Our new birth mom wants to be the "cool aunt" in our adoption... How will this work?

Julie - posted on 02/04/2010 ( 7 moms have responded )

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Please advice...

We met our new birth mother a little over a week ago after just having gone through a failed adoption three weeks prior. Our previous birth mother changed her mind one week before the baby was due. With our last birth mom, we talked of a semi-open adoption with 3 to 4 visits per year and monthly letters and pictures. We thought our new birth mom (a YOUNG 19 year old) had agreed to this; however she has decided that she wants to be more of the "cool aunt". I am not sure exactly what that means, but I do know she wants to see us and the baby more than 4 times a year. I have the feeling that she wants to "hang out". Had this been the previous birth mom, I would have been more agreable. I had gotten to know her and like her. This new birth mom is very cute, but oh so young and I don't know if I could deal with the "drama" that may come with her life. I am also scared of getting close again because of the last situation.

I don't want to be selfish, she is giving us her baby... but does anyone have any suggestions? Does anyone have an open adoption like this? Does it work for you? How did you make it work?
If she wants to see us more throughout the year, I am ok with that I suppose, but just scared of what it could lead to.

Any suggestions would be appreciated.
Thank you,
Julie

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Cecily - posted on 01/18/2013

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I don't have any perspective from a parents point of view but I am an adopted child. My parents dealt with a situation when my biological mother approached them wanting to get to know me years after my closed adoption was brokered. They managed the situation really well, agreeing to send her letters and photos but not to destabilise my life by introducing her to me until i was ready to make the choice myself. This was very kind and generous of them but I think it cost them a lot. I think there is a bit of a myth in this culture, a kind of disney idea of what the relationship between a biological mother and child is like but the bond between mother and child has nothing to do with blood. I think my parents where more accommodating than they would have wanted to be because deep down they felt they didnt have full rights to me. They have made decisions to try to make it easy for me to have a relationship with my birth mother in adulthood if i wanted to but this has really only caused me pain. Children need love and consistency, blood means very, very little. Please ignore the very nasty comment in this thread, you are trying to make the right choice for YOUR child and you are just trying to figure out what that is. Trust your deep instincts (not the neat 'nice' ones) and know that you are going to be this childs REAL family, the ones with him/her through thick and thin. Personally i can only imagine that open adoptions must be very confusing (for the child as well as everyone else) and so i think its really important to decide on the boundaries and maintain them. Never doubt that you are the best advocate for this child. Don't squash your protective feelings too much out of a fear of being selfish. I think those are feelings that a lot of adoptive parents feel and its tough. Giving you 'her' baby may seem so hugely generous you feel enormously indebted but it works for her too remember! And for the child who is so lucky to be so wanted! Good luck!!

Marshella - posted on 02/13/2010

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I hate to see/hear so many stories of birthmoms not being as involved in their child's life as they would like. It must be heartbreaking, for both the child and the mother. Please open your heart to her predicament. Its a very hard decision she has to make. Can you imgine never seeing your child again? Always wondering how they are doing? I agree w/other poster about being sure to always call her birth mom (or, just mom). I have an unusually open adoption with my two adopted children's bio father (their mom passed away before we adopted them). We are actually glad and welcoming that thier father is involved in their lives! Its the best for everyone... the father knows his kids are doing well, the kids call thier bio dad and my husband both "dad", and all have adjusted wonderfully. It's nice to have somoene we trust who can take the kids from us for awhile, like an overnight viist - gives us "free childcare" and we get a break! He trusted us, and we don't want to let that trust down and we trust him - it was difficult at first, being as he's a recovering substance abuser. But he's been to treatment and is now on the right track. If he were to ever use again, we'd of course change to supervised visits. But I think he's going to continue to do well. Anyway, at least you don't have that complication - drug use - in your situation. If this isn't the right birthmom for you- you don't feel a connection - perhaps you should look for another? I don't understand what "drama" you are referring to. Anyway, I say give it a chance - give her as much involment in her child's life as you can - it doesn't have to be written in an adoption agreement. Why not write her a heart-felt letter, saying you'd love for her to be involved - visiting when she and you can arrange it, and maybe when the child is older, taking it for visits out of the house? Surely that would give you time to build on trust. She's trusting you with her most precious gift - can't you trust her in return?

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Terrie - posted on 07/04/2013

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I'm going through a similar situation Bio Mom wants to be the cool Aunt. Ours was a cps case and Mom had already lost 3 children to the state one 8 years ago and one 5 years ago, we got our daughter when she was 6 months old..she is now 19 months and the adoption will be final next month.Dad has never seen her for he was in prison when bio mom found out she was pregnant and he isn't due to get out until 2016, Cps and I both tried to help bio Mom get her life together and get off drugs, she got off drugs but turned to drinking daily in 6 months she moved 17 times, so no stable home, no job just jumping from man to man. at 9 months into the case, both mom and dad signed their rights over to cps cause they knew they were going to be taken anyway. Mom now says she wants to be the Aunt come spend the night,take her by herself shopping etc. She doesn't understand at all that the shape our daughter was in when we got her was bad and her fault. I won't go into it all...but I am not comfortable her being that much a part of our daughters life. I send her pictures and I've told her twice a year visits But Dad when he gets out of prison wants to be a big part of her life as well..again I'm not comfortable with this .I've been very nice and very supportive to their feelings but my #1 concern is my daughter, and she will always know she is adopted but bio Mom has already tried sneaking around and telling the little girl she lost 8 years ago things and mom now has to watch her closely and the little boy she lost 5 years ago Mom had to stop all visits because she was cursing her 9 year old daughter and telling her about sex....I just want to protect my child, I'm not going to hide from her who bio Mom and Dad are but I feel in the best interest of my daughter that very little visits and very supervised will be taking place.

J M - posted on 02/20/2013

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Dear Julie see this is 2010 post who did things go???

Felt for you and your loss of been let down before :( and to the post above by
to Cecily wonderfully placed as good to see it from the actual baby that has grown up to a adults point of view.

, no doubt your adoptive parents you call are your REAL parents, where as open as they felt was right, which is what all this comes down to.

Adoptive parents are in fact the parents, as they are there 24/7 full stop, as have been given the right to be on the merits they have been approved to be fit parents something bio parents don't get proved to be, or need to go through, but facts remain they choose to give those rights up.

They don't owe anything or should feel this be over their heads for the rest of their life, all they owe any thing to is to care for their new baby/ child for the rest of her or his life.

The new birth Mum to "stick to the original agreement! She sounds very immature in the first place, thus why she was not able to be a responsible Mother yet, just not her time.


A lot of these so called Open adoptions are arranged to only suit the Bio Mother can be seen clearly here , but who is to say whats then best for a baby while after been adoptive out? these differences should never be confused? One should never adopt out if they cannot keep to agreements themselves.

" You are not HER full time BABY SITTER! I think people get confuse with Open adoptions, they are NOT to be used to hold of each other, but to be very carefully discussed and respected, for whats would ultimately be BEST interest of the baby, a bio Mother should never hold the fact over that she gave birth that she feel its ok to change the boundaries, its not.

And the original BEST interest where to adopt the baby out, so when any baby is adopted out Legally in the fill sense of the word, then bio Mother does not have any real legal say. You and others must keep all emotions at bay in check", and do what is in BEST interest of the child or baby first will become the New parents decisions, to decide how that will be as they have FULL care of that baby/ child.


Can actually bring in unnecessary emotional upset for the child. If the birth Mother was a mature person, she would of respect her own original agreement with you..... yes all her hormones are all over the place and a sad time for her to no doubt, but she is immature, and if she is really thinking of the " greater good, then she did not have to adopt in the first place.

Your bond need never to suffer with your Adopted baby, because of unnecessary emotional interference's.

I would be very wary, keep it simply and keep boundaries clear, YOU will be the Mother in the full sense. and all respect to her decision to adopt her baby out, but she needs counseling and support to grief and let go of control as well.

No no such thing as a Birth Mother been a cool Aunt, as are the connections are totally different, sounds like she is just using that to see the baby a lot more, than ( she) first agreed to.

Don't let you emotions be take advantage of, "you need to set very clear boundaries, keep it as was the first agreement, because if the Birth Mother has changed this now to they way she wants it the 2nd time, then beed so young, no reason why she may change it often over time again.

You don't need to be messed around. She has either given UP her right to be a full time Mum, or not, but she cannot have it all ways, this will only bring confusion.

Sounds cute may be to some trying to be a cool aunt??, but use your gut in stink, you know best else you would not have been chosen in the first place, you don't want to be used full stop.

Keep to the original agreement!

Sarah - posted on 10/26/2012

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My brother and his wife have just been given the most lovely baby girl (have to foster then adopt) and for them they are really lucky to be blessed with her. However, you can't not inform the baby of the paternal mother and father. I think my bother and his wife will have a certain amount of problems (like my cousins), but she is so lucky to have the love of my brother and his wife.



I would have been a surrogate for them and it would have been my pleasure for my brother and his wife (would have been a baby nest). If you feel like they are getting a little bit in your face you just need to say "you need to back off a bit and leave ME, MY HUSBAND and BABY to it".



How was the surrogacy agreed? Was it your egg? Whose sperm, Sorry I don't want to upset you, but I have research it soooooo much.



Sarah

Anita - posted on 03/12/2010

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Hi Julie
I have a baby who was given to me by my brother & his partner.
In my culture we can give over our babies to family members without going through the courts, but in saying that if some day down the track my sister inlaw wanted the baby back I wont have any legal right to keep him.
Its been 9 months now & things have started to get a bit strange..
Before he was born she came to me & asked if I wanted their baby as they werent ready for another one. My partner cant have kids so with alot of disscussion we accepted their offer, we were to raise the baby as our own & they would be classed as Aunty & Unkle.
But latley shes been getting a bit attached & its making me feel uncomfortable. I dont want to be selfish or rude either but this is MY BABY.
Sorry to dump my story on you but seems we are in the same boat.
If you do end up with the baby I would love to keep in touch with you on how things are going as Im pretty stumped on what to do aswell.
Regards
Anita
P.S Good luck

Sarah - posted on 02/08/2010

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I think you need to be comfortable with whatever you agree on. Have an agreement written and signed before placement. Is this birth mom seeking counseling? If so what does the counselor say? If she is not I would suggest this. Most birth moms tend to change their mind before placement if they are not seeking birth parent counseling. They are not prepared for that emotional roller coaster that happens after they give birth, having a counselor there during this time helps with support. If she is working with a counselor let the counselor know your concerns. Sometimes a birth mom does not look at all sides of the situation and when explained from a different point of view (the child's) the birth parent then changes her requests. Another option is to record certain milestones and send her a tape, so she can experience these things but allow your family to develop into its own family. One thing I would NOT DO is call her something other than birth mom. Some birth moms feel that if you just say they are an aunt or friend then it is ok, but that then is lying to the child to who they are. A birth mom might be a friend, but they are much more than just a friend. It is VERY IMPORTANT that the child ALWAY KNOW birth mom is BIRTH MOM. Good luck and best wishes.

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