Friday, January 27, 2012

Guest Blogger: Out of the Darkness, Light. What we mean to Adoptive Parents.

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This is a guest blogger! I was contacted by him after my last call for birthparents. You can read his blog HERE

Now before anyone gets all butt hurt ... yes his view is very different from a lot of people who follow this blog. Remember that we are all entitled to our own opinions and there is no need to attack. This, in my opinion, is a beautifully written post. Love, Jessa :)

To date, I don’t feel that I have done anything of note. I feel that I have led a trite and meaningless life. I don’t really consider myself to be all that special or important to anyone - at least not yet. But really, when you think about it, we are heroes to our child’s adoptive parents. I’ve never thought about it this way, but I suppose it’s true.

From the beginning of their long journey through the adoption process, my daughter’s adoptive parents prayed for Caroline and I and our unborn daughter before they even knew us. All they knew was that out there somewhere, there was a woman with child who was scared and didn’t know how she and her baby’s dad were going to take care of their child.

The adoption process is very long, very stressful, and very emotionally draining. Everyone’s experience is different, but from what I’ve read, there are a lot of let downs. While some agencies, including the one Caroline and I placed through, don’t allow any contact between birthparents and prospective adoptive parents, many do. The same is the case in private adoptions where a friend, or a friend of a friend, knows somebody who knows somebody who is pregnant. Pre-placement contact is often a tedious and gut-wrenching experience, and I don’t know why people do it. A crisis pregnancy is the hardest thing a woman will ever go through, and while they may know that adoption is right for their child, they might feel like somebody is trying to snatch their baby from them before he/she is even born. As a birthfather, even one who was 100% committed to adoption throughout Caroline’s pregnancy, I couldn’t even imagine meeting with a couple who would be raising my child before the birth. If we had committed to a family before Hannah was born, we would’ve had to let them down – at least temporarily.

When your child is born, there is a paternal instinct that takes over. Holding my daughter in my arms just seconds after she came into this world, the reality of our situation faded away, and I thought to myself that I was wrong and that there was no way I could give my little girl up – that somehow we would find a way to take care of her. However, beginning with the drive home from the hospital, reality began to come back into focus, and I began to remember the impossible situation we were faced with. The focus once again returned to choosing an adoptive family.

Despite knowing that our eventual decision to choose adoption was the right choice, if someone had tried to take my baby away from me while we were still at the hospital, one of two things would’ve happened: Either we would’ve had to tell the prospective AP’s that we had changed our mind, or we would have gone through with the adoption and experienced a lifetime of regret and resentment.

The message of this post is that our child’s parents’ lives rise and fall with the decisions we make as birthparents. I’m not an outwardly emotional guy, but I’ve read some accounts from adoptive parents that just broke my heart – stories of people who had chosen a couple and then reneged at the last minute, expectant mothers who had miscarriages after selection, birthparents who revoked their relinquishment of custody, and of course those “expectant birthmothers” who are scamming prospective adoptive parents for financial gain. I would just like to say really quickly that if you are looking to adopt and an expectant mom you are communicating with asks you for money, don’t send her a dime. It might not be a scam, but it probably is. Think about it – if you were pregnant and looking for parents for your child, would you ask them for money? I think not. See the Facebook page “Avoiding Adoption Scams”.

Before they brought our child home, our little girl or boy’s parents were in a very dark place. Most people who are looking to adopt, including my daughter’s mom and dad, experienced the pain of infertility. I can’t imagine how emotionally taxing that must be both for a man and for a woman. As a man, if I were unable to provide my wife with a child, I would feel like less of a man, and that I was a disappointment to my wife. I can only try to imagine how a woman would feel if she couldn’t conceive, but as most women have such a strong, natural drive to bear children, I would think it would be an affront to their identity as women.

Many couples cannot withstand this let down. All too often, infertile couples (I really don’t like use the word infertile - it’s so scary), don’t share a deep enough love to make it through such a difficult time. Those couples who do “make it” and choose adoption drudge on through years of waiting - Waiting to decide if they should adopt. Waiting to find the right agency. Waiting for their home study to be completed. Waiting for their future child’s birthfather to do the wild thang with his girlfriend and have an “accident” happen.

After reading the blogs of many adoptive parents, most of whom are experiencing this process for the first time, and one family who is going through it for a second and, I might add, more difficult time, I have realized something. We, as Birthfathers, are the answer to our child’s adoptive parent’s prayers.We are the bright light piercing through the darkness that has become their lives.


Lara Zierke said...

Love this. Tears.

Megan said...

Incredible post! I'm not butt hurt at all. This is very refreshing and honest.

Brandon Baugh said...

Very well put post. Some things need to be said along the lines of the things that most people don't even think about. Obviously we all want to think about the positive aspects of everything but sometimes the whole picture needs to be reviewed. Very well done.

Tracy said...

very heartfelt and well stated...as a potential AP I really appreciate that he (as a expectant and then birth father) can seem to truly recognize some of the fears, pains and hopes we face as well. ~ God Bless ~

Julie said...

LOVE this post.
As an adoptive Mama to 2 precious miracles, I appreciate the honesty in this post.
We went through 9 years of marriage before being able to grow our family, due to infertility and adoption failures, but I wouldn't trade our journey for anything.
We love our children's birth families and appreciate the ULTIMATE sacrifice that they made for us. They placed THEIR child into our family for us to love and raise as our own! We are forever grateful!

HURT and CONFUSED said...

I enjoyed reading your post, I on the other hand had a much different experience with my son's adoptive parents, they wish I didn't exist, they haven't said that but their actions have proven this to be the case. A far cry from the people who said they would always honor the bond I share with my son, that they would have no problem with a lifetime relationship between my son and myself and family, those people are long gone and it has done so much damage, I have never known such a betrayal and never wish that upon anyone. xxoo HURT & CONFUSED

etropic said...

~Hurt and Confused,

Please know that YOU ARE NOT ALONE! Your screen name says it all. I understand FULLY what you are saying and feeling. Been there done that..STILL doing that. If you ever need to vent, please come on over my way.


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