June 2017

Adoption and Us

A common question we’re asked when we tell people of our fertility issue is whether we would ever consider adoption. And we both automatically always answer yes. Not only is this something we would consider, but if our IVF journey continues to be unsuccessful, it’s something we would definitely look into very seriously.

Obviously, everyone wants to have their own baby and experience the joy of seeing how they inherited Dave’s nose, or my argumentative nature. I can’t think of anything lovelier than having a mini Dave running around causing chaos. In addition I can’t imagine going through life without experiencing the feeling of carrying a baby inside me and giving birth to him or her, despite the horror stories I’ve heard from some of my friends! I feel that is something every woman should have the opportunity to experience at least once, and naturally it breaks my heart that I may never get to go through that.

However, one of the main reasons Dave and I want to have a baby is because we want to be parents. We want to experience every single thing that you do as a mum and dad venturing into the world of parenthood; the pregnancy, the birth, bringing baby home, feeding, changing nappies, first tooth, first steps, first word, starting school, riding a bike, learning to swim, birthdays, Christmas, holidays, homework, teenage rebellion, arguments, tears and tantrums, relationships, leaving school, first job etc. We want to feel and experience every single moment of life as parents. We want to soak it up, capture it in our hearts and forever know that we would go into it with love, compassion and such a willingness to be the best mum and dad that we could possibly be.

So does it matter if we experienced this with a child that wasn’t biologically our own? No, to us, it really doesn’t. I’m not passing any judgement on anyone who doesn’t agree with me. I can perfectly understand why adoption is not for everyone. However, Dave and I have so much love to give, and if we weren’t able to have our own child, we don’t see any reason why we couldn’t give that love to another child that needed it.

At present I haven’t done much research into the adoption process as we are concentrating on our IVF and trying to put all our energy and focus on that. However, I do know that the hoops you have to jump through to be considered as potential adopters are very extensive and stringent although this can only be a good thing. It certainly isn’t an area where you want to see slack acceptance criteria.

I also know that if you are open to adopting a child of any age, then the waiting list is not as long as it is for a baby, which I believe is approximately five years. If Dave and I did end up adopting we would ideally want a baby, as we would want to raise the child in our own way and unfortunately you may not be able to do this with an older child. Although that sounds terrible, that is one criteria that we are quite set on, as we want to experience being parents from as early in a child’s life as possible.

Other than that, we are open to anything. The child doesn’t need to be from this country, we don’t care if it’s a boy or a girl, all we care about is having our own child that we can love and cherish and bring up as part of our family.

A potential downside of adoption and I imagine one of the biggest fears for adoptive parents is the chance that one day the child might come to you and ask about their birth parents and want to get in touch with them. I can’t imagine how hard that must be for adoptive parents, however I heard a story recently that was so heart-warming, it made me view adoption in an even more positive light.

A man we know in his 40’s had been adopted as a child and despite always thinking of his adoptive parents as his mum and dad, he had naturally always wondered about his birth parents, where they were, if they were still alive, and why they had given him up for adoption. As he was getting older he decided that he wanted to try and trace his birth mother. He successfully tracked her down to Ireland, got in touch with her and arranged to go over to meet her. I’m not sure what he expected, but unfortunately the meeting didn’t go as well as he had thought it might. He said later that she was a nice enough woman, but he got no answers from her and felt absolutely no connection or bond to her whatsoever. He realised upon leaving Ireland that he had no desire to ever see her again. His adoptive parents were the only parents that he had ever known, and whether biological or not, they were his mum and dad. Despite always being close to them, that really made their relationship even closer, and he was so thankful that they had adopted him as a child.

This story really made me see how selfless an act adoption can be, and how you can really change a child’s life for the better. Obviously, not all adopted children will act or react as this man did; some may never express a wish to find or know their birth parents, and some may find them and form a relationship with them. However, no matter what happened, Dave and I would always treat any adopted child exactly like we would our own, and would love and support them through all their choices in life.

Whilst adoption is not something we have started investigating yet, it is definitely something we would consider in the future if IVF did not work for us. In fact, we have also said that even if we did successfully have our own child, adoption is something that we would never rule out. Whatever happens, we are determined to be parents one way or another.

adoption

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3 thoughts on “Adoption and Us”

  1. Hi Rachel,

    I’ve just read through your blog and I can relate to everything you’ve said, we’ve just had our 3rd cycle fail and it’s devastating.

    We’re at that stage now where we have to make a decision on what’s next. We always said we’d try 3 Ivfs and then think about other options. The stages after that would be embryo donation, then adoption. We’ve done 3 ivf rounds so it’s time for that conversation. The blocker for me is that my brother was killed 3 years ago and if I don’t have my own genetic children, that’s the end of our family line which kills me. Like you said, it’s not about whether we’d love the child or not because of course we would, genetic link or not. But it’s about that age old need to pass you DNA on and in my family I’m the only one left who can do that. Tough choices.

    Anyway, I’m sorry to read that your cycle failed too. I hope once recovered you can come back stronger and hit it again, that’s what I’m hoping to do. Ivf is such a brutal process, I’m so happy that so many people are writing blogs and talking about it, so that we can stop it being such a taboo subject.

    Take care and I hope you both get your dream soon.

    Jessica xx
    (infertilityandlife)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Jessica, thank you so much for your lovely comment and I’m so sorry about your 3rd round failing; I can only begin to imagine how you must be feeling right now. One round failing was bad enough but I really think I would have reached my limit after 3 failed rounds. I take my hat off to you that you made it that far and I hope you manage to make a decision about what you want to do going forward.
      I’m so terribly sorry to hear about your brother and I completely know what you mean about the family line; whilst adoption is a great option, there is something sad about thinking an adopted child would never look like either one of us, or perhaps not inherit some of our traits. I would love to have a miniature of my husband running around lol.
      In a way it has been such a comfort to me that people like yourself have reached out to me; it makes me feel less alone, which is exactly how I felt at the beginning of our IVF journey, and that has all been because of my blog, so I’m so glad I decided to do it.
      I look forward to reading how you get on in the future – my thoughts are with you and I’m sending you a huge virtual hug.
      Take care xxx

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I’m the same, I felt so isolated before I started my blog and all of a sudden a whole new world opened up! I’m so glad I took the plunge to do it!
        I agree about the traits as well. I admit that I’ve always hoped we might have a boy and that he might inherit my brothers eyes, or laugh, or ability to get in to mischief! I know it’s not a definite, but just the chance to still have something of his character in our lives was definitely something I was hoping for. Going for a donor embryo or adoption completely stops that possibility of course. I dunno, I said I’d only do this 3 times, just because it’s so brutal, but making the decision to stop was always going to be a tough one. We’re waiting to see our consultant before deciding.
        I look forward to reading more of your story too, take care xxx

        Like

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