Tuesday, May 18, 2010

And then there were two

We are down to two adoption classes left- the first, of which, is tonight. I believe tonight's topic is the Covenant Agreement. This is where we will learn the most about what true open adoption is really all about. Throughout our sessions, we have touched on the topic so I am looking forward to learning more about it this evening.

In the beginning, the thought of going through an open adoption aka covenant agreement really petrified us. The more we learn about it, the more comfortable we are getting with the arrangement. We watched a very informative video presentation last week.  While I do not remember the name of it,  I rememember it was about three birthmothers who shared their stories.  They explained through tears just how difficult it was for them to place their children for adoption; but that they were able to find peace and comfort knowing that the adoption did not mean they would never see their children again. 

I was touched in two ways: first, I have found that I can relate to these birthmoms in a very unique way. One mom said that it was so painful leaving the hospital in the wheelchair with no baby in her arms to take home.  As soon as I heard that, I really had to fight the tears because it hit me that I can soooo relate to this woman! I KNOW that pain- all too well. Leaving the hospital without Grant nearly did me in.  It is the most painful thing a person can experience- it brings panic, anxiety, and the feeling of being sick to your stomach. 
Second,  the fact that most of these moms want to stay in contact with the adoptive family.  I think many people think that birthparents place their babies for adoption because they are deadbeat losers. They feel that these parents are abandoning their children- when this is usually not the case at all.  The ladies in this video were in tears- you could tell they loved their babies very much.  This was not a decision based upon not wanting the child; but by pure love and wanting what is best for their baby.  Some moms are so young and do not have the support of their parents which leaves them no choice but to place their baby for adoption- or worse they abort them.  Others are single parents with other children; having no financial means of taking care of an additional child.  And there are those single parents who have no support from the birthfather and they feel that giving their child a loving home with TWO parents is what is best for their baby.  No matter the reason, most birthparents truly love their babies and they go through so much loss and grief trying to do what is best for their child.  I have so  much more respect for these birthparents than I ever had before, now that I understand the many decisions that have to be made for the sake of the child.

Open adoption is very important for many reasons, and I will list two.  Every child deserves to know where he came from, and who he came from.  Growing up with this truth answered is very beneficial for the child's self worth,  heritage, and general well being.  It eliminates the many questions that would come up otherwise, as well as the need to go out and look for his birthparents when he is of age.
The adoptive family and the birth family also benefit from open adoption- it gives opportunity for the adoptive family to minister to the birthmom and/or birthfather in a HUGE way.  It also forges a lifelong relationship between both families which is beneficial to all involved; and the birthparent is able to see and know that the decision made was indeed the right one.

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