Woman Asks The Internet If She’s A Jerk For Refusing To Let Her Sister Adopt One Of Her Twins Once They’re Born
Reddit user u/EuphoricInevitable28 and her partner had been trying to get pregnant for a long time, and when they finally succeeded, her family was really happy for the couple. Except for her sister.
The woman also had difficulties conceiving and when she heard that u/EuphoricInevitable28 was expecting twins, she started demanding that she gave one of them up for her.
Appalled and confused by the whole situation, the Redditor turned to the ‘Am I the [Jerk]?‘ community, asking if she handled it properly.
Image credits: Jonathan Sanchez (not the actual photo)
Image credits: Taylor Grote (not the actual photo)
Image credits: EuphoricInevitable28
Some people get pregnant quickly, but for others it can take longer. About 84% of couples will conceive naturally within a year if they have regular unprotected sex (every 2 or 3 days). However, for couples who have been trying to conceive for more than 3 years without success, the likelihood of getting pregnant naturally within the next year drops to just 1 in 4, or less.
Infertility is usually only diagnosed when a couple have not managed to conceive after a year of trying. There are 2 types of infertility:
- primary infertility – where someone who’s never conceived a child in the past has difficulty conceiving;
- secondary infertility – where someone has had 1 or more pregnancies in the past, but is having difficulty conceiving again.
There are many possible causes of infertility and fertility problems can affect either partner. The common ones include:
- lack of regular ovulation (the monthly release of an egg);
- poor quality semen;
- blocked or damaged fallopian tubes;
- endometriosis – where tissue that behaves like the lining of the womb (the endometrium) is found outside the womb.
However, in a quarter of cases it is not possible to identify the cause.
Usually, fertility treatments include:
- medical treatment for lack of regular ovulation;
- surgical procedures such as treatment for endometriosis, repair of the fallopian tubes, or removal of scarring (adhesions) within the womb or abdominal cavity;
- assisted conception such as intrauterine insemination (IUI) or IVF.
Image credits: Jelleke Vanooteghem (not the actual photo)
There are agencies that facilitates private adoptions in which a mother voluntarily decides to give up her child. This is different from adoption out of the foster-care system, in which a child who has been abused or neglected has been permanently removed from their family by a state agency and placed with another family.
But even these organizations aren’t as demanding as OP’s sister. Spence-Chapin Services to Families and Children, the oldest adoption agency in New York, offer women “interim care,” that is, vetted volunteers will care for newborns for up to a month while the mother decides whether she wants to complete the adoption.
There is consensus among adoption researchers that for many birth mothers the experience of placing their children for adoption brings feelings of grief, loss, shame, guilt, remorse and isolation.
Some prior research suggests birth mothers’ grief reduces with the passage of time. However, this 2018 study notes “the importance of not confusing birth mother’s satisfaction with her decision and the feelings of loss that she may feel about the placement.”
A birth mother may feel she made the right decision regarding placement and yet still experience ongoing feelings of loss and grief even years later.
In fact, age often has an inverse relationship with satisfaction. “As with time since the relinquishment, age of the respondents predicted an incremental decrease in satisfaction for every year they have aged,” the researchers of the study wrote. “It may be that the distance afforded by time, along with the internal resources and perspective that often comes with age, may have provided an opportunity for birth mothers to look back and reflect on what could have been.”
So even if in a parallel universe the author of the Reddit post agreed to her sister’s wish, it could be that she would admit herself to a lifetime of disappointment and pain.