If you’re pregnant, you might wonder if you can keep adoption a secret. Should you? You may feel unsure if telling anybody about your pregnancy is a good idea, especially if you are thinking about adoption.
So much is going through your head right now. Will people understand your choice? Will they judge you? Will they be angry? Nobody can predict the answers to these questions. Even people who love you may act in ways you do not expect.
But should this keep you from telling anybody about your adoption plan? Is it possible to make a secret adoption plan?
Why You Should Tell Somebody
It is not a good idea to hide your pregnancy and adoption from everybody in your life. Many people are tempted to keep the pregnancy a secret from family members, friends, classmates, and even the father of their baby. Nobody wants to have these difficult conversations.
You might feel some shame for experiencing an unplanned pregnancy. Even adults experience pregnancies that weren’t planned. It just happens, and you should not feel ashamed. You also should not feel ashamed for considering adoption, which is a compassionate and loving choice for the baby growing inside you.
You may also worry that the people you talk to about adoption will try to pressure you to parent your baby. It is true that many people will not understand your choice. It takes time to become confident that you are making the right decision, and it may be stressful to justify yourself in the meantime.
No matter how you feel about telling people about your adoption plan, you are completely normal. Telling people about your pregnancy and plan for the future can be scary and even painful. You are on uncharted territory, and that is not always comfortable.
The truth is that it is often easier to tell people about your pregnancy and adoption now rather than after you leave the hospital. After adoption, you might be emotionally exhausted and dealing with a mix of emotions. You don’t want to have to tell people about the adoption on top of everything else you are feeling later.
Many people associate adoption with teens, but adults in their 20s, 30s, and even 40s place children for adoption as well. Of course, many adults also want to keep adoption under wraps. For example, you might already have children. Should you tell your children you are considering adoption for the child you are pregnant with? Should you even tell them about the pregnancy?
In many cases, it simply is not possible to hide a pregnancy from children. Plus, you might realize that somebody in the future might tell your child about the baby you placed for adoption. It is much better for your child to learn the truth from you. Adoption does not have to be a dirty little secret. In fact, adoption is a loving choice and a gift. When you frame adoption this way, children may understand your thoughts and emotions.
What To Do Before You Tell People
One of the first things you should do is build a support network. The people in your support network are the ones who are going to defend you. These people may include adoption professionals, best friends, and close family members. Some people even have an attorney to provide support. You can rely on these people no matter what happens. They have your back.
When Keeping Adoption a Secret Is a Good Thing
While it is not necessarily the best thing to keep your adoption plan a secret, you might find yourself in a situation where keeping it a secret is best.
For instance, you might realize that your boyfriend or the baby’s father is abusive. Unfortunately, hiding a pregnancy from the father of the baby can make adoption very difficult. Many states have provisions in place that protect you if you think the child’s birth father is a threat to you or your baby. If you are afraid of this person, you should speak with an attorney or adoption professional.
Unfortunately, many pregnant teenagers also deal with abusive parents and other family members. If you do not feel safe talking to your parents, you can meet with an adoption professional to learn more about the steps you can take to be safe.
Confidentiality is Available
When you consider adoption, you may not want your information to be available to just anybody. Lifetime offers complete confidentiality and privacy. We also offer resources that support you through your pregnancy and the adoption process.
Sharing the news about adoption is rarely easy. When you have a support system that includes friends, family members, and professionals, you do not have to deal with your decision alone.
If you’re struggling with the best way to reveal your adoption plan to others, we can help!
You can reach out to an adoption coordinator at any time by calling or texting Lifetime at 1-800-923-6784.
Mardie Caldwell, C.O.A.P., is nationally recognized as an expert on open adoption. A Certiﬁed Open Adoption Practitioner (C.O.A.P.), Caldwell is the founder of Lifetime Adoption Center, established in 1986. She has assisted in over 2,000 successful adoptions and was one of the ﬁrst adoption professionals on the Internet.
Caldwell’s life work is dedicated to educating and helping birth parents find the right adoptive parents for their child. She spreads the word about modern adoption through speaking appearances, webinars, online resources, and as a podcast show host.
She has written several award-winning books, including So I Was Thinking About Adoption, the first book of its kind. There are many reasons women choose adoption, and this short book is a comprehensive resource to make the best plan for you and your baby. Caldwell wrote So I Was Thinking About Adoption as a handy guide to the details of the adoption process.
Caldwell has made over 150 media appearances, including ABC News, CBS News, Larry King Live, CNN Headline News, NBC’s The Today Show, CNN’s The Campbell Brown Show, NBC News, KGO Newstalk Radio, CNN’s Black in America II, MSNBC, Fox, PBS, BBC, and Dr. Laura.