misunderstandings about adoption which does not help you and your husband while you are going through it.  People that have not been through it really don’t understand.  As I always say, there have been too many Lifetime Movies that paint the birth mom as the wicked witch that is going to come back in a week/month/year and demand “HER baby back” or worse yet, kidnap your kid….and that has not helped the adoption industry.

For me, I chose to only share the info with my 3 closest friends who had always been supportive (no matter what) and one cousin of mine that had adopted her son 15 years ago.  I knew none of these people would break my confidential information to anyone else, and God forbid something went south, I would not have a ton of explaining to do to an army of people that “meant well”.  (including my parents)

You are lucky that you have your partner/husband to share all your feelings and emotions with and you can support each other.  I found that another source of enthusiasm and support were total strangers.  Seriously!  In the grocery store or out shopping and talking to other parents I would tell everyone I was adopting and I had been matched with a birth mom.  These folks were SO happy for me, asked genuine questions without judgement and usually had a few tips on parenthood that were useful.  In doing this, I found that I actually felt more like an expectant mom and it solidified my commitment to being a mom sooner rather than later.  The more I spoke about my adoption (outloud) in the present tense, as in it IS happening, the more confident I became and the more REAL it all was.  You should try it!  grin 

In the end, I told my parents and siblings less than a month from my child’s due date and only gave them limited info.  Luckily they were 3000 miles away which helped with daily questions and concerns. 

I hope this info helps you to do what is best for you guys and I wish you a blessed experience all around!

Meg Coldwells
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Posted: 29 September 2009 11:26 PM   Ignore ]  
Total Posts:  16
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myadoptioncoach, thanks for your reply!  Yes, many of our family’s concerns have been spurred by TV shows.  A show I haven’t seen about teen pregnancy recently showed a real-life situation in which the birth mom chose to parent ,and some family members saw it.  I’m thrilled that they are taking an interest and investigating adoption through the media, and it’s not smart or realistic to try to ‘protect’ them from potential risks of adoption.  This is more for the sake and sanity of my husband and I - not having to reassure people when we can be focused on all that is beautiful about our experience.  grin

Like you, our family lives 3000 miles away.  Also like you, I’ve been telling every stranger who will listen that we’re adopting!  When we decided to adopt I just couldn’t keep it quiet.  Telling strangers is a fun and safe way to celebrate and acknowledge this very important decision without having to tell all of our family/friends yet (we’re waiting until we’re officially on the wait list before we tell everyone).  Thanks for sharing your story and for the well-wishes!

Posted: 30 September 2009 12:16 AM   Ignore ]  
Total Posts:  3
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You are SO welcome and I am thrilled for you that you were already “filtering” the info to the people closest to you and taking the chance, ie.“trying on” the ‘I’m gonna be a mom’ role, it is SO MUCH FUN!  wink
I am not sure what you mean about being on a waiting list, but once you are matched and have some more details about your pending arrival stay cautious.  Because as we all know, it is not done until the unpregnant woman signs.  But don’t let that scare you, keep focused on the prize and stay positive!  It will happen sooner than you think!
Much love and support!
Meg

Meg Coldwells
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Posted: 01 October 2009 08:41 AM   Ignore ]  
Total Posts:  4
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We lived through this scenario a few months back.  It was totally devastating, and the only thing that got us through it was our faith, as you said, that the baby meant to be with us will be with us.  That seems only marginally helpful in the moment, but I really think I would have lost my marbles if I hadn’t had people helping me remember that through everything.

That said, we told our families immediately when we got matched, and I don’t regret it.  They got disappointed too, but we’ve been very clear with them from day one, and they’ve been very respectful of it, that it could fall through at any moment and that we as adoptive parents are not “entitled” to a particular child.  Even as much as it hurt at the time, we fully understood and respected her right to change her mind.  So when it did happen, our families were there to support us and hold us up when we struggled to do it ourselves.  But, every family and every situation is different, so we should definitely all do whatever is best for us!

Posted: 07 October 2009 03:13 PM   Ignore ]  
Total Posts:  14
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We shared our match with our immediate family and close friends, and I don’t regret that decision.  We only had about three weeks to go before her due date.  Our family and friends shared our hopes, dreams, and prayers to build our family.  They were also a great support system when the birthmother changed her mind and chose to parents six weeks after delivery.  We all helped each other through the pain of that loss.  We all celebrated together when we were chosen again for a 2-1/2 week old boy just seven months later. The crown prince is now 6-1/2 and was definitely God’s choice for our family.  Yes, sharing your match opens you up to a lot of questions but when you answer their questions you never know who you might be helping in the long run!

 
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