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Contact with BirthFather’s Grandmother
Posted: 18 February 2011 12:23 AM   Ignore ]  
Total Posts:  2
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Our daughter is now ten months old. We had an open adoption in that we met with the birthparents and exchange letters and pictures. We had an AMAZING meeting and absolutely adore them. We knew at the time that the birthfather did not want his mother to know. Just recently, the grandmother found out and requested a meeting with us, facilitate by our agency. It was a good meeting and she was very gracious to us and understood we were the parents, etc. However, we could tell it was very hard for her to say goodbye..followed us out to the car and kept snapping photos even when our daughter was buckled into the carseat. Since then, she has sent poems, letters, pictures, and even a bottle of her perfume (her “trademark’). She wrote my husband and I a very nice letter. She says she thinks we are wonderful parents and does not want to be intrusive, but is really struggling. She admits to some depression and the fact that her siblings are having grandchilren right now is not helping. She is requesting direct communication with us in the future and more visits before we move (we are military).

I believe in openness and don’t want to deny my daughter her roots. However, I will admit that visits do cause me anxiety with her because I know she would really have it another way. I also worry that as my daughter gets older, it will make her feel bad seeing how hard it is for her to say goodbye.

I am trying to think of a plan to make us all happy.

Any thoughts or experience with this? I would be grateful.

Posted: 18 February 2011 03:17 AM   Ignore ]  
Total Posts:  28
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I think what would be really useful for you right now is to examine your feelings and really get a handle on what, exactly, you are afraid of.

We are also in an open adoption with our children’s birth grandmother. And we resisted it as first. But once we discussed it and really thought about what we were feeling, we determined that most of our feelings was based on that relationship being an “unknown.” And the unknown made us feel insecure and threatened.

But what does it harm to have another adult who loves your child in your lives?

It sounds as if perhaps you are feeling overwhelmed at the moment by the depth of her emotion. Keep in mind, this is also very new for her and she doesn’t really know where it will lead. Perhaps all she knows is that she wants to have contact of some kind and she is feeling just fearful as you.

I would continue to schedule additional meetings. Take it slow and easy, don’t make any promises and allow the relationship to grow and develop without preconceptions of what it might be. You may be very happy you do.

Our children are now 28 months and 15 months. We refer to their birth grandmother as “Florida Grandma,” although we will likely be switching it to Nana. (My mother is known as Baba and my husband’s mother is known as Grandma. Nana is what her other grandchildren, our children’s half siblings, call her.) We consider her a member of our family and wouldn’t have it any other way. After all, it is not possible to have too many people who love and care for your child. But it took us well over a year to get to that relationship.

Good luck!

Posted: 18 February 2011 10:57 PM   Ignore ]  
Total Posts:  2
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Thank you very much, I know you are right. We are definitely going to have more visits with her and my husband and I are working on a plan as far as scheduled communication with her in the coming years as we know we will move.

My anxiety really comes from knowing that she would rather have kept her in the family and wondering if there will be “enough” for her as far as communication comes into play. Right or wrong, I really don’t want unexpected phone calls.

Regardless, we do want her in our life and we will come up with a plan. I do think I need to examine my feelings more like you said, though. With our frist adoption, I did realize that it certainly was the case of the unknown with the birthparents that scared me and that it turned out to be comletely unfounded.

Thanks, again, for taking the time to write.
Heidi