In an ideal world, every prospective birth mother choosing adoption would be supported by her family and friends, who would recognize that adoption is the best choice for all involved. However, this is not always the case.
If you’re a pregnant woman whose family and friends don’t support your adoption decision, you need to know that you can still move forward with your adoption process. You are the only person who can decide if adoption is right for you, and your friends and family cannot stop you placing your baby for adoption, even if they disagree with it.
It may be difficult to move forward with your adoption without the support of your family and friends, but when you work with A Child’s Hope, you will have a great support system in the form of your adoption counselor. She will work with you from the beginning to the end of your adoption process, even being there for support after your child is placed with their new adoptive family. To be matched with a counselor for free (and with no obligation to choose adoption until you’re ready), please call our Pregnancy Hotline: (919) 971-4396, or Text: Pregnant to (919) 971-4396, or email email@example.com.
However, we understand how emotionally challenging it can be to place your baby for adoption when those who matter most to you don’t support your decision. You may wonder how you can get unsupportive friends and family members to change their mind about your adoption. With most cases, it’s as simple as educating them about the realities of modern adoptions.
Sometimes, when people think of adoption, they only think of the closed adoptions that were common in the 1960s and 1970s. To them, adoption may only mean something negative — but, when you take the chance to explain the actual benefits of adoption, they will usually see your decision in an entirely different light.
You can always talk to your adoption counselor about how to best explain your adoption decision to your family, but here are some things you might want to emphasize when you’re talking to unsupportive family and friends:
- Your adoption decision is entirely your own. Sometimes, people may hear stories of birth mothers who were coerced into adoption, and your family may be concerned that adoption is something you’ll regret later. Let them know that this is entirely your choice, that you always have the ability to change your mind, and you’ve thought long and hard about all of your unplanned pregnancy options before deciding adoption was right for you.
- You are in charge of your adoption process the whole way through. Many people may not know all of the positive options available to prospective birth mothers today. Explain that you will be able to choose and meet the perfect adoptive family for your baby, receive financial assistance (that in no way obligates you to choose adoption), choose how much contact you want with the adoptive family and more. Make sure they understand that you’re not just a passive witness to your adoption process; your decisions affect every part of it.
- You are not “giving up” your baby. While your friends or family may see your decision as “giving up” on being a mother to your child, you need to explain that adoption is exactly the opposite — it’s you choosing to give your child the best opportunities in life, which you cannot provide yourself. Adoption not only gives your child the best chance at a stable, supportive home, but it also gives you the chance to continue pursuing your dreams and goals to make your own life the best it can be. When your family and friends see how positive adoption is for both of you, they’ll likely understand your situation with more empathy.
Of course, all family situations are different, and some family members may not change their mind, no matter how hard you try. While this can be difficult, know that you can continue with your adoption plan without them; try to surround yourself with the friends and family who are supportive of your decision instead.
Remember, your adoption counselor will always be there to provide any support you need during your adoption process, as well. If you have questions about how to approach any unsupportive friends or family members about your unplanned pregnancy or adoption plan, please contact us today for our free adoption support.
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Adoption Counselor/Homestudy Supervisor - Triangle
As an adoptive parent I truly have a passion for adoption. There is no greater joy than helping to create a family! I love this job and I love working with adoptive parents as well as the birth parents. When it all comes together it is an awesome experience! Kelly is a graduate of NC State University where she earned a Bachelor of Social Work. She also received her Master of Social Work from the University of South Carolina. Kelly has been working with children, families, in the home and in communities for 18 years. Kelly has been working with birth mothers and adoptive parents for the last 5 years. Besides working, she has a great husband and three fabulous children, Landon, Parker and Ansley. Kelly and her husband adopted their daughter with the help of ACH and feels as though her personal experience helps her relate to other adoptive families.
Sloane completed her undergraduate degree in Human Services Counseling at Old Dominion University and holds a Master's Degree in Social Work from the University of Southern California. Sloane has been working with children, birth mothers and adopting families for more than 10 years. She loves advocating for children and helping women during pregnancy.
Lakisha completed her undergraduate degree in Sociology with a concentration in Social Welfare at Winston-Salem State University. She received her Master of Social Work from Syracuse University. Lakisha has worked with children, individuals and families for more than 12 years. Her experience includes working with at-risk youth, homeless children and families, child mental health, as well as school social work and case management. She is also a long-time basketball fan, a former player and coach. She played at Winston-Salem State University and coached women’s basketball at Elon University and Syracuse University. Lakisha and her husband reside in Alamance County, with their young son.
Jess completed her undergraduate degree in Communication at the University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown and earned her Master of Arts degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from Messiah College. Her professional experience includes case management, education, women’s behavioral health including a focus on pregnant mothers, and working with kinship and domestic adoptive families who have experienced trauma. Jess is a native of central Pennsylvania though loves living in Asheville with her significant other. When she is not working, she is likely caring for her puppy and dog, painting, practicing yoga, camping or planning her next road trip to see family and friends or have an adventure in some new place!
Sylvia is a graduate of Western Carolina University, where she earned a Bachelor of Social Work. She also received her Master of Social Work from the University of North Carolina. Sylvia has been working with children and families for more than 19 years. She enjoys gardening, reading, hiking, and spending time with her husband and three boys. She also loves animals, especially her dog Jazzy.
Nicole completed her undergraduate studies at Chowan University in Psychology with a concentration in Alcohol & Drug Studies and a minor in Criminal Justice. Nicole has provided services to adolescents, teens, college students, the Department of Corrections, the Department of Parole and Probation, the NC Division of Motor Vehicles, the Division of Transportation, and the Department of Defense. She is a Certified Alcohol & Drug Counselor and has been working in the mental health field for 15 years.
Suzanne was the primary pregnancy care manager stationed at Duke high-risk perinatal clinic for 20 years. She has a BS in Social Work at UNC Pembroke and is a licensed School Social Worker. She recently worked as a case manager in a substance abuse disorder residential program for women with young children. Suzanne is a “Durhamite” but has resided in Wake County since graduating. Her biggest accomplishment has been happily raising her 14 yo daughter and 3 poodle mixed pups.