by Sandra, age 25
It has been a few years since I placed my son for adoption, but I remember the day that I found out that I was pregnant like it was yesterday. I knew that I was not ready to be a parent, but abortion was not an option that I could live with. After I told my parents, they strongly encouraged me to meet with a pregnancy counselor to discuss my options. We found out about Evangelical Child and Family Agency through a local pregnancy center.
Shortly after meeting with my pregnancy counselor, I knew that adoption was the best option for me and my baby. I was in college and knew that I would most likely not be able to finish my education as a young mother. More importantly, I wanted my child to grow up in a two-parent home, like I did. I knew that I would not be able to provide all the things that he needed. As I worked through and planed my adoption, I began to realize that love and sacrifice go hand-in-hand. I needed to do what was best for my baby, regardless of the price that I would pay. Love began to take on a new meaning for me. My pregnancy support counselor walked me through the adoption process and encouraged me to think about what kind of adoption I would like. I will never forget the day that I got to view adoptive parents profiles. I picked up the first profile and read about Bill and Kathy. I knew that they were the parents for my son. My counselor set up a meeting so that we could meet each other.
I gave birth to my son one week after my due date. I will never forget the time in the hospital that I got to spend with him. I kept him in the room with me and showed him off to friends and family that visited. I couldn’t believe that this precious life had finally arrived. The adoptive family also came to visit. I knew that they were so excited to see the baby, but I also knew that they cared about me. Although the hospital time was full of emotions, I never thought twice about changing my adoption plan. I knew that adoption would be the best plan for him. I loved him too much to change my mind. The day that he went home with his adoptive parents was very emotional.
Adoption was the hardest decision that I had to make. Even though the grief was intense, there was an underlying feeling of satisfaction knowing that he was with his new family. Today, I could not be more satisfied about my adoption decision. My relationship with Bill and Kathy has evolved from pictures and letters to spending time with each other a few times a year. I would have never thought that our relationship would be this open, but I can’t imagine my life any other way. The initial pain of my adoption decision has changed to joy and happiness as I look forward to seeing them and watch my son as he grows.
by Mei, age 31
When I found out that I was pregnant with my third child, I was devastated. I was already struggling as a divorced single mom with two children and I knew that I could not take care of another child. My boyfriend at the time was pressuring me to get an abortion because he was not ready to be a father. I initially made an appointment to have an abortion, but I was not able to follow through with it because it went against my beliefs. I felt like I had nowhere to turn. I did not want my two children to struggle any more than they already had, and I wanted this new baby to have the opportunities that I could not give him.
A friend told me about adoption and suggested that I contact ECFA about meeting with a counselor to discuss my options. I was initially unsure about adoption because it is not fully accepted in my culture, and I did not know much about it. But I quickly called and set up an appointment with a pregnancy counselor. Meeting with my counselor gave me a new perspective on adoption and answered my questions. I had expected that she would pressure me about what I should do, but I never felt pressured or pushed to make a decision that I didn't want to make. I really sensed that she genuinely cared about me as a person.
The more I thought about adoption and the more I learned about it, the more it began to make sense for my situation. I wanted to know that my child was taken care of but I didn't have the means to do it myself. I finally decided on adoption and began the process to select a family.
I looked at some adoptive parent profiles and fell in love with one family that had one child already. I wanted my baby to have an older sibling, since I was close with my siblings. I met the adoptive parents toward the end of my pregnancy and we got along so well. I could tell that they had a lot of love to give a baby and I felt that my child would have everything that he wanted in their family. This time in the adoption process was very difficult for me because I knew that my decision was becoming more of a reality and I still had some difficult days ahead.
I will never forget the day my son, Joshua, was born. I decided to have limited visitors in the hospital because I knew that this was my time to spend with him and say goodbye. I had my family videotape some special moments and I was able to tell him how much I love him and how much he means to me. My two other children were also able to visit with him in the hospital. They each drew him a picture, which I eventually gave the adoptive family. I knew that spending time with him would make saying goodbye more difficult, but I also knew that this experience would last a lifetime in my memory and I wanted to make the most of it. The day that I left the hospital was extremely emotional. I was emotional, not because I thought I was making the wrong decision, but because it was hard to say goodbye. That night I realized that loving my baby meant sacrificing my feelings.
Today I have what is called a semi-open relationship my the adoptive family. I chose to receive pictures and letters updating me on how Joshua is doing. I also send the family pictures of me and my two children so that Joshua can know how much he is loved. I love receiving updates about him and I can see that he is really happy with his family. Even though it was hard, I can honestly say that I am satisfied with my adoption decision because it was the best thing for everyone involved, especially Joshua. I have no regrets. Adoption has actually enhanced my life and I have become a better mom because of it.
by Kelly and John, age 23
My husband and I were married for about two months when I found out that I was pregnant. We already had a one year old and were struggling financially. Neither of us could keep a good paying, steady job and were barely able to pay rent. We were not prepared for another child.
I was adopted myself, so I knew the benefits of adoption. After talking about it, my husband and I decided that exploring adoption was the best option for us. I knew that open adoption was possible through an agency. Even though we knew that adoption was the best choice for our situation, we also knew that it would be very difficult because we were married and already had one child. We were afraid that others might judge us for our decision. There were so many questions that we had. As my pregnancy progressed, we explored what parenting might look like, but it became more clear that we would not be able to give this baby all that she would need. We eventually contacted a Pregnancy Support Services worker at ECFA who met with us shortly after and started to prepare us for adoption.
We chose an adoptive family through the agency. We looked at several profiles, and we both agreed on one particular adoptive family - Kevin and Lisa. Something about them touched our hearts. Kevin and Lisa had been trying to have children for years, but, because of infertility issues, were unsuccessful. After meeting Kevin and Lisa, there was a connection. As my husband and I got to know them, we began to feel a sense of purpose in making an adoption plan. We could provide a child for a couple that could not have children. We were comfortable with them and felt that they would love our baby just as much as we would. We wanted our baby to know how much we loved her and that we made an adoption decision because we wanted the best for her. We had a sense of peace and confidence that Kevin and Lisa would convey this to our baby.
The time at the hospital was unforgettable. We were both nervous and didn't know how we would react to seeing our baby. We even had questions about our ability to follow through with an adoption plan. Seeing her for the first time was amazing! At that moment, we saw how precious she was. We knew that we had to be strong and lean on one another for strength. We chose to invite Kevin ad Lisa to the hospital to see the baby and we were able to watch them hold her. In a strange way, seeing them with her gave me peace and confidence that we were making the right plan for our baby. We even felt a sense of accomplishment that Kevin and Lisa would know the joy of being parents. Leaving the hospital was very difficult. The following weeks were filled with tears and many emotions as we came to terms with our decision.
We chose to have ongoing contact with Kevin and Lisa through letters, pictures, and visits. Kevin and Lisa also encourage her relationship with her older brother. The sorrow that we once felt has turned into joy and satisfaction. We know we made the right decision. We look forward to what the future holds for our relationship together.