Thursday, June 11, 2009

Things to never say to an adoptive couple

An adoptive mom just wrote an awesome ARTICLE on things not to say to an adoptive mother.

Even though we have not adopted yet, we get questions very similar to those. Here are a couple that are my personal least favorites.

After you adopt, you will be able to have one of your own. This comment makes me the maddest, I'm talking grizzly bear mad. Adoption DOES NOT cure infertility. Adoption does cure childlessness and fills empty homes, but it does not guarantee a pregnancy. Actually only about 10% of couples who adopt, will go on to have their own successful pregnancy later on. I have met hundreds of adoptive families over the last few years. Very few of them have had their families continue to grow through their own pregnancies. I also know couples who do conceive, but unfortunately have miscarriages. Some of those couples choose to adopt and still their family doesn't grow through their own personal efforts. If a pregnancy does happen after adoption than it is just as big a miracle as adoption itself. I am very passionate about this and I think people are finally understanding that we really have no desire to become expectant parents through pregnancy. Please don't ever say this to a couple looking into adoption.

You both work full-time so you must be rich enough to adopt. I have a harder time talking about this subject, but I think it's time to lay it all out. Adoption is expensive, but that doesn't mean the agencies are rolling in the money. They provide: medical care, housing, and counseling (and I'm just hitting the highlights). We will also have to pay legal fees and hire an attorney when we go to court to make everything official. We are not paying money to buy a baby, we are paying to help take care of the birth mom while she is pregnant. We both work for several reasons. I couldn't stay home all day, every day, in a quite house. I would go insane. But the real reason I work is because we need the income. We are trying to save for an adoption, put hubby through school without going in to debt, plus just continue to have the money we want to live comfortably.

I could never do an open adoption, I wouldn't feel like the mother. Adoption has changed so much over the years. Gone are the days of a birth mom placing a child and then never hearing about them ever again. Change is progress. This women chose to place their children because they LOVE them. What a peace of mind they can have as they get the chance to watch their child grow. Once we adopt, the child will be ours for eternity. But we still want the chance to share them with their birth parents. Those parents gave them the chance to live, now we are giving them the chances at life. We've met several birth moms from different situations. I've seen the healing that comes to those with open adoptions. When we first started the adoption process, open adoption scared us. But there is nothing wrong with having even more people to love a child as it grows.

Aren't you worried about getting a baby with problems? Stereotypes are horrid. Birth moms are awesome and they have their acts together. That is why they make adoption plans. They may have made mistakes, but they are turning it into a miracle. Plus, even if we could have conceived a baby on our own, sure, we could of controlled things like drug exposure, but we still wouldn't have had the perfect baby. Medical conditions are possible with all pregnancies. That is just a part of mother nature.

I could never love a child that wasn't my own. DNA has nothing to do with love. You feel in love with your spouse and you weren't related to them. I also feel in love with my in-laws and I'm not related to them either. Love is unconditional, that's what makes it so great. We will love our child no matter where they come from. I should also add that we will love our children no matter what they look like.

Your time will come. No one is more aware of this fact than we are. After years or trying to conceive and now years of trying to adopt, we realize that it will happen when it's supposed to happen. Most days we are okay with this. But it doesn't change the fact that is seems like we are standing still while others move forward with their lives. We live in Utah, where having a family is a big deal. We go to baby showers, baby blessing and even to the hospital to welcome family and friends who have brought little ones into the world. We have friends who were able to adopt a lot faster than us, while we still suffer with those whose adoption plans seem to drag on. We know and adoption will happen within the Lord's timing, but until then we come home to a quite house every night. People probably say this because they think it's what we need to hear and coming from their own mouths, it probably does sound good, but to us it's just a shouted reminder that we are still childless. Instead you could say things like, "We are thinking and/or praying for you." Or you could ask if we have heard anything. The answer is usually no, but it lets us feel acknowledged. Even though we are only a family of two, we are still important.

We are both very passionate about adoption, and we both love to talk about adoption. Feel free to ask us any questions. We want to educate the world about adoption. It's not some scary thing that should be kept a secret. It should be celebrated.

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