Placing a child for adoption affects each person differently. With most, there is a sense of loss. Some parents expect this, while some are completely surprised by this feeling. While the feeling of loss is inevitable, you can heal emotionally and move forward with your life. Everyone copes with loss differently. There isn’t one right way to cope with your loss; you just need to find the method that works best for you.
Support Groups: Attending a support group can give you the support and friendship you need to tackle any problem or to cope with the loss of placing your child. You’ll find other members of the support group in your exact situation. You’ll find those who have overcome what you’re currently experiencing. And you’ll find those who are just starting out on the journey of self-discovery and emotional healing. Whether or not your family and friends are supportive of your decision, your support group will be. They can be a rock for you in uncertain times.
Professional Counselor: Your professional counselor can take you step-by-step through the healing process. He or she can teach you how to cope with loss and how to overcome negative emotions that you experience. He or she can even help you to better understand yourself, your feelings, your experiences, and your thoughts. Your professional counselor can help support you so that you can learn to support yourself emotionally.
Personal Time: Yes, life is full of responsibilities. Some may have responsibilities with family, jobs, school, and so on. But, even so, it is important to take some personal time. Take time to relax and enjoy life. Take some time to redefine your life goals. Redefine yourself. Find yourself again. Take the time you need to recuperate and regain your mental and emotional fortitude.
One Day at a Time: Life can be overwhelming, especially so if you think of your end destination and all the work required to get there. Instead of constantly thinking of the end goal, take it one day at a time. While having an end goal is fantastic—and even necessary—start by making smaller, daily or weekly goals for yourself. Taking your life and your healing process step-by-step can ease your burdens. Conquer your daily goals and you will find that your self-confidence increases and you are more apt to face the sometimes challenging days ahead of you.
Journal Writing: Writing in a journal can be very therapeutic. Don’t worry about your spelling, grammar, or punctuation. Just write about your feelings and your thoughts, your fears and concerns. Just get it out on paper or on the computer. Then, look over what you’ve written again later; you can do this right away or you can give yourself a few days to think things over before going back to what you’ve written. Not only is journal writing great for immediate benefits and stress relief, but it is a great way to understand just how far you’ve actually come on the road to emotional healing and progress.
Coping with a personal and heart-wrenching loss will be different for everyone. Not all of the above methods may work for you, but give them a try. Experiment with a few and see which works best for you and your specific situation and coping needs. This time in your life is about you, and what you need to do to emotionally heal.