You’re Not My Mother!

March 31st, 2009
Categories: With Your Child

For birth mothers in open adoption and those in reunion, a phrase that you might be unfortunate to hear is, "You're not my mother!" Of course, adoptive moms have their own time and place with which to deal with this particular verbal assault. But how should a birth mother respond? What would be inappropriate? Where are the boundaries? First, for birth mothers in open adoption, the first time you might hear such an utterance is during a visit of some sort. I'd venture to guess that things like this are most likely to happen on visits that happen in your home as opposed to visits on your child's home turf. At your home, you have certain rules. Perhaps you have just had to tell your relinquished child… [more]

Information to Share with Your Child: Their Story

August 28th, 2008

I cannot count on fingers and toes the number of adoptees who have wanted to know their story and have been told, point blank, that they can't have it. By their birth parents, the ones who mentally possess that story. I can't imagine it myself, denying my child that information. And so I implore other birth parents to consider sharing as much information as possible. No. I don't mean getting into specific detail about the conception. That's now what I mean. I do mean, however, to be honest with your child about the relationship or, in some cases, lack thereof with the other party. Try to leave bitterness and resentment for the other party out of it even if it exists. Instead of saying, "He never called… [more]

Information to Share with Your Child: Your Favorites

August 21st, 2008

Keeping it light-hearted again today, don't forget to share your favorites with your relinquished child. Perhaps you're thinking, "But that's trivial and mundane! They need the big stuff! The meaty stuff!" Well, true. They do need the big stuff, the meaty stuff. But they also need to know you. And your favorites are part of you. And so it is important to share such information with your child. What kind of favorites? All of them, of course! Color. Number. Day of the week. Month. Season. Song, band/singer. Food. Sport. Drink. Candy! Ice Cream flavor. Movie. Television show. Website. Animal or insect. Item of Clothing. Word. Place. Vacation spot. You can see the point. You could make this list go on forever. Now here's the trick: answer the reasons as… [more]

Information to Share with Your Child: Your Childhood

August 21st, 2008

While sharing medical information is important in that life-altering way, sharing information regarding your childhood is equally important. Whether your childhood was storybook or horror flick, that information can be vastly interesting to your relinquished child. No point is too small to share. Maybe you spent summer afternoons under a tree reading while everyone else was doing something far more physical. Maybe your child would like to know that because they felt silly for always being the bookworm. Maybe you have fabulous memories of summer camp to pass on. Maybe you have great sleepover at Grandma stories. Maybe everything seems silly and mundane. But it's a great way for your child to get to know you in ways that they weren't privy. As an example, how many… [more]

Information to Share with Your Child: Medical History

August 21st, 2008

Whether you're preparing the information for the future or getting it ready because your adult child has asked, getting your medical history information in line for your relinquished child is of vast importance. I cannot stress how important it is so let me just repeat: it is of vast importance. Even if you're not sure you're ever going to reunite or you have been told that your child does not want to reunite, you need to get this information together. Everyone always talks about getting that medical history in order but what should you include? Everything, of course. And I do mean everything. Some things to consider for a female that you might not have thought of: the age in which you first started menstruation. Maybe… [more]

Information to Share with Your Child

August 21st, 2008

Maybe you are a birth parent in reunion with your adult child. Perhaps you are a birth parent involved in an open adoption with your relinquished child and the adoptive family. Maybe you're even an expectant mother considering adoption and trying to decide what information is pertinent to pass on to your child should you decide to relinquish your rights upon birth. Whatever your scenario, the answer is simple: Just about everything. Over the next few days I'll hit on some "big" things that you most definitely want to share as well as some smaller ones that you might not have thought of on your own. But when it comes down to it, your placed child wants to know you, to know about you and how those things… [more]

Maybe One More Similarity

May 17th, 2008

I wrote yesterday about the ways we can and cannot compare divorce and open adoption. I still maintain that the relationships between adults is an apples and oranges comparison. I still maintain that children aren't given the same choices in open adoption that they are in a divorced family as well. But, a commenter brought up the following scenario and, well, it broadened my opinion just a little bit. Julia left this comment: I have made the comparison myself, only it was about the child actions, not the parent actions. Our daughters who were adopted at 9 and 15 frequently tried to play their birth family members and us. They would come home, tell us that their grandparents didn't agree with something we did… [more]

Thursday Thirteen: Things I Don’t Want for My Relinquished Daughter

March 6th, 2008

Wow, the weeks are just flying by anymore. It's Thursday again. Time for another list of thirteen things that apply to adoption as I know it. Last week I wrote a list of thirteen things I want for my relinquished daughter. However, like any parent, there are things that I don't want for my daughter, too! Read through these and see how your wishes for things your child to avoid differ from my own. If at all. 1. Heartache. Silly wish, right? Her heart is going to be broken from time to time despite any protective actions taken by her everyday parents. That's part of growing up and understanding what it is to love. So, while she won't be able to avoid heartache, my flip-wish… [more]

Thursday Thirteen: Things I Want for my Relinquished Daughter

February 28th, 2008

Thursday again? Like any parent, I have hopes and dreams for my daughter. The only difference is that I am not parenting her and someone else is in physical charge of nurturing her through to adulthood. I was once told by a disgruntled, anti-birth parent reader that my dreams for my child were out of place as I was not her parent. That's preposterous! For example, I have dreams for my younger brother. I want him to be happy in his marriage, successful in whatever career path he finally chooses and to find a vehicle that won't break down every other week. That doesn't mean I'm going to force him to marry someone I think is worthy, choose his career path or buy him a… [more]

New Year Wishes for Our Children

January 4th, 2008
Categories: With Your Child

I've previously talked about my own adoption resolutions for this New Year. I'm still determined to bring these things to fruition. However, on the forums, a thread was started about birth parents' wishes for their children. And I thought it was a unique and heart-warming discussion. My adoption related goals for the year are my own. I am personally responsible for sending those letters, helping to plan those visits and scheduling a portrait shoot. Those are the things that I want to do, for me and for my placed daughter. They're on my plate. And yet, it's true, I want so much more for the Munchkin. Like the other mothers that replied to the thread, I wish for her to have an amazing year. She'll have… [more]