Friday, June 29, 2007

I'm a Lucky Non-Birth Mom

A friend of mine is a doula and she told me about a lesbian couple she is working with where the non-pregnant mom is feeling rather left out of the whole pregancy/mom-to-be process. My friend told her that she needs to be OK with grieving and feeling angry that she is not pregnant, because that is something she'd wanted for herself, so she is jealous of her partner's pregnancy. I never wanted to be pregnant. That's one count of luck. I married a woman who really wanted to be pregnant - another stroke of luck. Our friends, co-workers and family always treated us the same - as future mothers, and now, as a family.

I bonded with the babies while still in utero, talking to them and reading stories, and immediately after birth. They came out knowing my voice, and other than nursing, I was every bit as much a mother to them as their other mom, especially in the beginning, when I was able to stay home with the whole family. Now, of course, we have different roles within the family, but we are both definitely still MOMS (all caps - no denying it), just ask the kids!

Not giving birth myself was not the same as not sharing in the birth experience, and not sharing DNA with my kids does not make them any less mine. People see me with our kids and it is clear, I am Mom. I am very lucky, and I hope the couple I mentioned above and others like them, are able to get to the wonderful place that I am - 100% accepted as one of my kids' MOMS!


Casey said...

You are DEFINITELY Mom and I couldn't do *any* of this without you. And if you were to ask the kids on any given day who their favorite mom is - it sure wouldn't be me. :)

PT-LawMom said...

I think a lot of men feel a similar jealousy - not of the pregnancy itself but the chance to bond with the child from the very smallest flutter. Surely the women had to pick which one of them was going to do this. Hopefully once they see the miracle of their new child, they can decide the other one should do it the next time around.

patti_cake said...

I am happy that you and Casey have such a wonderful family... and sad for the other non-birth Mom that is having issues. :(

Dakota said...

Pt-lawmom - yes, I hope if that is what they decide, that the other carries the next baby, that it works out for them. Hopefully,once the baby arrives, the non-birth mom will feel just as bonded as I do with our kids. It would be so sad to not really feel a part of their family.

Patti_Cake - yes, we are so very lucky! I am sorry that not all families are as fortunate as we are in this area. I think it has to start with the couple themselves and how they view first their own relationship, and then how children will fit in, and how that is projected to the outside world. Occasionally we used to get the question about who is the "real mom." The answer, of course, is that we both are...if it is someone who I want to engage in a dialogue, I will explain who the bio-mom is. Sometimes people are just really curious about how we did it, how decisions were made, etc. and I am always happy to educate people. The more people know, the less there is to fear.