Sunday, September 4, 2011

Deciding who to tell and when

I have always thought it odd when friends of mine have told me when they decided to start "trying" to have a kid. In a way it always seemed like they were just telling me that they were deciding to have unprotected sex, and that was never something that I thought I should be privy to.  But, like many things that I thought I knew, I am now realizing why people chose to tell me when they made the decision to try to have a child.

In many ways, I feel like our decision to begin the adoption process is like many couples' decision to start trying to have a baby.  For some couples, this decision comes just a few months before they are able to share news of a pregnancy.  For others, it can be years.  Taking the risk of telling people you are trying to conceive means knowing that people will be asking for months about how it is going.  When things work out well, that isn't a big deal.  But, I can only imagine that when you end up having to try for years, the constant questioning can be frustrating and even heartbreaking.

And so, our decision to tell people that we are planning to adopt a child, risks many of the same things.  In a lot of ways, I think that was part of my motivation in starting this blog.  Once we begin our wait, it will be nice that I will have a place where people can find updates on our journey so that I do not have to worry about sharing any heartbreaking news over and over again, face to face.  This is never something I have been good at doing and the thought of having to do it for many many months makes me nervous.

Right now, our decision has been shared with the people closest to us (and those of you who have found your way to this little blog of mine).  It has been so wonderful to see the reaction that people have had.  At first, I was afraid to tell people because I knew the response would involve some, "I told you you would want kids someday." But, I quickly learned that this reaction didn't bother me because most often, what came next was such incredible excitement for what we were about to do.  And I quickly saw that the risk of telling people our decision was far outweighed by the support that I found in people.  I know that this journey is going to be a long one and I now know that I am going to need these people in my life to be there right along with me every step of the way.  Carla and I are going to need lots of love, encouragement, and support and I am so thankful that we have so many people in our lives who are willing to provide just that.

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