Once you have made the decision to give up your baby for adoption, you are probably wondering how you are going to tell your friends and family. You may not have even told them that you are pregnant yet. Telling friends and family about your adoption decision can be difficult because many parents are looking for approval from others; they want someone else to tell them they are making the right decision.
The fact is that you are the only one who can know if you are making the right decision to give your baby up for adoption. Many people do not understand adoption and may have negative views of the process. Be ready to explain how you came to your decision and allow your friends and family time to understand your decision.
I haven’t even told anyone about my pregnancy… How am I going to tell them I plan to give up my baby for adoption?
Telling your family and friends about your unplanned pregnancy is the first step. They need to be able to have time to understand this before they can contemplate your choice of adoption for the child. Think back to how you felt when you found out that you were pregnant. You may have been shocked, disappointed, and even confused. Those who love and care about you will need time to process the news of your unplanned pregnancy.
Sometimes, family and friends’ initial reaction may not be about what is best for you. They may initially be thinking about how this will affect their lives or how they could have done a better job as a parent or a friend. Stay calm and be mature about the situation, even if your family members are not being supportive. Explain to them the situation and that you have already made a decision on how to deal with your unplanned pregnancy.
Who should I tell?
It is your decision who you want to tell about your plans to place your child for adoption. Only approach those you feel comfortable talking with and who you trust. But don’t expect a certain reaction from a friend or family member. Some parents might be disappointed. Others will be angry. They may need to process these emotions before they can begin to understand your decision to give your baby up for adoption.
Friends may at first be excited about the pregnancy and then disappointed that you are giving the baby up for adoption. They may even try to persuade you to keep your child, saying that they will help take care of the child. You should remember that your friend may eventually move on with their life and start their own family. They may not always be there to help you.
You should try to tell your family and friends, one person at a time about your plans for adoption. If you tell everyone at once, you could be overwhelmed by the various emotions of your friends and family in the room. Everyone is going to have a different reaction. Try to approach the member of your family who you believe will be the most supportive. If they are supportive of your decision, they can help calm fears and answer questions of other family members. They also can be there to support you when you tell others about your plan to give up your baby for adoption.
Once you tell your family and friends about your decision to put your baby up for adoption, they will ask many questions and have various concerns about you and the baby. You should share with others how you decided that adoption is the right choice for your unplanned pregnancy. If you wrote down the answers to some of the questions from the Considering Adoption questions, you could read your answers to them. Sharing the stories of other birth mothers and adoptive parents with them could help ease their fears. Your adoption counselor is also available to speak with your family members if they have questions.
Many people think that parenting is the only option because they have negative and misleading ideas about adoption. They also may not be thinking about what is best for you and the child. Try to calmly explain your situation and what you want for your child and for your own life. Make sure to be clear to others that you are the only one who can make this decision and that while they may not agree with you for placing your baby for adoption, you wouldappreciate their support and love in the coming months.
After you have shared with others your plan to give up your baby for adoption, you will feel so much relief that you no longer have to hide or worry about what people will say when they learn of your decision. While some of your family and friends might have said hurtful things, you might be surprised by others who showed you the support and love you deserve during your pregnancy.
Our adoption counselors are always available if you need someone to talk to about your concerns and fears. They will even be there if you want to share your happy moments during your pregnancy with someone. Please call 1-800-Adoption if you would like to talk to a specialist in more detail about speaking to your family and friends about your adoption plan.