Don't know where else to post this; I want to have a baby for my friend - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 107 Old 05-06-2012, 07:29 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I have a very dear and sweet friend that has one child but always wanted more.  She had a horrific birth experience that eventually led to the removal of her uterus and ovaries.  She's younger than me and I haven't seen 30 yet.

 

They really want to foster and adopt but their finances are not really in a place for adopting.  They can afford another child easily, but the adoption fees are such that they would be a large hamper.

 

For a few years now I have been seriously considering offering to give birth do a baby and give it to them for adoption.  Is this even done?  How would it work?  I would rather have a biological child with my husband and then give the baby to them rather than 1) being inseminated by her husband's semen (too weird for me) or 2) having them find a donor egg and then having me go through fertility treatments that go with being a surrogate.

 

Anyway, I'm looking for any advice or information before I offer this to her.  I really truly am okay with having a baby for her.


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#2 of 107 Old 05-06-2012, 07:47 PM
 
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Firstly, what a completely wonderful and selfless thought.  Your friend is so lucky to have you in her life.

 

Secondly the financial issue is one to be seriously considered.  Do you have insurance?  If there are complications, how would those issues be paid for?  Even a relatively minor complication (in my case, insulin-dependent GD) can be very expensive (and time-consuming and stressful) even with insurance.

 

Thirdly, there is always the chance that you would not find yourself able to part with the child in the manner in which you intend.

 

My thought would be for all parties to a) see a counselor together, and b) see a lawyer together.  You and your spouse will be bonded to the child and your friend and her husband for life, as will any other children from either set of parents.

 

Yes, I think this kind of thing can be done and done well; done compassionately and caringly and wonderfully.  But carefully.

 

Whichever path you choose, I wish you luck and commend you on your willingness to give of yourself.


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#3 of 107 Old 05-07-2012, 08:22 AM - Thread Starter
 
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McGucks, thank you for the thoughtful reply.  We do have insurance and it's very good.

 

That was wonderful advice about seeing a counselor and lawyer.

 

I do think The Hubby and I would be attached to the child, but hopefully not in a "We're the rightful parents!" kind of way.  Another one of my friensd did surrogacy for two pregnancies (donated egg and sperm), and I've talked at length about it with her.  I know I could never be fully prepared for the adoption, but I hopefully have a good idea about how it goes and how I would feel about it.

 

Again, thank you for your compassionate words.  They've given me a lot to think about.


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#4 of 107 Old 05-07-2012, 08:40 AM
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Lazurii: That is really selfless and kind of you.

 

I would be very concerned (and a little offended) about the fact that you would rather have the child be biologically yours instead of letting them use their sperm or donor eggs. I am dealing with infertility, and I would never agree to those terms. We are looking at donor eggs, but if I were in your friends position, I would be thankful of your offer, but decline it. The desire to have a genetic connection to your own child can be very strong (no matter how "weird" the idea of insemination with her DSs sperm seems to you), and for me, at least having a child that is genetically related to my DH helps a little. Since it is her child, you really should let her call the shots about who the father is, if you are going to do this. There is nothing weird at all with donor eggs or sperm - people do it every day. What exactly do you think is so weird about it?

 

I hope this is not offensive. Your offer is really kind and generous.

 

ETA - the treatments for using donor eggs are really easy, actually. It is the donor that goes through the hard part. Donor sperm is pretty simple too.

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#5 of 107 Old 05-07-2012, 09:06 AM
 
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I understand the "weirdness."  Frankly, I think conception in general is kinda weird.  I found myself embarrassed at times when I was pregnant just because people would know how I got that way!  I have issues, I know...

 

If you are willing to do this for your friend, you will communicate under what circumstances you could comfortably do it, just as she will hopefully do the same for you.


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#6 of 107 Old 05-07-2012, 10:19 AM
 
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I have been a birth mom three times.  I know how wonderful it is the help grow a family.  I also know the pain and misery of losing a child to adoption.  If you have any questions, you can feel free to ask me.  I do think that you are a wonderful person though for even thinking of doing this.  However, I am worried for you and your husband if you actually go through with it.


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#7 of 107 Old 05-07-2012, 12:24 PM
 
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I really think that you should spend some time reading literature about adoption from the "other side".... It is often not a piece of cake for the child and this situation, in my opinion, could be really harmful to the mental health of the child. "What was wrong with me that my parents, though they kept my siblings, found it possible to give me away?" What may now seem like a selfless act could end up, I dare say, would end up hurting the child for life. There is a huge difference between your idea and using someone else's eggs and sperm...

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#8 of 107 Old 05-07-2012, 12:30 PM
 
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I really think that you should spend some time reading literature about adoption from the "other side".... It is often not a piece of cake for the child and this situation, in my opinion, could be really harmful to the mental health of the child. "What was wrong with me that my parents, though they kept my siblings, found it possible to give me away?" What may now seem like a selfless act could end up, I dare say, would end up hurting the child for life. There is a huge difference between your idea and using someone else's eggs and sperm...

 

Definitely.  I have a lot of explaining to do when my birth children grow up. 

 

OP, have you looked into surrogacy at all?  It's really not all that "icky".  There is a site called all about surrogacy.  Maybe you should check it out and see if maybe that is something you could handle.  That would still be a huge sacrifice and blessing to your friend with out the ramifications of placing your own biological child.


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#9 of 107 Old 05-07-2012, 01:46 PM
 
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I think you should also take into consideration that your oldest is going to be 5 or older at the time that you do this.  Maybe it will have no impact, but it may.  I have met quite a few birthsiblings who searched (and felt deep loss) even when their parent did not seem to feel the same way.  This isn't just about you, or your friend.  And you don't have control over how your children will feel about it--either the one you place or the ones that you do not.
 

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#10 of 107 Old 05-07-2012, 03:57 PM
 
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 You have gotten quite a bit of good advice, but I want to ad my two cents smile.gif  Fostering or adopting from the state is free or almost free.  There are good reasons not to do it.  But if your friends feel that fostering to adopt is too complicated, they may be very unprepared for how complicated this situation would be.  Botton line is that all adoption is complicated, you just have to find the one you can bear!

 

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Originally Posted by Lazurii View Post

They really want to foster and adopt but their finances are not really in a place for adopting.  They can afford another child easily, but the adoption fees are such that they would be a large hamper.

  

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#11 of 107 Old 05-07-2012, 04:00 PM
 
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OP I think you're a very thoughtful and kind woman for wanting to do this intensely loving thing for your friend....here is what I worry about:

You know how, when you find out you are pregnant, you're like "Oh, there is a little speck in me!" and you think about how that speck will become a baby. Then, you have an ultrasound at nine or ten weeks (or maybe not)...but you reach that phase where you're like "oh my gosh, it's not a speck anymore..it's a baby blobby!" and again, you think of how it will become a real, live, pink baby. Then you reach that "age of viability" and you are filled with awe, knowing that you made it to the point in your pregnancy where if, god forbid you should go into labor, your child would live! It's an amazing feeling, to know that there is a real live "viable" human inside of you.

Then, even more amazing than that....is the day this human comes out of you. Do you remember your childrens births? How you look at them and thought "holy shit, you are a REAL person" - not a speck, not a blob, not a sack of skin and bones that could be "viable".....a rolly, soft, pink little ACTUAL person.

We, so often, cannot truly conceptualize that these people within us are ACTUALLY people. When they are inside of us and we are feeling them move and learning what music gets them dancing and what food seems to give them hiccups, etc...we are bonding, but only half way, because there is a barrier between us. When they are born, in a split instant, context is provided for all of those experiences we've shared with them, through the barrier of our own bodies. In an instant we love them and the context provided by their existence right in front of our eyes, suddenly makes all of that time they spent in us even that much more lovely. You meet your baby..but that's not "day one" in your relationship...because you have history, all those days you carried them, thought of them, nourished and cared for them, you realize that though you are just meeting face to face, you've known them for a long while. That bond is so strong.

 

I'm worried about that for you. I'm worried that it would be hard enough to give up a baby which was not biologically yours...but at least you would be able to say "It was so nice to carry you, baby, but I was only a vessel...your real mama is going to take over from here".

What happens when it is your own baby? What happens when this child is born and has your husbands nose? Or your mothers intense eyes? What do you say to that baby? "It was so nice to carry you...and you are of me and of your father, my beloved, but I must give you away to this other woman because she has lost too much in this world...I will always love you, but I cannot be your mama....." - that has the makings for an absolutely heartbreaking outcome.
 

Do you really think you could take a baby, after it came out of you and you realized it was an actual baby....and give that child away? The sibling of your own dear children, the flesh and blood of your beloved husband? I think that would be REALLY difficult for you and I don't think you should spare ANY effort to try and make sure you could really do this.

 

Go back and look at the baby photos of your children. Better yet, if you have any, go back and look at the pictures you took with your newborns when they were fresh out of you...try to really take yourself back to those days, when you gave birth to your kids...and imagine taking that little baby and saying goodbye.
 

You can logic your way through handing over a baby which is not biologically yours....but the love between and mother and a child is not logical. If you KNOW in your heart that the baby is just as much your child as your other children...I think it's going to be very, very hard to make your heart go along with giving that child up.

Good luck. Your heart is in an awesome, awesome place on this one honey. I know you want only to try and help your friend and I can't believe what  a crushing loss she has suffered, that's terrible. But you should really, really think about what this actually means. This could end up being so incredibly emotionally damaging for you.

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#12 of 107 Old 05-07-2012, 04:34 PM
 
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 You have gotten quite a bit of good advice, but I want to ad my two cents smile.gif  Fostering or adopting from the state is free or almost free.  There are good reasons not to do it.  But if your friends feel that fostering to adopt is too complicated, they may be very unprepared for how complicated this situation would be.  Botton line is that all adoption is complicated, you just have to find the one you can bear!

 

 

Amen to this.  I do not think you can *ever* truly escape "complicated" when it comes to adoption or for that matter surrogacy (traditional or gestational)--not only are their multiple people involved, even worse these people are not static, they grow and change over time as well.  Doesn't mean it can't be happy or turn out well--but whenever you involve people in anything, autonomous people who have their own thoughts and feelings (and this includes the future baby/child/adult) it is by definition going to be more complicated than the original idea.

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#13 of 107 Old 05-07-2012, 06:17 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you, everyone, you've given me a lot to think about.


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#14 of 107 Old 05-07-2012, 06:47 PM
 
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Please read the book Primal Wound before you go any further.  Start reading blogs of adoptees and birth mothers.  I can link you to them if you like.  There are many listed on my blog... and many more on the blogs I link to mine.

 

Please consider the thoughts and feelings of your possible child in this.

 

I too at a time that my cousin was struggling with infertility had similar thoughts and feelings.... so I do get where you are coming from - there is actually an old post on here about it- from a old user name of mine....

 

This is not a good idea- for many many many reasons... but most of all it is not a good idea for the child you would be choosing to bring into the world.
 


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#15 of 107 Old 05-08-2012, 07:35 PM
 
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Lots of good replies and food for thought here.  Just to add, there is a specific surrogacy thread in FYT that might also be a resource/tribe to tap into.

 

Good luck!


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#16 of 107 Old 05-09-2012, 11:56 AM
 
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You gotten a lot of good advice. I would really, strongly advise you not to do this with your own genetic material. It would be much easier emotionally for all the parties if you were carrying a non-genetically matched child. Consider IVF with a donor egg and sperm donation from the friend's husband.

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#17 of 107 Old 05-09-2012, 01:55 PM
 
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I did a search to and asked a few people I know if they knew of a situation where this took place.  I had one tell me that a friend of hers had done this exact thing- gave her friend a baby since her friend was infertile- that she could have raised- just wanted to help her friend out- the family that adopted the baby moved out of state and discontinued all contact with the birth mother.  I don't know the particulars or any other detailed information.... but I do believe it to be a reliable source and that is something you would need to consider.  Open adoption is not " legally binding" and not enforceable under the law- so even if your friend promised it- things could change once the baby is here.  Just a word of caution.
 


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#18 of 107 Old 05-09-2012, 02:02 PM
 
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What a generous thought!  And so much to think about!  Another aspect that no one seems to have brought up yet is that you presumably will want to stay friends with this family.  How will you be addressed, and what part will you have in the child's life?  What if they make decisions for the child that you don't like or don't agree with?  What if they split up or die or have other tragedies/ life changes befall them, will you expect to have some option to take the baby in?  Do you expect some kind of relationship with the child?  Will you have any financial responsibility for the child?  What if they move, or you grow apart as friends, or something happens that you wind up not liking each other very much?  What if the baby isn't well when it's born, will they have the choice to not adopt & leave you with a special needs kid when you weren't expecting any kid at all?  If you have testing while pregnant and find out that there is a problem, is abortion an option?   If there are unexpected expenses, co-pays, medication etc.  who pays?   If you have need of counselling, or other aftercare (for depression etc.) who covers it?  What kind of involvement will they have during gestation, and how much say (if any) in your medical/diet/ health decisions?

 

If you can't talk about all this stuff openly and honestly with yourself, your husband and your friends, I'd say that it's a bad idea.  Probably none of that stuff is going to happen, but if it does you all could find yourself in a crazy emotional legal mess. Everyone would need to have their eyes wide open and expectations out in the open, or there is a very good chance that any of the relationships around the pregnancy could fall apart.  I'm thinking if you can't get over a little squeamishness at the idea of being inseminated by another guy, this all might be a little much.

 

All that said, this could also be incredibly awesome and beautiful.  Setting boundaries will be challenging, but if everyone is on the same page it could be great. I gave up a baby for adoption, and while it was the hardest thing I've ever done it worked out well for everyone in the end.  It would have been a lot easier if I had planned the pregnancy with the intent of giving up the baby and known that my child was going to a happy family.  Now that I have reunited with her and I know she grew up happy, it has been a great weight off my shoulders. 

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#19 of 107 Old 05-10-2012, 10:53 AM
 
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If you are willing to do this for your friend, you will communicate under what circumstances you could comfortably do it, just as she will hopefully do the same for you.

 

 

That's the key IMHO. I would also not be willing to be impregnated with another man's sperm, so I feel for you on that one. Your friend and her husband may think that bio-connection to their newborn is very, very important, or they may think that it's not so important. There is no right answer to that - different people have different experiences. 

 

 

If you proceed by conceiving your own bio-child, then you have the right to change your mind at any point. While your friend and her husband would be disappointed that you hadn't chosen adoption, it's a disappointment that your friendship would probably survive. If you use any of their genetic material, then your gift would become an obligation - that baby would be part theirs in a manner that they could enforce legally.

 

I heartily concur that counseling would be good for all four of you, as well as a lawyer if you decide to use their genetic material.

 

If I had a sister, I really think that I could step outside myself enough to do this for her, if I'd had all the babies I wanted to raise and she had not. Do you love this friend as much as you'd love a sister? 

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#20 of 107 Old 05-10-2012, 11:13 AM
 
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Of the responses I have read, I have not seen anyone ask how your husband feels about this. I know my husband would NEVER agree to giving away a child that was biologically ours. While I have seen a lot of great advice, I think you need to talk long and hard with your husband about this before making any kind of offer.

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#21 of 107 Old 05-10-2012, 11:58 AM
 
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I don't know, I can't say that if someone suggested to let me adopt one of their children and then it all changed at the end, that our friendship would survive that at all. That's a life changing experience and I can't say that it's simply "going back to life as normal"

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#22 of 107 Old 05-10-2012, 12:14 PM
 
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My neighbors are involved in a strikingly similar situation, and things did not go well.  I don't want to muddy up everything here for the sake of their privacy (and potential court proceedings), but let's just say that everyone had good intentions from the beginning, lawyers were involved the whole way, and things are very very sour now.  

 

Perhaps a better route would be to assist your friend in raising the money necessary for adoption through an agency/private lawyer.  You could host a fun run, garage sales, boutique, fundraising dinner, silent auction, or anything else.  You could raise money in any way you know how and donate the money to their adoption fund.  One thing to consider is professional skills that you have.  If you are an accountant--you could do taxes for people but give the money to your friend instead of keeping it for yourself.  If you do hair, you could do likewise.  Plus, many clients are more likely to contribute a little extra if they know that the money is going towards a good cause.  Think of whatever you do for employment now, and then brainstorm ways to use that to raise money for her.

 

Does your friend have any religious affiliations?  There are several religious-based adoption agencies that have significantly lower fees than other organizations.  

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#23 of 107 Old 05-10-2012, 01:25 PM
 
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What religious based adoption agencies are you referring to?  The religious based ones I know of- are just as costly.  I would be interested to know which ones you know of and research them.


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#24 of 107 Old 05-10-2012, 02:00 PM - Thread Starter
 
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ckthom, I have discussed this with The Hubby and it is supportive of possibly offering this opportunity to our friends.

 

If we were to go through with this there would obviously be much discussion between the four of us.  I can't speak for my friend but since she's willing to adopt a child from the state or foster care I'm assuming that genetics is not an end-all with them.  There would be a lawyer involved.

 

Thank you for all of the advice, I have been pondering it on and off since starting this thread.  A lot of food for thought.


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#25 of 107 Old 05-10-2012, 06:05 PM
 
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Sorry to keep coming back to this, but adoption from the state if free.  The fact that your friend says it is too expenive is really concerning to me..

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 I can't speak for my friend but since she's willing to adopt a child from the state or foster care I'm assuming that genetics is not an end-all with them. 

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#26 of 107 Old 05-10-2012, 06:26 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Sorry to keep coming back to this, but adoption from the state if free.  The fact that your friend says it is too expenive is really concerning to me..


Hmm, maybe she doesn't know this.  Thanks for the info.


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#27 of 107 Old 05-10-2012, 06:31 PM
 
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I think it would be really, really difficult to explain this to the child.  I loved them so much, I gave you away?  I just don't see this being a good idea for the child. 

 

And, I know this is going to come across harshly, and I can see that you are coming from a pure place with this, but, I still think this needs said...

 

People are not gifts.


"If you keep doing the same things you've always done, you'll keep getting the same results you've always gotten."

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#28 of 107 Old 05-10-2012, 09:11 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Just1More View Post

I think it would be really, really difficult to explain this to the child.  I loved them so much, I gave you away?  I just don't see this being a good idea for the child. 

 

And, I know this is going to come across harshly, and I can see that you are coming from a pure place with this, but, I still think this needs said...

 

People are not gifts.


THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 

i agree.  Whole heartedly.  Please educate yourself.  If you want to talk to me privately please message me I will speak with you.  I am so troubled by this idea... please go read primal wound before you take one more step!


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#29 of 107 Old 05-10-2012, 09:57 PM
 
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LDS Family Services charges 10% of the prior year's gross annual tax return, with a minimum of $4,000 and a maximum of $10,000.  However, if there are families that can not afford the $4,000 then the fee is usually covered by their congregation.

 

There is a Jewish Family Services Office in the building where I work, and in talking informally with their counselors it sounds like their fees are structured similarly--it is based on the family's income, but financial assistance is also offered.

 

Also, I looked into it more and it sounds like adopting through a state agency is free.  There are so many children already in this world who need loving homes.  You could help her locate adoption agencies that she can afford and then throw her a big baby/kid shower when the placement is finalized.  I agree with the prior poster---children are not gifts, even when there are good intentions.

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#30 of 107 Old 05-10-2012, 10:37 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Okay, whoa, everyone cool down.  I'm asking for advice, and I've gotten wonderful feedback.  But please don't let this degenerate into a , "OMG, you're not thinking enough/clearly/how I would/in a Western way, so you must be wrong!"  Please, can we keep this a constructive and open-minded conversation?


SAHM to DS BuggaBoo blahblah.gif  12/07, and DD Doozer energy.gif03/10.  Sharing life with The Hubby since 01/05.

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