When things get tough, we tend to be our own worst enemy.
Instead of moving forward and looking for solutions, we dwell on our problems and blame ourselves.
If you’re facing an unplanned pregnancy and considering adoption for your baby, you may find yourself in this predicament.
From questioning whether you’re a good person to worrying about how your parents will react to your decision, it’s easy to focus on the negative.
Thing is, the only person who can get you out of your funk is the one who got you into it: you.
Here are 10 negative thoughts you need to banish from your mind right now as you consider adoption for your baby.
1. I’m a bad person.
Sometimes life throws us a curve ball, and an unplanned pregnancy is one of them.
Looking back, you may be beating yourself up for some of the choices you made. But bad choices don’t make you a bad person.
The fact that you’re being honest with yourself and taking responsibility for your actions is a move in the right direction.
Don’t let your current situation bring you down. Learn from it instead.
2. I don’t need help.
Whether it’s out of pride or the fear of being judged, this is something that many expectant mothers tell themselves when dealing with an unplanned pregnancy.
But deciding your future and your baby’s is a complicated process and you can’t do it alone.
No matter how committed you are to your placement plan, you’ll need to lean on other people.
Don’t be afraid to reach out to counsellors, adoption professionals and birthmother support groups for assistance. That’s what they’re there for.
They can help you process your emotions so that you can make an informed decision when you’re ready, whatever it may be.
3. My parents are going to kill me.
You know your parents better than anyone and how they’ll react to the news of your unplanned pregnancy. But their response may surprise you.
They may agree that adoption is the best choice. Or they may encourage you to parent and offer you assistance and support.
The thing is, you won’t know until you tell them. So regardless of what you think the outcome will be, don’t be afraid to share your plans with them and see what they have to offer.
4. Maybe my relationship with the baby’s father will improve after we become parents.
When it comes to an unplanned pregnancy, expectant mothers will do everything they can to make the best of their situation. But it’s important to know your limits and to be realistic.
If your relationship with your baby’s father isn’t rock solid now, bringing a child into the mix won’t make it better. If anything, it will make the situation worse.
Being a parent is a huge commitment, one that requires all kinds of sacrifices and compromises. That can be extremely stressful on a relationship.
If you don’t feel that your baby’s father can bring love and stability to your future baby’s life, don’t bring him into it. And to sidestep problems down the road, be sure to tell him, directly or indirectly, about your adoption plan.
5. What if…
It’s hard to know what the future will hold. But when you’re considering adoption for your baby, one of the things you’ll need to do is picture what your life could look like in the years ahead.
Once again, be honest with yourself. Instead of focusing on what you wish your life look like if you placed or parented, think about what it will actually be like.
6. If only…
Regrets are part of life. We all have them. But punishing yourself for things you’ve done in the past won’t change a thing.
What’s done is done. Focus on the here and now. Take things one day at a time and make every moment count.
7. A good mother would never give her child away.
First of all, you’re not giving your child away. You’re looking at your options, and adoption is one of them.
With adoption, you can create a loving plan that includes choosing your baby’s adoptive parents and keeping in touch with them in the years to come.
If a good mother is someone who does what’s best for her child, then by that definition you are a good mother. Whether you raise your child or not doesn’t diminish your love for her or your title as “mother.”
8. I’m terrified my child will grow up hating me.
Adoption isn’t what it used to be. Openness and honesty have replaced shame and secrets.
Unlike adoptions in the past, you can have a say in choosing your child’s parents and watch him grow up.
Because you’re be part of his life, you can answer your child’s questions about his adoption directly. That way he will always know where he came from, who you are, and that your decision was made out of love.
9. Will I ever see my child again?
Open adoption gives you a chance to keep in touch with with your child after placement and share in her life.
Whether it be through phone calls, emails, text, Facebook, Skype or visits, you can get regular updates about your child, and even be part of family events and get-togethers.
Each open adoption arrangement is different, and some work better than others. It will be up to you and the hopeful adoptive parents to work out what works best for you based on your child’s best interests.
10. The adoptive parents are more deserving of my baby than I am.
It’s tempting to look at an adopting parents’ parent profile and think they’ve got it made.
Keep in mind that a parent profile is a marketing tool that is designed to show the couple in the best light possible.
Behind those happy smiles, nice homes and scenic vacation shots are real people with real lives and, just like you, real challenges.
As you’re reading their letter or looking at their photos, avoid the trap of comparing yourself and feeling like your life is lacking in some way.
No matter how perfect or deserving they may seem to you, keep in mind that you are your child’s mother until you sign the adoption papers and you have nothing to be ashamed about.
Creating an adoption plan for your baby is hard but it’s no reason to get down on yourself. By removing these phrases from your vocabulary, you’ll find the strength and peace to make the choice that’s right for you and your baby.
Want to learn more about placing your baby for adoption?
Looking for adoptive parents for your baby? Check out our profiles of adoption-ready parents.