Preparing to both give birth and give your baby up for adoption can inspire many emotions as the months go by. It can certainly inspire feelings of confidence and admiration for yourself since you are making a selfless choice, yet it can also inspire feelings of fear and doubt. A birth mother support group can be a huge comfort when faced with any and all those emotions.
Many birth mother support groups are designed like other well-known support groups such as Alcoholics Anonymous. They are created to help people who are going through difficult experiences share their joys, defeats, pain, and triumphs with others who are in the same boat. Consider these strategies to optimize the time you spend in a birth mother support group.
Attend the First Meetings to Just Listen
Going to your first few support group meetings can be intimidating. You’ll take some of the pressure off yourself if you commit to going to the first few meetings just to listen and learn. Attending quietly is perfectly acceptable, and you will likely find others in the group who aren’t eager to talk.
Simply by showing up and listening, you can learn a lot about what others are going through. You’ll probably be able to relate to a lot of the shared experiences in the group. If you are inspired to ask a question, you may want to write it down to ask at a later time unless questions are specifically welcomed in the group.
There’s no set time limit on when you must participate in the group. In fact, if all you want to do is attend and listen, that’s okay. However, if you are inspired to speak up and share your story, trust your instincts on when to do so. Support groups are safe places where you can share without having to worry about being judged for having complex feelings over the situation.
Set Boundaries and Stick to Them
The great thing about support groups is that they are typically full of empathic people who understand what you’re going through. However, there are sure to be a wide range of personalities in a group that’s simply brought together because of this one shared life experience. Be clear on the boundaries you want to set before joining the group and stick to them.
Boundaries can be anything from restricting the amount of personal information you give to others who you meet in the group to only engaging in discussions that feel productive to you. Beyond the group guidelines that should be explained to you when you first, most groups encourage you to only say and do what you want in the group.
Share When You Feel Inspired to Do So
Sharing how you think and feel about your own experiences as a birth mother can be cathartic and healing. When you are truly ready to talk about what you’ve been through, you may realize that you can help other mothers cope with their triumphs and struggles by talking about yours.
Explore Different Types of Support Groups
Not only will a traditional birth mother support group provide a great deal of comfort and relief, but some other types of support groups may also help you at different points of your pregnancy and subsequent recovery. You may join groups that honor your decision to give the baby up for your adoption and offer advice for challenges you may encounter during the pregnancy.
Some groups coordinate volunteers to create floral arrangements or gift baskets that are then presented to birth mothers after they have the baby. You may opt to volunteer for a service position to offer comfort to others who are also in your position. That can be an extra activity on top of going to traditional birth mother support groups.
Finally, contact Arizona Adoption Help today with any questions you may have about adoption. Whether you are still wondering whether you want to give up your baby for adoption or have already made up your mind, we are happy to speak to you about your options. We prioritize the needs of birth mothers, and all our services for birth mothers are always free.