My name is Sterling, I'm 22-years-old, and I am the birthmother to the most gorgeous little boy in the world. I started this blog to share my experiences, thoughts, and help myself move forward after placing my sweet little boy. If this is your first time visiting my blog, I invite you to read my story (top of the left column). Feel free to comment with questions or requests. If you follow me, I'll follow you!

Sunday, April 4, 2010

things birthmoms shouldn't have to hear...

I worked a very long shift tonight at work, and unfortunately had to work with all three of the people who disagreed with my placing David. I don't typically avoid the subject, but I knew I would have to go on the defensive around them, so I kept my mouth shut whenever I wanted to say something about him. These three people are also really great at trying to get a rise out of me by making anti-Mormon/religion comments near me. I've stopped reacting, because it's not worth it. Tonight got me thinking, though, about what kinds of things people have said to me throughout this process that I wouldn't have thought twice about before.

I made a list of the things birthmoms shouldn't have to hear.

1) "I wouldn't be able to give my baby away."
    I actually heard this from a girl in response to why she had had two abortions within a year, instead of placing for adoption. My heart broke.

2) "You're taking the easy way out [by placing your baby for adoption]."
I don't think this needs an explanation...

3) "I was a single parent and my children turned out just fine."
    Every person and their situation is different. If this is true of you, just know that we don't sit there and say, "She should have placed her children for adoption."

4) "You're so lucky you don't have to do all the 'mom' stuff!"
I know being a mom is hard, but there is nothing I wouldn't give to lose sleep, ache, get spit-up on, change diapers, and do all the other 'mom' stuff.  Infertile couples feel this way, too.

5) "Adoption is selfish."
Yes, I'm completely selfish, because I wanted my son to have the best life possible, and have all the things I can't give him. I wanted him to be raised by both of his parents, who love and adore him more than anything in this world, instead of a daycare or grandparents. I'm such a selfish, self-serving person for that. I'm selfish because I consciously made the decision to relinquish my parental rights and willingly go through more pain than I ever thought possible.

6) Complaining about pregnancy.
Again, this is one of those things birthmoms and infertile couples shouldn't have to hear. Given, pregnancy is hard. But I know people who had hellish pregnancies who would gladly go through them again because the magic of those few days between being pregnant and placement is worth every bit of pain or discomfort. And there are some people who would sell their left kidney to be able to be pregnant.
7) "Ohh, he's so cute! Too bad you gave him up for adoption..."
... really? Just, really? Well, your dog was really sweet, too bad it's dead.. (I really wanted to say this to my coworker who said the above statement.)

8) "You could have just gotten an abortion."
    ... not worth the fight on this one...

9) "Get over it. You made the decision, you shouldn't hurt over it."
    Just because I made that decision doesn't mean it was easy, or that I'm going to be completely normal immediately afterward.

10) "If you loved him enough, you wouldn't be able to give him to someone else." 
     Actually, if I loved him any less, I wouldn't have signed the relinquishment papers.

I hope I don't offend anyone... I just want people to be a little more conscientious about things that can hurt.


  1. Sterling, I know you don't probably know who I am, but I live in your ward. Since Lynn has been sick I have been following your Mom's blog and yours too. I want you to know that I think you are the most amazing young woman. Don't listen to any of those people....they have no idea about loving something or someone far beyond their own life. I have been a mom, a mom struggling with infertility (the waiting and wanting is unbearable), and since an adoptive mom of a 10 year old disabled child. People truly just don't stop to think before they open their mouths.

    Right now if I had to choose a hero in this world it would be you. You for knowing so well what was best for your son...for giving someone else the opportunity for motherhood...and most of all for the strength, faith, and selflessness you have demonstrated over and over again. I pray that Heavenly Father will hold you close as you continue through this journey!!!

  2. I have heard some of those things come out of people's mouths...and I've seen people leave comments like that on other blogs and facebook pages. Part of me wishes I could slap some people sometimes...well, I guess I always could...but, you know what I mean. :)

    I am not a birthmother, but I have a tender spot in my heart for them. Women who are so selfLESS, loving, kind and in touch with the spirit. I admire you for the strength you've shown during this tough time. You are a role model to me.

    Love you.

  3. I second what Janice said. You are my hero. You know more about what love really is than many people I know. You are amazing and I admire all you have done and are doing for those around you. Thanks for being an inspiration. I've learned more from you than you could possibly know.

  4. It is obvious that people don't know what they are talking about. Anyone who actually has any knowledge of adoption - or the love of family - should know that they are in the presence of something bigger than them. Adoption is one of the most sacred things out there, and it is a shame that people could see it as anything less.
    Also - I think some people just need to think before they speak. And some people should just not speak.

  5. Agreed. I should start carrying duct tape around to shut people up...

  6. Hi Sterling,
    You don't know me, I am a friend of Dave and Amy's. Amy and I went through some infertility struggles at the same time, and shared our experiences. Dave is such a sweet person, he grew up in the same town as my husband. They are the best kind of people.
    I loved your post, and most importantly the strong spirit that you convey in your writing. I found that in this last post, I felt like I can relate in a different way because of what I have gone through with infertility. You have taught me about the sacredness of the adoption process, and I feel like it has made a difference in my life. And if you can just educate one person out there on what it's like for you, and how to be sensitive and compassionate, then you are changing things. You are such an important person to me, even though I do not know you!

  7. "Sometimes the things you are scorned for you should be adorned for." -311

  8. Sterling

    It was fun meeting you last night. As a birth mother and now dealing with my own infertility problems I totally agree with everything you said! People don't get it! I appreciate your honesty and openness. And I always carry a roll of duct tape with me! :) Hope to talk to you soon!



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