Addiction is a complicated disease that doesn’t discriminate based on race, class, education, or age. Before drug addiction plagued my family, it was something I didn’t quite understand. I knew alcohol and tobacco were addictive. I even had heard of addictive personality traits and addictions to activities like gambling or shopping. But the drug addiction of today is an epidemic that isn’t getting better. Depending on the substance a person is addicted to, detox can be dangerous, and treatment and recovery can be near-impossible. I recently lost my big brother to heroin addiction. It is through that loss, and helping another family member through the same addiction, that I have realized just how difficult it is to love a person suffering from addiction.
Maintaining a relationship with an addict is challenging and frustrating. Loving someone unconditionally does not mean you have to love their disease. It does not mean you have to condone their habit. It does not mean you have to pick up their messes. Here are some ways I have learned to focus on the relationship while also recognizing the addiction. If you are struggling to maintain a relationship with your child’s birth parent because they suffer from addiction, hopefully these tips will help you.
For the list of ways to support and understand addiction, please continue reading at adoption.com.
A lump. A giant, hard, non-moving lump. I stepped out of the shower and nervously called for my husband to come to the bathroom. He walked in and immediately said, “What’s wrong?” Apparently the lack of color in my face told the whole story.
I said, “Feel this. Is there something there? Tell me it’s all in my head.” His face soon matched mine and his response was, “Call your doctor; it’s not in your head.” A trip to the doctor confirmed the mass and got me sent in for an immediate mammogram and sonogram. At 35 years old, what was happening? The “C word” was running through my head….
To continue reading about my biggest fear as an adoptive parent, click here to visit adoption.com.
When I met my husband, I had previously been married and had one biological son from that marriage. I had my male son young, before I knew the extent of my own infertility. My pregnancy was plagued with many challenges, and delivery made it clear that it may be unsafe or maybe even impossible for me to have more children, male or female. I thought it was only fair to share that information with my future husband early in our courtship. He seemed okay with the news and was quick to say we could adopt one day if we got to that point in our relationship.
We were soon married and years went by and our desire to build a family grew. Our desire to have another child became stronger than I had ever imagined. I began to feel the pain of letting my husband down because I may not be able to give him a biological child. Although adoption was still very much on the table, the fear of all the unknowns, including the cost associated with it, prevented us from quickly moving forward. So we spent a few years trying to conceive. I had been diagnosed with several things that limited my chances to become pregnant, but we had a sliver of hope. Finally our doctor decided to test my husband as well. The testing concluded that he, too, was suffering from infertility. If he was ever deeply hurt by that news, it went quietly. He took the news in stride, and we focused solely on adoption.
Like my husband, many men suffer from infertility. In order for a male to do his part in baby-making, the production of sperm is necessary. The movement of the male sperm into the semen is essential. The quantity and quality of male sperm is important. Many things play a role in sperm production and movement. Is male infertility something that has brought you to adoption?
Here is a list of the top causes of male infertility: Click to read the rest of the story at adoption.com