Thursday, September 29, 2016


It's 2016.  Adoption has been portrayed in the media in several different positive lights in recent years, and adoption stories have become less taboo.  Everywhere you look you can see adoptive families, with their radiating smiles singing the praises of the "selfless woman who placed her child with us."

So why is it still so hard to "come out" as a birth mother sometimes?

I am pretty open about my birth mother status.  I tell everyone as we get to know each other, because it is a part of who I am.  However, it isn't something that I shout from a rooftop for every stranger to hear, mostly because of one experience, and one stereotype:

I placed my middle child.  I was a young, struggling, single Mom, and I was in no place to successfully parent two children at that time.  After my adoption decision, I went on to get married, buy a house, and have a planned pregnancy.

When my youngest was born, she wasn't in the greatest of health so she was sent to a larger hospital with a NICU.  Every family was assigned a social worker to help them with whatever was needed, and (apparently) the social worker does an in depth review of everyone's files before even meeting with you.  She asked me about my family, and when I responded that we had one older child, she pushed me, and pushed me, and pushed me some more.  When I told her of my middle child's adoption, she immediately (seriously, there was no hesitation) asked, "Was CPS involved?"

And that, everyone, is the problem.

In this modern society. there is still the long held stereotype that birth moms are somehow unfit.  That we are incapable, and that we are women who have not come to the decision of adoption because we wanted to, but because we were forced to, or else risked having our children placed in foster care.

I want to fix this, but I just don't know how.  I want to scream from a rooftop that, "I am here!  I'm not unfit!  I loved my child, and I wanted the best for them!  I was realistic about my situation and realized that I wasn't the best!  That's it!"  

But no matter how loud I scream, it seems like the long held idea that I am somehow irresponsible is louder.

I made a great choice when I chose adoption, but I feel like sometimes society is punishing me for doing what was best, and that's a real injustice that is done to birth moms every day.

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