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“What does adoption mean to a child?”

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Brittany's Adoption Scholarship Story

Adoption is a word I first heard when I was about nine years old. I was told that I was adopted and that my birth mother had issues and wanted better for me. I spent my first year of life in and out of foster homes and spent my first Christmas alone in the hospital. Then at 18 months old I was connected with a family who would love me for me!

As I got older I resented my parents because I thought a part of me was missing. I had fights beyond fights with my mom because I blamed her for my birth mother not wanting me. My teenage life was like no other regular teenager. I dropped out of school and got pregnant at 18 years old. I knew at that point in my life I wanted better for myself and for my daughter. November 25, 2006 my daughter was born. I went back to school to become a Medical Assistant. As I thought things were getting better, that I was getting my life back on track, things just ended up getting worse. In the end, I realize I let my daughter and myself down. I pulled the same excuses as I did in high school and didn’t finish what I started.

At the age of twenty I found myself pregnant again. I tried and tried to ignore it because I know it was going to disappoint my parents. I knew they were going to say “how did you let this happen again?" You know how hard it is with the child you have now.” So I avoided the situation as much as possible. I didn’t have any medical treatment and I didn’t even know when I was due or if the baby was healthy. I finally sat down with my mom and we talked and at the end of the conversation I knew it was wrong of me to try and avoid the situation. I came to the conclusion that one child was plenty for me to handle at this time in my life. I agreed to meet with American Adoptions.

Through American Adoptions I was paired with Annsley, an adoption specialist. Annsley had me come into the office and sat me down to discuss my options. I knew adoption wasn’t the only way to go but I knew it was the right way to go. I went through about five families before I found Michelle and Dave; the family that I can now call a part of my family. We had one conference call and I knew for a fact that they were the family for my baby. They wanted nothing but a baby of their own. 

On September 24th I knew something wasn’t right. I went and checked myself into the hospital. Not knowing what had gone on for the past nine months, I was hit with the biggest surprise, twins! On Sept 27th I was told I was going to have a c-section so I called Annsley right away and asked her to contact Michelle and Dave. They gathered there things and came all the way from Virginia within 24 hours. Then on Sept 28th I gave birth to two identical twin boys. I met Michelle and Dave for the very first time and I felt complete. Yes, I knew what I was going to do was the hardest decision I would make in my life. However, I knew God doesn’t put obstacles in our way that we can’t overcome.

For the rest of my life I knew I would question myself with all these “what if’s” and “how could I."I had no clue how I would explain to my daughter that she has two brothers out there. However, I knew that I would never question the family I chose for my two boys. The biggest gift I could ever have given myself and my child would be giving a couple a baby to complete their family; not because I had to but because I wanted to. Michelle and Dave are two of the most wonderful people I will ever meet in my entire life. Now finally, at the age of twenty, going on twenty-one, I know adoption isn’t just giving a child away, it’s much deeper than that. Adoption is love and a family combined into one. It means more than one could ever imagine.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Why is American Adoptions the right adoption agency choice for many birth mothers?

American Adoptions is one of the largest licensed adoption agencies in the United States. Each year, we work with thousands of women who are facing an unplanned pregnancy and offer assistance to these women. Our large, caring staff is able to assist you seven days a week and provide you with one-on-one counseling about your pregnancy and available options.

You should choose an adoption agency where you feel completely comfortable with their services and staff. With American Adoptions, you will work with an Adoption Specialist who is on-call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The Adoption Specialist will be your advocate and will provide support and guidance as you create an adoption plan that is right for you.

How will the family tell my child about me and the adoption when my child is older?

Each family has their own style of introducing adoption to the child. When you are matched with an adoptive family, you can ask them this question. If you would like your Adoption Specialist to discuss it for you, just let her know. He or she can share your wishes or provide good ideas from other adoptive families.

You will also be able to share what you want your baby to know about you. You can complete a keepsake booklet to share hobbies, stories, photos of you and your family and a letter to your baby. The adoptive family can provide this to your child as he or she grows older. Be as creative as you like! Some birth mothers have even knitted a special blanket as a gift to their baby or given a similar symbol of their love.

The father of your baby can fill out the birth father's keepsake booklet or write a letter too. You may have other family members who would also like to share photos or a letter to the baby. This is your opportunity to pass on your and your family's love and to share your personality, history and reasons for choosing adoption. The adoptive family will treasure whatever information you provide and will share it with the baby at an appropriate age. In most adoptive homes, the word adoption is in the child's vocabulary early on, and adoption is celebrated in their lives.

Additional Resources

Teen Pregnancy - Information for Young Women

While not every woman who chooses adoption is a young mother, many are. Through adoption, many young women have found an ability to give their babies the best life possible, while finding the opportunity to realize their own dreams, as well. Call American Adoptions today at 1-800-ADOPTION.

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Adoption Glossary

Do adoption terms and phrases leave you feeling confused? Learn the meaning to key adoption words and phrases with our comprehensive adoption glossary.

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