Monday, October 3, 2011

An email

Yesterday was a busy day: church at 9:00, Youth Group at 11:00, a friend's birthday lunch at 12:30, meeting with a student at 3:00, and dinner with a friend at 6:00. Whew. In the midst of all of that, we managed to come home mid-afternoon. A friend had made curtains for our closet in the nursery and gave them to me yesterday, and I happily hung them up. While in the nursery, I decided to check my email on my phone, and was surprised with an email from an expectant mother considering adoption. My heart immediately started beating fast, and I was excited that as I read the email she sounded like a real person. (We have gotten a few emails so far, but they all were very clearly not "real" or scams or something, so I deleted those right away.) She had seen our profile online.

However, my heart sank when she said she is only 9 weeks pregnant. On a purely emotional level, that due date just feels SO far away right now. On a practical/ cautious level, that is a long time for her to weigh her options, decide to parent, etc (rightfully so), as well as a long time to potentially need money for expenses. 
My husband and I then did some intense googling. We had her name and the state she lived in, and found some things on the internet that looked like she was indeed a real person. It's amazing what you can find on the internet. We talked, talked, and talked. We had hardly any information, but we still managed to talk about this possibility off and on for the entire day. What was her situation? What were we comfortable with? What should we email back?
We forwarded the email to our lawyer, and asked what she thought. The expectant mother had said in her email to us that she had also contacted our attorney, so we asked our lawyer if she had indeed been contacted (she had). We replied to her email with something that we hoped was simple, brief, kind, and non-committal, and said we are glad she contacted our lawyer and that we will let her guide all of us on the next steps from here.
After praying and talking through the situation, my husband I decided a few things. These are based on the small amount of information we have at the moment, and if our attorney finds out more, things could change one way or the other. We may never hear from her again. Or there may be things that come up that are deal breakers for us - drug or alcohol use, financial needs, etc.
But, for now, we decided we are not comfortable "matching" with her until she is further along in her pregnancy (24 weeks seems acceptable in my mind. Maybe 20 at minimum?). I don't expect her to "wait" for us, but if other things fall into place like it could be a good match, maybe she would. But maybe it just also means she is not the right match for us. We also decided that her financial needs will be an important factor in our comfort level with this particular situation.
Our attorney emailed her this morning, and also asked if she could call her. We are waiting to hear if she responds and what new information our attorney has if she does. I have been praying for this woman and her baby.
Any advice on a possible situation this early in the pregnancy?
PS - I almost feel silly for even writing about it, because we may never hear anything from her again...it is FAR from a real match. But it's been a big development on our adoption journey, and will be a learning experience one way or another...
ETA - If you know me in real life, please don't say anything! We don't want to broadcast every small possibility that is out there :)

13 comments:

Kate said...

Said a prayer for you!

cjdubs13 said...

Exciting to have some change in the waiting process! I would be very careful which it sounds like you know and are. Keep us posted!

Rach said...

I dont blame you for waiting. 9 weeks is really early. The agency we went with wouldnt match until the birth mom was in her 3rd trimester.

Jen said...

I'm just curious why you say you won't match with her until she is further along in her pregnancy? I am no adoption expert by any means, just wondering if it is common to match early or later in the pregnancy? Is that purely based on the added expense of paying her expenses from such an early time or to minimize the chance of having a birth mother change her mind or a combination of both?

Cassandra said...

Being so early can be a good and bad thing. It would give you time to be a part of the pregnancy right from the beginning (if that is something that is desired from both sides) but it also leaves more time to grow attached only to have her decide to parent or have the father contest the adoption plan. We too were contacted by a girl wanting us to parent her baby (she was 11 weeks). We met and agreed and she then miscarried three weeks later...

A said...

will definitely be praying! i'd love to have the link to your profile, if you have a minute and want to email it to me!! :)

Betty Rubble said...

I can honestly say that no matter when your match is made--9 weeks or 9 months that until your baby is placed in your arms you worry that the birth parents will change their minds Don't let fear drive you-that was the best advice I got when we were waiting for Isaac to arrive.

I do agree however that you have to have non negotiable NO GOES in place--regardless of how far along Mom is. This not only protects her but you as well.

Follow your heart-you will know when the right match is made!

Leah said...

My advice is don't rule anything out. Like you said, you may not hear from this woman again, but at the same time, this woman may be carrying your child, and with that brings a lot of hope. Thinking of you! :)

Miss Jill and Mister John said...

How exciting!

However with what I know now, I would really try and talk myself out of engaging in a match that is much under 6 months (maybe 5 months if it was right for us). The reason I would be cautious is the time you'd invest if it fell apart. We waited (and spent money) on our first failed match from March-late July and then we disolved our match at the birth of the baby. Aside from the heartache of the loss and the loss of money, the loss of time weighed heavy on my heart. All while we were matched and waiting, other opportunities flew by us. In heat of the loss, I felt like we may have lost our "real match" while we were intertwined w/this match that fell apart. (Of course, I know now that the perfect baby for us was waiting for us... God's plan is best!)

That said, I would be so excited and tempted! If you do decide to pursue further, I'd want to know the dynamics between E-mom and her parents, aunts, E-father's family, etc. I always feel like the extended family can step in at any time to change the game too. Esp when it's so early in the pregnancy. If you engage in conversations with the E-mom, a tough question I'd want answered is what would change her mind.... if someone said they'd support her, would she parent? It's a hard question to ask but it is very telling.

You are in my prayers!

Britney said...

I think God has given you wisdom. Yes, pray for this dear woman and her baby. I also think it is smart to not agree to a match right now. So much can change. Our agency wouldn't allow matches until the 3rd trimester. It's better for you and for her.

Rosie said...

Keeping my fingers crossed for you. How exciting! Even the possibility makes me smile for you :)

Melody said...

I think you are wise to wait for the "match" to be made til later. So much can happen and change and you are very wise to pray and hope but not get so flipped out with excitement that you set yourself up for a major let down. The good thing in all this is that the Lord has ordered your steps! And this email and sign of interest has not taken Him by surprise at all. It might be to help you guys really think through some non-negotiables. We had those and then everything changed at the last minute and we were looking at a birthmother with some issues we had marked "no" to on paperwork in the beginning. God had softened our hearts and changed our thinking, not out of desperation but rather in His sovereignty. I'm excited about this email and I'm praying along side ya'll for this birthmother and the child she's carrying.

Kellie said...

Our sons birthmom was 14 weeks when she contacted us and we matched shortly thereafter because she had done so much to show us that she wanted us and was serious. As you can see, she did go through with it so I wouldn't say an early match is a bad thing. In our case, she was panicked and until she had a plan in place, she was very unsettled. Matching with her gave us both that assurance.
We had a lot of emails that came through and didn't pan out too. But you never know when it might be the real one. Praying for you!
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