Today, we wanted to switch things up and let you hear from one of our birth moms!
In this guest blog post, she gives advice on how she came to realize that adoption was going to be the best choice for her:
“The decision of whether to make an adoption plan or to parent is without a doubt the toughest decision I’ve ever made in my life. I went through many sleepless nights and lots of thinking before I was finally able to see that adoption was the best decision. Not just for myself, but for my baby too given my situation. If I were to give anyone thinking about adoption any advice, it would be this…
Take your time while you’re making this choice. If your due date is coming up real soon, you might feel like you have to decide ASAP. But actually, you don’t have to decide one way or the other by the time you deliver. You can choose adoption after your baby’s been born. So, don’t let the fact that your due date is soon approaching force you into making a quick decision.
Also, look for women who have been where you’re at, to hear how they made this decision. Maybe it’s a young mom juggling work and college and parenthood. Maybe it’s a woman who placed her baby for adoption. Ask both of them what’s worked and what hasn’t, and the positives and negatives about their choice. This can give you a glimpse into what your life could look like. What really helped me when I was thinking about adoption was to speak with one of Lifetime’s peer counselors. These are women who made an adoption plan for their baby or child, and now hope to help other women through this process. Talking with her was great…she knew what I was going through because she’d been there, too.
I love to make checklists and write things down. So I suggest that you write down a “parenting plan” and an “adoption plan.” For a parenting plan write down things like childcare, your finances, etc. For an adoption plan, write down who you want to be involved and the type of adoption you’d like. After you get all of it down on paper, you’ll be able to see what each plan looks like. For me, when I saw that parenting was going to be the wrong path, the right one became obvious.
Choosing between adoption and parenting definitely isn’t an easy decision. But it’s one that only you can make, based on your situation. Don’t let people rush you into a decision or pressure you into either choice. Try to give this decision-making process the attention and time it needs.”
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.