Tips to Consider for Your First Conversation with a Birth Mother
For adoptive parents: The first phone call with a birth mother, who is considering adoption and placing her baby with you, can be somewhat nerve-racking! However, many birth mothers share the same fears as you when it comes to this initial conversation. Putting yourself in the birth mother’s shoes and having empathy towards what she is going through may help ease the nerves during the first conversation. Here are some tips to consider for your first conversation with a birth mother.
Show your excitement: Let her know how excited you are that she chose you! The birth mother wants to hear the family happy and excited on the other end. You will undoubtedly be nervous, but it’s important to let your excitement shine through.
Avoid very personal questions: Try to avoid any probing questions about medical expenses, drug use, the birth father (especially if he’s not in the picture), etc. You certainly don’t want to touch on subjects that will make the birth mother feel uncomfortable right away.
Touchy subjects: If something comes up that you’re uncomfortable talking about, simply let her know that you’re not sure of the answer, but that you both should discuss the topic with your case worker. Case workers are familiar navigating many touchy subjects and can help you proceed from there.
Ask pregnancy-related questions: Feel free to ask her how her pregnancy has been going! It is normal to ask how she is feeling, how her doctor’s appointments are, if she has any cravings, etc.
Get to know her: While we recommend avoiding very personal questions, feel free to ask her some basic questions about herself! For example, what she likes to do for fun, what she’s doing this weekend, etc.
Keep in contact: It is perfectly ok and highly recommended that you exchange phone numbers or email addresses for further contact purposes. Some adoptive parents make an ‘adoption only’ email address, which is only given to the birth mother for communication purposes. Some adoptive parents get a ‘pay as you go’ phone to use only for adoption communication. Choosing to be in contact with the birth mother directly is completely up to you and your level of comfort!
Your profile: Feel free to ask her what she liked about your profile. Adoptive parents work so hard to create this profile and it is reassuring to know what stood out and ultimately led her to choose you!
You don’t have to have all the answers: You may not have an answer for every question she asks. If something comes up that may put you on the spot, let her know that you’ll think about it and get back to her. For instance, baby names can be very controversial! Discussing your favorite baby name could cause for a rocky start, if perhaps she does not like the name, dislikes someone with the name, etc. If she asks, we recommend letting her know that you plan to get to know the baby first, but that she’ll be the first to know once you decide!
Does she have questions: Feel free to ask if she has any questions for you!
Be yourself: Most importantly, be yourself! She already likes you from your profile!
Contact your case worker: Call your case worker to report how this first conversation went!
For more tips and advice about the adoption process, please call or email AdoptHelp at any time! Visit our website at http://www.adopthelp.com/contact-us/ or call 800-637-7999.