Why Adoption Feels Harder than Abortion

I’ve held naive assumptions about both abortion and adoption in the past, and I’ve asked naive questions. One of those questions brings the two together as I’ve had trouble understanding why women who are unexpectedly pregnant chose abortion instead of adoption, especially when many of those women believe abortion is ethically wrong. At the Q conference in DC a few weeks back, Angie Weszely, President of Caris, explained it to me. For a woman facing an unplanned pregnancy, pregnancy involves what feels like a total loss of self. (Even for women like me who have only experienced planned pregnancies, pregnancy involves a bewildering sense of self loss.)

Carrying the baby to term involves losing the self but saving the baby. Abortion staves off the loss of self, but it includes the loss of the baby. Adoption, Weszely explained, is in some ways the hardest choice because it feels like both the loss of self in seeing the pregnancy through and then the loss of the baby.

I’m grateful for the wisdom and grace of women, like Angie Weszely, who are offering supportive care for women facing such difficult choices.

For further posts on abortion, visit Karen Swallow Prior and Ellen Painter Dollar’s exchange from last fall: What Do You Think About Abortion?

For further posts on adoption, read reflections from Margot Starbuck, Ellen Painter Dollar, Jennifer Grant, and Sara Hagerty from last summer: What’s Happening on Thin Places this Week

About Amy Julia Becker

Amy Julia Becker writes and speaks about family, faith, disability, and culture. A graduate of Princeton University and Princeton Theological Seminary, she is the author of Penelope Ayers: A Memoir, A Good and Perfect Gift (Bethany House), and Why I Am Both Spiritual and Religious (Patheos Press).


  1. Scott__F says:

    As an adoptive parent, I want to thank you for sharing this insight into the hearts and lives of all the brave birthmothers. Also for giving nuance to topic that is so often painted as back-and-white

    • I second Scott’s comment. We owe so much gratitude to the birthmothers of our children. They have a bravery and sense of selflessness I can only imagine. It is a complicated issue for all parties involved, but when there is an opportunity for the expression of this gratitude as well as time to express the loss, healing can happen.

      • ValencySpeaks says:

        “Healing” from adoption loss is a construct of a loss/grief model that **does not** fit the ambiguous loss and disenfranchised grief adoption brings into a woman’s life. With adoption loss, there is no closure, no “moving on.” There is only learning to live with the loss, and learning to live well in spite of the loss. (Please read Pauline Boss’s excellent work on this type of loss for further information).

        As I told Scott, my decision to relinquish my child had nothing to do with bravery. True bravery would have been to tell those pushing adoption in my life to jump off a cliff, and then to courageously continue to parent my darling child. True bravery would have been to stand up to my church, my society, and my culture and declare to all of them. “I AM ENOUGH.” That would have been bravery. What I did was an act of capitulation and desperation.

        • “True bravery would have been to tell those pushing adoption in my life to jump off a cliff, and then to courageously continue to parent my darling child. True bravery would have been to stand up to my church, my society, and my culture and declare to all of them. “I AM ENOUGH.” That would have been bravery. What I did was an act of capitulation and desperation.”

          AMEN! Well said, I feel the same way. Unfortunately we were used and tossed aside. In my case I was too scared, inexperienced and young. The industry uses that against young expecting moms. I felt guilty for a lot of years until I realized I didn’t stand a chance against the manipulation and coercion.

    • I would say that in most cases losing a child to adoption is an act of desperation not bravery. I certainly do not want to be thanked. My child was not a gift I gave. We as a society would do much more for children if we supported a mother and enabled her to raise her own child rather than give that child to strangers while an agency makes tens of thousands of dollars. As long as money and children change hands in a transaction, as long as there is a profit motive in adoption there will always be agencies working hard to coerce pregnant women into surrendering.

      • Monetary support, parenting lessons, support groups, and day care can help, but parental maturity and priorities are another thing.

    • Barbara Thavis says:

      They have a bravery and sense of selflessness????????????? No, they have been coerced to think that you, older, wiser, richer two parent family is superior to the MOTHER. It is almost always not the deficient mother that places her baby for adoption. It is the lovely mother that is wracked with uncertainty that she is enough. In truth, she is that child’s birthright. She is the voice the baby is straining to hear, the breast she is looking for to eat from, the heartbeat that she is waiting to be comforted by.
      Our country needs to change the laws surrounding adoption. It must become illegal for a prospective adoptive parent or their agent or representative to have any dealings with pregnant women until they are six weeks postpartum. Just as a doctor wouldn’t rip a fetus from her mother’s womb at 34 weeks, even though said child would survive, so too should the mother stay with the infant until it’s fragile nervous system can better take the shock of losing it’s mother.
      Don’t allow women to be bullied into surrendering their child because of a temporary lack of money or self esteem. Let women use those nine months to prepare for the babies arrival. Get social services involved when the family systems are not in place or are not supportive of the new family. And don’t forget that there is a father involved. If he is not supportive get the state to intervene taking money from his paycheck if necessary.
      If in the end, after caring for her child for six months, the mother doesn’t have an interest in parenting her child, adoptive parents can be found.

    • ValencySpeaks says:

      Brave? I was not brave, I was desperate for someone to offer me some support, and I am not even talking financial support, but emotional and spiritual support. Instead, I was met on every side by people who told me my child deserved “more” (implying more stuff, more money, more trips to Disneyland were better than what I had to offer), and that my love and my determination to excel in life wasn’t enough for her. For me and my child, adoption was a very permanent solution very temporary problems.

      Brave? No, Scott. Not brave at all, but broken and broken-hearted at the loss of my oldest child to the adoption machinery nearly twenty years ago.

      • MommaBeanBlessed says:

        I’m sorry for your loss – but the system is very different now. Why were you looking into adoption in the first place? I don’t think women should be coerced into adoption, but those who make an informed decision should not be judged or told how they were coerced or anything else. I freely chose adoption for two of my three children and it was the best decision ever. I did want more for my children at the time – I wanted them to have dedicated parents who wanted to be parents above all else, and that was not me at the time. If you wanted to be a parent more than anything else, then I am very sorry you were talked into adoption.

    • MommaBeanBlessed says:

      Thank you Scott. As a birthmother I accept your comment that we are brave. As an adoptee, I thank families like you who provide love and support for us. :-)

  2. This is an excellent post, AJ, and is so very helpful for my own mind and heart on these tender issues.

  3. I think it’s more than just loss of self. The tremendous difficulties, pain, risks and expenses of pregnancy — physical, emotional and financial — are often dismissed or completely overlooked in the adoption vs. abortion equation. To assume that a woman in an unexpected pregnancy can easily chose adoption assumes that the months of pregnancy itself are a negligible consideration — not just mentally and emotionally, but also physically and financially — and that the only real concern is caring for the baby *after* birth.

    And adoption certainly does this. It ensures that a child whose biological family is unable to care for it after birth is cared for by another family. In fact, it also ensures that the child’s biological family, who would find themselves beyond their ability to function with the addition of that child, is cared for.

    However, adoption does nothing to care for a woman that is unable to care for herself or her unborn child *before* birth. No one can ensure that a child is cared for in utero but that child’s biological mother. And while other people can offer support, no one else can assume the biological mother’s physical pain or the risks to her life, health and job that come with pregnancy and childbirth.

    If we wish to reduce abortion and increase adoption, we have to take the problems and risks of pregnancy itself seriously and care for and about, not just the child, but the mother before birth.

    • Amy Julia Becker says:

      Amy, thank you for adding an important layer to this conversation. One of the reasons I’m really interested in the work of Caris, the pregnancy support center I mentioned, is that they are trying to emphasize exactly what you write about–true care and support for the woman rather than simply thinking about the baby. So often the abortion debate seems to focus upon either woman or baby rather than holding the concerns for both in tension with one another.

    • ValencySpeaks says:

      “In fact, it also ensures that the child’s biological family…. is cared for.”

      Uh…not really. With womb-fresh infant adoption as practiced in the United States (please note, I am NOT referring to foster-adoption, but the voluntary termination of parental rights), the child’s biological family is usually discarded and pushed aside once the ink on the adoption decree is dry. Heck, sometimes adoptive parents don’t even wait that long before they start breaking their promises to the child’s biological family. “Cared for” implies relinquishing parents receive the necessary supports to manage the lifelong grief resulting from the ambiguous loss of their child. One need only take a quick survey of current adoption agency practices to see this is not the case.

      This truth is further compounded when a relinquishing mother goes on to have subsequent children. Those children **are** the biological family of the relinquished child, yet NO ONE aside from their mother usually cares a wit for their emotional or psychological health in regards to the fact they have lost a sibling. They are part of the unacknowledged collateral damage left behind in the wake of the “miracle and blessing” of womb-fresh infant adoption. Adoption does NOT ensure these members of the child’s biological family is cared for – in fact, it ignores and marginalizes their loss even more than their parents’ loss.

  4. Thank you for these insights, Amy Julia. I can’t say I know what it’s like to carry a child to term and then release the daughter or son for adoption. Shoot, I don’t even know what it’s like to be pregnant. But I have seen a number of women in my courtroom whose pregnancies are anything but easy or joyful, many of whom are also struggling with the choices they face.

    Looking at a woman in a jail jumpsuit who is eight months along and facing a lengthy prison sentence is heartbreaking. So is looking at the same woman who is instead facing release from custody with no support, no job, no medical care, no home, nothing. I can hardly bear to think about them even now as I write this, let alone sit on the bench and try to somehow come up with just and equitable rulings and orders that are allowed by law.


    P.S. Rachel Stone just posted a piece I did that also draws from my experience as a judge. I hope you get a chance to read it over Amy Julia, as I’d love to hear your thoughts and feedback on it: http://rachelmariestone.com/2012/05/16/a-judge-on-rushing-to-judgment/

  5. Adoption “IS” harder than abortion. Much, much, much harder! It doesn’t just “feel” harder.

    One is over before you feel quickening – life actually moving, kicking, inside you. The other involves the entire spectrum of physical, hormonal, and emotional preparation to nurture the child within you and then having it taken from you and you are left with empty rams and full aching breasts.

    Adoption involves a lifetime of wondering about a real live human being: how that child feels, does he or she hate me or understand that I did what I was told was best for him. Yes. a few who have abortions dwell on what the fetus might have grown to be, but with adoption there is no doubt or fantasy about the fact that you gave away a real live child of yours.

    Today there is allegedly open adoption. It is not without a new kind of pain – when it is fulfilled – as many promises of ongoing contact are not, and open adoption contracts for the most part are unenforceable. Those who do remain in touch have to see their child calling another Mommy and watch as someone raises their child in ways that might differ from what they’d prefer. For the child, he must somehow deal with seeing his mother as she goes on with school or marries and has other children she keeps and it is painful for him to understand why he was not kept.

    Physically, choosing to carry through a pregnancy for nine months and deliver a full term baby is riskier and involves far more courage to face people pregnant and explain your choices – which in some circles might be applauded and in other not at all. An abortion can be accomplished with NO ONE ever knowing – an important element. Terminating a pregnancy that results from a rape might be life saving – emotionally – for the mother who couldn’t bear to carry the child of a violent madman. It is also critically important for women in abusive relationships with men who might not agree to an adoption, or women whose parents might be opposed to allowing a grandchild be adopted out.

    Studies of women who have lost children to adoption confirm that it creates lifelong, irresolvable grief, anger, guilt and PTSD which is some cases increases over time. Women I have met who have experienced both an abortion and placing a child fro adoption have all said that the later is far, far worse emotionally. How could it not be?

    Simply ask any mother how she would cope with the loss of one of her children. Imagine one of your children being kidnapped. This is what you are asking of mothers. See also: The Universality of Grief of Mothers Who Lost Children to Adoption” at works.bepress.com/mirah_riben/10/

    What all of these discussions and your entire premise miss is the best choice: helping women with unexpected pregnancies be mothers of their children! Simply because a pregnancy is untimely is no reason to either abort or give the child to strangers. That is choosing between the devil and the deep blue sea. Women need support to parent safely. This can be provided though in-home care programs, or programs that foster mother and child together.

    *** Pro-lifers need to embrace the choice of Family Preservation and stop thinking of adoption as the only alternative. *** That thinking has been subliminally put into your thoughts by the very powerful adoption lobby because there is a great deal of money – billions of dollars – being made annually in transferring children via adoption.

    When you think WWJD – he would not encourage taking the babies of those in temporary crisis, or the poor, and giving them to strangers! Jesus helped the downtrodden, he did not want them exploited. Every biblical mention of adoption happens only to save the life of the child and in every case, the child adopted returns to his roots. The importance of genetic heritage is where the bible begins – with who begat who. And Jews are only Jews through their bloodline. Adoption severs those ties. Adopted people in all but two states in America have their birth certificates hidden from them for life. In a few states, now, they are returned them as adults, but with many caveats. This is unfair and puts adopted people in jeopardy of needing medical history and being unable to provide it.

    Adoption should not be promoted. promote instead Family Preservation. It’s what Jesus would have done!

    • I do not think heaping additional shame and fear upon women considering adoption will accomplish pro-life goals.

    • Abortion is much much much much much harder for the dead child you abort. It is a coward’s way out.

      • I just had my child. The most beautiful thing I have ever had to do was give him up for adoption. I still would never say abortion is a coward way out. People who have not gone through having a baby should first be quiet and keep their opinions to yourselves and stop judging basically should keep your mouths shut cause no one knows how people feel in that moment. Abortion is never easy physically, mentally, emotionally. Nor is adoption on the emotional and mental part. Abortion is never a good thing but for us to judge people this way is very rude. God should be the one to judge, not us.

  6. Adoption is not an alternative to abortion. Adoption is a multi-billion dollar a year business. Here is an interesting article.

  7. I disagree with the advice you were given entirely and think Amy MJ has it right.

    We have to investigate the biases of women in society here where women, more often so than men, are considered “moral” when the more they throw off any self-interest or preservation for others. The duty of a woman is to give, give, give and never care for her own welfare at all. There is a separate standard of morality for women in society. To say that a woman chooses abortion because she doesn’t want to “lose herself” as if it is a woman’s duty to “lose herself” and “choose adoption” speaks not only to this stereotype but to the false dichotomy of adoption vs. abortion.

    Besides asserting that women who choose abortion are more “selfish” (and therefore, less “feminine”) than others in nature, many people also conclude that women just don’t know adoption exists. This is another stereotype that women are incapable of making good decisions and being informed. Adoption is a multi-billion dollar per year industry that spends millions upon millions (the largest agency in the U.S. has award winning advertising campaigns spending 5 million annually to recruit expecting mothers) to advertise. Women more than know adoption is available to them. They’re not choosing it for a reason. We can either analyze them based on stereotypes about “self” or we can simply ask them.

    Abortion is the decision not to be pregnant. Adoption is the decision not to parent.

    Many women choose abortion because they no longer wish to be pregnant. They either can’t or do not want to, for whatever reason, go through all nine months of pregnancy and labor. Being pregnant includes physical, mental, emotional, and financial risks. A healthy fetus requires that the mother be alive and healthy. People treat women as though they can neglect their own needs and health entirely during a pregnancy and still carry it–as though that’s also a solution to abortion. It’s not only unacceptable to expect women to do this–it defies logic and medicine. Not every woman who is pregnant, especially unexpectedly, can safely carry a pregnancy. Adoption does absolutely nothing to address why many women have abortions.

    Adoption is a parenting decision not a reproductive one. Plain and simple, adoption does nothing to address the issues of pregnant women who no longer wish to be pregnant or can not physically endure a pregnancy.

    Not all mothers who surrender children to adoption even considered abortion; that is a stereotype.

    I have serious concern about this sort of bias in counselling, especially non-medical personnel explaining abortion.

    • I really appreciate your distinction that adoption be seen as a parenting choice while abortion is a pregnancy choice. You say that women do not suffer from a lack of information and decision-making skills, but are exercising them when choosing one or the other; I agree, women are not acting out of ignorance.

      I would like some insight though on another aspect of both pregnancy and parenting choice, and that is the decision not to have sex in the first place if one is not ready to be pregnant or be a parent. This is not a question for those who are pregnant through no fault of their own (as in rape or other tragic circumstances) but those who willingly and freely choose to engage in intercourse. Even if they use birth control that is almost entirely, but not always, effective, they are engaging in procreative activity to a degree. Is abortion to be seen as another birth control method for people in such a voluntary situation?

      It’s a conundrum I have wrestled with for years, and still do not have figured out to my own satisfaction. Perhaps it’s unsolvable since there are so many nuances and permutations to each individual pregnancy, so that each requires its own new analysis. Or perhaps there is an answer, but it will never be universally accepted. I tend to lean toward preserving life rather than end it as a general proposition, but I know there are others who do not have that predisposition.


      • Tim,

        Asking a man and a woman (it takes two to make a pregnancy) to both forgo sex assumes that sex is a cheap thrill each can easily dispense with, rather than an integral part of a relationship between two people.

        I have been unexpectedly pregnant and I have had an abortion. I was nearly 40, married and already a mother. My husband and I did not want, and could not handle, any more children or any more pregnancies. When I got pregnant, we were using birth control that is statistically as effective and reliable as sterilization.

        My husband and I continued to have sex, even though we did not want any more children, because: 1) We trusted our birth control. We knew that no birth control is 100% effective, but the chances were so slim that we didn’t believe it would happen, and 2) the great rewards in physical and emotional intimacy in our marriage seemed worth a small risk of pregnancy. Sex is a spiritual act for us that adds to our bond as a married couple, and neither my husband nor I wanted to live in a celibate marriage for all the years left before menopause.

        I don’t expect you (or anyone else) to agree with the decision to end that pregnancy, but perhaps my experience will help you understand why two people would voluntarily put themselves in a situation that could lead to an abortion…

        • M, thank you so much for a response to my question. I can see how people will respond as you lay out, based on the relationships they are in. And I completely agree that this is an issue that affects both men and women (and that’s why I used the word “people” in my question and not “women”).

          Thanks again,

        • Thank you!!!! Married couples should be having sex, which is very good for the prostate by the way.

        • How about restricting sex to outercourse and sex toys. If you avoid getting semen in or around the virgina, it reduces the chance of pregnancy drastically.

  8. I am a mother by adoption. I am passionately and firmly pro-choice. The infant adoption business in the US – and most international adoption as well – is not only corrupt but deeply and profoundly classist, racist and misogynist. A truly just and compassionate society does not force women to give up their children or end their pregnancies because they don’t have enough money to buy food, or they don’t have health insurance, or they can’t get time off from work.

    “Loss of self” is only one possible reason why carrying a baby to term and placing for adoption might be harder than abortion. And, in the end, it doesn’t matter what the reasons are. I trust women to make the best decisions for themselves, and agree with Declassified Adoptee that women don’t choose abortion out of a lack of information about options. They too often do place for adoption because they don’t believe they can parent successfully, and that’s much more tragic.

    Adoption, like abortion, should be safe, legal, and rare. Comprehensive health care for women, including access to birth control, would go a long way towards achieving both goals. Comprehensive support for women who want to parent would go the rest of the way – and yes, I do mean government programs that provide money, medical care, child care, food, shelter and education without demeaning, belittling or abusing the recipients of that support. And yes, that means wealthy women like me might end up without children – and that’s a outcome I am willing to accept, because it’s not about me.

  9. Chad Rancher says:

    Adoption, whether it is open or closed, impacts the natural mother with life-long consequences, many of which the mother will not even become aware of until much later in her life. Open adoptions are a myth, are not legally enforceable in any of the 50 States, can close on a whim by the adopters, and most close within 5 years of the signing of the surrender documents. What this means is most natural mothers lose out on seeing their baby’s first smile, watching his/her first steps, or sharing in decades of birthdays and ALL the other important milestones in her child’s life.
    Natural mothers suffer from chronic, unresolved grief, and begin engaging in searching behaviors. They imagine whenever they hear a baby cry, that it is their surrendered infant crying out for them. They, either consciously or unconsciously, search the faces of children longing to find and reconnect with the child they lost. If they are lucky enough to be reunited with their adopted-out son or daughter as an adult, the mothers then suffer from ambiguous loss, wondering how the adoptee’s life might have turned out had they not been adopted in the first place. Does any of this sound easy to the readers??
    People who adopt can not begin to imagine the pain associated with the loss of one’s newborn to adoption. And, sadly, not all adoptions end with the child being “better off” with the adoptive “forever” family. Male adopters are more likely to divorce the female in order to have their “own” biological children. In addition, adopters can lose their jobs, divorce, have extramartial affairs, become terminally ill, have alcohol, drug or emotional problems, or any assortment of problems.
    Adoption agencies, on the other hand, can make billions of dollars selling the idea that adoption is a win-win situation. The reality is the agencies promote the slick marketing techniques of Madison Avenue to make money off the backs of pregnant women when the new mothers are at their most vulnerable, and in need of true Christian, moral, ethical, and nonjudgmental help. Where in the Bible does it say, “God has an adoption plan for your baby,” or “God has put your baby in the wrong tummy, so do the right thing and ‘gift’ your baby to a deserving (read: paying, wealthier) customer?!? Oops, I meant “couple…”

    • MommaBeanBlessed says:

      God meant for me to be with my parents – and they adopted me when I was an infant. Yes, some people may take advantage of the system. But, people do this in nearly any system. Look at credit rescue companies, or all the loan modification companies, etc. Also, the advantage taking is not just one way…as prospective birthmothers often accept financial aid with no intention of actually going through with placement. Others take considerably more than needed and could be seen to “profit” from the experience. This is not how adoption is meant to be. I would advise any woman thinking of adoption to find a family early on, so that she can really get to know them.

  10. As someone who faced an unplanned pregnancy as a single woman living alone, I think it’s important that we really explore not the emotional but the practical logistics of pregnancy and childbirth. Some of the issues I faced during my pregnancy included:
    –not having insurance (!) or being able to obtain insurance due to my “pre-existing condition” of pregnancy
    –being turned away from any medical care even on a sliding scale due to lack of insurance, and having to pay out of pocket for a $1K E.R. visit (imagine that for a mom earning minimum wage…)
    –living paycheck to paycheck and working at a place that (like 83% of companies nationwide) did not provide paid maternity leave. Even six weeks off of work to have a baby would have left me unable to pay rent and possibly evicted from my apartment, like some of the homeless women I now volunteer for.
    –severe morning sickness is tough to get through while working full-time and going to school!
    –coincidentally, my child was born prematurely at 34 weeks. This happens to close to 12% of women with a higher percentage being low-income minorities. If a woman is the sole earner for her household, how does she recoup that lost income if she
    –what about women who se jobs render a pregnancy hazardous or physically impossible to maintain while working?

    Thank goodness now laws have been or are being put into place to the effect that all women will be able to receive prenatal care. If we are truly pro-life, though, we need to do more than just tell women “there’s always adoption”… for many, the mere act of carrying a pregnancy to term is an insurmountable or, frankly, impossible logistical task. We need to do more to help make it possible for women. Specifically, campaigning for paid maternity leave, as well as paid sick days and paid vacation days (which 40 million hourly workers in the U.S. do not have).

    How about the percentage of women seeking abortion who are already moms? Can you imagine carrying a child to term while working and caring for your other children, and trying to explain to friends, family, co-workers and your children that you will give the child up for adoption?? How about the percentage of abortions that result from a prenatal diagnosis of birth defects? What is the likelihood that a special needs child placed for adoption will quickly be scooped up into a wonderful family life? Conversely, abortion is quick, inexpensive and most importantly, so private that it can be decided and done without the knowledge of a boyfriend/husband.

    **As a quick aside, I did carry my pregnancy to term, one which was the result of an assault. While I can’t pretend that my feelings are the feelings of every woman who has gone through a similar situation, I can say that I don’t believe in abortion in ANY circumstance. A human life is always still a life. I read an excellent article from a site called Boundless (which is a division of Focus on the Family) that actually addressed such situations in detail, if anyone is interested:


    As someone who has actually been through this, I thought the article is to date the best i’ve read on a subject that is frustratingly glossed over a lot. If we’re to believe the stastistics that “less than 3% of pregnancies are the result of assault or incest”… that’s still a lot of lives to gloss over.

    • MommaBeanBlessed says:

      I’m sorry you had this experience – adoption should have taken care of your medical and financial needs. All the logistical needs you listed should be met in an adoption plan.

  11. I am a birth mother, married to the birth farther, with an open adoption of three years. I love my APs and I have shared so many wonderful moments with my daughter. I chose adoption because I never wanted a child. I would never pretend to ever want to be a mother, and I am thankful for my decision everyday. Sometimes resentment can be just as toxic as abuse. While I was in the hospital, after having my child, a nurse came up to me telling me about her situation. She did decide to keep her unwanted child and to this day she is in weekly counciling just so she can maintain a civilize relationship with her son. She told me it took her a very long time to, not only truly love him, but to actually stop hating him. So….yeah I defiantly did the right thing. Let’s try and support our intelligent, well-informed birth mothers okay? Stop jugging the situations of those of which you will never comprehend!!

  12. P.S. that static about open adoptions typically dissolving after five years is completely bogus.

  13. MommaBeanBlessed says:

    I will boldly say, having been in the situation as both an adoptee
    and a birthmother, that ABORTION IS SELFISH. Abortion is NOT about the
    child, so please don’t insult intelligent people by trying to say that
    it is. Abortion is about the woman. Abortion proponents mainly argue: “don’t tell me what to do with MY (a woman’s) body.” To say that you are
    killing your baby for the sake of your baby is an oxymoron. Obviously, an abortion is for the woman, not the baby.

    I am an adoptee, a birthmother (two times), and now married and a mom. To be entirely honest, I thought about having an abortion both times I found out I was unexpectedly pregnant, even though I had sworn never to have one. In fact, I even visited a planned parenthood with the first one, but was thankfully 3 days past the cut-off date for the “easy” abortion. Abortion would have been the “easy” choice in both circumstances, because then I could have selfishly gone back to the life I was living before getting pregnant. No one but me would have needed to know.

    However, I chose adoption both times. The first adoption was not as hard on me as one might think. First, I walked out of a doctor’s office with pictures of a baby boy when I could have been walking out of an abortion clinic with nothing (at just about 15 weeks). Further, I was coming out of a verbally and emotionally abusive relationship and I had only quit drugs when I found out I was pregnant and then decided to carry the pregnancy through. I was so busy healing myself, that I did not really have time to bond with the baby. I do remember the excitement of the adoptive family. That was a gift to me and reassurance that I had made the right decision.

    The second adoption was more difficult. I was in a better place in life, I was emotionally stable and had a good job and family support. However, I was not married, and not entirely sure I wanted to be a parent. I absolutely did not want to be a single parent. Again, abortion went through my mind – then I wouldn’t disappoint anyone by making the same mistake twice. The thought of abortion made me physically ill though, and that is why I again chose adoption. This time I did bond with the baby and it was much more difficult to say goodbye. The first four weeks after delivery were the hardest. But in the long run, the decision was rewarding.

    I get photos and letters of my children. I was blessed to pick an adoptive family very early in the process (at only about 4 months pregnant with the first baby) and therefore I really got to know them. With the first pregnancy I was living in hotel rooms, or at friends’ houses, with a low paying job and no insurance. The adoptive family paid for necessities – including medical care, maternity clothing, etc. Basically, the idea being that the birthmother ends up being in financially the same place after the delivery as she was before. She is not getting paid for the baby, but the baby is being taken care of her, and her life is being taken care of, so that the pregnancy is not a financial burden on her. The second pregnancy I had medical insurance and could afford my own clothes. I did not ask for any assistance from the family as I wanted all their resources to go to the care of their (my) children.

    I am now married and have my own little girl (10 months old now!). Now I am loving being a parent. Now I was ready for it.

    No amount of “support” would have helped me be a good parent with the first pregnancy. I was in need of healing first. I did not emotionally have anything to give a baby. I wanted my babies to have the best chance that life could give…meaning a loving, stable, two parent home, with parents who were ready and wanting children. I was able to provide them that.

    To this day I am thankful that my birthmother chose to carry me to term and place me with a wonderful family. My family is not perfect – no family is. I have had bumps in my road of growing up, as all children will. I was my parents’ first child, so I got the brunt of their mistakes. Adopted children are not guaranteed a better life, but they are given the chance of a better life.

    Finally, modern adoption is very different than it was 20 years ago. Adoptions are more open and it is more acceptable. I probably should look up my birthmom, just to let her know that I am happy and well. As a birthmother myself, I now understand how important that is to know. As a birthmother, I can attest to the gift of adoption – it gave me a chance to get my life together so that I could create my own family one day…while preserving the lives of children that I was not ready to care for before.

  14. Brian Williams says:

    Wisdom and grace? All Weszely appeared to be saying was that pregnant women were too selfish to deal with “loss of self”. What a trite way to deal with killing an unborn child. Don’t get me wrong – nature aborts all the time – but I think to terminate what could be a viable premature birth is infanticide. The latest date for abortion should NOT overlap the earliest viable premature birth. I believe that after that time, a birth can be induced, but all attempts should be made to treat it as a potentially viable premature birth and to save it for adoption. The late-stage hesitant woman who fears “loss of self” should have to sign a waiver that once the induction starts, she loses all rights to the child.

    I find it amazing, the overlap between “liberals” who are against the death penalty for the guilty, but are FOR infanticide, as I defined it above.