lest ye be judged...
Where am i going with this post?
Well, in a few directions but these ones specifically
The role of an adoption advocate( referred to as AA) is NOT to COAX people into wanting to adopt a baby or to convince women to place their child with others!
The Primary ROLE of an AA is : To impart one's love of adoption, the testimony of what adoption is to you, to educate, dispel adoption myths and unify others in this great miraculous process.
And even though we and others may be hoping to adopt- it is not really our duty to TELL others what they should do, or cast judgment upon someone b/c they choose to parent instead of place!
AP's should be very wise to not be pushy with their unwed pregnant associates. They need to understand that we all have our agency and opinions and they will all be very different.
And no potential birth mom should feel obligated or guilt tripped into placing their baby- if that is not where their heart is leading them to!
Here's a story about our first FP( failed placement)
Aria had just turned 18 months and we were contemplating putting our papers in after i got my first diagnosis of PCOS. We got excited about the idea and one day out of the blue my mom calls me and says" I have a friend who has a daughter who is thinking about adoption!" I said something about how cool adoption is , every who desires should adopt"
She said " Corrine- she is pregnant and would like to place her baby with you guys"
I thought she was joking and in an hour I was talking on the phone with this sweet lady! We will call her B.
B. told us the Birth father has 2 other kids with 2 other women and is kind of a stinker- doesn't pay child support, never showed up for custody hearings etc... She told me she wanted her baby to have a father. Her baby was to be half Phillipino and half white.
and honestly- that got us excited b/c Brandon served his mission in the phillipines and we've dreamed of adopting from that culture.
She told us it was a girl and we were ecstatic!!! We LOVE girls ( i'm sure we'd loved a boy to but, we've never had one)
She told us she was 6 months along and so much about her life and family.
A week later we took a big road trip up to my mom's place and met with B, her mom and dad over lunch- everyone seemed so happy about everything! B loved my girls and Brandon and his ability to speak Tagalog!
The next day, I went into town with B to her ultrasound and check up. It was so cool to see this tiny girl kicking around in B's belly. Part of me was so happy and part of me felt sad b/c of my recent diagnosis of PCOS. Later that day we ran around town and I had this feeling come over me. It was like someone was whispering in my ear: "She needs to know all her choices". The rest of the day i had that feeling and that night i called B up and told her that we were going to the Social Services Gov't offices the next day so, she could see all of her options. She said okay.
The next morning i called her and she told me that another couple in ID could PAY for everything if i couldn't do it. She said "If money is an issue than i will just call that couple!"
I didn't get angry but, i knew she was upset that i was taking her to get on medicaid!
I told her "money is not the problem for us- i need you to know all your options before you commit to us. It's only fair."
I picked her up and whisked her away to the medicaid office and then to a Social worker's office who explained what the gov't can do, what agencies can do for her if she chose to place and believe it or not the case worker was LDS, Someone i Knew and an Adoptive Mother!!!
She was the right person to talk to B. and I knew i did my Best at helping her see what ALL her choices were. I told her that no one should ever be pushed into adoption by anyone ( in this case it was her semi-racist father and lack of knowledge that led her to not know). I reassured her that whatever she chose- We'd be happy with. I wanted her to know that although we made this trip and rejoiced at this chance- she was not obligated to place with us- ever!
A week later we got the call- she was for Sure choosing to parent! Her dad would have to work through his issues and somehow, they were going to make it work. The whole Father issue wasn't why she was considering placing- it was mostly b/c she lacked funds to parent without some sort of help.
I wasn't mad , just kind of sad that a sweet child would be growing up fatherless. But, that was her choice and we supported her. I knew the afternoon after the ultrasound that this wasn't meant to be. My human & motherly instincts kicked in and i gave B. the BIG PICTURE on her choices.
It was difficult but, it was worth doing the right thing!
No one should ever be MAD that a person decides to parent. You can be sad( that's normal) but, being mad comes from a terrible place inside you. Anger and Hate do not come from The Holy Spirit or from God. We have been instructed to " Love one another". And if you do get angry feelings when you see a teen mom or unwed mom- you best check yourself! Figure out why and CHANGE that part of your heart! The Pure love of Christ can be in the place where that anger is.
No amount of grouchy finger pointing will get your baby to your family any faster! Nor will you be a good parent b/c of it! Learning to love others, regardless of their life choices- is one of the hardest things for most people.. Why do you think it was Written in Stone? So we don't forget this is what we are instructed to do!!!
Here's what the LDS handbook says ( paraphrased after the part about adoption and a child being sealed to a mother and father)
Birth parents who do not marry should not be counseled to keep the infant as a condition of repentance or out of a sense of obligation to care for one’s own. Additionally, grandparents and other family members should not feel obligated to facilitate parenting by unmarried parents, since the child would not generally be able to receive the blessings of the sealing covenant. Further, unmarried parents are generally unable to provide the stability and the nurturing environment that a married mother and father can provide. Unmarried parents should give prayerful consideration to the best interests of the child and the blessings that can come to an infant who is sealed to a mother and father (see First Presidency letter, June 26, 2002).
If an expectant parent decides to parent the child, Church leaders and other members should treat the parent and child with care and compassion and seek to strengthen parenting skills. LDS Family Services may help in these circumstances. Leaders encourage the parent to have the child given a name and a blessing (see 20.2).
So, AP's get off your high horses and stop casting stones upon those who choose to parent! Being a Birth parent or a Single parent are both extremely hard! Either way- a person's decision to parent or to place- there will come some judgment for outsiders- but, it shouldn't ever come from you! And the sooner your heart is filled with love the sooner your life will be filled it too!
Birth parents are amazing b/c they think about the long term repercussions on a child when sometimes others are blinded by the ideal of what being a parent will be like. Either way- we are NOT in their shoes and never will be!
On that note- I want to thank all PARENTS who choose not to abort their precious children. Thanks for giving them life!
**** pic: of my under construction onesies . I had LOTS of left over onesies from my store so, i added some sweet adoption saying on them. More pics to come of those! 2nd pic- a baby who was recently placed by an awesome birth momma!****