Scared and Alone
My experience with adoption was extremely difficult because I kept my pregnancy a secret from the entire family. The father of the baby and I were the only ones aware of the birth of our child. At the time when I felt so alone, my social worker at Catholic Charities was the one person who reassured me that I was doing a truly wonderful and selfless thing in placing my baby for adoption.
I only turned to Catholic Charities for help in my 9th month of pregnancy after a pregnancy filled with fear, uncertainty and denial. From the moment I met my social worker there, I was never made to feel like I had been irresponsible or that my feelings didn’t matter. I felt safe and was so grateful for the kindness and understanding shown me.
For years after the adoption I have always felt comfortable in contacting Catholic Charities, and they have been so kind in facilitating communication with the adoptive parents. I am so thankful for the services Catholic Charities provides and for the kindness and compassion of their staff.
They truly made one of the most difficult times in my life less lonely, and gave me the support I so desperately needed.
~ Request to remain anonymous
From one adoption to another
The decision to give my child up for adoption was an easy one for me. As a child growing up, I had always known I was given up for adoption by a young couple who decided they could not raise me in the manner I should be raised. Adoption was not a foreign word to me from the day I can remember. Along with knowing I was adopted, my mother was very involved in MCCL and Birthright. I can remember accompanying her to fairs, and other functions where the fetal model displays were set up. Early on in life, we learned the growing stages of a baby during a pregnancy. Those images are burned vividly in my mind. That’s a baby in there – no matter what stage of a pregnancy the mother is in – that’s a baby.
So, when I found myself pregnant, I knew in my heart I could not raise a child, go to college and start a career at the age of 18. I also knew that abortion meant killing a baby. And that is simply wrong. As Catholics we believe abortion is wrong, but bottom line, in my eyes, no matter what faith one is, it is wrong to kill an unborn child.
So, with abortion out of the question and raising a child not being an option, I had one road to go – adoption. I went to counseling and helped choose the parents my child would go to. I had a birth coach who accepted and respected my decision to give my child up for adoption. The nine months flew by quickly, and on September 12th, 1988, I had a beautiful 8 pound little girl whom I named Kayla. Following her birth, Kayla was with me in the hospital for the two days. During those two days she met her grandparents, her aunt and uncle, and her great-grandparents.
I was met with so many comments on “how or why could you give your own flesh and blood up.” I did it because it was the best for her, and it was the best for me. I knew she was going to a household that desperately wanted a baby and who could do the things for her I could not.
The hardest part of my story was leaving the hospital without a baby and seeing my dad cry for the first and only time. Was it the easiest thing in the world to do? No, it wasn’t. Do I regret the decision I made? No, I would do it all the same again. It takes strength and commitment, but it was the right decision.
~ Kristen, Adoptee & Birthparent
The Best Thing
I found out 2 days before I delivered my daughter that I was having a baby. I had my daughter and I had to think about the right thing to do for her. It took me a couple of days, but then I decided that adoption was the best thing to do. Why? Because I was not ready for her and her dad had medical problems. The family that adopted her left her name what I had names her. We are in contact and I pictures as part of our open adoption. Open adoption is a great way to watch them grow up.
~ Requests to remain anonymous
A Catholic Identity
We decided to place our little girl for adoption through Catholic Charities because for one thing we’re Catholic. We got married in the Catholic Church and they really seemed to be very nice and cooperative with us and understanding. We’ve really enjoyed all the support they’ve given us and the couple that adopted our little girl.
~ Mike and Jodi
An adoptee, a birthmother, and an adoptive parent
Two months ago, I become an adoptive parent and also completed the triad of adoption. As an adoptee, a birthmother, and an adoptive parent, I have experiences adoption from all sides. When I was 18, I experienced an unplanned pregnancy. After considering my options, my family and I decided adoption would allow me to continue my education and my birth daughter would grow up with a family who was in a better place financially. Although it was a heart breaking decision at the time, I have not regretted it, as it allowed me to continue my education and my birth daughter and I would not struggle to make ends meet. All experiences with adoption, I hope will allow me to be able to give my adopted son some insight on his journey.
~ Requests to remain anonymous
My parents brought me to Catholic Charities to help me to explore my options. I was only 14 and the biological father was in jail for statutory rape. He was 20. They showed me a video which featured happy adoptive families. I was sold instantly. I knew that I could not provide the quality of like that an adult married couple could.
I felt completely supported by Catholic Charities, 100% accepted and loved. Now I continue to appreciate the role Catholic Charities plays as the intermediary between families. It was important to maintain confidentiality because we feared that my daughter’s biological father might try to find her. I enjoy letters and updates from the adoptive parents while maintaining a closed adoption. I am hoping that someday her adoptive parents will give us their blessing to have a relationship once she is an adult.
~ Request to remain anonymous