And the longer you wait, the harder it gets.
It’s easy to beat yourself up while you’re in a holding pattern. But that won’t help you get chosen any faster. If anything, it will only make things worse.
Here are seven things you need to stop telling yourself while you wait for an expectant mother to pick you.
1. Why would anyone pick us?
Being picked by an expectant mother with an adoption plan is a bit of a crapshoot. You never know when or how it will happen, or who will pick you.
But if you go into the process questioning why any woman would choose you to adopt their baby, you might as well throw in the towel now. Stop being your own worst enemy. Find success by staying positive and proactive in your outreach efforts.
2. We’ve never been chosen for anything before.
Getting chosen by an expectant mother isn’t like high school basketball, where everyone lines up against the wall and waits their turn to get chosen.
There’s no one-size-fits-all approach when it comes to getting selected. Every birthmother is different and is looking for different things. That means that you have as much of a chance of getting chosen as anyone else.
3. We haven’t been picked so far, so why would we get picked now?
Adopting parents don’t come with a “best before” date. Some couples get chosen right away, while others wait longer.
Remember, you’re not trying to appeal to every birthmother—just the one that’s looking for you. And it could happen at any time. In some cases, it just comes down to luck and timing: Being in the right place at the right time.
4. We’re too (insert negative adjective).
From completing your home study to creating your adoption profile, adopting a newborn can be exhausting. Don’t make it harder by second-guessing yourself and doubting whether you’re too old (or any of the things that other couples worry about it) to get chosen.
In most cases, the reason you haven’t been chosen yet has nothing to do with you. It could be something as simple as the right birthmom hasn’t come along yet and seen your parent profile.
5. All of the other couples are (insert positive adjective)
It’s hard to stay hopeful when other couples are getting chosen by a birthmother and you’re not. Especially if they haven’t waited as long as you.
But adopting a baby isn’t a competition or a popularity contest. The reasons others have been chosen isn’t because they’re better than you. It’s because they’re different. And because they matched the criteria of what a birthmother was looking for. And, with any luck, one day your turn will come, too.
6. Even if we do get picked, the birthmother will eventually change her mind.
This is one of the hardest parts of the open adoption process—the reason why many couples go overseas to adopt rather than try to connect with a birthmother domestically.
But just because other couples have had a failed adoption match as a result of an expectant mother changing her mind doesn’t mean that you will too. The key is to create a genuine relationship with a prospective birthmother before the placement and to make sure she’s comfortable with her decision.
7. What if our future child loves his birthmother more than us?
Hold on, one step at a time! Although it’s tempting to look at what your adoption will look like down the road, it’s way too early to jump to conclusions.
Instead of using your time now thinking about all the ways your relationship with your child or your child’s birthmother could fall apart, focus on ways to build and strengthen it. Having a positive attitude is a great way to start!
Waiting to get chosen by an expectant mother is a nerve racking experience. Between all of the uncertainty and the fact that so much is on the line, it’s easy to get overwhelmed by negative thoughts and to think the worse.
But don’t be your own worst enemy. Try to enjoy this time as much as you can, keeping in mind that having a child is never easy and that what you’re going through is just part of the process.
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