Grand Parent Stories

My Daughter is Pregnant

It is an emotional time when your son or daughter tells you about an unplanned pregnancy. You may be overwhelmed, shocked, saddened, and/or angry to learn you are going to be a Grandparent. This was supposed to be an exciting time in your life to share with friends and instead, the timing of this pregnancy is not such a happy event and your son or daughter’s decisions will now affect everyone in the family. If they choose adoption, a child will be raised in another family and there will be feelings of loss to come to terms with.

ROSLYN’S STORY

Dear Beginnings,

I am the mother of Roslyn, who just last year at age 16, found herself pregnant. Through a fabulous counsellor in our community, Roslyn was given many pamphlets on adoption agencies and decided, after meeting you, to follow through with Beginnings.

Shirley, our Beginnings counsellor, met with my daughter and was so wonderful to her and our family. The decision for Roslyn to place her baby for adoption was such a difficult one, but knowing that the adoption would be open gave her much comfort. She knew that giving her baby the life that she was given as a child was the very best for her baby. What an amazing testament of her love for her child—to be so selfless and think only of what was best for her child—it was truly an act of pure love.

Several adoptive family profiles were given to Roslyn to choose from and of these, Dale and Francine connected with her. I could not ask for a more wonderful couple to come into Roslyn’s life. They have embraced her and loved her unconditionally. They have cheered her on and been her biggest fan when it came to her role in the high school play.

They have been there for her above and beyond of what is required of them, and I thank God for them every day. Roslyn is off to University this September and I know that we will not be the only family praying for her while she’s gone! This young girl who found herself pregnant last year will be working overseas with children this year; we’re so proud of everything she’s accomplished!

Your agency does wonderful work and I thank you from the bottom of my heart! Truly God’s work is being done through you and I pray that many more couples like Dale and Francine are blessed with the gift of being parents and that more young girls know that open adoption can be such a wonderful and amazing gift.

Roslyn’s Mother

We do know that open adoption—the opportunity to stay connected with a grandchild through email, photos and visits can reduce the feelings of loss. It is our hope you will fully participate as one of many loving grandparents in your grandchild’s life.

Beginnings can help grandparents with the decisions their daughter or son makes. Call us for more information on the process of private adoption

Grand Parent FAQ

How can parents support their pregnant daughter or birth father son?

Parents need to be non judgemental and offer a verbal declaration of support for whatever their daughter or son decides, then seek out their own support network to talk about their own feelings of disappointment, loss or anger. By articulating clear boundaries of what they will or will not provide, grandparents will add to the information needed for their child’s important life decision. Often parents do not say anything until after the decision is made and it could have made a significant difference to the outcome.

What if parents do not agree with their daughter or son’s decision?

Parents must find a way to manage their disappointment and seek a counsellor to talk about how they will reconcile their lack of control. It is ultimately the birth parents’ decision to make for their child. It is never wise to pressure, coerce, impose or manipulate a decision that is not theirs to make. The consequences for this may not be evident at the time, but will surface in the future.

What if my son claims he is not the father, can we insist on a DNA test?

Yes. Ideally, the birth father pays for this service if he is requesting it. It is in the best interests of the child to have the paternity confirmed if there is any doubt. Beginnings can arrange for DNA testing. It is a simple swab taken from the mouth and sent to a lab. Results are usually back in 7 working days.

What is the role for grand parents once the adoption plan is made?

Parents role is to be there for their son or daughter.

What does open adoption involve?

Open adoption involves ongoing communication and contact between birth parent(s) and the adopting couple, including the child. This can take the form of letters, emails, phone calls, and/ or visits. The amount of contact is negotiated between the parties and varies from one situation to another. Beginnings believes openness is good for a child as it allows him or her to maintain relationships with important people in his or her life; as he or she grows older, openness allows access to information about his or her origins and background and to any other siblings he or she may have.

Will birth grandparents be included in the child’s life in the future?

In most cases yes, but it up to the birth parents how much they want to have their parents involved in the lives of their adopted child. The adoptive families are usually eager to have ongoing contact with all members of the birth parents families. The Covenant agreement can include extended family members in the contact arrangements.

What is a Covenant Agreement

It is an agreement outlining the specific contact arrangements between birth parents and the adoptive couple. The word Covenant means “promise” and implies a commitment on both sides to carry through with the arrangements they are making – for the sake of the child.  These agreements are not legally binding, but are considered by Beginnings to be a binding promise to stay in touch.

What is an Entrustment Ceremony?

This is a ceremony that happens at the time a child is placed in the care of an adoptive couple by the birth parent(s). It is an acknowledgment of moving a child from  one family to another and honours the role of birth parents in the lives of their children. Each ceremony is unique and reflects what is important to the people attending. Often there is chosen music, a poem or reading, and candle lighting to join the families in their Covenant agreement.  Beginnings’ Covenant and Entrustment Ceremony form a foundation for the new relationships created through adoption.

Will my son need independent legal advice?

Beginnings can provide information on the definition of a legal parent, and will speak to birth fathers about their options and rights. If they agree to sign consents for adoption, all forms and papers will be reviewed with him prior to signing. At the time of signing consents for adoption, an appointment will be made with a lawyer familiar with private adoption who will offer independent legal advice and be available for any questions your son may have.