There is naturally a lot of anxiety about the first conversation with the birth mother. You will feel you have so very much at stake, and you will be afraid that you might say the wrong thing and turn her off.
When I facilitate the first meeting between the birth mother and the prospective adoptive parents, I have observed many adoptive mtothers so nervous that their knees visibly shake. That nervousness goes away quickly, but it is very real at first.
Be mentally ready for that important call or meeting. You should remind yourself that you may have several such calls before a placement occurs. Go over in your mind what you would like to say so you will be ready to say it, and are not fishing for words when you are nervous. The important thing is to listen and to ask simple questions that are not too probing at first. Be prepared to give a brief description of your family and to answer the kinds of questions you expect the birth mother to ask. She may be very nervous also. A little humor is not a bad idea and can help you both relax. And don’t forget, you will have other opportunities to get more detailed information.
You may find that the birth mother has a hard time asking the kinds of questions she out to ask. You might consider helping her ask the right questions. For example, you might say, “You would probably like to know a little bit about us. Let me just give you a brief description of our family.” Tell her the name of the town where you live, what jobs you have, whether you have other children and whether the adoptive mother plans to stay at home with an adopted child. The birth mother will probably want to know why you want to adopt. Have you struggled with infertility or suffered miscarriages?
Try to keep the conversation going. Don’t let it end becasue no one can think of anything else to say. The longer you keep the conversation going, the more likely she is to feel comfortable with you and to want to learn more about you. You might want to keep notes by your phone so you won’t go blank when the phone rings. You will want to have a pen and paper ready to take notes.
Make sure you remember to get her phone number, so you can check back with her. But don’t be pushy. Remember, she is choosing you. You are not choosing her.