Through modern adoption, a mom can choose the parents she would like to raise her child and how involved she'd like to be in her child's life. Adoption is free for the biological mom. She can choose at any time to place her baby for adoption. She can try to parent and if it's too much for her, she can place her baby in a loving home. Adoption agencies can even help with expenses related to the pregnancy which can include anything from rent to clothes to transportation. And then if she changes her mind when the baby is born, she doesn't have to complete the adoption and she doesn't have to pay anything back.
A young lady who was getting out of an abusive relationship wanted nothing to do with the father and had an abortion scheduled on Thursday. The doctor had gotten permission to give her number to me. I called and asked if she'd be willing to meet. She screamed profanities for quite a few minutes. But I was calm and kind and she agreed to meet with me. After I asked about her struggles and gave her the facts about fetal development and abortion procedures and risks, she asked one question, "will 'it' feel pain" she asked. I took a big breath before telling her the truth. "Yes," I said quietly. There was silence as a single tear rolled down her cheek. And after several minutes of pause, she said, "I can't do that."
We called an adoption agency while she was in the room, and she couldn't bring herself to ask the questions. The lady on the other end got our information and mailed packets of information on several couples looking to adopt. She chose a couple with similar faith and race, interviewed them, and carried her baby to term. She created her own birth plan, which for her, she wanted the nurses to whisk away the baby so she wouldn't become attached. But instead, her labor came so quickly and she looked into his eyes, and she was in love. She felt badly for the parents, and frankly, maybe he would have had a better life with them, but that little boy could not be more loved. He became her inspiration to be a better version of herself. That little boy helped her have a reason to get up in the morning. And his smile took her out of depression.
When I asked her later why she chose to carry, she didn't think about the adoption or the abusive boyfriend or about the accurate facts that helped her make the best decision, she thought about how I was kind to her. I followed up with her at least weekly and was a friend she could talk to. There was a moment in the pregnancy when she lifted her head toward God and said, "God, I can't do this! I need your help!" And I watched her life change. She started going to church every Sunday morning where ladies talked to her and encouraged her and prayed for her during Wednesday night prayer meetings. And when it was time for her little boy to be born and she could call only one person, she called me to witness the miracle.
Modern adoption provides multiple options and gives lots of time for decisions to be made. Nine months is a long time to get ready for a baby. A lot can happen in nine months. For those adoptive parents, I pray God gave them a beautiful baby. I wish they could have more than one baby. But the truth is there are approximately the same number of couples wanting to adopt every year as there are babies aborted. That's why there is a shortage of babies. We are killing them. And I know it's difficult to hear for those parents and grandparents who elected to lose a child, but the truth sets us free.
There is always hope. As long as a child is living, there is an opportunity for that child to overcome hardship and become the person God created them to be. Everyone goes through hardship. We don't kill people because of it. Unless they are waiting to be born. Then we let our fear and imaginations take over. We become so afraid of what they might face that we kill them. That's not helping anyone. Now, we have a lot of wounded parents and grandparents with empty arms, and children who are missing from our lives that we will never get back. Modern adoption provides the best of all worlds for a mother who may not be able to care for a child, for potential adoptive parents who would give a child a great home, and for the child who only wants a chance to live and be loved in the world.
I had a friend who adopted a little girl. The biological mom had blonde hair and blue eyes, but her little girl was born with dark hair and dark eyes, just like her adoptive mom! The biological mom chose to be at every birthday party, a part of her child's life, and part of her child's extended family. She got to watch her daughter grow up without the responsibility of parenthood.
If more people understand modern adoption, they would know that abortion is never the answer. These children are blessings to their families and the world. And there are so many adoptive parents with so much love to give! There are parents willing to adopt children with disabilities, with health concerns, with special needs. My husband and I are one of those fortunate adoptive parents.
Most moms considering abortion are thinking about only two options: abortion or parenting. "I could never give up my baby for adoption," I've heard so many times. "I couldn't either," I'd tell them. "Because your baby is precious, and we don't give away what is precious." The only time we give up on our children is if we stop them from living. In modern adoption, we are not giving up our children, we are giving a life to our child.
Another friend of mine was planning to abort before abortion was legal. She got to the airport with big bouncer-looking men in sunglasses waiting to escort her and she simply couldn't do it. The fact abortion was illegal was enough to carry her little boy to birth. Forty years later, she was giddy with excitement to meet her son and get to know him. Whatever the embarrassment at the time had been, or the obstacles she thought she couldn't overcome, even in a closed adoption, it gave her son a chance to live a good life. And it gave her a chance to see how his life had turned out.
Happy birthday, little boy! I'm glad you're in the world. I'm glad for a doctor who got permission to give me your mom's phone number, for your mom agreeing to meet on a Tuesday, and who talked to me when I called on that Thursday instead of driving to that appointment. I'm glad God's Holy Spirit showed up in that room like He always does when we invite Him into the situation. And I'm thankful for you, smiling couple, who gave enough hope to keep him alive until his mother could meet him. And I'm thankful that I am adopted into a family, too. I'm a part of the family of my heavenly Father who adopts all of us who call out to Him to be our Father.
Faye Barnhart is a Co-Proponent of the Colorado Life Initiative. The wife of a farmer and mother of grown children including an adopted special needs son, and 'Grammy' to a special boy who needed life-saving surgery at birth, Faye has been a follower of Jesus Christ since a small child and has served four pregnancy care centers in two states, including CEO of the largest pregnancy center geographically in the United States and Colorado. She has also served as an aid at the Colorado state Capitol and raised her children as a single parent. She is a Life Affirming Specialist and Women's Advocate with more than twenty-six years in ministry.