The hardest parts are often left unsaid. Collectively, society has decided to brush all the negativity under the rug. Remember this – it is okay to feel sad and it is okay to feel alone. You have been through a tough emotional and physical journey, and there might be triggering reminders everywhere you look. What you need is a safe haven. A place where you can feel reassured with your emotions and speak your feelings.
Post adoption resources are available to all birth parents once the adoption process has been completed. Your adoption experts at Adoption Choices of New York will walk you through the right post adoption care that is appropriate for the healing you need. Fortunately, there are many local counseling groups that specialize in support for birth mothers after adoption. Information regarding counseling and support groups will be provided to you before the placement. Reach out to your adoption experts if you have any questions.
Legal Process After Birth
Before we move on, let’s discuss what happens after you give birth. The adoptive parents and their attorney will attend the finalization in court. Your attorney may also attend via telephone. Our adoption experts at Adoption Choices of New York will be present in court if the hearing is local.
We will set you up with post adoption services if you feel like that is the right path for you. Counseling does not have a set expiration date and can be lifelong if needed. Remember that pre-placement counseling services come at no cost to you, and that birth mothers may also be able to obtain additional, post-placement, services at no cost.
The Benefits of Support Groups
1) Speak Your Feelings
Although you might have felt confident about your choices during the adoption period, it is natural to still have doubts. You might especially feel ashamed and might doubt your ability to become a mother in the future. There may be things you feel uncomfortable sharing with friends or family members, or believe they might not understand. While attending a support group, you will ncounter birth mothers or parents who are experiencing the same emotions.
This is a safe space. Being surrounded by families who are going through this journey will allow you to share your stories freely without fear of being judged. By sharing your stories, it will help you learn to accept and validate the decisions you have come to. Other parents will empathize with your situation and might even offer tips on what they’ve been doing on their own healing journey.
2) Spreading the Love
All parents will grieve differently after placing their child, however, what everyone will need is the mutual understanding and respect from the group, yourself included. One of the main reasons for seeking out a support group is to build a sense of community and a foundation for lifelong friendships. When going through adoptions, any step you take to move forward is triumphant and worthy of celebration. Having a support system is similar to having your own cheerleaders to commemorate the little moments of healing.
3) Feeling Fine By Yourself
At the end of the day, despite having your support group and family members, you will still need to rely on yourself. After getting familiarized with other people, it might be difficult to adjust yourself at home. Support groups are a great way to develop self judgment and obtain healthy coping skills for the future. But do not fret if you ever need to reach out for comfort, that is part of being human.
What to Talk About
Once you have made the decision to go to a support group, you might wonder what speaking your feelings actually means. The short answer is that you should say the things that will make your heart feel lighter. Typically, many support groups will have predetermined topics up for discussions corresponding to the day. It is up to you to decide how much of your story you might want to discuss.
There is no pressure for you to pour out every detail but you should speak enough to get the reassurance that you need from other birth mothers. What you shouldn’t discuss is intimate information regarding the adoption or anything negative about your child’s new family. It is neither healthy nor necessary for your healing time. You need to remember that this is a safe place with no constraints and the people attending along with group leaders will be patient with you. Don’t feel frustrated if you are unable to speak the first visit, you also need to give yourself some time to process the situation.
Aside from talking about the adoption or how to move on from it, you can also talk about lighthearted things like book or movie recommendations, an event in the area, new recipes, etc.
Finding the Right Support
At Adoption Choices of New York, our adoptive parents pay a fee to cover any and all counseling and support groups through us. Our adoption experts will help you choose the best and most beneficial option with you. There are also nationwide support groups like Brave Love, BirthMom Buds, and On Your Feet Foundation that provide post adoption mentoring and retreats for birth mothers.
If your area doesn’t provide any support group, it might be an adventurous opportunity to create your own. This way, you can decide how you speak your feelings and create a space for other birth mothers in the community to feel like they have a platform. Whatever you decide to do, don’t forget to take care of yourself first. You are a strong and brave individual and the world is glad to have you back.
Adoption Choices of New York
For more information on adoption or if you are currently in the process of adopting a baby and have any questions or concerns, feel free to contact, Adoption Choices of New York.
About the Author
Lisa Truong is an undergraduate journalism major at the University of Denver. She is minoring in writing and Chemistry. She has been commended by professors for her news stories as well as creative writing.
During her freshman year, her essay “See Ya on the Other Side” was displayed at a writing exhibition sponsored by the University of Denver. That essay later went on to be published in Many Voices One DU, a book also sponsored by the university.
Lisa frequently volunteers to be a leader at the Daniels School of Business for their quarterly Ethics Boot Camp where students learn about the importance of character in business. In her free time, Lisa enjoys watching animated movies with her mother, listening to music, going for bike rides, and eating breakfast food.
“Birth Parent Support Groups and Resources.” Birth Mother Thoughts. Accessed August 19, 2019. https://birthmotherthoughts.com/life-after-adoption/birth-parent-support-groups-and-resources/.
“How to Choose the Right Support Group.” Mayo Clinic. June 26, 2018. Accessed August 19, 2019. https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/stress-management/in-depth/support-groups/art-20044655.
“The Benefits of an Adoption Support Group.” Adoption.org. Accessed August 19, 2019. https://adoption.org/benefits-adoption-support-group.