Question: "I'm about 99% sure adoption is going to be the best for my baby. My aunt keeps telling me that she'll help me raise my baby, but I know I can't count on her help for long. What can I do?! I love her, and I don't want to hurt her feelings."
Answer: In the long term, making a plan that works for you AND for your baby is what matters the most. Sometimes, the best way to tell people about your adoption plan is to share what know you about open adoption, and how that led to your plan for your baby. Tell her the reasons you see adoption as the best choice and the concerns you have about bringing your baby home.
If you've already told her your reasons for choosing adoption and she's still pushing you to parent, try making a chart. The chart will show her types of help you’ll need to parent your baby, and include spots for her to sign up to commit to helping. For example, your chart could have your work or school hours, child care, and hours you’ll need someone to look after your baby.
Add spots on your chart that show where you'll need help paying for things, like diapers, formula, rent, clothes, your power bill, and other necessities.
Make sure your chart also has info on the medical costs for your baby and the paychecks you'll miss while you’re out on maternity leave with your baby.
Most people have good intentions when they offer to help out. But at the end of the day, unless it changes their life, their help will disappear over time. By giving her a visual of the help you’ll need, she can see how much thought you’ve already put into adoption.
Let her know how she can support you while you make an adoption plan. Tell her how with modern open adoption, extended family members can also be part of the child’s life.
It helps to sit down and talk things out as you make a plan you feel is best for your baby. Lifetime can put you in touch with a licensed counselor for help, or you can even talk with a woman who chose adoption for her child.