How I Cope with Missing My Child – Thoughts from a Birth Mother


I am a birth mother who misses the child I placed for adoption. From time to time, I think of him, and fantasize about what life would be like if I had him. Sometimes I dream about him with me. It’s not that I intentionally think of such sadness, but it happens once in a while.

It’s normal to miss the child you placed for adoption. Immediately after placement for about one year, I missed him in a terrible way. My body would ache for him, and I would reach over in my bed at night to touch him, but he wasn’t there. It was an overwhelming loneliness. However, over time, that subsided. Now, I miss him sometimes. Here are some tips that help me cope with missing the child I placed for adoption.

Remember Your “Why”

There is a reason that I chose adoption. Honestly, there are many reasons why I chose adoption. The bottom line is that adoption would give my son and I the best shot at life that we could have had. That’s my “why” I chose adoption. When I’m feeling down about missing my son, I think about why it is that I miss him. I know that I miss him because I love him, but I wouldn’t ever go back and change the decision that I made to place him for adoption. I love him so much, and I want him to live a happy and healthy life. Remembering the “why” of choosing adoption in the first place helps me to feel comfort. It’s okay to miss my child, but that doesn’t mean that I regret my decision. Missing my child is just part of choosing adoption. I wouldn’t have it any other way, though. After all, how could I not miss such a perfect little angel?

Reflect on Life Today

I look at the amazing life that my son has today, and it honestly inspires me to be a better woman, a better wife, a better sister, a better stepmom, a better me. He is so happy and fulfilled in his life. He goes on vacations with his family, loves his pets, goes to a great school, and his smile is genuine. I am so happy that my decision for adoption is the reason that he has the life that he does. I’m proud of the decision that I made for my child and the results of making that decision. I implore you to look at the life your child has. If you are feeling sad and missing him or her, be encouraged by the joy that he or she is experiencing in life today. Knowing that my son is safe, happy, and healthy are things that bring me great comfort in times of sadness when I miss him.

Work Toward Goals

I have many life goals, including to pursue my PhD, a business career, and becoming a nationally known adoption advocate. I had different goals when I chose adoption, like getting my Master’s degree, starting a career, and having a family one day. After meeting those goals, I set more goals for myself. If I had not chosen adoption, I’m not sure what goals I would have had and met, but I know the struggle would have been real. When I miss my son, I remember that furthering my own life is one of the reasons I chose adoption. If I start to get sucked in to loneliness when I miss my son, I remember the promises I made myself about living my life to its fullest. If the day ever comes when my son asks me how I spent my life while he was growing up, or if he ever needs me, I’ll be able to be proud of my answer. I am living my life to the best of my ability today, and that makes me feel better when I miss my son.

It’s Okay to Feel Sadness

It’s okay to feel sadness from missing your child that you placed for adoption. It would be a concern if you didn’t. As birth mothers, we make a significant sacrifice for our children, and the emotions that come with that decision can affect us for a period of time after placement. If you find you are missing your child from time to time, remember why you made your adoption decision in the first place. Think about the life your child has now. Focus on your own personal goals. Over time, and with effort in healing, the emotions will become easier to manage. Don’t give up!

~Lindsay Arielle

Lindsay is a guest blogger for Considering Adoption. She placed her son for adoption 7 years ago and hopes to use her experience to support and educate other expectant mothers considering adoption, as well as adoptive families.

Comments 1

  1. It is 42 years since I placed mu son for adoption. Consciously, I miss him excruciatingly but not constantly. The missing him that I feel constantly is a more subtle, almost gentle pain like an old bruise in the bone that reminds me of a time when it was broken. I was broken. But I am no longer broken by the sight of the nurse wheeling my sweet baby boy away. I chose this for him. I gave this life to him.
    When the towers came down on 9/11/2001, he would have been in his very early twenties. Just out of college. I feared deeply that somehow he had been lost that day. In the towers, doing an internship somewhere, on one of the planes, perhaps in a hallway of the pentagon. It obsessed me that I would never know until I reminded myself again that I had chosen to give him life, and then to give him life in a family who could give him more than I could and that every time his dear memory filled my heart with that bittersweet pain I could choose to give him life again.
    The pain I will always feel. The pain of separation, the pain of not knowing, the pain of a loss no one who knows me can truly understand or even acknowledge. But I will never feel the pain of regret for having taken his life to provide me with mine. I chose to give him life. And with every thought he thinks, every dream he holds dear, every person he loves, every step he takes and every decision he makes, I give him life again and again and again. I chose to give him up. Painful? Oh, yes. But that pain pales in comparison to the joy of his life. That is a gift that I give to both of us as long as I live in this world.

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