When people think about the women who place their children for adoption, they may imagine unmarried teenagers who become unexpectedly pregnant.
The fact is, many of the women who choose to place children for adoption are in their 20s and 30s. They may be married or unmarried, but they often have one thing in common: They are already raising a child (or children) of their own. Faced with an unplanned pregnancy, they decide to give a second or third child up for adoption, as they feel it is the best job of parenting they can do for the children they are currently raising as well as the one they are carrying.
If this is the situation you are in, know that you are not alone. Giving a second or third child up for adoption can be an emotionally complicated process, but you will know when it is the right choice for you, your unborn baby and the children you already have. When you are ready to begin, the Law Offices of James Fletcher Thompson can help.
Why Do Women Choose to Give a Second or Third Child Up for Adoption?
If you are facing an unplanned pregnancy and considering giving the baby up for adoption when you already have kids, you probably have a great deal of questions. One of them is probably, “How do I know adoption is the right choice for my family?”
One of the reasons that many birth mothers who are older and already have children choose adoption is because they understand the responsibilities associated with parenting. They are already raising a child (or two or more), and the prospect of raising another may feel too difficult for them financially, physically or emotionally at this time in their life. They may feel they would be unable to continue to provide for the children they are raising while also caring for a newborn, and so they choose adoption as the best option for all involved.
If you are considering adoption for your unborn baby, we encourage you to reach out to our adoption counselors to learn more about the process and the things you should consider before taking this path. Remember, “giving a baby up” for adoption is not “giving up” at all; it’s giving your child the chance at the opportunities in life that you can’t provide at this moment in time.
Will My Child Understand My Choice?
It’s normal to ask, “If I give my second child up for adoption in South Carolina, what will my other children think?”
The answer to this question will likely depend upon the age of your older children. Many children get excited at the presence of a growing belly and the promise of a sibling, but how old they are will dictate their comprehension of the adoption process and your decision to place their sibling with another family.
The most important thing in this case is to be honest with your child, in an age-appropriate way. The adoption of their sibling should not be a taboo topic; it’s one you’ll need to explain and answer questions about not only during your pregnancy but also after you give birth. Adoption is a lifelong process, so be prepared for your older child to have different questions about their sibling’s adoption as they grow up.
When you take the time to discuss your upcoming adoption and respect your older child’s thoughts and opinions, they will better understand your decision and see why it is the best choice for your family.
How Do I Explain My Adoption to My Children?
Talking with older children about giving a second or third child up for adoption can be complicated. Fortunately, there are many resources available to guide you through this conversation.
You will want to make sure you are open and honest with your child about your decision. Start discussing the concept of adoption before explaining your adoption choice. Consider reading these books to your children and asking them if they have any questions about how adoption works:
- “Sam’s Sister” by Juliet C. Bond
- “The Rainbow Egg” by Linda Hendricks
- “The Mulberry Bird” by Anne Braff Brodzinsky
Before explaining your own adoption decision to your older child, be honest with yourself, as well. Address any emotions you have — and share those with your child. Explain to them that it’s okay to feel sad about the adoption, but remind them that their sibling will be happy, safe and loved with the adoptive family you have chosen. Always use age-appropriate language. For example, with younger children, simply say the new baby is going to live with a family who can’t have a baby of their own, rather than explain the complexities of adoption.
Be there to answer your child’s questions and help them through whatever feelings they may be having. It can be helpful to involve older children in the adoption process; a sibling who meets the adoptive family or gets to say goodbye to the baby at the hospital may be reassured that this is the best choice and be more comfortable with your decision. Depending on your open adoption preferences, your older child may get to grow up knowing the child you placed for adoption.
Above all, make sure your older child understands that they are loved and will always be cared for by you. It can be scary for young children to see a sibling being sent home with another family; they may think the same thing will happen to them. Reassure them that you will always take care of them and the baby placed for adoption will always be their sister or brother, even though they are being raised by someone else.
If you are having difficult explaining your decision to give a second or third child up for adoption to your older child, remember that our adoption professionals are here to help. Our adoption counselors can prepare you for this conversation and make sure you receive the adoption support you need through every step of your process. We know how difficult this decision can be, and we’ve helped many women in your same situation find the right path for them.
Contact our counselors today to learn more about this kind of adoption in South Carolina.