I didn't want my parents to be disappointed in me.
I am a student and I have a good, harmonious relationship with my parents. When I noticed that I was pregnant, I was surprised and I felt embarrassed, especially when it came to my parents, who were always very protective with me. They never had to worry about me – and now I was pregnant at such a young age, and without a partner.
With some difficulty I kept the pregnancy a secret, nobody knew about it. I went to the hospital to give birth on my own. The birth was to be anonymous. I was sure that I would not keep the child. I didn't want my parents to be disappointed in me. The midwives in the hospital were very understanding and supported me. They told me about the possibility of a confidential birth. The day after the birth, I attended a counselling interview with one of the midwives. During the conversation I realised that I am more attached to the child than I thought. The first few hours with the child affected me a lot and I began to doubt my decision. During the counselling I decided to open up to my parents. My parents dealt with the situation much better than expected. They did not reject me. On the contrary: Today, my child and I live with them. I am very glad that I was given such good support by the midwives and attended counselling. Today, I feel that I made the right decision. | Lisa
I was in denial about the pregnancy at first
because I was afraid of being alone with two children, without parents, a husband or support. I already had one child and my husband didn't want a second. I panicked.
Giving birth at home and putting the baby in a baby flap never even crossed my mind. If there were complications, somebody had to be there for the child. I called the support hotline on a number of occasions. The female counsellor explained how an anonymous birth worked. She gave me a lot of courage. The newborn was placed in the care of a foster family following the birth. I really struggled to start with; I was just trying to get by from one day to the next. I went to visit my daughter as often as I could and had to cry a lot. I really didn't want to let her go any more.
A few months after the birth I couldn't bear it any more. I had to tell my husband. He was shocked, but we went to see the foster parents together so we could visit the baby. Then we made the decision to take him home with us. I was happy that I did not have to keep it a secret any longer, even if it was sometimes hard for my husband and the family.
I am very grateful to the counsellor and the people in the clinic, grateful that people I did not know were there for me to say ‘you can do it!’, ‘we will manage it. Whatever decision you make, we are behind you.’ I’m grateful that you get so much recognition, are encouraged and respected, even though you do not know if what you are doing is right or wrong. That you have the offer ‘we are there for you, so that you have support.’
When I was very young, I started asking myself why I look different, since I do not have the same skin colour as my parents or siblings.
My parents never kept it a secret from me. From day one, they spoke to me honestly and in detail and told me that I was adopted.
I started to rebel when I was in primary school. I wanted to know who my 'real' parents were and why they gave me away. My parents have always supported me in an active manner. However, they couldn't answer the questions that would make me happy. Why did my mother give me up for adoption? Do I look like my biological parents? Where do they live? Do I have other brothers and sisters? The only answer I heard was: "Your biological mother was too young to keep you." This was when I started to develop feelings of anger towards my (adoptive) mother. She said that it wasn't her that I disliked really, but my biological mother, and I was unconsciously projecting these feelings onto her. Following a number of long conversations, I came to understand why I was doing that, and was able to get to grips with the situation better. When I reached 16, I wanted to meet the woman who had given birth to me, or at least have a photo of her – something that my mother outwardly and calmly accepted. I told my parents about my worries and fears. They reassured me and said "We are by your side and love you." It took a long time until I found the courage to call my biological mother. I met her when I was 18 years old. In the conversation that we had, I found out everything I had always wanted to know. But the meeting also showed me that I belonged to my (adoptive) family and that was my place.