I Am Not a Stereotype: Birth Parents Speak Out

In honor of Birth Mother's Day, we wanted to share these powerful voices with you.

Terra Cooper May 07, 2016

I am always looking for ways to honor birth parents. With Birth Mother’s Day coming up, I wanted to do something to show the world that these women and men are not the stereotypes that they are portrayed as in the media. I asked some of my amazing friends who are birth parents to answer, “I am not a stereotype, I am . . . ” Their words speak for themselves.

The media may show birth parents as one thing, but they are just as diverse and unique as any other men and women in the world. They all have their own stories, their own journeys, and even if any of them fit the “stereotype” that is shown in the media, it doesn’t define them as a person. It is so important in all areas of our life to simply not judge someone based on a part of their life.

I hope you take a minute to read their truths and get to know these beautiful people that I am so blessed to have in my life.

I Am Not a Stereotype
1. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am not sorry. I am proud that I was able to provide for my son the best way I knew how, by placing him with someone who could raise him the ways he deserves.
–Katie, birth mother

I Am Not a Stereotype
2. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am not broken. I am strong. I loved her when I was pregnant. I loved her when I placed her. I love her today, and will love her always.
–Kristen, birth mom

I Am Not a Stereotype
3. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am a wife, mother, sister, daughter, and child of God. I love fiercely and I know that I am enough.
–Laura, birth mother

I Am Not a Stereotype
4. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am not an uncaring, unloving mother. I am strong. I care more about him than anything in the world. I love him so much that I broke my heart to make his life whole.
–Laci, birth mother

I Am Not a Stereotype
5. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am strong. I am creative. I chose life over death. I am a mother, sister, daughter, and birth mother. I am not an alcoholic or drug addict. I love my little girl. I just couldn't give her what she needed.
–LeAnn, birth mom

I Am Not a Stereotype
6. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am a woman who wanted and loved her baby, but felt she deserved the best life possible and knew I could not provide that for her at that time. I loved her enough to find her a mother and father that could.
–Lauren, birth mom

I Am Not a Stereotype
7. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am a child of God. I am a Mormon. I am a wife, parent, mother, daughter, and sister. I am worthy of love. I am forgivable. I am a birth mother and I am proud to be all that I am.
–Lindsey, birth mother

I Am Not a Stereotype
9. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am a mother who wanted only the best for my child. Through love I grew strong enough to make that decision. I'm not a drug addict. He is loved and wanted and I'd move heaven and earth to make sure he knows that always.
–Lisa, birth mom

I Am Not a Stereotype
10. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am capable and compassionate. I am not unstable. I am a fighter. I refuse to give up. I keep going not only for him, but for myself. I love deeply and care greatly. I am stronger today because of my experiences.
–Lindsey, birth mom

I Am Not a Stereotype
11. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am a mother who loves her children fiercely. I am a woman who has faced immense adversity and come out on top. I did the necessary and impossible to break the cycle. I am in the 2% who chose adoption. I am a birth mom.
–Madi, birth mother

I Am Not a Stereotype
12. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am a warrior. Each and every day I strive to not only give my son a better life but to improve my own.
–Lindsey, birth mom

I Am Not a Stereotype
13. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am a birth mother of a closed adoption from an era long ago. I am a woman of faith. I was not on drugs, or a "bad" girl. I was on the honor roll. I went to college. I am a fearless, successful entrepreneur. Most importantly, I am a devoted wife. I am a loving mother to four extraordinary girls. I am a blessed Nana, who sees her children raising their own children beautifully. They show me daily that I am not a stereotype. I am learning to erase shame and instead, celebrate my many miracles with humility. I am not sorry for trusting God to place my first child, with the love of two parents to give her all the beauty of life and emotional stability that she deserved. And because of this, I am a birth mother to an incredible woman!
–Lori, birth mother

I Am Not a Stereotype
14. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am enough. I am a caring soul. I am a beautiful daughter of God. I am a good friend. I am a chef and baker. I am me.
–Margaret, birth mother

I Am Not a Stereotype
15. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am a mother, wife, daughter, sister, friend, and hard worker. My children and family are my life, we all make mistakes and I would do anything for them to make their life better. I made the best choice for my birth son. I am lucky to be part of a beautiful open adoption.
–Maren, birth mother

I Am Not a Stereotype
16. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am a mother that loved her child enough to protect her, even if it meant sacrificing my place as her mother.
–Marissa, birth mother

I Am Not a Stereotype
17. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am a survivor. I loved my birth son enough to break my own heart, so that he can do more than survive. I want him to have better. I love him enough to say goodbye so he can thrive.
–Megan, birth mother

I Am Not a Stereotype
18. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am a passionate woman, a feminist, a musician, and an artist. I wanted to be his mom and raise him. I gave him life, so does she. So much love. I do not have a moment that goes by where I am not thinking of how much I love him.
–Marissa, birth mom

I Am Not a Stereotype
19. I Am Not a Stereotype

I was on birth control. I was not on drugs. I am educated. I am not an angel. I am not selfless. I was a mother making the best decision I could at the time for all of my children. I was 31 years old. I was married ten years and parenting other children. I never wanted to become invisible.
–Michelle, birth mother

I Am Not a Stereotype
20. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am a compassionate, healthy, loving, and empowered woman. I survived the most complex anguish of my life, in order to do what I believed was best for both of my beautiful girls. I love and miss my birth daughter every day of my life, but have faith that she's with her meant-to-be family. I am passionate about and committed to shattering stigmas, shame, and stereotypes.
–Melanie, birth mother

I Am Not a Stereotype
21. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am a mother, a college student, a birth mother, and a loving friend. I made the best decision for both of my babies. I made a family of three, a family of four. I love both of my daughters equally.
–Miranda, birth mother

I Am Not a Stereotype
22. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am a great person, wonderful friend, great daughter, and fun sibling. I wasn't prepared for this handsome, sweet, great little boy. That doesn't make me a bad person. I'm a proud birth mom who chose wonderful parents for him, who would truly love him like I would and more. Never a moment or day goes by that I don't think of him. I love him to the moon and back, always 'n forever!
–Natalie, birth mom

I Am Not a Stereotype
23. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am a daughter of God. I am a daughter, sister, auntie, cousin, friend, and a birth mother. I have given him something I couldn't provide, a father. I broke myself to make sure he would be whole and have everything he ever needed. He knows our story. He knows I would move heaven and earth for him. I know I am strong.
–Norma, birth mother

I Am Not a Stereotype
24. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am a birth mom who loved my child so much that I chose for him the best parents ever. I chose a mom and a dad for him, because I knew they could give him more than I could provide at that stage of my life. I was not a dropout, on drugs, or a "bad" girl. I was and am a mom who loves her son. I was and still am a Christian who while pregnant, lived with shame. I am a wife, a mom, an entrepreneur, a person with a giving heart. I have always loved my child and I never gave him away. I placed him with love.
–Paige, birth mother

I Am Not a Stereotype
25. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am a strong woman who put her child's needs in front of her own. I gave her life, and my decision gave her the family she deserves. I did not give her up, I gave her more. I am a wife, a lover, and a fighter. Push me down, I'll get back up. I am beautiful. I am enough. I am a birth mom.
–Rachel, birth mother

I Am Not a Stereotype
26. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am a hardworking, loving, and generous human being. I take every trial I face and learn from it and use it to better myself. I placed my daughter for adoption so that she could have her every physical and emotional need met. I wanted her to live, not just survive.
–Rebecca, birth mother

I Am Not a Stereotype
27. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am a dad, a husband, a hardworking man. I am a birth father and I didn't give my son away. I love him more than words could ever say, and I know his incredibly amazing mommy and daddy will teach him that. Truly blessed!
–Rob, birth father

I Am Not a Stereotype
28. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am love. Motherhood has been the greatest gift of my life. It began with my awareness of conception—four days after I was raped—and continued even as he passed from my arms to his mother's. This human family is ours and, for all the pain, I wouldn't have missed a moment of the joy. I am love.
–Rebecca, birth mom

I Am Not a Stereotype
29. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am a loveable, worthy young woman. I chose the best life for my babies because I want them to know a better life than what I could have provided. I chose the best life for my babies because I love them enough to know they need more than I can give.
–Sage, birth mom

I Am Not a Stereotype
30. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am a birth mom. I am a successful, cook, student, and friend. I am not "selfless" or "selfish." I am birth mom strong.
–Sara, birth mom

I Am Not a Stereotype
31. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am creative. I am a hard worker. I am strong. I didn't give my kids up ... I gave them both more than I could ever give them myself. I am a beautiful daughter of God. I'm learning to love me for me. I'm a birth mom, a mom, wife, sister, and so much more.
–Sonya, birth mother

I Am Not a Stereotype
32. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am a recovering drug addict, not a junkie. I am a strong man who gave my twins a better life. I am clean and sober and do not regret my choices now that I am sober. I am a father who loves himself now and I have goals for my life. I am a leader. I am grateful for the 12 steps and what it has given my life. CLEAN DATE: 12-13-15
–Stephan, birth father

I Am Not a Stereotype
33. I Am Not a Stereotype

I wanted my son to be raised by a mother and a father. I wanted my son to have parents who were ready and excited for that role. I wanted my son to have more opportunities than I could give him. I wanted my son but the quality of his life was more important than my wants.
–Valerie, birth mother

I Am Not a Stereotype
34. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am a conscientious, inelegant, sensitive woman with a strong maternal sense who adores children. I am a person of faith. I have a strong connection to nature. I could have parented my birth son. We would have been ok. I wanted him so much. I have no regrets about the life I gave him. I didn't place my son for adoption so that I could have a social life, education, more time or money, or more dating opportunities. Those things are great, but I'd rather have my child. I did it for him.
–Tamra, birth mom

I Am Not a Stereotype
35. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am a mom, a wife, a birth mom, and educated professional, a mentor, and a good friend. I am not a wayward teen, selfish, or a drug addict. I did not have my child taken from me and I did want him. I just knew he needed more than what I could give him. I am a birth mom. I am a good mom.
–Alysia, birth mom

I Am Not a Stereotype
36. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am not what they say I am. I am not weak. I am not a failure. I am courageous. I am strong. I am a survivor. I am blessed. I am the woman. I am because of my children. I am a mother. I am their mother. And I am thankful for that.
–Amanda, birth mother

I Am Not a Stereotype
37. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am a mother of two. I own my home and have a Master's Degree. Adoption is not a burden but a gift. My son is a blessing to all of our family. He is not property. He is a living, breathing person and at the end of the day he has the most amazing life I can give him; with or without me being the primary parent.
–Andrea, birth mom

I Am Not a Stereotype
38. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am a strong woman, mother, and wife. I didn't give my birth son up. I gave him a life. One where he will be successful and strong.
–Angela, birth mother

I Am Not a Stereotype
39. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am human. I am a mother. I am worthy and strong. I gave them life when I placed them. I want the best for them. I am learning everyday. I loved them before I met them. I love them with all of me. I am a birth mom.
–Angel, birth mother

I Am Not a Stereotype
40. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am not a stereotype. I am an adoptee and birth mother. I have suffered two losses that are not natural. I have double the hardship, but I've gained double the joy. I am success driven, a strong woman, and a passionate individual with my heart on my sleeve. I have soul searched and prayed for a long time. Now I can finally say, I've found my heart's peace.
–Becca, birth mother

I Am Not a Stereotype
41. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am an authentic, compassionate, smart, divinely beautiful, and accomplished bright light. I lead and teach with strong hearted wisdom that I earned in the most gut wrenching of ways. My light cannot be hidden, ridiculed, shamed, feared, or humiliated. I am not defined by events. I transcend them. I am pure love and I have given pure love. Our future is full of healing and hope.
–Ashlee, birth mother

I Am Not a Stereotype
42. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am a loving woman who chose life for her daughter. I chose for her to thrive, not just survive. I am strong because of it. I am a beautiful daughter of God.
–Elizabeth, birth mom

I Am Not a Stereotype
43. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am a hardworking, independent mother of two who chose a better world for her children. I am not selfless and definitely not always brave, but stronger than I knew I could be. I am a birth mom.
–Beth, birth mother

I Am Not a Stereotype
44. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am a birth mother, a nail technician, a wife, a mother, a daughter, a sister, a human. I was not into drugs or in high school when I placed my daughter. I could have been a parent at 19. I chose to give my daughter more.

I Am Not a Stereotype
45. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am crazy beautiful, strong, loving, selfless, and inspiring. I educate about adoption and help people understand the facts instead of myths.
–Brenda, birth mother

I Am Not a Stereotype
46. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am a birth mom. I am someone who wants to be there to fill in the gap for my Beloved. Someone who learned to love so much only to have her heart broken. I am brave, breaking barriers, and getting through the hard stuff.
–Cannille, birth mom

I Am Not a Stereotype
47. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am the typical, average young woman who had to make an immensely difficult decision that most women, young or old, will never understand. I often find myself caring for other more than myself, and I can be very sensitive ... But, I am a birth mom. Despite hearing the words, "I could never place a child for adoption," I know in my heart that if they found themselves in the situation I was in, it would probably be considered. We all have that strength in us, as mothers and fathers. I am no different. I just did what was best for my child. I am a birth mom.
–Chelsea, birth mother

I Am Not a Stereotype
48. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am a mom. I knew my child needed more and I gave it to him because that's what mothers do. We put aside ourselves for the sake of our children. We put aside sleep and hours of pain and anguish and hurt. We give every part of ourselves for them and that's what I did. I gave him everything I had, I gave my love, a million tears, all the strength I could find plus the strength given me by others. I gave the anguish of a million heartbeats to give him what he needed and what I knew I couldn't. I am a mom.
–Christie, birth mom

I Am Not a Stereotype
49. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am a mother, a wife, a human. I do not have a drug problem. I have a car, a house, a job. I did not give up my son.
–Christina, birth mom

I Am Not a Stereotype
50. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am a beautiful woman who wanted what was best for her. I am a woman of faith. I am a woman of love. I am a birth mom.
–Crystal, birth mother

I Am Not a Stereotype
51. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am worth it. I am enough. I wanted more for both of my boys and they now have everything they could ever imagine. They deserve two parents. I am strong and did what's best for them. I wouldn't be who I am without them. Open adoption is possible when you all work as one.
–Christine, birth mom

I Am Not a Stereotype
52. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am an involved birth father. I am a man who considered parenting, and chose adoption alongside the birth mother and is involved in our open adoption.
–Dan, birth father

I Am Not a Stereotype
53. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am not just a mom. I am a birth mom. I am not just a birth mom. I am a mom. She showed me my strength. I showed her that true love sometimes means doing the impossible.
–Emily, birth mother

I Am Not a Stereotype
54. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am the mother of four boys, and a nurse for 20 years. I was raped at 12, gave birth at 13. I am a survivor, not a victim. I chose life for my son. I gave something they couldn't give themselves.
–Jackie, birth mother.

I Am Not a Stereotype
55. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am a loving, supportive, and grateful birth father. I am also a father. I respect personal boundaries with our open adoption. The relationship I have with my son's adoptive parents is healthy and beautiful. My experience with adoption is one of the most meaningful and spiritual experiences in my life.
–Jason, birth father

I Am Not a Stereotype
56. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am not selfish. I am not uneducated. I am not a teen mother. I am not a hot mess. I am just someone who wanted the best for their child ... just like any other loving parent does.
–Jenna, birth mother

I Am Not a Stereotype
57. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am a college graduate. I am a business owner. I am an advocate. I am strong. I am courageous. I am a daughter, wife, mother, birth mother, and friend. I am enough.
–Jeanie, birth mother

I Am Not a Stereotype
58. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am an adoptee. I am a birth mother. I am a wife, mother, sister, friend. I am a daughter of God. I put the needs of my children before my own. I placed my first daughter for adoption because it was the right thing for her and me. I am enough. I am strong. I chose the road less traveled and adoption has made all the difference.
–Jori, birth mom

I Am Not a Stereotype
59. I Am Not a Stereotype

I am a dad. I am a husband and I am a good man. I am not an absent father or a dead beat. We chose what we thought was best for all of our children and ourselves. I love all of my children, even if one calls me Josh. I am still someone that loves him.
–Josh, birth father

I Am Not a Stereotype
60. I Am Not a Stereotype

We are devoted to each other and the well being of our son. We would have loved to raise him ourselves but the circumstances at that time would have made it a very difficult beginning for our son. His well being was so important to us that we made the heart wrenching choice to place him in the arms of his wonderful family. Some of the adoption world doesn't quite understand why a loving married couple would ever think of placing a child, and believe me we carry that with us every day. But we know in our hearts and God knows that what we did was never for selfish reasons. When we see how happy and well he is doing we know we did the right thing by our son. It was never about convenience, or ourselves. It was about the unconditional love we have for our son, it was always about him from day one.
–Annie, birth mother, and Daniel, birth father

author image

Terra Cooper

Terra Cooper is a Staff Storyteller at Adoption.com. She is a mother of three-- two boys and one girl who was adopted. She is also a professional wedding photographer, a self-proclaimed foodie, and a TV/movie addict. Visit her website.


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