Now that you are matched you may have just learned that the expectant mother wishes to meet you. How exciting. How nerve wracking.
Sometimes the meeting includes the birth father and sometimes other birth family members. The agency will prepare you for what to expect, to the best of our ability, but please be aware that we KNOW that you will be nervous. You will wonder what to wear, how to act, what to say, what not to say.
Our best advice is to just be you. Dress casually if that is who you are or dress up if you feel it is the occasion to do so. Act as you would to any extended family member. If you are a hugger, then hug the expectant mother! Try to sit close and to remember that you are not being interviewed. You were already selected! She just wants to meet you. With that said, please don’t interview her. Leave the hard questions to the agency.
This is a time to get to know each other. It is an awesome experience to meet each other. Bring a camera, though we can’t promise that the expectant parent will let you take photos of her, it is encouraged by the agency to begin your baby album by having photos with you and the child’s birth mother.
Most importantly, remember the expectant parent will have the same fears that you do. She will ask what she should wear, what she should ask and she will definitely wonder, “what if they don’t like me?” You are probably worried about the same thing.
These meetings are so neat for the agency staff too as right in front of our eyes, we see two groups of strangers meet each other and within less than five minutes, you feel like you have known each other forever. It isn’t that you have learned that much about each other in such a short time, but rather it’s a feeling, a connection that brings you together… and it is just so special.
During the meeting we encourage you to share information about yourselves and show the expectant parent that you are interested in her, not just the baby. Also, even if you are open to post adoption contact, it is important to not make promises you cannot keep. Often, we get so emotional and excited that we make promises that may not be realistic. Take time to get to know each other.
It is okay to laugh. Most likely you will giggle and laugh or even cry during your first meeting. All of this is okay!