If you recently placed your child for adoption, there is no doubt you are experiencing many emotions. Every birth mother faces a unique experience and copes in her own way. Even if you are confident in your decision to place, feelings of grief and loss are very common. However, there are some healthy ways to move forward after the adoption that can benefit birth mothers.

Accept your emotions

Any emotions you experience after the adoption should not be ignored. It is vital to express, address, and accept your feelings. Coming to terms with these emotions can allow you to move forward. Support is important. Lean on your family and friends, talk to your social worker about adoption, join a birth mother support group, or speak with a counselor. These resources and support will remind you that you are not alone. Connecting with other birth mothers who have gone through the adoption process can be very therapeutic.

Make Goals

Create a post-adoption plan and write down your plans and goals. Staying busy and having something to look forward to can help through stressful times. Try to include activities that you enjoy doing and ways to work towards your goals. Whatever you like to do or decide to plan, having these goals will help in the healing process.

Read Other Stories (and Maybe Share Yours!)

The topic of adoption is more openly discussed these days and is in books, articles, websites, blogs, and more. Reading personal experiences and stories of other birthmothers can help you stay positive and move forward after adoption. Your story is important too! It may help other birthmothers going through the same process, reminding them they are not alone. Whether speaking at a support group or a blog of your feelings and experience, sharing your story can help you in your process and others in theirs.

Moving Forward

As you move forward in life, your adoption experience will always be with you. Being a birthmother is part of you now. Feeling emotions of grief and loss may happen over the years, especially on your child’s birthday. This is common, and you should allow yourself to feel these emotions. Acknowledge them and then shift your focus to the wonderful life you have given your child.

Having Trouble Moving Forward?

If some time has passed and feelings of grief have not eased at all, you are sad for most of every day, emotions are interfering with your ability to function in everyday life, or thoughts of suicide or death, you may not be moving forward healthily. Get help as soon as you can. Talk to a healthcare professional, friend or family member, social worker or adoption coordinator, counselor, or someone else you trust.