10 Fears Birth Mothers Might Have about Open Adoption
By Carl Roth
Your mind can often be your own worst enemy as a birth mother weighing unplanned pregnancy options. When looking through adoption agencies in Texas to partner with, some aspects of a potential adoption plan come to the forefront. Open adoption is an avenue that allows for an exchange of contact information between the birth mother and adoptive family. Beginning the adoption process may have you wondering, “Is open adoption for my baby appropriate?” This path can instill uncertainty and anxiety in many birth mothers, and we at Adoption Choices of Texas want to help.
We understand the adoption process in Texas front to back, so there’s no unplanned pregnancy question that we can’t answer. All the support you need to feel comfortable giving up your baby can be found here at Adoption Choices of Texas. Now let’s address and explain some common open adoption concerns so you may decide whether it’s right for you and your child.
Fear #1 Your child grows to resent you
Guessing how your child will feel about you as they grow up is like trying to anticipate the weather forecast ten years in advance. Birth mothers can catastrophize in this regard, afraid their child will hold a grudge against them. However, with a loving family taking care of their every need, your child has no reason to harbor resentment. Open adoption even allows you to send your child gifts to show that they remain in your thoughts. Adoptive child/birth mother relationships may not be akin to most parent/child connections, but love shines through.
Fear #2 Becoming too attached to your child post-adoption
You will never stop caring about your child, whether you opt for an open or closed adoption. Even birth mothers who strongly wish they could forget will find themselves thinking about the well-being of their adopted baby. Attachment to your child is not a problem; a closed adoption wouldn’t solve that even if it was. Closed adoption birth mothers sometimes experience greater longing because they can’t track their child’s growth under a stable roof. If seeing your baby grow and thrive in a loving home will comfort your maternal desires, open adoption could be for you.
Fear #3 Reluctantly assuming some parenting responsibilities
From a legal standpoint, open adoption is no grounds for co-parenting agreements. Your child becomes the adoptive family’s responsibility, and attempts to manipulate you into caretaking are breaches of their custodial contract. You won’t need to worry about such occurrences; adoptive parents understand and accept the commitment of full guardianship. Housing, feeding, and caring for your child is their sole responsibility, so you won’t be forced to babysit anytime.
Fear #4 Embarrassment whenever you reconnect with an adoptive family
Birth mothers can be as self-critical as anyone, and it’s normal to fear negative judgment in your situation. You may be convinced that your recurring presence in an open adoption agreement is looked down upon by those involved. Personal sensitivity runs high in these circumstances, which is why realizing the admirability of your effort is crucial. As homemakers themselves, adoptive families respect birth mothers’ loving intentions and do not see them as lesser for their decisions. If you choose to be a consistent presence, it only shows the quality of your character to the adoptive family.
Fear #5 Causing familial identity crisis for your child
Whether it’s open or closed, adoption will inevitably become part of your child’s personal identity. Depending on the personality they develop, this could mean any number of things for what they choose to make of it. The fear of confusing an adoptive child with dual familial identities is understandable but largely manageable. Your honest answer can uncloud much inner conflict if your child ever asks why you placed them for adoption. Knowing that they have two loving mothers shows them how cherished they are, and that’s nothing to be confused about. A child’s greatest need is love, and an open adoption ensures that yours will have no shortage of it.
Fear #6 Adoptive parents will see you as a nuisance
Most find that adoptive parents are far more generous than expected. Their gratitude to you for providing them with your child to raise is never forgotten. More than simply an open adoption obligation, adoptive parents sometimes send sentimental keepsakes like the child’s artwork or photos. Choosing open adoption signals a personal stake in your child’s progress, something adoptive parents will not roll their eyes at.
Fear #7 Feeling guilty for not having raised your child
If you’re currently facing an unplanned pregnancy, this particular feeling is probably one you’ve thought about extensively. The difficulty in coming to grips with not raising your child is the time it often takes to fully heal. Closed adoption may seem an attractive option to those wanting to avoid exacerbating guilt from giving up your child. While this holds for some birth mothers, others find that no contact with their child only worsens their emotional turmoil. In addition, not knowing for certain that their child’s adoptive family is properly caring can lead birth mothers to great distress.
What you don’t know can hurt you, so carefully examine your inner self to determine the most satisfying outcome. For example, seeing the love and care the adoptive family provides often helps alleviate feelings of guilt involved in open adoption.
Fear #8 There’s no option to “close the adoption” later on
Problems between birth mothers and adoptive parents are exceedingly rare, so the need for such measures is equally uncommon. While there isn’t typically a way to completely “close” an open adoption contract, measures can be taken to inhibit contact. Problematic open adoption relationships can be distanced in a civil manner for the worst-case scenarios. In addition, adoptive parents are screened extensively. Therefore, you can be confident that open adoption relationships will remain healthy for all involved.
Fear #9 Contact with a child could serve as a reminder of past troubles
Arriving at your adoption decision isn’t an easy task, and your present circumstances likely have a hand in your determination. Non-ideal contexts often surround expectant mothers considering adoption, and these tough times are personally burdensome to work through. Wanting to leave reminders of past tragedies behind motivates some birth mothers to select closed adoption. Their fear is understandable, but so is the belief that something beautiful can come out of unfortunate situations. Having contact with your child through open adoption can remind you of this healing perspective. Despite whatever hardship a birth mother faced, the outcome is the wonderful blessing of a newly created family.
Fear #10 Judgement from future family for staying connected to your child
This concern is often present among younger women facing unplanned pregnancies while holding future familial ambitions. What might your future spouse or children think about your continued contact with the child you placed up for adoption? The significance of your adoption decision would be apparent to them, and your open adoption activity only further proves this. Nobody in your future family could devalue your lasting connectedness with your child and the strength it demonstrates. If and when you feel ready to start a family, devotion to your adoption-raised child will show loved ones your preparedness.
Who can I talk to about proceeding with adoption in Texas?
No matter your feelings about open adoption, there’s a plan to be found for you with Adoption Choices of Texas. Your every need along the path to a private Texas adoption is only a click away. Of course, fear and uncertainty are present in every adoption decision, but our informative and supportive specialists serve to defeat all doubt.
As an expectant woman or birth parent, to learn more about adoption, contact Adoption Choices of Texas. You can call us at 888-307-3340, text us at 888-307-3340, or email us here. If you are hoping to adopt, please visit us here. We look forward to helping you through your adoption journey!
Adoption Choices of Texas es la única agencia de adopción con servicios completamente en esapñol en el estado de Texas. Si está embarazada y necesita ayuda, llámenos o envíenos un mensaje de texto y uno de nuestros especialistas en adopción podrá ayudarlo. Podemos ayudarte con la adopcion de niños. Para obtener más información sobre el proceso de adopción como una mujer embarazada o una madre biológica, comuníquese con Adoption Choices of Texas. Para español llamar: 888-510-5029
We look forward to helping you through your adoption journey!