Nolee, I was so alarmed by your story and your comment that I could hardly sleep. Please, please, please keep your baby. You say that you are struggling with depression and alcohol and that you want to work on these problems before you become a mother. Well, I have news for you. I bet if you give your child up for adoption these problems will become even worse. Adoption could make your depression ten times, no, a hundred times, no, a thousand times worse, and with your predilection to alcohol you may very well turn to drink even more in order to cope. As first mothers before you have found, once you are pregnant you are already an expectant mother and once you give birth you will be a mother, even if you never parent that child.
You say that you are confused now that you have found First Mother Forum and are hearing a perspective that is different from what you are used to about adoption. Well, let the fog clear, my dear. The universe has just given you an incredible blessing. It has opened your eyes to the truth about adoption before you make what could potentially be the biggest mistake of your life.
And you are so blessed to have family that wants to help you. Please let them. Your baby on the way is a valuable, integral, and important member of YOUR family. He or she has a right to be a part of the family. The family that he or she will resemble both in looks and personality and whose heritage and ancestry he or she shares. Please do not take that away from this child. You really do not have that right. You also mentioned that you parents are pushing fifty and at that age you don’t want to burden them with another baby in the house. Well, I must admit I chuckled over that one. People in early middle age are hardly ancients who can barely move. 50 is the new 30! Based on my calculations your parents were not much older than you are now when they had you. And 22/23 is a great age to have a baby. You are an adult but still plenty young enough to keep up with an active child.
And please, please read more of Kellie’s blog, especially her family’s adoption story (links below) and see how the loss of a child to adoption affects the entire family. Kellie thought she was doing the right thing by encouraging her unmarried pregnant daughter to give her grandchild up in a kinship adoption and the whole thing blew up in her face.
You go on to mention that the agency will provide counseling for the child. Well, I can tell you that there is no counseling on earth that can resolve the fact the one was given away, yes, GIVEN AWAY, by one’s own parents. And I bet they also told you how wonderful and prepared (i.e. financially secure) the potential adoptive parents will be. My natural mother was told the same thing, and yet my adoptive parents divorced when I was a toddler and my adoptive father never contributed any more to my support. In this day and age (and I am speaking of U.S. culture, as I am not very familiar with Peruvian culture) it is even more likely that the parents will split up. So please do not compare your present day situation to that of the potential adoptive parents since these circumstances can and will change.
And one last thing, I am reading that you feel guilty and consider yourself a burden to your family because you made a ‘mistake’. Well, there is no need to feel that way. It sounds as if you have a wonderfully supportive, loving family who truly want to be there for you. And even if you did make a ‘mistake’, so what? Join the club. We all do. So often we all want to plan our lives and think we know best when and how something should occur. But we are not always right. Perhaps as time goes on you will see that this was, in fact, the best time for you to become a mother.
I can only hope that you do not end up as another person who thinks she is making the right decision by choosing adoption and then when all is said and done, and it can’t be undone, feels like she was hit by a sledgehammer when she realizes what a devastating choice adoption really is. I do wish we could lead a horse to water and make her drink.
As an adult adoptee, I hope that you will heed our words. And also remember that while most of us will be far from you geographically, the bloggers and readers of All in the Family of Adoption, First Mother Forum, and the other family preservation blogs will be there to cheer you on.
Godspeed, Nolee. Please keep us posted.