Depression impacts everyone at some point. For a birth mom, it’s at a point you’ll always remember.
But maybe remembering is a good thing. Out of pain comes the reminder of a decision you had to make, but more importantly comes “why” you made the decision. And the “why” was out of love.
Tough as it may be, parents are faced with tough decisions. It begins from the time you learn you’re pregnant. You search your heart, study, research, pray and ask others for advice. Then you must choose. It may feel like a roll of the dice that what you’re doing is right and in the best interest of your baby. But if you make choices based on all that, then chances are that you’re making a choice that your heart knows is best.
Afterward, self-doubt, guilt and depression creep in. When you place your baby for adoption, a feeling of grief and loss is normal, but the word “normal” is somehow more upsetting — not comforting.
“What if I didn’t do the right thing?” That question drives pain into your heart. Know that if you’ve followed your heart, putting your baby in the best hands possible at this time of your life, you’ve done your best. You’ve done your best for your baby. Now, do your best for yourself.
You’re an example to others. We’re all examples to one another. If you put an oxygen mask on yourself, you will teach others to do the same. It’s time to stop beating yourself up and make peace with yourself. If you’re depressed and struggling with grief and loss, ask for help.
Forgive yourself but don’t forget. Don’t forget because remembering can be a good thing. Honor yourself for acting out of ultimate, unconditional love. Remember “why” you made the decision to put your baby up for adoption. The “why” was out of love.
Find a safe space in a safe place. Talk with others. Tell them how you feel and why. “Where” you ask? Destiny takes pride in providing ongoing support to birth moms. Successful adoption extends beyond the adoption to supporting birth moms so you may become the best version of yourself.
Destiny birth moms, Marlana, Melanie and Shelley, shared their post-adoption experiences and advice. They say:
Q: What has post-adoption been like? What are your future plans and dreams?
Post-adoption, in all honesty, has been a struggle. But I have learned this isn’t an easy thing to do. You have to have one big heart to want what’s best for your child. My future plans are to do what’s best for my daughter. I can’t wait to finish my bachelor’s degree and start to achieve what my destiny should be. I never knew about this whole adoption world, but having experienced it first hand, I now know what my ultimate goal is. I want to do social work. I would love to help other birth mothers in their process as I had help with mine. Marlana
Q. What is the birth mother support group, and how does it help you?
The birth mother support group is where a bunch of birth mothers get together for fellowship. I’d compare it to a therapeutic group. You can talk about adoption to everybody, but not everyone understands. People can be so judgmental. It helps to have people you can talk with about it. Melanie
Q: Would you recommend post-adoption counseling?
Yes. Personally, I use the support group as my counseling. I regret that I didn’t reach out for help right away. I would absolutely recommend counseling to other girls. The last three years would have been a lot easier if I had started counseling right off the bat. Shelley
Author: Destiny Adoption Services
Destiny Adoption Services is proud to support and guide birth parents and adoptive families on the journey of adoption. We’re a state licensed nonprofit adoption agency with four decades of adoption experience, and our professional team of experts includes moms, adoptive moms and birth mothers who provide compassion combined with trusted resources and skills.