Adoption option? - page 2

I'm new to L&D nursing. We have some very young "mom's", some as young as 13 and 14. I've noticed that no one ever mentions adoption. ALL of them are keeping their babies. The grandmothers are... Read More

  1. by   PANurseRN1
    I agree with Deb. "Shaming" people often leads them to desperate (and sometimes bad) choices.
  2. by   KellNY
    I agree with mercy and smiling.

    Please please please keep in mind that adoption "back in the day" was not always a voluntary thing, a selfless act. The young mother was often lied to, tricked, coerced or forced to give up her baby.

    Please see the following links.
    Healing Families Dismembered By Adoption - And Adopting Children BACK!
    Our Trauma
    "birth-" Mothers Exploited By Adoption - Homepage

    I'm not saying they are all 100% true or verifiable. But something must be said about what these families went through.


    I also think of it like this--if I'm a poor 15 year old, pregnant...here are my options. I can have a baby who I know will be at a slight disadvantage (poverty, single parent household, etc), but whom I know will be loved and well cared for. Open adoption or not, my other option is to surrender my child to stangers. Will they spank my child? Abuse her? Teach her hatred and racism? Treat her as a lesser person than their biological children? Be disappointed or want to abandon her if she were to become very sick or mentally ill (and yes, I've seen that)? I have no idea.

    No to mention, there is a high demand for healthy white babies. There is NOT a demand for sick, non-white, drug exposed, and or genetically impure babies (ie mother has CP, MS, mental health issues, etc). So it's not like all of those potentially relinquished babies will float gently into a loving family--many would face years in the system-if not their entire juvenile lives.

    We've stopped breaking up families just to build what we deemed "better" families. We've shown many mothers (yes, they're teenagers, but they are mothers, nonetheless) that they are capable of raising their children and becoming a family unit with that child.

    I'd also like to add that it kinda makes me ill that a teenage parent must always prove herself worthy based on her age alone.
  3. by   Jo Dirt
    Quote from BabyRN2Be
    I agree with MC, that giving up a baby at the age of 15 shows great maturity.
    I have to disagree and say this isn't necessarily true. My sister got pregnant when she was 16 and did all she could to hide it from my mother (father was deceased) but my mother had her suspicions and finally got her to admit it when she was five months along. My mom sent her to a home for young unwed mothers and the baby was put up for adoption to a very nice couple who even encouraged my sister to keep in touch and would send her pictures of the baby. My sister never once called or even wrote a letter to see how the child was doing, but instead looked at the adoption as a good way to get off the hook so she could get back to her self-absorbed narcissistic life (keeps the rearview mirror in her car pointed downward so she can look at herself while she drives...you can see what we're dealing with here.)

    But I see disturbing scenes around here also. In the health department a couple of weeks ago there was a girl who looked about 12 with a newborn and her mother was taking care of them both. It was sad, one of those things you just kind of shake your head at.

    But then, look at Loretta Lynn. Became a mother at 14 (and a grandmother at 28!) Times were different back then, but I believe people also matured at a younger age than they do now.

    When I was in nursing school we learned there was an 8 yr. old child in the care of social services who was pregnant. It literally made me sick to my stomach to hear that and it still disturbs me to think of it.

    It's too bad more people don't consider adoption, though. I agree that most all teenagers are in no condition to care for themselves, much less a child. I'm sure a lot do their best, but unfortunately that is not always good enough.
  4. by   judyblueeyes
    In my area this is a cultural issue.

    The young girls have told me they "want to get their babies out of the way while they are young" because they view later childbirth as a disadvantage. Sometimes they say they "want to give (him) a baby".

    "Giving" him a baby cements the two families without the formality of marriage.

    It is a pretty common practice to pass the baby "up" to the now grandmother (who is usually fairly young herself), who is also now well established with an apartment or house, job, spouse (legal or not), maturity/stability, etc.

    I don't view these situations as "bad" or "good". It's not the 1950's Cleaver's- it's just the way some groups do things.
  5. by   blackberry4eva
    as a young mother, i was also told that i should give my baby up for adoption or have an abortion. all along, i was totally against it and felt as if everyone was against me.even though i was young, i realized my mistake and i loved the wonderful life that grew inside of me. it was not at all about property, it was all about love.how many of you regret having the children that you have? just because you are young doesn't make it any different.everyone makes mistakes and it is not fair to judge people. don't get me wrong, i don't recomend teen pregnancy and know that it is a very challenging experience, but everyone who has had a child at a young age is not doomed to poverty as proven in my experience. i grew up in a good home and my parents were one of the ones who didn't want me to keep the baby, but i made the choice to keep him. i got a job and did not party all the time or gave him to my mother to take care of all the time. she did help me out alot of the time, and god bless, but when i was home and not in school, i took care of him and learned to become the resposible parent that i am today. i am a living witness that you can make it and adoption choices depend on the individual and should not be some sort of generalized thing. i know that in some circumstances, it shoud be the best thing,but it is not our place to judge anybody. leave that for god to do.
  6. by   BabyRN2Be
    Quote from HappyNurse2005
    It's a standard part of our admissions questions, if there is an adoption plan. of course, by the time i get them, they've usually already decided.
    HappyNurse, Just out of curiosity, do you ask everyone this or is this based on marital status? I know that there are couples who are surrogate parents as well as others who are single parents by design. I'm just wondering if everyone is asked this (whether married or not) or do you ask only under certain circumstances?
  7. by   hope3456
    My L&D medical bill pretty much wiped out my savings this year - even after insurance paid 80%.

    I know a 19 y.o. girl (friend of my BIL) who had a baby not long after I did and medicaid picked up the entire tab for medical care. Sorry, but this girl makes minimum wage and is completely dependent on her mother - who also lives at the poverty line - for childcare and living arrangements. The sperm donor is nowhere to be found. I actually suggested to my BIL that he should encourage this friend to consider adoption and he blew up at me.

    Other factors involved, I can't help but think that this baby is gonna have a rough next 18 years - and so is the mother. I can't help but think that if these girls were expected to pay for even a fraction of their medical care from the beginning, even $2000 or so, they would be forced to think about how much it costs to raise a child and would consider adoption.

    I'm in CO, and 1/3 of childbirths are paid for by medicaid in this state. Does anyone else think that seems like a high amount?
    Last edit by hope3456 on Dec 27, '06
  8. by   LovebugLPN
    I absolutely agree with these posts and I was a teenage mom. I had my beautiful son right after graduation. I wanted to put my son up for adoption because I knew that he should not pay for my stupidity. When the father's parents heard about this they blew up at me and told me they would raise the child if I did not keep it. I knew he was better off with me, a teenage mom, then them. I love my son and am so proud of him. He forced me to grow up and provide a better life for the both of us. I know how much I struggled and I had graduated school but I do feel bad for the children of children having babies. I have seen too many welfare generations and I wish there was a way to stop it.
  9. by   HisTreasure
    So not going to get into the Medicaid debate...but I have to say Adoption is good reardless of age. My mom was a young mother. She had my brother at 17. 10 years later; she, as a wife, mother, and nurse adopted me. She is a selfless woman and her choice to keep her baby was based on love, not selfishness or a dysfunctional sense of property. And yes, she lived with her mother below the poverty line. She still managed to pull herself together and provide a great life for herself and her family. I've always lived a well-off life; car at 16, living in a prominent suburb, etc. Not all teen parent stories end badly.

    My biological mother gave me up for adoption and she was 30.

    It is a sad world when parents encourage their children to keep their children if it is not in the best interest of the child. However, if the grandparents want to accept that additional responsibility of teaching their child how to be a parent, who am I to judge? Even a mature, well off woman will wonder about her child if she gives him up. That is natural. How come we feel compelled to make a person child endure pregnancy, labor, delivery, and the everlasting emotional effects of giving up their child if that is not what is in their heart to do? If she has a support system then we should support the decisions they as a unit make. Sometimes emotional scars are tougher to overcome than poverty and single-parent homes.


    I'm not arguing, adoption should be discussed with teenaged mothers, but not necessarily encouraged. God's plan for us is not to be second-guessed.

    And yes, I was a teenaged mother.. I had my daughter at 19. I was almost 20. I was married and DH had great job. My baby was planned and we anxiously anticipated her arrival. Not because I wanted someone to love me, I'm very well loved, but because she was a gift from God. He chose me to be her mom. I would have been very offended if a nurse or whomever had tried to convince me to give up my child just because I was younger.
    Last edit by HisTreasure on Dec 27, '06 : Reason: Additional thoughts
  10. by   tvccrn
    I was a teen Mom myself. I had my son when I was 17. I lived in a small East Texas town and it was 1984, not really the "IN" thing at the time.

    I attended school up until the christmas holidays (he was born on Dec. 31) and went back to school in May. While I was off I went in once a week for tests and to exchange my assignments.

    All of this was done with the agreement of the school district with the assurance that if I kept up my grades I could still graduate.

    Come time to announce the honor grads, I wasn't on the list. My grades would have put me there, but I didn't have enough "classroom attendance" to graduate.

    With all that, I ended up with a GED and am now a nurse.

    I made it work for us. Unfortunatly, I don't see that happening nowadays.

    These kids are having babies and dropping out of school to live on welfare for the rest of their lives. I don't know if it has to do with the culture they were raised in, but I don't see the hard work ethic that I grew up with.

    tvccrn
  11. by   mercyteapot
    Quote from tvccrn

    These kids are having babies and dropping out of school to live on welfare for the rest of their lives. I don't know if it has to do with the culture they were raised in, but I don't see the hard work ethic that I grew up with.

    tvccrn
    I have to disagree with the universality implied in your post. ''These kids'' are choosing multiple paths, just as their classmates who weren't teen moms are doing. Many finish high school with the help of their parents, school based day care centers, or yes, horrors, public assistance. Seeing as none of them have actually lived the ''rest of their lives'' yet, I don't know how it is possible to proclaim that they'll be on welfare forever... especially given the restrictions on lifetime aid.
  12. by   EDValerieRN
    In March of 2000, I gave birth to a baby girl. I was 16, and yes, Medicaid payed for it. I never once considered adoption, because it was my child, and I loved her from the beginning. I graduated high school early, I went to college (with no help from my parents) and got a degree. My daughter has always been well-cared for. She has never lacked a mother.

    I don't appreciate being judged as a welfare-mom, a bad mother, or selfish just because I had my daughter at a young age. I worked two jobs, and I'm still paying off loans from school. There are those of us who do it, and it's a shame to lump us all together into one big group of irresponsible, unwed mothers.

    There is a problem with the welfare system, but it is not to be blamed on young mothers.... or african-americans, or illlegal immigrants. Lumping a group together and blaming them for a problem is irresponsible at best.

    I still get the looks, and the comments... especially around parent-teacher conferences. The funny thing is, my daughter is more well-adjusted and intelligent than many of the children from two-parent homes.
  13. by   tvccrn
    Quote from mercyteapot
    I have to disagree with the universality implied in your post. ''These kids'' are choosing multiple paths, just as their classmates who weren't teen moms are doing. Many finish high school with the help of their parents, school based day care centers, or yes, horrors, public assistance. Seeing as none of them have actually lived the ''rest of their lives'' yet, I don't know how it is possible to proclaim that they'll be on welfare forever... especially given the restrictions on lifetime aid.
    I'm glad that you are seeing that, but here where I live it's not happening.

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