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Unread postPosted: Sun Sep 01, 2013 12:46 am 
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I'm New!

Joined: Thu Dec 06, 2012 3:51 pm
Posts: 14
Your Adoption Connection: In an at-risk placement with the sweetest baby boy
It's been a while since I have been on here, but things have been pretty crazy. Things have been going great with the adoption and we finalize on September 20th, but Thursday morning, we got a call that no one wants to get. We were informed that our son's Bio-Mom was found dead and they suspected it was suicide. Our agency has had contact with her in the last couple of months and she seemed to be doing better and was 100% sure she had done the right thing. She had been in rehab for awhile and had not been in contact with Bio-Dad since May. Actually, she feared he was dead also since neither her nor his family had heard from him. They are conducting an autopsy to discern her cause of death. I never imagined we would have a situation like this to deal with, but she had attempted to take her own life several times in the past and was a ward of the state. I'm just really struggling with this and can't imagine how we are going to explain something like this to our son when the time is right in the distant future especially if his Bio-Dad is deceased also. I can't imagine that anyone else has had a situation like this, but I could use some help understanding how to deal with this. To make matters worse, when we got the call, we were going to a funeral on Thursday for my grandma who had passed on Monday from cancer. It has just been a messed up week. Any thoughts???


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Unread postPosted: Sun Sep 01, 2013 4:14 pm 
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Homeschooling Mama
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Joined: Sun Feb 10, 2008 3:21 pm
Posts: 987
Location: Hagerstown, Maryland
Your Adoption Connection: I have 3 children, all adopted as older kids.
My son's birthfather committed suicide the year after we finalized our adoption. Brandon was 12. It was a really difficult time, but we got through it. We asked Brandon what he wanted to do, and he wanted to write a letter. So he did that, and then we tied it to some balloons and sent it up to the sky. I know that is terrible for animals, but it was a terrible time for my son, and he needed it. We attended the funeral, but would have stayed home if it had been to much for him - and it almost was. Lots of relatives trying to hug him and comfort him, and Brandon is tactile defensive! None of them cared, they just wanted to tell him they remembered him when he was little, and to promise to keep in touch because his dad would have wanted them too. You can guess how many of those well-wishers followed through. Ugh. They were nice, well-meaning people, I am sure, but I was angry that they would make promises to a vulnerable child who would take them to heart. The only person who did follow up was his dad's girlfriend, who sent photos and some items to us. It was much appreciated.

So, I would try, try, try to get as much info as you can, if possible, because more than likely your link to this side of the family will be gone forever.

_________________
Holly (35)
Waiting to adopt #4 (& maybe #5!)

Proud mom to:
Brandon (24), adopted at age 12
Jessica (23), adopted at age 10
Carolina (16), adopted at age 11


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Unread postPosted: Sun Sep 01, 2013 9:58 pm 
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Site Admin
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Joined: Fri Feb 08, 2008 2:23 am
Posts: 5347
Location: Farm fields of Illinois
Your Adoption Connection: International, foster and private adoption.
I think because your son is very young and was a baby when adopted may cause a different way to talk about it than if he'd lived with him and remembered him, KWIM? (And Holly, that's horrible in how Brandon had to go through that regarding people who spoke to him. :sad2 ).

The only experience I have to relate is that with our first older child adoption. He was six years old when he came and just a few months later (and before the adoption was finalized), his bio dad was killed in a knife altercation-presumably during a drug deal gone wrong. It was on TV and all. We didn't allow J to watch it that night, but told him about it.
His reaction?
He was glad "D" was dead and 'couldn't hurt anyone anymore'.
Not a surprise to us at all.
Through his counselor and us, he also conducted a letter to D. It stated pretty much the same thing, that he was glad D couldn't hurt anyone anymore.

Of course, with your son, this isn't the case. FWIW, I *do* believe I'd stress-when the time comes--that she had related many times how she felt she had done the right thing in releasing him for adoption---and, that she had tried to commit suicide in times before.
She is to be admired for placing your son in a positive and protected environment since a wee baby. That is something I'd stress as well. It would seem she put his happiness and well-being first and foremost. Not always the case in some adoption scenarios..

Sincerely,

Linny

_________________
There is an instinct in a woman to love most her own child - and an instinct to make any child who needs her love, her own. ~Robert Brault

Adoption Specialist for
Adopt America Network


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Unread postPosted: Mon Sep 02, 2013 5:55 pm 
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Honorary Member

Joined: Sat Feb 09, 2008 11:26 pm
Posts: 1346
Your Adoption Connection: Adoptive mom to 2, raising 2 biological kids also
I'm with Linny. The suicide may have not been adoption related at all. She had tried before. You can
stress how responsible she was to find stability for him. I also agree that if you want information for him from his birthmother's family, do not delay. Watch for the obituary.

I'm so sorry for this news! Hugs!

_________________
Old Fashioned Closed Nuclear Family Values


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Unread postPosted: Mon Sep 02, 2013 10:24 pm 
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I'm New!

Joined: Thu Dec 06, 2012 3:51 pm
Posts: 14
Your Adoption Connection: In an at-risk placement with the sweetest baby boy
Thanks, I appreciate the thoughts. It's sad that this isn't as rare of an occurrence as I had thought. We are lucky that we will still have contact with the family through my cousin who is married to A's cousin. ("A" is easier than saying Bio-mom each time) I have found her obit online and will take a screen capture of it soon. The one thing we are not sure of at this point is how to handle the request from A's mom. She has asked that we continue our plan of pictures and a letter 2 times each year with her since A will not be able to receive them. This should be easy, but A had a very rocky relationship with her and we aren't sure she would want us to. Not sure about that yet.

I like the way you suggest we approach the difficult conversations down the road Linny, thanks. We'll just have to see what happens and play it by ear.


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Unread postPosted: Tue Sep 03, 2013 6:50 am 
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Honorary Member

Joined: Wed Jan 07, 2009 3:23 pm
Posts: 1437
Location: Connecticut
Your Adoption Connection: Director, Forever Families Weekend
Adoptive parent
A is gone. Rocky relationship or not, her mother is surely grieving. Your child may want information and/or a relationship with A's mother someday, and you have a family relationship (albeit distant) through your cousin already. It seems to me that sending her letters and photos is a compassionate thing to do that really doesn't cost you (beyond a limited amount of time and postage). Whether A "would have wanted you to" isn't really the issue. She's not here to voice an opinion, and, even if she were alive, she wouldn't have had the right to decide whether or not you could correspond by mail with her mother or anyone else you chose.

Instead of asking whether A would have wanted you to, perhaps ask yourself what message it sends to your child if you do NOT honor a simple request from a grieving parent.


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