(Saturday before Mother’s Day)

A Lifetime birthmother, adoptive mother, and adoptee

The landmark day you became parents… It’s pretty clear that the day of your adoption is not like any other day. It’s the day you became a mother, your husband became a father and your parents became grandparents. Your life is forever changed and no other event will ever encompass all you have gone through to get to this day.

There is someone else who is a very important person; someone who had deep feelings of loss and sadness on that day. That special person is your child’s birth mother. She has gone through a great ordeal to bring you this day. Without her, none of you would have come together.

All members of the adoption triad will remember this day vividly and with deep emotion.

Sadly, it is sometimes necessary to point out and remind adoptive parents, or parents-in-waiting that these children find their adoptive parents after a long and often difficult journey suffered by their birth mothers. We must never forget this very important woman who, by strength of character, or difficulty in circumstances, or both, opted to give the gift of a child to those who could not have one. For this reason alone they deserve respect, recognition, consideration, thoughtfulness and kindness, from those who benefit from their decision.

Birthmother and her daughter during an open adoption visit

Letters and pictures, at the very least, are not much to ask and often provide your birth mother with hope and encouragement about the decision she made. When she sees a happy and healthy picture of her birth child, she has confirmation that her decision was the right one. The occasional visit, if agreed upon and handled wisely, can help to balance out the lives of each person involved: the birth mother, the child and the adoptive family, by honoring the wishes of the person who gave them so very much.

Should you doubt these truths, seek out some stories on open adoption, speak to someone who is a birthparent, or ask your adoption professional for some references to reinforce your decision to choose open adoption. Then, honor your birth mother’s wishes, always.

You are your child’s parents, no doubt. But a birth mother never forgets the birth of her child. Even if the child is out of her sight, they will never be truly be gone from her memory. This woman was your child’s first mother and because of this, your child will always remain in her memory and in her heart.

Please, take the time to send pictures regularly or when requested. Whatever your agreement is with the birth mother, commit to it and follow through as promised. If you need any incentive, simply look into your child’s eyes and remember where it all began!

About the Author

Mardie Caldwell, C.O.A.P. is a Certified Open Adoption Practitioner, an award winning author of 2 adoption books AdoptingOnline.com and Adoption: Your Step-by-Step Guide. Mardie is also the talk show host of Let’s Talk Adoption.com with Mardie Caldwell and the founder of Lifetime Adoption in 1986. She travels and speaks nationwide on adoption topics, family topics, infertility and writing. She has been quoted in and consulted for Parenting and Adoption magazines and has appeared on CNN, CBS, ABC, BBC, NBC, and Fox. Featured in Parade Magazine, Caldwell is an adoptive mother living in Northern California.