I just watched an episode of Teen Mom on MTV, followed by An Adoption Special, hosted by Dr. Drew. And while there are millions of people in the world who think the show is REALLY stupid and it totally glorifies teen pregnancy, I feel compelled to show my support for the segments they've produced on adoption. I fully admit there was not a single thing about 16 and Pregnant that interested me...especially during the 5 years we spent trying (and failing) to become pregnant. There was no effing way I was going to watch a show where teenagers complained about their "unfortunate situations" while I was enduring painful shots, tests, treatments and therapy to experience just one second of their success. But a staff member at Adoption Network Law Center alerted me to a very special couple on that show who were placing their child for adoption and telling a beautiful, compelling, and positive adoption story. Caitlin and Tyler continue to be inspiring examples of how adoption changes lives for good.
So many moms on that show (and elsewhere in the world) express, "I could never do that. I could never give my child up for adoption." The special actually took a second to focus on positive adoption language and the impact it can have on a child. We all understand the statement, but the language is critical. I don't want Luke to ever feel like somebody "gave him up" or "gave him away". He wasn't a stinky pair of shoes that somebody donated to Goodwill. He was a perfect, long-awaited, cherished gift who deserved more than our birth mom could provide. So she made a plan. She made a choice. And she gave him a chance.
And I thank God every day that she did.
Every adoption story is different and I am grateful to Teen Mom for showing that adoption is not "giving up". It's actually one of the most loving, wonderful, maternal things a woman can do for her baby. While our birth mom was challenging and our adoption story was nothing short of a circus, she did an amazing thing for us. And I will continue to be an advocate for adoption and emphatically show my support for the women who make this incredible choice.
Hooray to Teen Mom. Hooray to MTV. And hooray to birth moms everywhere.