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Thread: Need advice for a friend

  1. #1
    Pleaky is offline INCIIDer - A Community Creator
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    Default Need advice for a friend

    Pat - I'm not sure where to post to you so I'm going to try here. (I welcome anyone's experienced opinion too). I'll try to be brief but give some background.

    DH and I adopted DS 4 years ago from Ukraine. Our experience was wonderful and I shared it with 2 close friends from high school who, like me, married later in life and did not have children. One of my friends followed my lead, and she and her DH adopted from Ukraine about 1.5 years later. We are all now 48/49 years old.

    Our third friend told us that she and her DH had chosen not to have a family (he had 2 children from a previous marriage), so we were quite surprised when she told us a few months ago that they were attempting a domestic adoption. I was very concerned that at their age, the likelihood of being selected by birthparents was low, but to my surprise, they did get selected. They were using the services of an adoption coordinator (I think that's the term?). A few times, our friend hinted that she had some concerns. She then, quite unexpectedly, lost her sister a few weeks ago. One week after that she sent us an email saying they changed their minds, and that this is not the person they want to share this journey with (I think she means the birthmom). My gut is she is making an emotional decision at a difficult time. I want to gently open the conversation up, because the only concrete thing she told my other friend is that the bmom has missed some Dr appts.

    So, my question. I am so unfamiliar with domestic adoption, but missing some appts. doesn't seem like unexpected behavior to me. My friend has a need to be in control, and I want to counsel her (again, if this is indeed the only issue) that she needs to take a step back, but maybe this really is a major issue? Apparently she also had a very heated discussion with the coordinator, who told her she has never been spoken to that way, so again I suspect my friend is lashing out due to the stress of the last few weeks.

    If she were 25, I would remind myself it's none of my business, but she is 48 going on 49, and she really doesn't have the luxury of time. Also, she will tell me only what she wants to tell me, so I'm not afraid to at least venture the topic. I won't pursue it if she doesn't want to.

    What are your thoughts? Is missing some Dr's appointments very concerning? FYI, the bmom is in her late 20s/early 30s. She has 4 children already (all by the same father), although this baby is by a different man. She is poor. My friend did not mention anything about drug use or alcohol problems. The bmom did send photos of her children as well as an ultrasound. The children all looked healthy, smiling, etc.

    How can I help my friend?

    Pleaky

  2. #2
    pepperlc is offline INCIIDer - A Community Creator
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    What a tough situation. She is probably making decisions in her grief but she might also be trusting her instincts. She might just get a sense that this woman is not really serious about going through with the adoption and she doesn't want to get her heart broken later. Or she isn't thinking clearly.

    We adopted domestically but were not chosen by the birthmother until after she gave birth. This woman was the same age as me and already had a child by the same father. But she gave birth to twins (she knew). It think it took her time to decide if she could raise two more babies. There was a point after we met her that she told us that she wanted to keep one of them (through the lawyer). We said we would have no part of that. When we started to back away she agreed to place both for adoption.

    I would just sit down over coffee with her and talk about whats going on. Just be there for her. We were lucky in that in Florida the birthparents can't sign their parental rights away until 72 hours after the birth but once its signed they can't change their minds. Other states have rules that the birth parents have 30 days to change their minds. That is a very difficult situation because you are raising that child and 29 days later they can change their minds.

    I hope this helps you some with your friend. Many prayers to her.
    karen

  3. #3
    Pleaky is offline INCIIDer - A Community Creator
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    Default Thank you

    Quote Originally Posted by pepperlc View Post
    What a tough situation. She is probably making decisions in her grief but she might also be trusting her instincts. She might just get a sense that this woman is not really serious about going through with the adoption and she doesn't want to get her heart broken later. Or she isn't thinking clearly.

    We adopted domestically but were not chosen by the birthmother until after she gave birth. This woman was the same age as me and already had a child by the same father. But she gave birth to twins (she knew). It think it took her time to decide if she could raise two more babies. There was a point after we met her that she told us that she wanted to keep one of them (through the lawyer). We said we would have no part of that. When we started to back away she agreed to place both for adoption.

    I would just sit down over coffee with her and talk about whats going on. Just be there for her. We were lucky in that in Florida the birthparents can't sign their parental rights away until 72 hours after the birth but once its signed they can't change their minds. Other states have rules that the birth parents have 30 days to change their minds. That is a very difficult situation because you are raising that child and 29 days later they can change their minds.

    I hope this helps you some with your friend. Many prayers to her.
    karen

    I think you are right - I just need to sit down with her and let her talk. She keeps things very close to the vest, which I understand, but as an adoptive parent, I wish she would open up to me a bit more so I could help her. The bmom is in Louisiana, by the way. I have no clue what their timeline is for termination of parental rights.

    This has really opened my eyes to the challenges of domestic adoption. In some ways, I think international was easier. Although it is frustrating to know almost nothing about my son's bmom, I also didn't agonize through the pregnancy about what she was or wasn't doing, and we didn't have the fear that after months of waiting she would pull out.

    Thanks for your thoughts.

    Pleaky

  4. #4
    pepperlc is offline INCIIDer - A Community Creator
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    Each has their pros and cons. I'm not sure if you will find some info here that might help. You are a good friend.

    http://library.adoption.com/articles/louisiana.html

  5. #5
    Pleaky is offline INCIIDer - A Community Creator
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    Wow - what a difference a day makes. I learned today that the reason they backed away was the bmom was stringing along 4 families, and had bilked at least one family out of 7K. The FBI is now involved and plan to arrest her. I did not learn this directly from the couple trying to adopt, but from the other couple that adopted from Ukraine after DH and I did.

    I almost feel relieved, knowing my friend made an informed decision and not an emotional one due to her sister passing away so suddenly. My heart still aches for them. Apparently her DH wants to throw in the towel. While I understand that, I hope they persist and find a happy ending. Keep them in your prayers.

    Pleaky

  6. #6
    pepperlc is offline INCIIDer - A Community Creator
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    I'm so glad that you found out what was going on. So sad.
    hugs
    karen

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