Eric: My Story as a Birth Father

AA ISTOCK - CLIP 9XXXLargeSometimes you never know where life is going to take you. Six years ago, I had no idea that my life was changing in ways I never imagined. When Brittany and I first got together we had no intentions or even fathomed the idea of bringing a child into the world, we were just friends at that time. Eventually, we became closer and soon after we discovered Brittany was pregnant. With me being legally married, the situation got even more complicated. At the time, Brittany nor I knew if I was going to have a change of heart and try to salvage my marriage or not. Regardless, I was willing to go full steam ahead into being a new father again. I had no intentions of abandonment, no matter what my personal situation was. Brittany was not quite as enthusiastic as I was at that time.

Brittany and I were in a very tight situation. The timing couldn’t have been any worse. We were living with a friend because we had both become displaced and being displaced and pregnant wasn’t a good thing. Secondly, we had no steady income to support a child, we could barely support ourselves. So, how were we going to support a child?

As things unfolded, Brittany brought up the idea of adoption and I was totally against it in the beginning. I already have four sons, three from my marriage and one prior to my marriage. I will be the first to admit, I love being a dad. I was in disagreement and even angry about the idea of adoption. However as I was still legally married, I felt like it wasn’t my place or my right to tell Brittany what to do. To be honest, I had no decision-making power regarding what her decision was going to be. She made it very clear and added some valid points on why she came to the decision to choose adoption. We sat down and discussed it for a while. She made her argument and I made mine. The fact that she was making all the decisions didn’t sit well with me in the beginning.

Keep in mind, I am 12 years older than Brittany, so I didn’t have the greatest feeling about this. For a while, I felt like I was forced into choosing adoption. I was “quietly” upset with Brittany and kept that inside for a long time. Eventually, I understood why she came to the decision and I realized how selfless it was.

It was difficult to deal with and sometimes it still is. I take comfort in knowing that our son is well loved and taken care of by his adoptive parents. It’s not easy watching him grow up through photographs but I thank God all the time that I can see him grow.

No one really asks the dads that actually do care how they feel. It’s not easy sometimes and we can have our difficult days. Days of guilt, days of anger, days of feeling like a failure. I even feel sometimes like I cheated Brittany out of the joys of parenthood because of how the situation evolved. It’s not as easy for birth fathers as some people may assume. I hope that one day I will have all my sons in one place at one time in a big generational hug.

For the people who think birth fathers don’t hurt, shed a tear, or have feelings of remorse, we do! We have our sunny days and we have our rainy days, but we do love our children.

 

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