One of the free services we offer our clients facing an unintended pregnancy is truthful information about all their options – including the option of ADOPTION. When a mother places her baby in the arms of another loving family to raise the child– that’s a huge sacrificial act of love on her part. Not to mention – exceedingly difficult. We don’t want to add to her burden.
To that end, I was recently introduced to an organization called Brave Love which points out a few words and phrases that people might innocently use when speaking about adoption – but can be incredibly hurtful to the mother. For example –
Someone might say “she GAVE UP or GAVE AWAY her baby.” One birth mom wrote, “Those words cut deep. I gave up or gave away nothing – what I did give was a life. I PLACED my baby with a safe family in a loving home.”
Another phrase people might use related to adoption is “real parents.” A birth mom notes, “When you call me his “real mom,” I can only begin to imagine the pain his adoptive mother feels. We are both real people to that child. I am not his “real mom,” I am his birth mom.”
Ephesians 4:29 says that the talk that comes out of our mouths is to be what is “helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen…” These simple vocabulary changes can be a blessing to the brave birth moms among us who made the sacrificial, life-giving choice of adoption.