Ros and David Brawn made a decision when they got married - there would be no children. "We'd already had a baby in 1968 when we were 18. Because adoption was the norm for young unmarried mothers in those days, I had to give that baby away," says Ros. "It was a decision I would quickly come to regret every single day of my life and I felt very strongly that if our son was ever to come and look for me when he became an adult, it would be as if I'd be saying to him, 'You weren't convenient so we gave you away, but this child was convenient so we kept it.' "
Now 57, she and her husband are not sure it was the right path to have taken. "We've lacked the stability and focus I see in our friends who have children - and that's affected our marriage. I suppose you could say the marriage feels less grounded," says David.
He and Ros are one of many couples who gave up a baby for adoption in the 1950s, 60s or 70s and later went on to marry. Like most of these couples, not a day of their relationship has been unaffected by their loss. It is a very particular kind of loss. Unlike the death of a child, it cannot be grieved. Out there somewhere is your child speaking their first words, tying shoelaces for the first time, taking their first driving lessons, even having your first grandchild. And unlike people who lose a child through adoption but don't stay together, this is a loss that is more difficult to justify - to others, to yourselves and to your child. Even if you dare to hope for a reunion, will your offspring still want to know you once they learn that they could surely have been kept?
(profanity edited out)
I went to Planned Parenthood and a counselor talked with me. I told her what I wanted to do, and she told me that giving my baby up for adoption was a very difficult path. BAH! My life was a difficult path. I had an idea that being pregnant and giving birth was difficult, but giving up a baby that I didn't want or need? Not a big deal at all. I was doing GOOD! for other people! and it would all be roses and sunshine at the end.
I saw a counselor through this whole process. I knew her from previous ****** up **** in my life and trusted her completely. After it was all over she told me that her children were adopted, but she didn't want to sway my decision by telling me in the beginning. She didn't want me to make my choice to please her. I want to believe that as an adoptive mother she didn't know the other side of adoption. She did quote me statistics about first mothers getting pregnant again after the first year or two to replace the baby that they lost. I didn't understand it at the time. My logical brain thought that you gave your baby up and walked away. End of story, right?
I picked adoptive parents early and bonded with them right away. I began to think of my son as theirs, a package that I was simply holding onto until it was time for them to take it. It wasn't my baby, it was theirs. The pregnancy was easy, I was twenty years old and everything was going to be fine. I was doing the right thing for everyone.
Toward the end of my pregnancy things got a little weird in my head. I bonded with my son, something that I did not expect to do at all. I struggled through more than 24 hours of labor and his adoptive mother was right there at my side when he was born. I spent the day with him in the hospital, holding him and sharing him with friends that visited. My counselor came to check on me, to see how I was doing and to see my son. Finally, I gave him to his new parents and left the hospital.
My friends took turns staying the with me night and day. As long as there was someone there I mostly kept it together. I'm not good at falling apart in front of people. Growing up I learned that it was more painful to cry in front of someone that didn't give a # than to cry alone. Eventually I was left alone to feel what I had bottled up inside, and the pain was beyond belief.
Recently a friend that is going through a divorce remarked that she did not know how I had gone through two divorces. I told her that divorce was not even close to the worst pain I had gone through in my life. My life has not been easy and I have been through a ****** of trauma, but nothing has even come close to the horror of losing my son.
Are birth mothers who place children for adoption satisfied with their decision?
A more realistic objection was expressed in comments such as these:
My birthson is 18, 4-1-00 and not a day goes by that I haven't regretted giving him up. I have mourned his loss EVERY year of his life. Christmas and his birthday are horrible time's of the year for me to get through ... at time's to the point of being suicidal. ... Maybe you could ask the other two [children] who HATE the adopted brother because he got more of my concern and attention then they did while they were growing up ... because I was so consumed by his loss!
I realize that your main motivation here is to promote adoption but don't deceive your self the way you are trying to deceive these potential birthmother's, You are blatantly LYING to them when you say they will get over this by their child's second birthday. There is a good chance that even with the best counseling, if they are coerced at all, they will never get over the loss of their child.
I take offense to the statement: "The research confirms what anecdotal reports have long held: it is a myth that women who place their children for adoption "never get over it."
HOW DARE YOU???????????? I did my best to destroy my life because I gave my twin sons up for adoption. I was finally blessed with another child 12 years later. I gave my children up because I was severely abused as a child and I knew in my heart that there was a chance that I might hurt them if I was angry. With a lot of counceling, love of the Lord AND the love of my child, my anger is gone. I am an excellent mother to my son.
You are WRONG, WRONG, WRONG about the "research" saying birthmothers eventually "get over" relinquishing their child for adoption!!!!!! I'm a birthmother who relinquished her only child in 1966. I am in close contact with other birthmothers from all time periods. WE NEVER GET OVER IT!!! I did not heal and find peace until I was reunited with my son two years ago. Now, let me get this straight: if we abort our child, we are evil. Yet if we "give up" our child to strangers who you deem to be more fit as parents, then we are "good." So you consider it "good" to rip a child from his/her natural mother's arms and hand the child to "more fit" individuals, thereby creating a life-long pain and trauma to the birthmother. You really think this is good? If so, it is YOU who are SICK!
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, in 2005 45.8 million Americans do not have health insurance. If this figure includes you, you can anticipate an average hospital bill of $5,000-$10,000 for a vaginal delivery. Add at least $2,000 if you need a c-section. These figures do not include the medical costs associated with nine months of prenatal visits, ultrasound costs and other lab costs. If your baby is born premature or with health problems, neonatal costs can range from a few thousand for a short stay to more than $200,000 if you baby is born more than 15 weeks early.
Even those parents with health insurance can expect to pay coinsurance and deductibles related to pregnancy and childbirth.
I beleive that we should concentrate on helping those that do want to raise their wanted but untimely pregnancies to term. I also believe that we should concentrate on equipping women to prevent themselves from getting pregnant in the first place. This means personal responsibility first and foremost, and contraceptive availibility for those who do choose to have sex.
Originally posted by Incarnated
Pregnancy to term and birthing FOREVER changes the woman's phyiscal form and make-up. Like a virginity twice lost, the woman is never the same again. It must therefore remain ever the choice of the woman if she should want to be PUT THROUGH the phyisical changes that are associated with giving birth.
Originally posted by Good Wolf
reply to post by asmeone2
look at it logically and think that abortion is unwarranted when first of all; unplanned pregnancy should be avoidable period. When that fails, a life is created that shouldn't need to be destroyed considering every life has the potential of greatness. With an abortion system in place, there seems no just reason that a child should be aborted.
I'm very conflicted on this subject. I know abortion is wrong on every level, but to take away the choice (however wrong it may be) seems wrong, too.
I think abortion should not happen because parents should understand it's wrong, not because it is law.
Originally posted by Good Wolf
reply to post by asmeone2
It's a moral dilemma. The only logical escape is to focus on prevention.
Originally posted by ThePiemaker
Sometimes aborting a child might be a move made with love. That represents a flawed perception to me, but sometimes situations in this life are just too messed up. No way in hell am I or anyone else should be judging any rape victim for getting an abortion. This world's just way too cruel and situations like that don't have a right or wrong solution to them.