Heather's Story: The Gift of Life

My name is Heather. I am a birthmother. I was born September 9, 1977. When I was thirteen, I became pregnant. My boyfriend at the time was fifteen years old and had other things on his mind besides an unwanted pregnancy. When I told him I was pregnant, he supported me. That support lasted about two months. After that two months, we broke off our two year relationship.

When I was twenty-four weeks pregnant, I told someone about my pregnancy. I told the birthfather's mother. She immediately called my mother at work. My mother rushed home to confirm her phone call from the birthfather's mother. She immediately took me to an abortion clinic. The counselor told me I was too far along to have an abortion. She gave me a brochure on "Open Adoption." At that time, I was planning to keep my baby.

On November 2, 1991, Robert John was born at 3:42 a.m. He was brought into this world by a big, loving family. Laurie, Frank, and both of my parents were there for the birth. The hospital was very cooperative with us. Robert stayed with me in my hospital room. The hard part was leaving the hospital without that precious piece of life.

The same day I arrived home from the hospital, the birthfather's mother filed for custody. My mother was a nervous wreck and so were the adopting couple. They tried not to get too attached to Robert. The birthfather finally gave up the paternity suit and met Laurie and Frank. I guess, like me, he needed that peace of mind. To know them, I mean, and feel that Robert would be loved. The adoption was finalized in May of 1992.

Two years later, we are all a big family and get along. They call me, send me pictures, and we live close by, so we visit every three months. It was the hardest yet the best choice I have ever made. I gave them a gift no one else could give—the gift of life.

When ignorant people think it's selfish, you have to know in your heart that putting your baby first is never selfish. Some people just don't understand. They don't know what a hard decision it is. But I know that, in the years to come, Robert will love me for that choice.

Heather

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