If you are facing an unplanned pregnancy and considering placing your child for adoption, you probably have a lot of questions (such as, “What do I do?” and “How does it work?”). There is a lot of information on the internet about adoption laws, adoption plans, and adoption agencies who can help find your baby a great home. However, there is less information on the post-adoption experience.
What happens after you place your baby for adoption? Will you be able to go on living your life? Will you be able to see your child? Will you be able to find support through your adoption agency? These are all important questions to ask any adoption agency you consider. Ask about their service offerings throughout the adoption process, including after finalization. The right adoption agency will be honest, supportive, and there for you even after the adoption takes place.
Once you have given birth, you will need some time to heal. You will need to recover physically, and that typically takes about 3-6 weeks. You will also need to heal emotionally, which can take longer. Although adoption is a very positive decision, that can provide wonderful outcomes for your baby, it can also come with feelings of loss. Most birth mothers will experience a grieving period for about 6 weeks after giving birth. This is normal and something you can prepare for with your adoption counselor from the agency.
It is important to find an adoption agency that offers counseling support before, during, and after you make your adoption. Counseling will help you anticipate the feeling of loss, cope with any postpartum grief you are experiencing, and establish positive ways to work through it. For example, Adoptions With Love offers free pre-birth counseling and post-adoption support after adoption, for a full year after placement. There are birth mothers that still contact and stay in touch with Adoptions With Love, even 20-30 years later. Adoption is a lifelong journey, and we remain here for you. We think of birth mothers as part of our family, and we are always here for you – whether you gave birth 18 days or 18 years ago.
Many birth mothers say that the first few months, and first major holidays, after birth are the hardest. However, most birth mothers will also tell you that making an adoption plan was the best possible decision they could have made for their child. They were able to provide their baby with a stable home, loving family, and life full of opportunity. This alone brings most birth mothers great peace of mind.
If you would like, you can also connect with other birth mothers throughout your adoption journey. Your adoption agency can refer you to local support and birth mother groups. Your adoption agency may also set you up to talk with another birth mother who has walked in similar shoes as you.
Care for Yourself
Once you have given birth and your adoption has been finalized, take some time to focus on self-care. You have, after-all, just spent the past 9 months focused on your child and his/her future. Maybe you need some new clothes or need to spend some time with friends or family. This care of yourself does not have to be costly. As long as you shower yourself with self-love and appreciation, you will be glad you took some time to relax and enjoy some quiet downtime.
Find an Outlet
There are many healthy ways to cope with life after adoption. Some women enjoy multiple benefits from meditation, yoga, and journaling. These simple, quiet activities help to calm the mind, relieve stress, and give you time to just breathe. Other women choose to exercise after recovering from birth, which is both physically and mentally beneficial. Every birth mother copes differently and heals at their own pace. Adoptions With Love is always here and can help you determine what works best for you.
Placing your child for adoption does not need to mean “goodbye” forever. Through open adoption, you can keep in touch with an adoptive family. Your adoption agency can help you create an adoption plan with which you are comfortable. Would you like emails once a month, with photos and updates on your baby’s life? Perhaps you would like to see the family at a gathering once or twice a year. There are all kinds of adoption plans, and you and your adoption agency can come up with a plan that puts your mind at ease.
If you would like to learn more about adoption, or life after adoption, please do not hesitate to contact Adoptions With Love. We can help guide you through this process and stay by your side long after the adoption is final. Call us anytime, confidentially, at 1-800-722-7731 or request more information online.
Be sure to read our free eBook: How to Place Your Baby for Adoption.