Michelle is willingly giving us permission to share her story so that others can realize there is hope in the midst of a difficult situation. All client experiences with Advice & Aid Pregnancy Centers are kept with the highest confidence. The stories that are shared come from the real-life experiences that our clients, staff and volunteers had during their unplanned pregnancy.
Her name has been changed but her story is true.
My name is Michelle.
This is my story of adoption.
Redefining Adoption As A Positive
The word adoption can often have a negative connotative meaning even in today’s era. It can have, attached along with it, a definition from 50 plus years ago, brimming with stigmas and secrets. Images of young girls being sent away for 9 months to an “Aunt’s house” only to hand their child to a nun at the end of their “stay” are called to mind. They often never knew the life that would unfold and were left wondering if they would always be a secret to this tiny baby that had completely stolen their heart. Far too often, women were left with emotional wounds they could never recover from, always regretting their decision. Maybe all you have heard are the bad stories, trickled down from one ear to another. Now it’s time for you to hear a beautiful story, one that will hopefully “update” your definition of adoption. I hope that you see adoption in a brand new light. I am no adoption expert but I have some first-hand experience!
My Personal Experience
I can’t begin to tell you how many times I have had people ask me what the meaning is of the three cursive letters, permanently inked into my right wrist. As far as they are concerned, they are asking a very nonchalant question. However, they are almost always surprised when they learn the meaning. My response usually goes a little something like this, “They are my son’s initials. I placed him for adoption but it is open.” They unknowingly opened a door to a very special part of my life and I absolutely love it. What I have come to find, is that most people have either never heard of open adoption or have a misguided idea of what it actually is. I love having the opportunity to bring clarity to what open adoption is … to be a living example of how beautiful it can be when two families become one … two paths cross and converge for one reason – the love for a child.
The Beauty of Open Adoption
Open adoption is a relatively “new” idea, having been around only 40 years. It can vary in degrees of openness depending on what has been agreed upon between the birth mother and adoptive parents. It has recently become more common and accepted in the last 10-20 years and is becoming increasingly attractive due to the positive effects on the child, birth mom, and adoptive parents. Open adoption eliminates the feeling of abandonment an adopted child can feel when they never hear their birth mom’s side of the story. Silence can grow monstrous scenarios in our minds and produce misguided hurts that stem from our imagination of what might have happened. I cannot speak for every woman, but I believe that most birth mothers do not choose adoption because they don’t want their baby. I have been going to a birth mother support group and I have never met or heard of one who felt that way. In fact, it is quite the opposite. You desperately want your baby, but you also desperately want your baby to have the best life you can possibly give them. Sometimes, that life is with someone else. This is why I chose adoption for my son. I wanted more for him than I was able to give, so I gave him what I could; a beautiful family and a BEAUTIFUL LIFE! Open adoption is so good for the birth mom as well. It is so sweet to not only know, but to PICK, the family who will raise your child, to have a relationship with your child and watch them grow as the years go by and know what’s going on in their life. When I miss my son, I think about how happy he is, how loved he is, how alive he is! All life is precious and adoption is a very special way of honoring God’s gift of life. My son never will have to wonder if he is loved. It was also comforting to know that any couple who is ready to adopt has gone through strenuous, invasive and grueling paperwork, home studies, and many other processes. These couples REALLY want a child. They would not go through that process if they weren’t totally committed to adoption. They are seriously devoted to it, having proven themselves to be deemed fit before any birth mother ever reviews their file. It’s a comforting thought to keep that in mind.
Where To Begin
If you are struggling with a decision of what to do because you don’t feel prepared to give your child the life you would want to, I would strongly advise you to consider adoption. There are several wonderful agencies in the metro area. The process involves meeting with a social worker and eventually browsing through several different couple’s profiles. When you find a couple that matches your values and fit the family you would want your child to grow up in from these in-depth profiles, you meet with them. You can meet with as many couples you want. You choose who you feel is right. You will know in your heart. Just know, from a woman who walked that path 7 years ago, there is hope and there is healing. Not once have I EVER regretted my decision. There is a life growing inside of you, and you need to take care of this little one, protect them and choose whatever is best for them, because they can’t do that for themselves. That is what mothers are for.
If you, or someone you know, is facing an unplanned pregnancy, we want you to know that you are not alone as you make choices for both you and your baby. The idea of adoption can be overwhelming. We are here to help.
While Advice & Aid does not handle adoptions personally, we do partner with a number of licensed, fully trusted adoption agencies in our area. We can help you walk through the entire process with one of these recommended agencies so that you are not alone.
To read an additional adoption story: