My Adoption Story

by Ashley Henneman

Hello, there. My name is Ashley, I live in South Carolina, and I am 18 years old. I have a two-year-old named Brandon, a one-year-old named Nicholas, and I am expecting a little girl in June.

Here's how my story begins. I was raped after my first son. I found out I was pregnant about 2 months after it happened. It was really hard but I told my mom that I had been raped and that I was pregnant. I personally don't believe in abortions, so I chose to place him for adoption to a wonderful couple.

I gave birth on Dec 20th and placed him for adoption on December 23rd. I spent three days in the hospital with him and enjoyed every moment of it. I have a semi-open adoption. I don't know their phone number or address, but I have met with them several times before I placed him to them. I went through my church for the adoption (LDS Family services).

I get letters and pictures of him often. I write letters back, too. I am very happy with the set-up of the adoption. Although it was the hardest thing I have ever done and ever will do, I don't regret it. And if it happened again, I would do the same thing. I know what I did (in my case) was the right thing to do.

Sometimes I feel bad when I am happy because he isn't here with me. I think what kind of a person am I to give my child away and then still have happy times. But I went through my sad stage where I stayed in my room most of the time for a few months. And then I thought, he is happy; he is in a great and loving home; I should feel good that I cared enough about him to give him a great chance at life.

I love and care about him very much and think about him daily. But I can't cry about it forever. All I do know is that the best thing to do is talk about it and be open to how you feel. And if you ever talk to someone who has placed a child for adoption never say, "I know how you feel," because unless you have done it yourself, you don't.

Thanks for reading my story. I hope it can help some people understand why some women choose to put their children up for adoption instead of abortion.

Are you or a friend a birth mom? Read Relinguishing a Baby for Adoption.' experts Debbie Davis and Mara Stein empathize and share ideas that can help everyone feel good about that adoption.

Ashley is mommy to Brandon, Nicholas and Breanna.