The Fear Is Strong With This One

Sometimes my heart breaks.

Today is one of those days.

A friend, another adoptive family, found out there baby was born.  And then, they found out the birth mother decided to parent*.

My heart sank when she told me.  I felt myself catch my breath as tears fell from my eyes ever so slowly.

All I wanted to do was wrap her up in a hug and silently hope that this doesn’t happen to us.


Here’s the thing, most people who choose to adopt have suffered immensely before they chose adoption to build their family.  Some may have struggled for years with infertility or experienced loss (like us) or experienced countless medical procedures to no avail.

When we turned to adoption to grow our families, all future adoptive parents understand the risk of a failed adoption**.  We know the potential exists.  For Mr. MPB and I, we’ve deemed the risk of a failed adoption to be lower then the risk of another miscarriage, so it makes logical sense to us.


Yet, we fear it.  I’m yet to meet an adoption family who doesn’t fear the potential.  We fear it and we dread it.

In fact, just thinking about the possibility of a failed adoption makes my heart race and my eyes well up.  I catch my breath and have to deliberately refocus my attention on something else.  The fear can easily become debilitating.

I hope for an instant placement in which our baby will be a few days old and the paperwork has all been signed solely so that I don’t have to deal with a potential failed adoption.  I would rather meet my child a few days after birth then at birth in order to spare myself a fail adoption  (saying that aloud and writing it for the world to read makes me cringe – I should want to be there when our child is born as not to miss a moment of their life, and yet I’m too afraid to be for my own selfish needs).

I work desperately hard not to obsess about the fear of a failed adoption.  In fact, this is the first real post I’ve dedicated fully to the topic because I cannot bring myself to sit down and think about it long enough to write about it.

My fear is intense.  It’s palpable and it’s unlike anything I’ve experienced before.

I honestly don’t know what we are going to do if we experience a failed adoption.  I know I have many friends around the world who will help pick up my broken pieces, and I’m ever so grateful that I have such amazing support.  And yet, I also know it might just break me in a whole new way, and a way that I wont know how to survive.

Yet I know, there is no real way to prepare for a failed adoption, if it’s going to happen it will happen and we will have to find a way to get through it.

And so while I’ve voiced these fears today and gave them life, I am going to stuff them right back down and hide from them once again. I cannot live my life based in this fear or I just may not really live at all.


*Please note that I 100% firmly believe in a birth mother’s right to parent.  But that decision does cause heartbreak for the potential adoptive family

** I hate the term failed adoption.  I know it’s from the perspective of the adoptive family, but it implies that a birth mother choosing to parent is a failure. A change of heart yes, but not a failure.

 If you like this post, please feel free to share it and please click the follow button on the side or return to to follow my journey.

45 Comments on “The Fear Is Strong With This One

  1. I’ve heard of it being termed a “disruption” to an adoption that doesn’t go through. Failed seems like a weird term to me too.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. It is heartbreaking when you hear about this happening. Even worse when you actually know the people and worse yet when you have to fear it yourself. Right now, I’m just praying that if it happens to us, it happens before we bring the baby home because in WI, it’s at least 30 days before parent’s rights are terminated if not longer depending on what area of WI you’re in. I’m so happy that you realize just how much we are here for you. If your heart breaks, our hearts break for you but we will be here to help lift you back up. Love and hugs, my Friend!


    • I am so with you on hoping that it happens before we bring the baby home/to our hotel. Because we don’t know our state yet, we don’t know our termination timeline yet. This scares me more then anything. I try not to think about it and I just hope for the best. And I hope for the best for you too!!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m so sorry that your friend had to go through that disappointment and heartbreak. I really hope that you never have to go through that. I know that there are no guarantees in life, and especially in the TTC and adoption world. It all can be so unfair sometimes. I could sit here and tell you to not think about the negative things that could happen, and to try to stay positive about things and that you will one day have your baby no matter what…but I know that won’t help you. So I will tell you to try to hang in there, and try to find some peace with the situation. You WILL have your baby in your arms one day, I just hope and pray that you don’t have to go through an entire obstacle course to get there. *hugs*


  4. I would fear all of the same things, and I understand wanting a quick, easy placement. Our friends got a surprise, easy placement 24 hours after the baby was born and they have said several times that missing the birth is nothing compared to all of the fear that consumed them when they were very actively pursuing open adoption. They gave up because of their ages and then bam, surprise baby placed for adoption and handed to them (a true gift!!!). No one has ever given the missed birth a thought. They said that Gracie was constantly held by nurses, doctors, and volunteers in the hospital because everyone knew she was being placed for adoption. She received constant love from the moment she was born! Your baby will too, no matter the circumstances.

    I’m sorry for your friend. That is really hard.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much for your empathy Courtney! I so hope for your friend’s situation – the easy placement 24 hours after the baby is born – I’m desperate for this to be our situation. Thanks for sharing your friends journey, I so hope we have the same one.


  5. Its such a double edged sword isn’t it, this adoption thing.
    One hand when the birth mom signs the papers for adoption, she dies a thousand deaths inside and when she doesn’t, the adoptive parents die inside.

    I wish there was a less painful way to complete a family. I pray that you don’t go through a failed adoption. You will have your baby, stay positive. Don’t think of the worst when it has not happened, if it does happen, you would have just lived the worst twice.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. This is very scary stuff, no argument. I can’t imagine how intensely you feel these emotions, but I do believe that no matter what life throws at you, you handle it with astounding grace and dignity.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I understand. Thinking about a failed adoption is completely terrifying. I’m hoping so hard that you never have to experience it. I also hope your friends find peace and get another, successful, placement soon.


  8. To me a failed adoption is when the adoption breaks down and the [adoptive] family no longer keeps the child. Which to me as an adopted person is horrific.

    A birth mother choosing to parent is bittersweet because the adopting parents are suddenly bereft, but in most cases where this happens, it’s the best outcome for the child. As someone who was adopted I think that I can be at peace with my adoption because I know that my birth mother gave me up willingly rather than being coerced. That is so important for me to believe.

    When we (sibling, partner) were adopted “at birth” it was actually a few days after birth. There were no matches – it was more a case of a baby being born and “available” for adoption. I think in that way there was less chance of heartbreak because there was no attachment to a particular baby. I’ve heard adult adoptees bemoaning this system (get what you’re given, so to speak) but to me and people in my family it seemed like a logical way of doing it. You don’t get to choose a baby born to you and you don’t get to choose one you adopt.

    I’m sorry you are struggling with this right now. We can’t predict what might happen but I am just hoping that the worst case scenario remains that – a scenario – and that you have a positive experience. Statistically I feel you’ve had a rough ride so far so you must be due some good news soon!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’ve heard of families who do not keep children as they age, and it breaks my heart. Adoption or biological, it’s just not okay. At least not in my mind.
      And thank you for your hope that worst case scenario doesn’t happen to us. I desperately hope that once we are matched it goes smoothly and is in the best interests of EVERYONE involved.


  9. I feel so sad for them during this time. That is a hard thing to handle especially if they have been with the birth mom for a long amount of time before the baby was born. I am sending my thoughts and prayers for them during this difficult time. & Your fears are completely valid; it is such a hard reality for us adoptive parents. Sometimes I ask my self when does the pain end because it seems never ending. We must overcome the fear because some day; some way we will become parents and that is what we need to fixate on. The joy that it will bring us.


  10. I’m so sorry for your friend and her partner, they must really be hurting right now. I have no words to give you, I hope that it all goes well for you and can only wish you the best.


  11. Oh gosh, so heartbreaking for that family. I would be scared about this too. How could you not be? Hoping that your process is smooth and that you don’t wind up having to experience this pain. X


  12. Hugs! Hoping for you that this will not be your reality and that your first placement will be your forever child. XOXO. I’m sorry to your friends – I can only imagine the pain they must be feeling right now.


  13. The same thing happened with my cousin and his wife. It’s so heartbreaking. It seems no matter your path to parenthood, there is always the chance that something could happen to take it all away.


  14. It must be heartbreaking for that to happen – I would have the same fear. For the whole stressful process to culminate in everything falling through is just too hard to bear.


  15. I’m so sorry for your friend. I couldn’t even begin to imagine how much fear and anxiety is attached to adoption and the potential that you spend so much time and effort into being a parent only to be told never mind at the end.


Thoughts? I love hearing from you!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: