Yesterday Jill & I spent the entire day at an adoption conference. All day we were surrounded by adoption fanatics; people who are dedicating their lives to promote adoption. Although it felt a little weird at first, by the end of the day my heart had been touched multiple times as I heard these people’s stories. No doubt, adoption can be a miraculous process.
We heard story after story of people who had been adopted and adoptive parents that knew deep inside that, although they (or their child) came into the world through somebody else, they ended up in the family they were meant to be in.
Jill and I started the adoption process a couple of months ago with the feeling that we needed to complete our family. We both feel like a little girl is missing. We were completely naive (and probably still are) about the process, the potential pitfalls, and the emotional ups and downs. But, after the conference yesterday, we’re both more excited than ever. I can’t wait to hold our baby girl in my arms.
Here are a few interesting tidbits I learned at the conference:
- Adoption Scammers – apparently this is pretty big business. And it makes sense. Adoption is expensive. So, there’s potential for people to rip off a lot of people for a lot of money. But, what’s strange is that some women pretend to be pregnant just to get attention. We heard a crazy story of a girl who has been scamming multiple people at once (you can read it here). When she was caught and asked why, she said it was because she liked the attention she got when she told people she was pregnant. She wasn’t scamming money out of people, she was scamming emotions.
- Most adopted people don’t feel judged or that they’re looked upon any different than anyone else just because they’re adopted. It seems that people who aren’t adopted often assume that the adopted feel stigmatized. Usually not true.
- Adopted children are curious. No matter how great their family life is, and how much they love and appreciate their adoptive parents, they’re curious about where they came from. In most cases, they’ll eventually want to find their birth parents. It’s not an attempt to replace their parents, but only to satisfy the curiosity and fill the gaps in their question of “Where do I come from?”
- Open Adoption – It used to be that once a baby was adopted all communication from the birth parents was cut off. Now, open adoption is encouraged. In many cases the birth mother becomes a good friend of the family and sees the baby often. To Jill and I this seemed extremely odd at first. After hearing the stories of adoptive parents and adopted children yesterday, we’re both much more open to the idea of open adoption. In some ways I actually look forward to it. Birth mothers choose adoption because they’re not in a situation to give the baby the life they hope the baby to have. I know of no better person to be a friend and support to a birth mother in that kind of situation than Jill. She is amazing at giving love to those in need.
Needless to say, I’m completely excited and anxious as we embark on this search for our little girl.
P.S. We left Spencer & Kaden at home by themselves all day. It’s the first time they’ve spent that much time alone. They were so excited to “party all day” without their parents there. By the time we got home, they were bored to tears. 😉