Luckily adoption scams are rare, but that doesn’t mean they don’t happen. With the Internet, it seems that adoption scams are easier to pull off, making them more and more common. While you shouldn’t let the fear of a scam stop you from proceeding in your adoption journey, you should be aware of, and on the lookout for, a few key indicators.
This time of year always gets to me a little more than other times. The daughter we thought would be ours is turning two. When we officially started our adoption journey, we met a young lady who was very early in her pregnancy. We chatted a little on Facebook, as she found me through our adoption page. Since we were working with an agency in our state and she was in another state, I honestly never thought anything would come of our conversations in the form of an adoption match being made; we just talked about her situation. After talking awhile, she expressed her wish that we could be the parents of her unborn child. We began educating ourselves on the possibilities and what we would need to do since our agency only worked with people in our state. We soon drove to meet her and her boyfriend and immediately hit it off with them. We got along great and had so many similar interests!
It is a difficult journey when you are faced with a match that falls through, but time does heal and now I look back and know we are all exactly where we should be. To read more about the way I feel about our failed match and what lead us to adopting our son, Ezra, click here to read the rest of the article on adoption.com.
Protecting our children from unnecessary confusion by setting boundaries with birth parents.
Open adoptions can be full of complex emotions. I have heard of many of different types of open adoption relationships. Some are smooth sailing while many have bumps in the road. “Boundaries” is a familiar topic when adoptive parents get together and discuss issues that arise in their relationship with their child’s first family. Most of us adoptive parents don’t like to set rules because we feel so honored to have this child entrusted to us. But when you look at boundaries as rule setting, you can set yourself up for failure. Instead, boundaries should be viewed as a method for maintaining a healthy relationship. Just as my family knows not to call too early in the morning or too late at night unless it’s an emergency, birth parents should know the limits of what we strive for to maintain normalcy. Setting the boundaries with the people in our lives means we can live comfortably, avoid unnecessary surprises, and not be annoyed because we didn’t let people know how we’d like our family to work.
Navigating an open adoption and the surprising emotions that come along with it mean that sometimes we say things before thinking. Communicating with the child as well as with each other is so important. To find out some tips on how to best communicate with your child placed for adoption, follow this link to adoption.com for more. You will find tips with communicating with the child, but that when in doubt having a conversation with the adoptive parents is always a good idea too. Together you can make sure the child’s best interests are always put first.
The words people use aren’t always appropriate, but it doesn’t make them bad.
“Where is her real mom?” or “Why did his real mom give him up?” Sometimes the things people say to us make us cringe. We get defensive and sometimes fire back the answer with the intent to offend or belittle the person asking. We react because it causes us pain. It attacks that soft spot of infertility that not having biological children left many of us with. It may reopen a wound we thought had closed. We fear it may confuse our child. We worry about how the words of others will affect the emotions of our little ones. Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me. While that little rhyme might not always be true, we do have power to decide what we allow to hurt us.
One thing I have learned, and maybe it’s thanks to many friends in the adoption groups I am involved in, is that I don’t have to take everything personally. To read more about why I don’t think words are always meant or used with ill intentions? Follow this link to adoption.com to understand why I personally have used the word “real” many times in talking about biological family members.
As adoptive parents, when we enter our journey, we have the end goal in mind of becoming parents. When children are adopted at birth or a very young age, we may not even consider that being adopted could one day cause them pain. The voices of adults who were adopted help me prepare myself for how to help my son grow stronger and hopefully cope with any pain he feels. I encourage adoptive parents to keep learning. To keep listening. To keep loving.
It was an unusually warm January day in 2013. The expectant mother and I had grown quite close in the short time we had known each other. She had a bad case of bronchitis. As a result, she was not getting much sleep and growing dehydrated. Her amniotic fluid was decreasing, so we were going to the hospital every few days for a non-stress test and fluid check. We had our overnight bags packed, anticipating that one of these visits would result in the big day coming a few weeks early. That day was The Day. We called our spouses so they could meet us there. Things were about to get moving. Good thing she and I grabbed lunch on our way!
“Gotcha Day” can come with many emotions for people on all sides of the triad. From the term “gotcha” symbolizing an object to be gotten or the way you say “gotcha” when you scare or trick someone, to just not wanting to celebrate something that could have been emotionally devastating for others in the triad. Click here to see why our family doesn’t celebrate Gotcha Day on adoption.com.
A question I often get asked or see online is: “How do I write a Dear Birth Mother Letter?” The simple answer is that everyone is different. There is no way of saying your letter is the perfect letter to be chosen by every expectant parent that reads it. Your letter, however, may be the perfect letter for that specific expectant parent that is looking for all the qualities YOU have. When this question gets asked on adoption forums, the language or term “Birth Mother” is usually the first to get addressed. Adoption language is important and raises the hairs of many people when the “wrong” terminology is used. Below you will find out why the use of “Birth Mother” is not preferred as well as many other helpful things that will guide you in writing your introduction letter.