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Nerves? Normal?
Posted: 30 December 2010 04:07 PM   Ignore ]  
Total Posts:  6

I am posting this under “common questions and fears” in hopes that I am truly in the norm by having these thoughts.

We decided on adoption years ago, but we have just submitted our home study packet so we aren’t that far along in the process at all, however, I’m having jitters.

I’m scared about the changes a child will bring to our lives…I’m sure this is common among even those people who have biological children.

My biggest concern is that I am fearing someday looking at my child and thinking “that’s not really my child”. I’m scared I’m going to compare my adoptive child to biological nieces and nephews and think that he/she is really NOT part of the family. I am scared of watching my child do something and thinking “he/she gets that from me…but not really because he/she isn’t mine.” I’m scared that the child won’t be good at sports and my husband always was and he will think “if that were really my child, he/she would be good at this”.

I totally suck for thinking these things, but I am hoping these are normal thoughts.

I have no doubt in my mind that we will love the child as our own as soon as he/she is placed with us. It is more that I’m worried about things that will occur down the road and I’ll always know in the back of my mind that this child really isn’t “mine” or “ours”.

Please tell me that I’m not alone here and that others have had these thoughts. I feel really horrible for thinking these things and need to know that I’m normal.

Posted: 31 December 2010 08:00 PM   Ignore ]  
Total Posts:  6

Gee, there is usually quicker response. Now I really feel bad for thinking these things.

Posted: 02 January 2011 08:01 PM   Ignore ]  
Total Posts:  47

If other people aren’t considering these things, they should.  It’s a two-way street as well.  An adoptee may have some of these feelings toward you.  You may get a math whiz who is just as disappointed that he was adopted by someone who preferred sports as you may be that he lacked an interest in athletics.  You’re right.  An adopted child will be different than your biological family.  This child won’t have your family genes, and you won’t have his family genes.  There are plenty of folks who pretend that this won’t make a bit of difference, but of course, it will.  Ignoring it won’t change things.

Posted: 05 January 2011 02:01 AM   Ignore ]  
Total Posts:  112

I think your thoughts are perfectly normal.  People may not want to admit to them though. 
For the past five years, I’ve led an adoption support group for those considering adoption, those in the process or those who have adopted.  I have met hundreds of couples. And I have heard your exact fears mentioned A LOT.  All it takes is one person in the meeting brave enough to admit these fears out loud, and then many others join in agreeing.  People may feel ashamed to be adopting and to still have these thoughts.  But I believe that by acknowledging them you are facing them and that means you will conquer them if they do become problems while parenting.

I am an adoptive parent to three and I still have these thoughts.  I know my kids are completely mine.  I only have them thanks to their birthparents.  In a way, I do share my kids with them even though the birthparents aren’t in our lives.  I do know that some of my talents/traits cannot be passed to my kids but believe me, there are many talents/traits that I thought were only genetic but I was wrong.  My kids have many behaviors from my husband and I.  Adopting makes you realize how powerful the environment a child is raised in.

Don’t feel bad saying these thoughts.  I think they’re normal and I think they are OK to have even when you become a parent.  Just accept them and figure out what to do with them.  That is way better than denying them.

Good luck!

Danielle Pennel
AFC Community Moderator

Posted: 07 January 2011 08:30 PM   Ignore ]  
Total Posts:  4

Your thoughts are definitley normal! My husband and I just had another round of this the other night—we had to decide whether or not to show our profile to a potential birthmother, and it was agonizing. My heart felt like it was being ripped apart, even though my head knew that this was not the right situation for us. We talked for the millionth time about how scary this is, and how we fear that our kids might not love us, or that we will somehow screw something up raising them (which, of course, we will! That’s life!), that we won’t have the right answers, and that we will struggle constantly with the challenges that adoption brings. It occurred to me mid-sob that maybe we were the perfect (well, as perfect as a human can be) parents for adopted children because we care enough to agonize over these things. I saw a t-shirt somewhere that said “Adoption is not for the light of heart, but the big of heart.” I have loved that since, because not many people would go to such lengths to become parents—I remember that when my courage starts to fail. Hang in there! smile And know that you are definitely NOT alone!


Posted: 07 January 2011 08:33 PM   Ignore ]  
Total Posts:  4

Just realized that I got the quote wrong—it’s “Adoption is not for the faint of heart, but the big of heart.” Sorry! smile