I am a 22 year old single college student and found out that I'm pregnant about 5 weeks ago now (I'm about 10 weeks along). I was a very premature baby and was always told that I would most likely be infertile, so while I was always careful, especially with a new partner, I wasn't as careful as I should have been. The shock of my pregnancy has been a tough one to deal with. I'm in a place where I'm just about to finish up school in a year, I have an acting career already in the making, and I've been just barely floating by and supporting myself for the past 5 years, working both a full time managerial job and a part time nannying job while in school full time.

I want to be a mother some day and there is a huge part of me that knows that I could do it. I could raise this baby. But I'm states away from any of my family members, and have created a life for myself that I'm eager to continue and worried that if I don't, my happiness and my child's happiness would suffer greatly. Also, like I said, I barely skate by supporting myself and am only just now really learning to budget well enough to be able to pay my bills on time (ish). I feel selfish when I think of trying to raise this baby without a proper father (the father is actually a dear friend of mine and would most certainly be involved but not to the extent that I would want for my child) and none of our family around.

With a mother who was emotionally and physically unstable, I was raised almost solely by my young father (who was exactly a year younger when I was born than I will be when I'm due). I love my father. He's my best friend and I wouldn't give anything up to trade him for a different upbringing. He did everything he could for me. He is and always has been a musician and while it was great growing up with the "rockstar" father (although a poor one), my childhood consisted mostly of moving around for him and his career. And though he is supportive of my own endeavors, he never really put in the effort or the care that I would've liked to have growing up. I don't want that for my child. I'm too selfish to give up my career right now and to worried that if I don't, my child's life will be all about me.

 

Anyway, my whole reason for bringing this up on this forum is because I want to have a natural birth and have been starting to meet midwife groups in my area recently. One thing that many people have warned me against is that with this intense experience, the adoption might be even harder for me. In the event that I ever became pregnant, I always told myself that a natural birth was the best way to go and I wouldn't want to go back on that all, not only for the experience but largely for the medical drawbacks and problems with medicated childbirth and c-sections today. And part of me wants this experience even more now because it will be something that my child and I will always share, even if I am not a parent.

I guess I'm just looking for suggestions on how to handle something so intense and wonderful and beautiful without going crazy afterwards.

 

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KaCee-

I surrendered my daughter about 2 years ago to a wonderful family. The adoption process went perfect. They were the family of my dreams, and everything was ideal for that situation. However, I spent the entire year after her birth in an intense state of depression. I have gone through A LOT in the last 2 years, including the birth of my 2nd daughter. Please, I would really really like for you to e-mail me, there are so many things that I would like to say to you, SO many things I want you to know, that I wish someone told me.

theresarivers@ymail.com
Whew, this is a great post, and a very complicated question- I really am grateful you brought it up, because after having my three naturally I was wishing that I could be a surrogate for my wonderful friend and her husband who have been unable to have children....but I realized that with how much time and effort I put in to those 10 months, not to mention the labor and delivery, I don't think I could give up a child, even if I knew he/she would be going to a great mother and father.  I had to sit down and be completely honest with myself, and gosh, that will be so hard for you as a first-time pregnant lady!  You won't know how your body and emotions will react until you are there....I feel for you, I really do.  And I have no answers.  Lots of prayers?

Motherhood changes you. You are already changing: wanting a natural birth is wanting the best for your child (and for yourself and your future children).

Motherhood isn't going crazy.

Crazy is this society that forces us into believing money, work and career is above all. Above our families and above our health.

You are at a turning point, that is true.

Just remember that in a far future, money may be gone, our career may have surpassed us but if your lucky, your children won't.

I too got pregnant unexpectedly. I was already living with my boyfriend and was a PhD student. I'm presently nursing her on my lap and finishing my thesis... Yes it's not easy. Yes, I could have fiinished it earlier, have a lot more doors open to my carreer, but today I know I wouldn't have it anyother way.

She's my pride and joy, my descendence,my flesh and blood...

When I told my supervisor I was expecting, the only thing he said was: your life project begins now. Everything else will fade, but this will be forever...

All the best for you :)

I believe that you should have the birth that you want to have and giving birth is always an intense experience. I think giving the baby up for adoption would be difficult regardless. I was adopted as an infant b/c my birth parents were young and I have two best friends that put their babies up for adoption. I have reunited with my birth parents and have seen my friend deal with difficult times. You have to follow your heart and do what feels right. The hormonal changes that follow birth can be intense especially in a stressful situation so I'd try to make sure you have a good support network in place.
I wish you the best!
I'm a doula.  I wanted to say that there is a LOT of satisfaction in empowerment.  No matter what you decide wheather to keep your child or give it up, you will alway remember this expierence, so the more decisions you make in this realm the better it will go for you later when you are processing it.  Make the decisions for YOU and the health of your baby later you can say "I did the very best I could for you emotionally and phyically, I gave you the very best I could"  that is where the power is.
Thank you so much. I know that this is right and I feel confident in the direction I am going in. I just know how hard it will be. But you're right. I WILL be able to say that I did the best that I could. And that is an incredible thing.

Wow.  What a story!  May you be richly blessed in your decision to keep this beautiful child & go with adoption!  I am very impressed with this decision also to have a natural childbirth.  I myself had a natural childbirth 16 months ago, and I went into the day with the belief that there was simply nothing better I could give my son than that of a birth free of interventions & drugs.  (It was a water-birth.)  My husband and I just talked about wether or not we'd adopt a child if we are not able to have a second one, (I have an adopted sister, my husband grew up as a foster child) and it is SO important to us that that possible child not be born with interventions, but we thought most women would not be so brave as to go through the pain willingly!  You are to be commended!  I have lots to say on the glories of natural childbirth, but not much to say on what may lay ahead in giving your child up for adoption.  I actually wasn't into kids AT ALL until my son was born, and he has changed my life 100%.  I am a better person because of him.  More compassionate, more understanding, more loving.  I could not have predicted this at all.  (And I LOVED my free time, my travel, the various countries I moved to before my son came along, and if anyone asked me if I miss those things, I'd say- sure.  But NOTHING compares to being with my son.  Nothing on this planet.  Suddenly, nature has it that the chemistry in your body changes your priorities in a second!  Well- it did for me. )

 

Perhaps the first step in adoption is to find the angels on earth you feel are right for your little one... that will surely make you feel more confidant in this child's well-being!   I'd go on, but it's baby's bedtime here!

Lots of prayers of joy and peace to you!

Thank you all for such kind and encouraging words. Today I had my first appointment with one of the midwife groups that I am checking out near me and it couldn't have gone smoother. It was incredible and thrilling to hear my baby's heartbeat. I had a close friend with me and we both started laughing and crying. It was wonderful. I am setting up my first meeting with a local couple (that actually both teach at the college I attend and who have wanted to adopt for years) in the next week or two and am also starting counceling and a slow search for families through an organization called the Cradle. They have support groups and one-on-one counceling that I hope will be extremely helpful for me through this.

I'm 11 weeks and 4 days today.

I am sure the decission to put your baby up for adoption will be hard to deal with emotionally.  But think of the wonderful gift you are giving your baby and the adoptive family, and if you dont feel ready for kids I think it is a very responsible and loving decission to make.  But weather you decide to keep your baby or go with an adoption natural birth is a wonderful way for baby to enter the world.

KaCee, thank you so much for bringing these questions to the MBB community. I am heartened by the responses you've received!  I commend you for considering a natural birth. Most of the folks who have responded have mentioned the benefits to your baby; I want to mention the benefits to you.

The prenatal care you will receive from midwives is worlds away from what you'd typically get from an OB. The appointments are longer, and there is time to ask questions and even talk about where you are emotionally with the pregnancy.

 

The recovery from a natural labor & birth is usually much quicker and easier than recovering from a labor involving drugs, episiotomy, and abdominal surgery. Also, there are chains of hormonal reactions that will flood your brain and body after you give birth, and I think that these may help boost you through the experience of lovingly giving your baby to the family you choose.

 

Finally, if you plan to have other pregnancies in the future, your body will be in better shape to carry & birth if you avoid a cesarian birth this time around - that way you won't have to worry about the complications a uterine scar can cause.

 

Best of luck to you, I will be looking for updates to your story.

Thanks for saying that Liss, we totally agree!  My husband and I are so grateful for the midwives and the super fast recovery I had, and honestly, I would not wish all those interventions in the hospital on any woman or baby!  Plus they do treat you like queens... 

Wow! This brought tears to my eyes.  I have a 3 1/2 month old, and I was adopted along with my two younger sisters at the age of 6 into the same family.  I am still in school and the father of my daughter were not together very long when I found out I was pregnant.  In fact, when I found out, I told him I didn't want a relationship because I wanted to make sure he was by my side for the baby.  We got back together a month before my labor.  My waterbirth is the best experience I have had in my life, and I love looking back at the photos and replaying everything in my head.  No words can describe all the emotions in the room that day.  After the labor, my boyfriend/the father continued to support me and be by my side emotionally and physically.  I know if he wasn't with me, I would have crumbled.  I never felt depressed but I was certainly happier than ever because I had him.  Nothing could have replaced that feeling while I was in recovery.  Having a natural birth will give you an unforgettable experience to look back at.  It's a time that will make you smile and reassure you that you did everything right.  Build a strong support team now- family, friends, church, online communities,  local communities!  There are so many resources and you don't have to go through this alone.  A tangible suggestion are placenta pills.  Some studies have shown benefits to taking your placenta after labor to help prevent postpartum depression.  My midwives had the option of getting my placenta encapsulated which I did.  You are already so strong for keeping this baby and choosing to give him/her up for adoption.  Always remember your strength.  

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