The simple irony of writing this blog on what should have been my biological mother’s 63rd birthday is uncanny. Before I met my biological mother, I had worked with birth mothers for approximately 3 years. During that time, I gave my heart and soul to those who gave the ultimate gift of life, or so I thought I did. Until I met my own biological mother, I had no idea of what these heroic women really experienced after they lovingly placed their beautiful babies for adoption. Admittedly, I wished I knew then what I know now.
One of my favorite Maya Angelou Quotes is “Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better.” Well now, I know better and I can’t “un-know” what I know. So, I am doing everything I can to share what I know and I won’t stop until the adoption world not only understands the needs of birth mothers, but also meets those needs. After the adoption world steps up to the plate and raises the bar on the standard level of care for birth mothers, then society needs to be educated on adoption and the aftermath. More attention needs to be given to all sides of the adoption triad. (Adoptive Parents, Adopted Child & Birth Mother/Father)
Over the past 40 years more attention has been given to the adoptive parents. Concepts have been developed, such as depression after adoption for the adoptive parents, attachment disorders for the adopted child, but there is little to nothing to explain and treat the grief that birth mothers can experience. Books have been written, aiming to address adoption issues for the adoptive parents and there are some for the adoptive child as well. Again, the birth mother is in last place. In the adoption journey, often times there is a celebration for the adoptive parents and the adopted child. I can say in no uncertain terms – there is no celebration for the birth mother. What is the happiest day in the lives of the adoptive parents, is the worst day for the birth mother. Both the adoptive parents and the birth mother/father are often crying, but for very different reasons; one for joy and one for grief.
As a concerned human being, it’s time to take a stand. Whether you have a connection to adoption or not; understanding the need for adoption, while comprehending the emotions and aftermath. Taking Maya Angelou’s quote and doing better, is paramount to making a difference. It doesn’t just take a village to raise a child, it takes a village to raise the bar of the standard level of care in adoption. The Donna K. Evans Foundation is just one organization, but it’s a start. We have always held onto the belief that this adoption aftercare concept should not be copy-written, but freely shared. We want to see the model implemented in every adoption agency across the United States. We want to see change and those who sacrifice the most, get the assistance and respect they deserve.
Believing in an organization is a way to funnel your beliefs into one direction; whether you donate financially, volunteer time or simply promote the organization is a way of paying it forward, “walking the wall,” and making what you believe matter in front of yourself. Pouring yourself into a passion or a mission, is a taking a stance and allowing others to know who you are. Birth mother’s matter, let’s show them how much!
Support women through the Donna K. Evans Foundation. The time is now!
Donna K. Evans Foundation
Supporting Women After Adoption Placement