You’ve been selected by a birthmother to meet in person. Wonderful! That means your adoptive family profile made a huge impression on her, and she is ready to consider you as the lifelong parents of her child. Being connected with a birthmother is a remarkable feeling. With that said, we understand all the nerves that accompany this initial meeting. As your adoption coordinators, Everlasting Adoptions wants all adoptive families to be fully prepared for every part of the adoption process – including meeting birthparents.
The following tips and “pointers” will be helpful while you prep for meeting your birthmother.
- Be yourself! We cannot stress this enough. You’ve already made a positive impression on the birthmother, otherwise you wouldn’t be at this meeting. Extend that positivity by showing the birthmother your true self. She understands no one is perfect, and being yourself is the best way to establish that pure connection you are both hoping for.
- Consider dressing casual. While this initial meeting is important in terms of establishing a connection with the birthmother, it is not a job interview. Look presentable, of course, but a casual attire will help set the tone for the meeting as being light and stress-free.
- Ask them what type of delivery plan they prefer. If you would like to be present during the birth, or be at the hospital when the baby is born, express this to the birthmother so she can consider it in her plan. (Every hospital has different levels of receptiveness to adoption. Your adoption social worker will make arrangements.)
- Be considerate of her feelings on the whole process. This is undoubtedly one of the most difficult things she will ever do, and she needs all the support she can get – including support from the adoptive parents!
- The birthmother is nervous, too. This might be the most important thing to remember before and during your meeting. She wants you to like her just as much as you want her to like you. If you’ve spent hours mulling over what to say, how to say it and when to say it, chances are so has the birthmother. It’s okay to let her know you’re nervous. In fact, it may even take the edge off to share that commonality!
- Bring photos. Birthmothers can only learn so much from your adoptive family profile. Now is your chance to really show her what you’re all about, and to give her a glimpse of what her child’s life might be like when welcomed into your family. Photos of family, friends and relatives are the most powerful, as it is the birthmother’s own way of “meeting” them.
- Consider discussing what level of openness you are looking for. If you’re meeting with the birthmother, you’ve already chosen to move forward with an open adoption. But every open adoption differs in its level of openness. The details don’t need to be worked out right then and there, but you may want to establish some common ground.
- Explain your reasons for choosing adoption. It is always important to birthmothers to understand the adoptive parents’ reason(s) for adopting a baby. This conversation may also be the perfect way to help everyone feel confident in the arrangement.
Nothing can fully prepare birthmothers and adoptive parents for the first meeting. But positive thoughts and a little preparation can go a long way! Plan what you want to say/ask beforehand, but also remember the conversation will flow on its own before you know it. Everlasting Adoptions is always here to offer guidance, support and encouragement throughout the entire adoption process.