As Mother’s Day draws nearer, I find myself getting unexpectedly weepy.
First off, now I’m a mom. A role I wasn’t sure I was ever going to have, certainly one I came to later in life. It’s all now really sinking in.
I’m someone’s mom.
Here’s the part where my experience is different from other mothers and where some deep sadness fills my heart.
In addition to being over the moon about our baby, I can’t help but think about Ruby’s birth mom. And how her loss has been the biggest gift we’ve ever received.
Our precious girl.
Talk about a double-edged sword. Someone else’s loss being your gain? Let’s not even talk about what the kids have lost. Totally does my head in.
A number of people have written so eloquently about what adoption has taught them , about how the adoptive parents (NOT the children) are the lucky ones and honoring their son’s birth mother, that I ask you grab your favorite beverage and read their posts. All these posts brought me to tears and made me want to add my thoughts about adoption and birth mothers which at this point are not very eloquent.
I do have to say that not all of our experiences are the same, however I feel a deep kinship with other adoptive parents. I wanted to highlight some of the ways adoption is heartbreakingly beautiful, with an emphasis on heartbreaking.
Since I’m having some trouble putting together my thoughts on adoption and birth mothers in an eloquent way, I’ll just list them in no particular order. I bring these topics up now because I’ve been an adoptive mama for a while now and believe it or not these have come up. In the spirit of transparency on the internet, many brave bloggers are sharing what they are afraid of.
I do fear people are going to take offense to what I’m about to say. Some want to tell me our experience as mothers is exactly the same and while there are many commonalities, there are a few huge differences. Some will find out they’ve accidentally stepped on toes because they’ve been curious. Some will find my thoughts presumptuous. So be it.
I’m filing this post under: Things I’m Afraid To Tell You.
While I do not know my daughter’s birth mother, we are connected and I am forever in her debt. Ruby is a gift. She’s changed me in totally wonderfully unexpected ways.
Sometimes I find myself sobbing because I missed the first nine months with Ruby. She was so well cared for which is a relief, however I ache for that lost time.
Please don’t ask to know the details of a birth mother’s circumstances – it isn’t your business. I am nosy by nature, so I get it. But really, not your (or my) business. It is an awkward moment for everyone involved. That story truly does belong to the adoptive child and when they are old enough may or may not wish to share those intimate details of their past with you.
I know I’ve already over-shared some of Ruby’s history with people because I have been caught off guard. I feel awful about this because it’s not my story to tell. If I’ve shared anything about this history, please do not share with anyone. If I haven’t, please don’t ask.
Please don’t make assumptions about birth mothers. There is no typical story. There is no archetype. They are women just like us, making difficult choices. And for god’s sake, please don’t make comments about how “some” people are “breeding” and are “crackheads” who just irresponsibly give birth multiple times.
Really? sounds like right-wing anti-woman propaganda from the 80s.
Just stop it.
For all we know, the woman standing next to us in line at the grocery store has an adoption story. For some, it is a secret. I imagine, a painful one. Even without your judgement.
Please don’t judge birth mothers. They may or may not have different life styles than us. Comments about how you could never give up a child aren’t helpful either. Under certain circumstances, we’d all make tough choices to hopefully better the life of our child.
Please don’t say adoptive parents are lucky or saintly for adopting a child – we really are the lucky ones. We are the ones gaining a child to love.
Please don’t give parenting advice until you are also parenting an adoptive child – some things are just different when you are starting your life from a loss. Also, we lean toward Attachment Parenting and would probably be parenting this way even with a biological child.
What are you afraid to tell people? Please share in the comments or write a post of your own and link back.
Please know that comment kindness is greatly appreciated.
Thanks to EZ at Creature Comforts for the challenge. And Jess for getting it all started.