4 Things Every Birth Father Wants You to Know

Three birth fathers share their experiences and insights.

Kacey Bailey September 23, 2015
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The adopted person, adoptive parents, birth mothers, even birth grandparents receive a lot of attention in the adoption community. But there’s another person who is typically forgotten and often ridiculed, even in the increasingly open dialogue of adoption: the birth father.

I’ve been in the adoption world for quite a few years now, and still find myself surprised when I hear about birth fathers being involved in the adoption. It’s a stereotype that I’m hoping to alter. No two scenarios are the same, and I want to make it clear that not every birth father is the type of guy who leaves as soon as the girl is pregnant. I fight the stereotype that birth mothers don’t want their babies, or are too lazy to raise them—and it’s time to fight birth father stereotypes as well. 

I was able to get in ouch with three birth fathers—Dan, Casey, and Tevin—and hear their side of the experience. Here are four things they want you to know:

1 – Birth Fathers are important. 

Dan: “Birth fathers have an important voice, while it is one that isn’t often taken seriously because there are those that have a responsibility they choose to disregard. From the first day that we learned about the pregnancy, [the birth mother] and I worked together. I must say that it often didn’t feel like working together, though. We would fight each other and often times take out frustration on one another. For me, I accepted that I had the easier of our two places and I believed that a large part of my role was to listen to her struggles and do what I could to help ease any tension or discomfort.”

2 – We have good reasons for choosing adoption. 

Dan: “Our first decision was whether to parent, adopt, or abort. [The birth mother] quickly decided that abortion was not a option. We had only been dating a few months and I knew we were not ready for marriage. We were left with parenting from different houses or adoption. What a decision! I must say that I felt guilt and shame. Both [the birth mother] and I had daughters from previous marriages. Both of our girls were around 7 years old and we knew how hard it was to co-parent after a breakup—and the struggle of being a single parent. We also knew how much we loved these little girls. How could I be a part of creating a beautiful life and not want to see the child grow each day, yet know that this child would have many advantages if they were to be raised in a stable house with both parents being present daily? Adoption was a very difficult choice. Having the relationship [from open adoption] that we have has been the greatest joy for me. It has taken my feelings from shame and guilt to joy.”

Casey: “After running through every option we finally decided that adoption would be the safest and best way for our child to live a happy, healthy life s/he deserved. It was a hard choice at the same time.”

3 – We are involved, just in our own way. 

Casey: “I tried to be involved as much as possible during the whole process. I wanted to be as supportive and helpful as possible to the mother during the time. I was unfortunately unable to be at the hospital for the birth of our baby, which was the hardest part. I know I can’t go back in time. If I could, I would to be there to hold her those first few hours. I never expected to have to experience something like this. It can be heart-breaking but a miracle at the same time”

Tevin: “I was there from 4-9 months. I was at every doctors visit, ultrasound, buying prenatal vitamins, and of course meeting [the birth mother's] food cravings. We go see [our birth daughter] every chance that we get. They send pictures. We went to her baptism and sealing. I am almost as involved as the birth mother. I say it like that because a mother’s love is like no other.”

 4 - There Is love in our thoughts and actions. 

Dan: “There are differences about being a birth father verses being a birth mother. There is definitely a difference in how people respond to you. I have never had anyone put me down or ridicule me, but I also did not receive the support and assistance that [the birth mother] did. I do not believe that birth fathers deserve the same support, though. Birth mothers are amazing people. I have nothing but respect and admiration for them. They absolutely deserve every ounce of support they receive and I wish there were many more ways that would make the process and aftermath of adoption easier and more comfortable for them.”

Casey: “Anytime someone asks me if I have kids, I say yes. I tell them I have a beautiful birth daughter [that we placed for adoption]. It’s nothing to be ashamed of or embarrassed about. You just have to be strong about it from day one. It’s a life-changing experience for anyone who goes through adoption. I believe it’s a very good thing. You just have to believe in yourself and know that you’re making the right decision for the better of anyone involved. I actually kinda cried writing [this]! It’s harder at certain times than others but I always try to be positive about it. I want my birth daughter to know I just wanted her to be happy and have every opportunity possible even if I wasn’t the one giving it to her.”

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Kacey Bailey

Kacey is a birth mom of five years. She placed when she was 21 and has since received her bachelor's degree from Utah Valley University and married her college sweetheart. After years of building her career, she moved into writing and found a love in adoption advocacy. Working from home where she can raise her family is her favorite way to spend her time. Since adoption has created such defining moments in her life, she spends her time advocating its benefits and helping other birth mothers in their journeys.

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