Sharing Adoption Progress & Excitement
Adoption is hard work. International adoption is bloody hard work. But, I love the sense of accomplishment, so I’m delighted to see real progress occurring!
When we started the adoption process the first people we told were our references. One of the very first steps was to submit our adoption references, so for rather obvious reasons we started by telling these individuals about our plans to adopt.
Then, we told our families at Christmas. It seemed like something worth celebrating and while we were nervous about telling some people, they came through and showered us with love and support.
However, what we didn’t tell anyone other than our references is where we were in the process. We didn’t provide time estimates until we would be approved. We didn’t tell people we weren’t actually approved yet. When people asked how long we expect, we just said a year or two. We took the approach of not lying, just omitting details and keep things vague.
Of course, people asked their sometimes naive questions and make inappropriate comments, and we did our best to answer them. We did ask almost everyone not to ask us about the adoption process all the time – we knew it would drive us nuts to be constantly asked things like have you been placed with a baby yet or when will you get placed or any news yet. We simply told people that we will tell them when we know something – honestly, it’s not like we are going to come home and have a baby with us without telling our parents and siblings that we were out of the country for a few weeks adopting our baby! For the most part people have respected this, and when people do ask we understand that they haven’t heard anything and they are just curious.
So, anyways, with the progress that is currently happening, we are so excited and yet find ourselves not sharing with our families. After feeling hurt a little bit too much in the last year by some of our families, we were licking our wounds and intentionally decided to omit the details of where we were in the process. So, we haven’t been keeping people apprised of our progress. Which means most people just won’t understand how big of a step this is for us. So, we’ve embraced celebrating together and with a few close friends who know the details.
So, this has us thinking. How are we going to tell people if we get matched prior to birth (as opposed to an instant placement)? There seems to be a lot of opinions on sharing or not during the matched phase, because a match can always fall through as a birth mother (or father) may choose to parent. One approach seems to be sharing. Sharing the excitement with friends and family. Sharing the potential disappointment. The other approach seems to be keeping the match to ourselves and sharing once the relinquishment papers are signed and the placement is finalized. This of course means keeping the excitement and potential disappointment to ourselves. In many ways this reminds me of the decision to share the news of a pregnancy before the second trimester, some do and some do not.
Right now, we are leaning towards keeping it to ourselves in-real-life. Those who knew about our recurrent pregnancy loss were not overly supportive during our pregnancies and losses, so we figure why open ourselves back up to being hurt if the placement falls through. I know, this might be a negative way to approach it, but honestly, I’m petrified of a placement falling through and I’m petrified of being hurt by those we love again. While I believe in a birth mother’s choice to parent, I’m very selfishly petrified of losing once again and having to bring other people through the process. Honestly, I think we’ll need to keep it to myself to protect our hearts.
Of course, when it actually happens we might be so excited that we may just end up telling everyone. It’s easy to think about it now, but it sure will be interesting to see what happens when we are actually matched!
P.S. I will share with those who are supportive, which means of course I will share this news with all my blogging friends when the time comes!!
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