How do I tell my parents I want to make an adoption plan?

If you are pregnant and considering adoption for your child, you are probably feeling some stress, and you want to figure out how to gain the support and approval of your family and friends.

First, it is important that you have considered all of your options for your pregnancy. You can reach out to a Lifeline pregnancy counselor to talk through your specific situation. When you have thought through your options and determined that adoption is the best choice for you and your baby, then you can begin to consider how other important people in your life will respond to the news that you are choosing to entrust your baby to adoptive parents.

Often, expecting parents are nervous about telling their parents or close family about their adoption plan. However, when women wait to share with their close family about their adoption until the end of the pregnancy, it can often cause additional stress for them as their family members may respond emotionally. Ultimately, this is your decision, and the more time that you give your family members to process your decision and understand your perspective before the baby is born, the more likely they are to support you and wrap around you and your baby, and to accept the adoption plan.

Here are a few helpful things to consider as you prepare to share about your adoption plan with your parents or family members:

  1. Is your family familiar with the concept of “choosing family?” Is there anyone that your family members consider to be family that is not actually a blood relative?

Often parents’ gut fear is that adoption is betraying the child. “Doesn’t blood care for blood?” But then when thinking about their own lives, many people know of people who they consider family that are not actually genetically related to them! This concept can help them understand adoption.

  1. Will your family be excited about this baby?

A new baby is a gift to the world and, if you choose an open adoption, you and your family will be gaining not only a new baby, but also an adoptive family as somewhat of an extension to your family. There will be loss in not seeing your baby every day, but you and your family members can get to know the adoptive couple and see the baby thriving.

  1. How can your family support you?

Again, this is ultimately your decision, not the decision of your family, but it is important that you respect your family members and invite them into the process with you. Preparing with your pregnancy counselor ahead of time, to think through specific ways your family can support you, could be really helpful in guiding the conversation. You could consider things like do you want them to be a part of choosing the adoptive couple or meeting them? Do you want to invite your family to be with you at the hospital, or to have a relationship with the child’s adoptive family?

This probably still sounds like something that will be difficult. The truth is it can be, but you are not alone. There are adoption counselors that want to help you as you walk through your adoption plan and prepare for hard conversations. An adoption counselor could help you talk to your family, and provide support to you both throughout your pregnancy and through your adoption journey. At Lifeline, we have a team of pregnancy counselors that would love to walk through your adoption decision with you.

To begin discussing adoption with a pregnancy counselor today, reach out through our 24/7 FREE, HOTLINE by live chat, text, or phone at 1-800-875-5595.  Or you can submit a request  for one of our Pregnancy Counselors to reach out to you.

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