I realized after my last Facebook post about infertility a lot of people have a bit of a misconception about adoption. Adoption isn't always an option for people who have not been able to get pregnant.
Here is a list that might help those of you that want to support your friends that are struggling:
1. Adoption is very very expensive. Some of us have spent tens of thousands of dollars on fertility treatments. For some of us, we have gone in to serious debt or spent our life savings or a huge part of it already. Now some of you may be thinking, "Well, if you have a kid, that will be very expensive too" YES. I know this but getting pregnant naturally is A LOT less expensive. and natural. You are not getting stabbed poked and prodded and forcing what is supposed to come natural. (ok. save that for another post) In fact, other than the money you might have spent on that vacation or those drinks, it was probably free. :) I know kids cost money but it is very different to pay for a child's living expenses and save for a future for them, then to have to fork out another $10 or $20K to adopt a child. I personally have paid for very "pregnancy friendly" health insurance for many years in hopes of getting pregnant. I wish health insurance would cover adoption, God knows it is a mental health issue, but it doesn't.
2. Adoption may not replace the desire to be pregnant and give birth to a child. There is something very real about the innate animal instinct to bear children. Not everyone has it, but for those of us that do and can't it's excruciatingly painful. Having gone through the amazing roller coaster of pain and emotional stress of infertility treatments, some people are not ready to go through the emotional roller-coaster of adoption as well. For some people knowing that adoption is an option does not alleviate or replace the desire to have your own child.
3. Adoption to single parents. As a single woman, I have the hurdle of trying to adopt alone.
Now this statistic is a little old and progress has been made but I have done my research and it is still preferable for agencies to place young children with 2 parent families. If you want to adopt a special needs child, or an older child, this option becomes more viable, but if you are looking to adopt a new born or infant, and have the experience of having a child from birth, the percentage drops significantly. Also, adoption is another emotional roller-coaster. You have to be prepared to be picked over with a fine tooth comb. Important, YES! but still another thing that natural parents don't have to go through and may not understand. I think some parents should have been scrutinized before allowing them to procreate but again, that is another blog post.
4. Life still goes on. Adoption is a process and during the time that someone is trying to get pregnant and going through the hell of not being able to, life goes on. You try to build a life for yourself with the thought that you might never have a child. I am going to speak for myself now and say that I built an organization in the time that I was trying to get pregnant. It grew just like a child would have grown and now if I was to become pregnant, I would have to change a lot of things that I am doing to grow Charity Wings. I am no longer married and would be raising a child on my own. I WOULD ABSOLUTELY CHOOSE MOTHERHOOD OVER THIS LIFE. But I also have committed myself to the people I serve through this organization and deciding to adopt is not a decision I would take lightly nor could I "just adopt" as many people tell me to do.
So why do I feel sad and why do I post about being infertile?
Because there are so many people out there suffering like I do. Just because I am not ready to go the adoption route alone right now, does not mean I don't think about it every day.
And if I am being completely honest...
Sometimes I feel like maybe, just maybe, I don't deserve to be a mother. And sometimes, just sometimes, I feel like people look at me and think that same thing.
These thoughts are haunting and they come from a dark place inside me. I don't know them to be true but I have them all the same....
So if you hear of someone suffering from infertility. Just hug them and say, "I'm sorry'.