The birthmother is a caregiver in a uniquely selfless way. Yet, becoming a birthmother isn’t generally perceived in a positive light. So where does the birthmother fit within our nurturing village of caring for and supporting one another? To what tribe does she belong? What identity does she own? The truth is that she belongs to a tribe of fearless, successful, loving women. My hope is that together, we can help communicate this truth.
What story is more sacrificial and courageous than the love of any woman who takes a hard look at today and tomorrow and chooses the best possible future for her child and herself? And yet the birthmother is most often mistakenly judged as having rejected and selfishly abandoned her child. This unjust stigma attached to the woman who places her child for adoption has made our world a far more difficult place for women and a far less hopeful place for children.
In fact, the universe of women is cluttered with misinformation, distortion, and myths about who the birthmother is and why she makes her decision. If you adopt another woman’s child, you are instantly seen as heroic. But place your child for adoption, and you often find yourself defined as an outcast of motherhood, sometimes even a villain. This is true despite the reality that you have lovingly chosen to give your child a better, safer life. Our society has made placing a child into the arms of others to parent a lonely, difficult, and almost unfathomable decision.
This stigma is frequently passed on to her adopted child as well. Adoptees often believe they weren’t loved or valued enough to be kept, or that they were abandoned or flawed, and therefore given away. What a sad and untrue perspective. It’s time for another story, one based on truth and often unspoken love.
In the United States, only an estimated 4% of women in unplanned or unsupported pregnancies choose adoption. With this virtual elimination of adoption as a viable option for these women—often because of the stigma involved, and the self-perception they must overcome—single parenting or abortion become the default choices. Pregnancy for any woman is a time of change and challenge. This is never truer than for those without support.
Not only do these sisters of ours find themselves in an unsupported pregnancy, but they find themselves in the undesirable position of being forever considered the woman who doesn’t care. The woman who didn’t love. The woman who gave away her child. Mothers of older children who are placed for adoption, and those adoptions where children are relinquished from foster care face this almost insurmountable obstacle of self-perception as well.
I’ve tried to tell a different story. After more than 25 years working with women and children and families in crisis, I want the truth about these heroic birthmothers and well-loved adoptees to be told. I hope this tool will help you understand and tell their story as well.
“Adopting a Family for You: A Love Story” gives voice to those who’ve loved and dreamed for their children and had the courage to choose the best possible future for them. “Adopting a Family for You: A Love Story” is really a book for anyone who has ever loved a child, wanted something they couldn’t have, or faced an impossible decision. And that covers pretty much all of us.
I hope this book can meet a need in our nurturing village. To correct the stigma and misconceptions surrounding the decision to place any child into the arms of others to parent, it tells the story of sacrificial love. To the birthmother, this book says, “Well done.” And to every adopted person it says, “You are loved. Your story is the best kind of love story.”
Order it here: www.reimaginebest.com/book. Your signed copy will be shipped as soon as the order is placed. The Nurturing Village will receive 10% of all profits from your purchase. We also offer trauma-informed coaching and consulting at www.reimaginebest.com. Let’s work together to nurture our village.