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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi everyone,

I wanted to make a thread for adoption loss, a place where we could express our sorrow.

Today is the birthday of my second child, Kuheli, from Calcutta. It's been 8 years since the loss of my little Kuheli. I was supposed to travel to pick her up at any moment. She was 4 1/2 months old. On July 5th, I got a unexpected call from the adoption agency that she had passed away due to pnuemonia. I'd just gotten video and photos of her, and I had thought about how weak she looked. She couldn't do anything. No one ever told me that she was sick, but I could see it.

My next daughter was referred right after that, and I picked her up in Calcutta when she was 2 1/2 months old. She is a special blessing, and I'm so thankful I have her. I was blessed with another daughter 11 months after arriving home with dd1.

Today I didn't do anything special except put her referral photo in a place where we could all see it. I still miss my little Kuheli.

Jyotsna
 

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Yes, hugs to you. That baby was your baby, even though you had not yet met. I am so sorry about her death.

We've had two expected adoptive placements not happen. When ds was just six months old and still our little foster babe (but heading toward adoption), his mother got pregnant again. In that case, it was very clear that she was not able to parent, no matter how much support she was offerred. ds was the second of two children, the first of whom was parented by ds' mother for two years in a dangerous experiment of trying to see if she could do it with enough support. It did not end well.

Anyway, so when she got pregnant, the department was honest with her that they would need to remove her child and place him into foster care. She said in no uncertain terms that she did not want to abort, even knowing that her child would end up in foster care. She said that she felt strongly that this baby should have a chance to be born and live, even if not with her. Despite her developmental delays, everyone involved in the case felt they should respect her autonomy in making this decision once she had all the information (which she did).

The department informed us that they planned to place this baby with us. By the time ds' mother was six months along, things started to become "real." His mother showed us an ultrasound of this little baby boy, and I know this sounds crazy, but even in the ultrasound photo he looked so much like ds. They shared the same profile. We began to feel attached. We began planning for the arrival of ds' little brother.

Then, we heard the news. ds' maternal grandmother had basically forced/coerced/manipulated ds' mother into having an abortion. She (who was raising ds' older brother) threatened to never let ds' mother see ds' older brother if ds' mother didn't have an abortion. She (ds' maternal grandmother) also threatened to withdraw other support from ds' mother. ds' mother felt she had no other choice, and had an abortion.

No matter how I feel/felt about abortion, the way ds' grandmother acheived her desired outcome for this pregnancy seemed to me to be abhorrent. I also was extremely sad about how late this all occurred in the pregnancy. Additionally, I did grieve the loss of this baby who we expected to be bringing home in just a few short months.

It was a sad time.

Not long after, we met with a couple making a private adoption plan for their little girl, who had a due date that same summer. They were very firm in their decision to make an adoption plan, though we tried to encourage them to also explore alternatives and support for raising their child. The couple said they wanted us to adopt their child, and we were happy to adopt her. We began planning for this child's arrival, though tentatively, as it is our belief that no parents should feel pressure to relinquish their child out of obligation to a family. We did not want any pressure to come from our end, so we tried to give the couple ample space. We heard from the mother that the father had decided to go into counseling, and we thought that was very good. We had encouraged both parents to do so from the begining. We offered to pay for whatever kind of counselor he wanted to see, but did not hear back about that offer. As the due date approached, we emailed the mom because we wanted to check in. We did not hear back. Weeks passed, and it was hard not to just know. Eventually, I learned online that this couple had selected another couple as their child's adoptive family. I saw a post from the mother that they had found a "wonderful" adoptive family for their child. At first I was in denial and thought perhaps she meant us, but I soon came to terms with the fact that if that was the case, she wouldn't have been neglecting to reply to my emails. I quickly discovered who they had selected. I was supportive of the couple's right to choose, but on another level sad and hurt.

Eventually, the mom got in touch and said that the decision was because the father did not want a couple living in the same area as they did. They ended up going with an out-of-state couple. I hope but will never know for sure if this was the full story. She apologized for not having told us, but said that it was a point of contention between herself and the father at that time. It seemed she had felt embarrassed.

I totally respect a couple's right to choose a family or not for whatever reasons they want, and also to back out of an adoption at any time they want until the adoption is finalized. In fact, I still have mixed feelings about private adoption. But I did grieve the loss of this adoption despite my more broad feelings. To this day, when I see things online from the family that did adopt this baby, I feel both happy to see how happy and loved she is, and what a great family she has including her birthmother, while I also feel some pangs. I remember that she might have just as easily ended up in our arms...if only.
 

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I was going to start an adoption loss thread a while back when our plan to adopt from Zambia fell through. It's kind of a long story, so I won't bore you with it, but the kids we were supposed to adopt (though we had never seen a photo or had an official referral or anything) are now being adopted by another family, and I'm so happy for them, though I was really quite emotionally run over when it all fell through for us. We took a break from adoption altogether, and now, when we were least expecting it, we have a wonderful opportunity to adopt, and I'm ok with the way things have gone so far, even if this current opportunity comes to nothing (I think it's a pretty sure thing, but you never know...) I feel like our opportunity will happen when it is going to happen.

This is entirely different than the losses you both have described, of course. I am incredibly sorry for the pain you must have felt at learning of the deaths of your precious babies.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thank you for your responses, and I'm sorry for all of your losses too.

When my baby died, I couldn't function. Everyone knew we were going to adopt this baby, and the comments that came out of peoples mouths hurt me so much.

Some people said that they could see something was wrong with her. Other people, including my brother said, "You never met her, so at least that didn't happen". I wish I had met her. I wanted to hold her in my arms and let her know how much I loved her. She never had a mother. That still causes my heart to ache. She lived for just a few short months, and never knew the love of a mother. Her final moments were not good either, and the disposal of dead babies was another thing that freaked me out. I felt it was important for myself and my son (and ex husband) for us to have a memorial. Even though I wasn't a Christian, my mother talked to a priest we all knew, and he agreed to have the memorial. I invited all of our family and close friends. The memorial was short, and the priest read the poem that I wanted him to read.

Later when I went camping with my son (not long before I traveled to get my dd1) we took a photo of her, and set it on a beautiful leaf in the river. The photo floated away, and I gave myself and my baby permission to move on. It really meant more to me that anything else. And it was just my son and I, so that was nice. He mourned the loss of his sister, who he was expecting to arrive any time.

Anyway, I know that people never know just what to say, or how to express their feelings when someone is greiving, but it really hurt me to hear some of the heartless things. My dad told me that I would probably get pregnant! I couldn't believe he said that when my first baby daughter (through adoption) had just died.

Other families who were waiting for their daughters also lost them (from the same orphanage) and we brought each other more comfort than anyone else. That's why I wanted to start this thread. We seem to have similar enough experiences with adoption loss. Others see it as a child who never joined us. When you are adopting a child, you not only prepare for your child by buying clothing and a bed perhaps, but you also prepare your heart in a way of inviting that child to live with you. It is an experience that is completely different than being pregnant with a baby. I've experienced both types of loss, and losing my daughter from India was harder for me emotionally. I don't know why.
 

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Jyotsna, I know what you mean that some folks can never understand. I said privately to my closest friends back when ds' younger brother was aborted so late in the pregnancy that it felt on one level like someone had killed my child (regardless of my personal or political stands on abortion). I was very angry at ds' grandmother for a while. I don't think it would be safe to say that kind of thing in most circles. This baby wasn't even born yet.

Your baby was born and living, and then she died. I hope by sharing my stories it doesn't seem that I am blowing yours off. You lost your daughter, and I am sorry.
 

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Yes, hugs to you. That baby was your baby, even though you had not yet met. I am so sorry about her death.

We've had two expected adoptive placements not happen. When ds was just six months old and still our little foster babe (but heading toward adoption), his mother got pregnant again. In that case, it was very clear that she was not able to parent, no matter how much support she was offerred. ds was the second of two children, the first of whom was parented by ds' mother for two years in a dangerous experiment of trying to see if she could do it with enough support. It did not end well.

Anyway, so when she got pregnant, the department was honest with her that they would need to remove her child and place him into foster care. She said in no uncertain terms that she did not want to abort, even knowing that her child would end up in foster care. She said that she felt strongly that this baby should have a chance to be born and live, even if not with her. Despite her developmental delays, everyone involved in the case felt they should respect her autonomy in making this decision once she had all the information (which she did).

The department informed us that they planned to place this baby with us. By the time ds' mother was six months along, things started to become "real." His mother showed us an ultrasound of this little baby boy, and I know this sounds crazy, but even in the ultrasound photo he looked so much like ds. They shared the same profile. We began to feel attached. We began planning for the arrival of ds' little brother.

Then, we heard the news. ds' maternal grandmother had basically forced/coerced/manipulated ds' mother into having an abortion. She (who was raising ds' older brother) threatened to never let ds' mother see ds' older brother if ds' mother didn't have an abortion. She (ds' maternal grandmother) also threatened to withdraw other support from ds' mother. ds' mother felt she had no other choice, and had an abortion.

No matter how I feel/felt about abortion, the way ds' grandmother acheived her desired outcome for this pregnancy seemed to me to be abhorrent. I also was extremely sad about how late this all occurred in the pregnancy. Additionally, I did grieve the loss of this baby who we expected to be bringing home in just a few short months.
QUOTE]

That is disgusting. I am so sorry for you and for that poor poor baby. I saw this fromt he main page.....I don't belong here. I do believe in the right to choose abortion, although i'm not a fan. But it makes me sick to think of what that poor baby went through during the abortion process. at SIX MONTHS? There are preemies that age who are fighting for their lives. How absolutely terrible.
I hope that the gradmother gets what's coming to her. what UAV.
 
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