Adoption Purgatory

It would be a lot more fun to only write about the good stuff.

I set out to show what an honest journey through infertility and adoption looks like, and it’s important to share the all the bumps and manholes along the way. We already knew the path from infertility to parenthood wasn’t a straight line, and we’re finding that out about adoption, too.

We waited Monday for a call that never came. The call that confirmed that yes, after meeting us, we were still the family she wanted for her baby. The call that would make everything official, set up a birth plan, etc.

Our adoption coordinator called Carrie, the expectant mother, but didn’t receive a call back. All week. So the hubs and I experienced a hellacious four days wondering what we did wrong, if we did something wrong, and basically second guessing everything we believed to be true. Our agency is small, and only has one adoption coordinator, and she was unable to follow up with our concerns this week because she was with a different expectant mother who was in labor for two days. Then she had to complete the placement, the paperwork, and so forth, so she was truly slammed and unable to find out why we had been left hanging. That still left the issue at hand, which was that the hubs and I were left with no feedback, nor resolution, about this adoption that, last we heard, was taking place. So, I did what I do; I put my Sherlock Holmes cap on and started prowling around on Google. It’s a good idea to be prepared to deal with the information you set out to find, and I thought I was, but of course I wasn’t. What I eventually found were details that made it pretty clear that the expectant mother and father were preparing for their new baby, not preparing for an adoption. And the date they were expecting this bundle was at the beginning of May, not mid-June. At that moment, I felt like someone stuck a serrated knife right in my heart and started twisting it slowly around in circles.

But the problem with being hopeful adoptive parents is that our feelings are a distant, distant second to whatever the birth parents are feeling. We are constantly reminded of this by the books we are told to read and the classes we are made to attend. Whatever a hopeful adoptive parent is feeling, it is nothing compared to what the expectant parent is suffering, and the mindset that it creates is that we are guilty of the crime of grieving when things don’t work out because we don’t have the right. There is even less empathy for those of us who snoop around on the internet to find out the truth.

I’m not proud of the fact that I was essentially invading the privacy of the expectant parents to learn the facts, but I’m glad I found what I did, because it did prompt our coordinator to get involved and find out what the heck was happening. And here it is: our expectant mother is committed to this adoption. That’s what she wants. And she genuinely wants us to be the family that adopts her baby. She made up her mind about this adoption some time ago, and knows that it is the best thing for her, her other children, and most importantly, this baby. She is at peace with her decision. We also learned that she didn’t have anything to do with the stuff that ended up on the internet, that was done “on her behalf” and without her knowledge.


The birth father has changed his mind and wants her to keep and raise the baby. Which, as we established above, is not what she wants. She loves this baby very much and that is what has motivated her decision to place for adoption. I know her reasons, but I will not write them here out of respect for her privacy.

I couldn’t feel worse for Carrie. She is trying to do a selfless, wonderful thing for her baby and has no support. She’s as stuck as stuck can be. She asked the agency for the weekend to work this out with the birth father and get back to them on Monday. I guess we will see how it plays out. If for some reason we don’t hear anything Monday, that will be it for us, and we will have to move on.