adoption, but I can't

Libby - posted on 07/09/2009 ( 13 moms have responded )

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Well, I got a very weird call today. My nephew who is 21 and his off again, on again girlfriend are due to have a baby next month. They just found out they are having a boy. They however are not anywhere near mature enough to raise a child. And my nephew asked me to adopt his baby. His girl friend who is a little younger than him has some mental and maturity issues. He also is not mature for his age and realizes he can't raise a child on his own, or even with her help. I feel bad because he wants to keep the baby in the family, but I am due to have my next child in October. I have two living children and I don't work. My husband has two jobs and has to go to school this year to get certified to be a fireman. And I just don't think we could raise a child. It would be like doubling the financial responsibility that we were expecting to take on in a few months. Plus, we are having a girl and I just got rid of all of my baby boy stuff. So, I would literally be starting over for two babies. One other huge concern would be that this child could have special needs since I know my nephew's girlfriend does have some mental issues. What they are exactly, I'm not sure. But I just don't think I could take the chance to have something more than what I could handle. I really have to think about my immediate family first, even though this unborn child is family. I hope I'm doing the right thing by saying no. Any feedback?

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Aliska - posted on 08/24/2010

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A lot of places have 'open' adoptions now where the birth parents can still be involved with the child. If no-one in the family can take the baby then maybe this is an option. The baby will be better off with a couple who really want him and have the time and love he needs then with family who feel obliged to have him. You don't want to risk resenting this child and the child feeling the resentment.

Vanessa - posted on 08/24/2010

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What about they stay the parents and you take on the role of carer for a while? The government will pay you a carers pension, and you will also get child support to raise this little person.

Stifler's - posted on 08/24/2010

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I think you are doing the right thing. They do need to harden up and take responsibility regardless of mental issues or do the right thing by their baby and give it a stable home with someone else, family or not. It's their fault not yours and you have a baby coming that you need to take care of!

Libby - posted on 07/10/2009

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And thank you for saying I am not wrong for how I feel. It's an impossible situation and I am a fixer and wish I could help. But I know my limits and have always had a hard time saying no. This is the hardest. But I know it's the right thing b/c it's a life long commitment. I'm not just agreeing to babysit or something.

Libby - posted on 07/10/2009

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We live in Ohio. And I hate our "system" here. My brother in law's son was in supervised custody by the state after his mom lost custody of her other two children. The system failed him greatly, he is no longer on this earth. And my nephew's child would be in that exact same "system". I want the baby to go to someone who wants it, not just someone to take care of it in the interim and not give it the attention and love that it deserves. Yes, they have decided adoption a little late. I think they are holding out for hope that someone in the family will help. I just think that the baby would be better with a family who wants a child.

Tanya - posted on 07/10/2009

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I don't think you are wrong for how you feel. You are being honest and in a situation like this that is what you have to be honest. I know it's family but let me just say that this is not my family and my heart is in this, I would love for this child to stay with the family also but if not possible I thought maybe they could find someone to be a part of the pregnancy that will adopt but next month that would be kind of impossible. I guess if the state had to take the baby it would get care that is better then no care but so many children including babies fall through the cracks of the system through state foster care and adoption. What state do you live in maybe I could research something I don't know what I just feel I have to help do something for this baby.

Libby - posted on 07/10/2009

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Absolutely family doesn't have to be blood!! I'm glad they didn't abort either. But they have had a very immature relationship from the very beginning. I think that has a lot to do with her mental status and that he hasn't really had to be a very responsible adult to begin with. My husband asked me if I told him to "man up". He thinks he needs to suck it up and do the right thing and be a father. I sort of believe that if they know they can't handle it ahead of time then it would be easier for the child to handle an adoption sooner than later. I would hate to see them fail and then have the baby removed from their custody. I think the way my husband looks at it is we were 22 when we had our 1st child. But we were also married, both had stable jobs, health insurance, our own house, and we were mature for 22. She acts like a child and he acts like a teenager. I know that is partly because of her mental issues. She talks like a baby sometimes, she throws fits, she pouts when she doesn't get her way, etc, etc. She doesn't work, has caused scenes in public places and while at our house has gotten into arguments with my nephew. He has even apologized to us for her behavior. She also lies about stuff which is why they broke up in the first place. But then she was pregnant so he let her move back in and try to work things out for the baby. Now that they are farther along in the pregnancy I think they both realize they can't handle a baby. Well, atleast I have had a conversation with him and he claims they both have realized this.



I don't know that I would be stretched too thin, but I would say having another child wasn't how I invisioned my family. I know there is a financial issue whenever you have a child. And I'm not sure to add another one that it would be fair to my children. I'm not sure if that is making sense. But we go on vacations every year (except this one since I am in a high risk pregnancy). I just think our lifestyles would change from what we want them to be and/or planned them to be. I don't know that I want to give that up for a child that is not biologically mine. Wow, sounds selfish, but I just don't know that I want to take on someone else's responsibility. We are having our last child and we are happy with the way our lives are right now. Am I wrong for that?

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I liked what one of the posters said about family not having to be "blood." And I completely applaud your nephew and his girlfriend for carrying the baby to term and not aborting it. I also agree that you need to think of your own family and your own children first and realize that if you're stretched too thin not only will it be bad for your family but it will be bad for this other baby as well. I think that you could look into adoption agencies. I know he wants to keep the baby in the family but there are many adoption agencies that do open adoptions where the families can stay in touch and if the baby is loved and well cared for that is what is truly important. I will pray for you and your nephew that God shows you the right path through this difficult situation.

Libby - posted on 07/10/2009

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TinaMarie,

Thank you for your heartfelt post. I will share this in prayer request at church. We have a small church though, so the possibilities of finding someone there for the baby would be slim. But I guess you never know who knows someone. I know that my nephew was looking to keep this baby in the family though. But I guess he can either provide for it or he can't and he has to accept that the baby might not be as close as he would like.



Lydia,

You are right, I am not doing anybody a favor if I can't take care of both babies. I have to remember my first priority is to my own unborn child. My mom made a good point yesterday, that we've been waiting so long for this baby and it wouldn't be fair to her if someone else's baby took priority over her. We lost a daughter last year and we were very blessed to get pregnant again, considering it took us two years to get pregnant the last time with failed infertility help. And now we are getting another daughter and I really want to concentrate on her.



Plus, it would be like raising twins and I already have two living sons so my work wouldn't just be doubled, it would be much more than that. I'm just not sure there is enough of me to go around. If I wasn't pregnant I would probably seriously consider it.



And financially it would be tough to start over for two children at the same time. I just gave away all of my boy stuff since we are having a girl. So, I would need both boy and girl stuff. Not to mention I'd have to buy formula for one baby which is an expense I am not planning on since I breastfeed my children. I actually don't need a crib b/c I have an extra one. But basically I would need two of everything and I don't have that. I'm a stay at home mom who babysits a couple of kids to make a little bit of extra money to help my husband out. But he already works two jobs. His second job he's going to have to be going to school for, so we are going to have a busy year or so. And a busy year raising two infants primarily myself would be pretty stressful. I'm not sure I want to put myself through all of that. But then I just feel so selfish for feeling that way when there is child in need. But then I realize I don't have to fill the need because it's not my responsibility. I didn't have careless sex in an unstable relationship. I guess I just feel bad because I like to help people, and this is family, so it goes even deeper.

Lydia - posted on 07/10/2009

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You are doing nobody any favours saying yes if you cannot provide both babies with everything they will need. I have every faith that - with a little effort - your family will find a loving home for this child.

TinaMarie - posted on 07/10/2009

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My heart goes out to you, is this something that could be shared in church?, even without the names, you will have prayer support, remember how quickly church folk share these type of issues, it may even find this Child a home. And Don't forget God can handle all this ! May He bless you and give you clarity and peace. .We'll be praying for you all.

Libby - posted on 07/09/2009

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Thanks for the advice Tanya. Unfortunately, I don't know anybody who could take the baby in. I will give it more thought. But even my sister (his mom) thought she would do it a few months ago. Now she's given it more thought and is engaged to be married and decided she can only help as a grandma, not actually raise the child. She has her own business and she is starting her own life now. He is her only child and she had him when she was 16. So, I agree this is now her time, especially since she will be getting a husband soon (her first marriage!) I don't know about his dad's side of the family, but I know he has called him to see. Hopefully someone on that side can help keep this baby close. Or I'm afraid the baby will end up in the children's services system. I hope that doesn't happen. Not sure what else can be done. His girlfriend's family is just a foster family. Not that they don't care, but I think he wants to keep the baby in his family because he's afraid he won't get to see him if it goes to them. I'll keep praying that something good comes out of this. Thanks!

Tanya - posted on 07/09/2009

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Sorry you are in this situation. Maybe you could help him ask around the family to see if there is anyone who would be willing to take the baby in. I believe you are just being honest in saying you just can't handle it. If you can't find someone in the family maybe you know a family friend who would be willing or even someone you know who can't have children, they can always be family remember family isn't always "blood" they are people who are there for you and support you so if someone would be willing to take in the baby they would be family.... My prayers are with you and your nephew, I hope it all works out...

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