If I place this child for adoption, will he or she resent me for it?
This was one of my many fears about adoption. I was afraid that he would feel as though he had been abandoned, unwanted, or unloved by me. Luckily, open adoption has now resolved this concern. Currently in the U.S. only 5% of infant adoptions take place without any continuing contact between the birth family and adoptive family. A birth mother is able to express to the child that they came FROM love to love. That it was concern for them and not self interest which motivated the choice. Even in most reunifications (the opening of a closed adoption, usually when the child is an adult) that I’ve been aware of, the child’s first priority is to express gratitude for the life and family that their birth parent(s) gave them. In my first conversation with the young man I’d placed 17 years previous, he gave me a gift he doesn’t even understand as he used the word “generous” to describe the choice I’d made! What joy and relief that gave me! I know that as a child I resented my parents for decisions which i now recognize were in my best interest. On the rare occasion an adopted child would feel this way, time and perspective tend to take care of these things.
I don’t have people in my life who are in support of making an adoption plan. How can I find the support I need?
It is obviously ideal if your friend’s and family understand your decision and support you. Though there are no guarantees, family and friends who originally opposed adoption often do come to a change of heart once they see the results. Luckily, you have come into the adoption world at a time when there is SO much community! It has benefited me tremendously to have peers and mentors in adoption, other birthmoms who can say “here’s what worked” or “I wish I would have known…”. We are able to validate one another’s experience and the emotions that we encounter. Ultimately however, the decision is yours and no one else’s. It is essential that YOU have peace and confidence about your choice. It takes a whole lot of inner strength to do what you know to be right even when it’s lonely.