Whether you are an adoptee or a birth parent, any adoption search can be harrowing. The overwhelming emotions and the ups and downs of the journey can take its toll on the strongest among us. While you are on this journey, you may encounter setbacks, false leads, and plateaus. There may come a time when you have to ask yourself if it is time to cut your losses. While this is a very hard place to be, it is understandable that any person might arrive there in a process that isn’t guaranteed. When you are at this point, you will have to use your judgment and instincts to decide what is right for you and if the journey needs to meet its end without closure.
You Never Have to Quit
Adoption searches take time. This is simply the reality. It is easy to see reunions featured on social media and feel a bit hopeless about your own search. What you don’t see with these searches is the amount of time that was invested before the reunion. These searches can take years and sometimes never produce results. Those that do produce results often do not happen overnight. It is easy to feel disheartened. You might even feel emotionally and physically exhausted. While time is of the essence, it is perfectly okay to take a break from your search. Life will be happening around you and these searches can become all-consuming. If you need to take a break, give yourself some time to refresh. Let yourself have some time to get a fresh perspective, and resume your search when you are ready.
When You Feel It’s Time
You may come to a point in your search when you feel that enough is enough. This may be due to having enough information to feel that your search will be futile. It may also be due to feeling that it is time to move on from the search. You may also simply come to a place in life where you just do not feel the need or the drive to search any longer. When you feel it is time to end your search, you end your search. You can always resume it if you feel you want to in the future. Until then, it is more than okay to find closure in the attempt. There is no shame in knowing when to call it.
It’s Your Journey
The most important factor to remember in your decision about whether or not to quit an adoption search is that it is your journey. You may find resistance from friends and/or family one way or another in regards to your decision. You may struggle with opinions or even struggle with your own internal dialogue regarding your decision. At the end of the day, your adoption journey if your own. Whether you are an adoptee or a birth parent, you and you alone should be the one who makes the final decision about your search. You can certainly ask for advice, but feel confident in your decision. Trust your instincts. You know the emotion of the search the best and know what you need at this time. Make the best decision for you, not for everyone else.
Your first step in your search and reunion journey is to register in Adoption.com’s Reunion Registry.