A Birthmother's Journey

This is the journey that begins when the author is a teenager and continues during the reunion with the son she gave up 32 years ago.

Location: Portland, Oregon, United States

I am the natural mother of two sons one, age 32 and the other age 18 and stepmother of two sons.I had to start this after my oldest son found me in July of this year after 32 years. It is one heck of a rollercoaster ride but we plan on meeting face to face in November.

Monday, August 28, 2006

Being Certain

I was sure I was pregnant after I missed my period just once. I mean I was as regular as clockwork all my life. Something had to be wrong. But I was a Good Catholic Girl and being pregnant without the benefit of marriage was something that just was not done! Besides I was only sixteen. Talk about being scared! How do I tell the dorm mother that I was going to have a baby???? I knew of other girls who had "gone home for good" only to return after a few months, scared and sad. So I ran away. I hid until the cops located me. The home said I couldn't come back there. So I was placed in a group home then sent to Booth Memorial Home for Unwed Mothers in Chicago. I found out that my child's father had been sent away too. We were not allowed to get in touch with each other but we found a way to anyway. We had these romantic dreams of getting married and raising the baby. So once again I ran away from Booth. I was placed in a foster home. My caseworker said I had a few options(by this time Roe v Wade had passed but no self-respecting doctor would perform an abortion on a minor). I was still only sixteen and I was told I could have an abortion(too late, I was already at the end of my first trimester and I was Catholic so it was against my religious beliefs) I could raise the baby myself(I would just turn seventeen when he was born and had no marketable skills and no education), get married(yeah right-he was a year younger than me and a real jerk as all teenage boys tended to be) or relinquish the baby (everybody seemed to think that was the best thing for all concerned) I was given all these choices but none of them made a lot of sense to me. It was a pretty heavy situation for a sixteen year old girl to deal with.


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