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Never Ask a Birth Parent These 8 Questions

considering adoptionChoosing to place your child for adoption is a very difficult decision and is not made without a lot of consideration. While you may have a lot of questions for a birth parent, not all of them should be asked out of respect for them. Some of the questions you should never ask a birth parent include:

Why are you giving your child up for adoption?

To begin with, the phrases “giving up” or “giving away” are typically discouraged when talking about adoption. Any variant of this question can be hurtful to a birth parent because their reasoning for choosing adoption may be very personal, and can be a hard topic for them to discuss.

Why didn’t you choose to have an abortion?

Everyone has opinions as to how to handle an unplanned pregnancy. At the end of the day, it is the birth mother who gets to determine what is best for the baby, and she does not have to explain her reasoning for her choice.

Why can’t you keep your child?

Some birth parents feel they cannot keep their child, and some birth parents cannot keep their child for legal reasons. There are a number of reasons for either situation, including finances, health, time, lifestyle, abuse, crime, etc. In any case, it is none of your business as to why a birth parent cannot keep their child, and you should not ask for that information. The birth parent may, however, choose to share it on their own. 

Will you ever see your child?

This can be a sensitive subject for birth parents, because despite open adoptions becoming increasingly more common, the relationship between birth parents and adoptive parents is complex. You could be bringing up a painful topic for the birth parent if they are not able to see their child. 

Who/where is the father?

For birth mothers who are choosing to place their child for adoption on their own, questions about the father can be another sensitive subject. She may feel shame about the father and her situation, or it may force her to think about traumatic experiences. 

What do you think your child will think of you when they’re older?

This is a big fear and concern for most birth parents. They don’t want their child to harbor any negative feelings about them.

Do you feel sad about choosing adoption?

A birth parent is obviously going to feel some grief and sadness over choosing to place their child for adoption. They do not need to be asked about it and forced to shed light on this pain.

Do you regret choosing adoption? 

Just like you wouldn’t ask someone if they regret keeping and parenting their child, you should not ask birth parents if they regret choosing adoption. Adoption is a tough decision for birth parents to make, and asking this question may hurt them.