Adopt My Grandchild

Updated on December 22, 2014
C.C. asks from San Mateo, CA
26 answers

Adopt My Grandchild?

My dd and her husband became pregnant unexpectedly. They were not ready to have the baby. They decided to go through open adoption so that they can have contact with the baby.

Unfortunately, they never asked us (my husband and myself) if we would like the baby. We did not bring up the subject about us taking the baby.

The story started in August when they said they were going to do open adoption for their baby. They started looking for and interviewing families. They finally picked out a great family and let them know.

We had a family meeting last week (December) when they told us that they had picked out a family to adopt the baby. This family is young, has lots of energy and interests in common with my dd and her dh.

I asked why they didn’t ask us to take the baby. My SIL gave me a story about moving to be closer to the baby. He would want to see her all the time.

When I brought the subject up, (about us taking the baby) my SIL said that we could have told them about taking the baby anytime since August.

With this adoption, we only have the right to see the baby once per year.

From a legal standpoint, grandma (and grandpa) we are the best candidate to raise the baby.

I am not sure what to do at this time. Do we just let the other couple have their baby? Or do I (my husband and I) fight to raise the baby? (They have not signed any contracts at this time)

What would you do in this situation? No matter what happens, someone will get hurt.

With this adoption, we only have the right to see the baby once per year.

Thank you in advance for your input.

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So What Happened?

I decided to let it go. The baby is going to a great family.

Featured Answers


answers from Iowa City on

This is a decision for the parents not you. Let them decide what is best.

My aunt forcably adopted her daughter's child (her daughter was coerced into it when she actually wanted to do a non relative adoption) and it did not work out well. At all. Not for the child, mother or grandparents.

11 moms found this helpful


answers from Wausau on

Being biological grandparents doesn't give you any legal rights that are not willingly granted to you. If you wanted any chance of being considered as adoptive parents, the time to say so was the moment they told you they were giving the baby up. I'm sorry for the pain you're feeling, but you need to choke it down and not cause any kind of conflict now.

6 moms found this helpful


answers from Pittsburgh on

Just be happy they did not opt for a closed adoption. Less messy all around. But they are the parents and they have decided what they believe is the best choice for the baby and themselves. It would have been way more complicated for them to explain to a child years from now how they chose not to raise the child but you (grandparents) could. Probably a lot more rejection felt by the child. Perhaps they would have elected abortion rather than the major complications this might have introduced to their family. Especially if they either have other children or one day might. I would honor their wishes and leave well enough alone.

6 moms found this helpful

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answers from Dallas on

No!! you do not fight to raise the baby. A. you have no right legally B. you will destroy your relationship with your daughter C. There is a couple who already considers this their baby and what a blessing this baby will be to them and them to him/her.

Have you sat down and thought about what a complicated and emotionally toxic it would be for your Adult child to give you her kid to adopt? She isn't a teen so she is a young adult. Many people have kids and raise them when they are not ready so she and her husband have very strong feelings about this or they would not give their baby up for adoption. But if you did adopt the kid I think because of the circumastances this would be terrible for your daughter and the child.

Let it go. See what a blessing this is to your grand baby and the adoptive family. Support your daughter it is going to become emotionally and there will be a sense of shame I think too. Love and support her through this. I think it must be hard but also I think it is amazing that she is doing what is best for the baby instead of caving into sociatial pressures.

I just wanted to add something that I didn't have time earlier. They may have considered giving the baby to his parents or you but remember this is about how much involvement they want. If one of the grandparents raised the child they would have constant contact and updates and I think based on them being young adults this would be very terrible which is why I used the word "toxic". I'm sure your not toxic I just think that situation would be a wound that would always be open and picked at.

I wish you peace and healing over this.

14 moms found this helpful


answers from Seattle on

So, they got pregnant in August and you knew about it. YET, you didn't say anything about wanting to adopt the child.
Then, being responsible parents they started looking for a couple to adopt their child. YET, you didn't say anything about wanting to adopt the child.
They picked out a family to adopt their child and let them know. YET, you didn't say you wanted to adopt the child.
NOW...months later your feeling are hurt because they never asked you?!

You do nothing. Just like you have done since August.
This isn't your decision, this isn't your child. You thank the couple for taking this baby, loving this baby, and creating a family with this baby.

12 moms found this helpful


answers from Reading on

changing my answer - I misunderstood...

Your time to speak up was in the beginning. Not now when another family has fallen in love.

Then again, I will never understand a married couple giving up a child. Regardless, there is likely a reason they didn't ask you.

10 moms found this helpful


answers from New York on

In the case of adoption, most bio grandparents don't get to see the child at all. You must remember that this child will have grandparents, the parents of the people who are adopting him or her.

Your daughter is an adult, I assume. She and her husband get to make this decision. They may not want their child being raised by grandparent aged parents. She and her husband may find it too wierd to have their daughter or son be their sister/SIL or brother/BIL.

You don't actually get a choice in whether you "let" the adoptive parents have the baby. This is not a case of CPS and the parents losing custody. In those cases, they try to place children with relatives if at all possible to minimize trauma/disruption in the child's life. But this is an unborn baby, not a child who will need to get used to a new situation. I'm fairly sure that you don't have the right to demand custody of this child.

Do you still want a relationship with your daughter? If so, I think you need to put that ahead of a legal battle that will put you on opposing sides with your daughter and her husband. That will likely cause a rift that will never heal, and when they do decide to have children, you won't get to know them.

10 moms found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

Seventeen years ago I adopted a baby girl whose birthmom was 17. Her grandparents (50 at the time) could have adopted her, or just kept her in the family. But they chose to let her birthmom decide what to do. It started out as a closed adoption but we opened it after one year because I couldn't imagine not knowing her family.

Seventeen years later, we are in constant contact with her birthmom, birth aunts, uncles, cousins and those grandparents who could have stepped in and took over. We spend every Thanksgiving together, and they have adopted us in turn. They ARE our family.

I can't imagine what you're going through, as I often felt very bad for my daughter's birth grandparents (before we opened the adoption) because they knew what they were missing out on, where their daughter really did not.

I think you should let your daughter make this most difficult decision and support her fully. I cannot imagine a married couple going through with this though. How old are they?

I hope for you that the story unfolds more like mine did than what you are expecting.

9 moms found this helpful


answers from San Francisco on

I don't understand why you didn't indicate that you wanted your grandchild the moment you heard they were going to place the baby up for adoption. Why did you wait till now?

In any case, my guess is that they feel that another family is better suited to raise the baby. You are probably not very young, for one thing. It's best for someone young-ish to take on a baby.

I remember when I told my mother that my children's appointed guardian in the case of our demise was my SIL. My mother told me, "You know I'll fight for them don't you?" Which really pissed me off, because there was no way I wanted my mother raising my kids, since: 1. She was too old, and 2. She wasn't good mother material. She would have ruined my kids. Fortunately I knew she would never get them, no matter how much she fought.

Anyway, I assume you are better mother material than that, but still you have to respect your daughter's wishes.

8 moms found this helpful


answers from Baton Rouge on

Sorry if it sounds harsh, but it's not your baby. You don't get to decide who adopts it. If your daughter decides that she would prefer that you adopt it, then that's up to her.
Perhaps the reason she didn't ask you is that having you raise it would keep it TOO close, where an open adoption would make it easier for her to keep tabs on it while maintaining enough emotional distance for her own comfort.
Sorry, Gran, but it's just not about you.

7 moms found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

I agree to let it go. This is not about you. It is about your daughter and her husband. They are already making a very difficult decision so please don't add fuel to that fire.

If you were to adopt this baby, then every time you see your daughter and her husband, it would be in their face which I would assume would bring back all the feelings they have and open up old wounds.

The other couple will love this baby as their own. They are obviously ready for adoption and have gone through the testing, interviews, etc.

Wouldn't you want this baby to live in a stable loving home? Grow up well loved and wanted by these parents?

Respect your daughter and son in law's decision and support them because this has to be one of the hardest things they will ever go through. There is no need or room for fighting among yourselves.

How would you feel if you were the couple chosen to raise this child and then have someone start fighting to take the baby away. That does NO one any good and everyone gets hurt in the long run.

Be appreciative that you can see this baby once a year. Many grandparents do not get that option.

7 moms found this helpful


answers from Denver on

This is tough. I am an adoptive parent, and I am married to an adoptee. I want to share that before I say this - it's not the easiest way to start a life. Staying in one's family of origin is almost always best. BUT -

BUT - if this is going to jerk the baby from one family to another after he or she is born, THAT is even harder. In fact, my middle son's primary adoption trauma was leaving his foster mom and coming to me. People don't want to think of that as traumatic for the adoptee but if the adoptee has bonded to a foster family, it is (and you want them to be bonding with their care-takers, or they will have other more serious problems).

So - if this cannot be set in stone before the baby is born, be loving and let it be. But also let the adoptive parents know that you would love love love to see your grandchild more.

Try to be at peace. Love matters and biology matters too. If the adoptive parents come to love you and know you are supportive, the child will have both in abundance.

Good luck,

6 moms found this helpful


answers from Norfolk on

Let it go.
Your DD and her husband decided to adopt their child out elsewhere and not to you.
I don't know why.
There might be reasons real or imagined.
From a legal standpoint maybe you are in great shape but that doesn't mean you have the youth or mentality to deal with a baby again in your stage of life.
Babies can be a lot harder when you're older.
Maybe they feel you can't afford to raise a child and keep money in place for your retirement and older years.
When your daughter and hubby ARE ready to raise kids, you will be a more active grandparent.
Fighting with them now isn't going to make future relations any better.
This child is going to have an adoptive family.
Stay out of it and don't stir the pot.

6 moms found this helpful


answers from Philadelphia on

It is going to be the mother and fathers decision who will raise the baby. I don't believe just because you are the grandparents that that gives you a higher leg to stand on legally. It is not like the mother and father were found to be unfit and their baby is being taken away from them.

It also sounds like the parents made a very thoughtful decision about who would raise the baby. Let it go.

6 moms found this helpful


answers from Seattle on

This situation is so emotionally charged and complicated, that I highly recommend you seek the guidance of a professional, licensed, trained Clinical Psychologist ASAP.

And that you do NOT take advice from complete strangers on how to manage your relationships with your adult children and grand baby you are now estranged from.

Most people here are very confused why you waited so long to speak up and speak your mind and to offer to be 'that family'. Your silence for so long seems very unhealthy and shows you were ambivalent about making such a huge commitment.....sort of like your very own daughter, very unsure about making a commitment to her very own baby.....that is one strange cycle.

I'm not sure I agree that Grandma and Grandpa are the best candidates to raise the baby any longer, due to the profound lack of direct and honest and timely communication.

What were you waiting for ? To be politely asked? Were you waiting to see if the baby was healthy and you could handle the responsibility? No one knows but you why you waited in silence. And I find that to be alarming considering what your DD was contemplating.

About the best thing you can offer now, is that if for some unforeseen circumstances the relationships with the adoptive family go awry, that you would always be there for them. But that should have been offered so long ago.

I'm sad with you as a mother and a woman that you refrained from emotionally supporting your daughter during this decision. I would imagine your silence was heart breaking.

6 moms found this helpful


answers from Boca Raton on

I get the impression that you believe that you have some sort of superior legal claim to the baby over potential adoptive parents. Have you checked with a competent family lawyer or adoption attorney in your state (or the state where the parents reside) to see if that's actually the case? Generally the United States does not recognize "grandparent rights" though there are exceptions to that rule, quirks in the law, etc. And guardian situations are different too. You're talking about a baby who isn't born yet and hasn't been abandoned, abused or neglected by his/her parents.

Aside from the legal question (you need professional advice by someone licensed and competent in your state or the parents' resident state) I'm not sure that you have the "moral" right either. As long as you have made your feelings known (that you will take the baby) then it seems to me that you should respect your daughter and son-in-law's wishes. It doesn't sound like they were receptive to your offer, and the comments your SIL mentioned were probably spoken off-the-cuff. Perhaps he didn't know what else to say. I guess it wouldn't hurt to make sure you've communicated clearly one more time; otherwise, I would feel compelled to let it go.

I agree with the other answers here, though my heart mourns for you.

Try to stay focused on what is in the BEST interests of the child.

Good luck.

5 moms found this helpful


answers from Houston on

I am not sure why from a legal standpoint you would be the best candidate to raise the baby? This is not a situation where CPS is involved. Also you have no legal rights to that baby so you are not just letting the other couple get the baby. I could not imagine being in your daughters situation and not considering your parents. For whatever reason I think your daughter had ruled you out. It could be the daily reminder, your age, maybe the other couple could offer more financially, or siblings. Your daughter is doing what she feels is best for her baby and I think that's incredible. The other couple will be incredibly blessed too. I am sure a lot of heartache will follow for the biological family so please support your daughter and I am story for the situation.

5 moms found this helpful


answers from Amarillo on

I am an adoptive parent. My son's parents were young and in high school. We went through the local state agency and he his mother had gone to the a religious agency to place said child up for adoption. Once a month all the agencies met and would match up children if needed. Because we were the same religion, we were selected to be his parents.

The adoption at that time was closed. I feel in one way that it was best so that the parents were not "snooping" to see what or how the child was being raised and that the wound could/would heal from the birth. There were times before the final adoption that I wondered if the mother would try to take the baby back. That is always something to consider but I would have fought to keep the child after getting attached and losing a job to care for the child.

A recent family member had a child and did an open adoption and has had mental issues. She gets updates once or twice a year but that wound is always open and the scab comes off. There were ups and downs in the family between the mother and her two sisters who would have loved to adopt the baby but she placed him in another home that was of the same faith.

Let the daughter and her husband do what they have decided. Step back and let them do what they decided. Yes, it is your grandchild but the child does not know you and you would be a stranger because they would not know you.

When the time comes you will be a grandparent. Right now due to whatever the reason you will not be one. Do not fight this decision as you will lose and your will lose our daughter.

the other S.

PS My son has never waned to find out who or were his parents are. I would have supported him if he had.

5 moms found this helpful


answers from Portland on

I agree with all the posts below. I adopted my daughter after her parent's rights were terminated. It was a closed adoption because she needed a fresh start. She had relatives who weren't allowed to adopt because her birth mother had alienateall of them.

I suggest your situation has some of those dynamics. The choice is your daughter, s. You are wanting to fight her for her daughter. You will lose and you won't even get that once a year visit.

5 moms found this helpful


answers from Washington DC on

With an open adoption, the baby's parents can choose to let you see baby more often than once a year. Just be kind and respectful and maybe they will realize that the more people that love their baby, the better.

I think it would have been way too difficult for your daughter and sil to see their child every time they visited you. And as he said, why didn't you let them know sooner?

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Los Angeles on

I'm not sure what kind of "fight" you're up for. I'm sure you are smart enough to know you have no legal grounds for a legal fight. The only fight you can fight is the one of hearts and minds. So your leverage is this: you can let them know you would be willing to adopt their child. Perhaps another option is that you offer to support them in the form of $$, a place to live, and child care, so they can parent the child.

If you decide you cannot respect their decision and turn this into a fight, you could very well destroy the relationship with your daughter. And if that happens, you won't have a daughter or grandchildren, this one or future.

I have no doubt that your daughter and her husband discussed the possibility of you adopting the child. They ruled it out for what ever reason. I'm sure you are a very wonderful person and would love that child. But it seems your adult daughter has a different picture in her mind of what she wants for her child. Likely this picture includes younger parents who could spend many long years with their child. And yes, they are letting her go. They are choosing not to parent. And because this no doubt is a very painful decision, they are choosing to have distance. They obviously cannot bear the thought of the constant reminder of their choice.

I get that this is really emotional for you because in your heart thats YOUR grand baby. But if the child is adopted, the child will not be your grand baby. And I think thats the part that you need to start to come to terms with. You are correct, the once a year visit will not amount to a relationship. I'm sure open adoptions run the gamut, but from what I have personally seen, open adoption is not about maintaining contact. It is about peace of mind for the biological mother or parents. Its about having a picture of where you child is going, knowing they are safe, happy and loved instead of some great unknown outcome. The story that was told about the families willingly opening their lives to the bio grandparents is really cool and heartwarming. But I don't think thats how it typically works. I think you need to brace yourself to let this child go, because you have already offered to raise it and your kids did not jump at the chance.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Santa Barbara on

This is a bit tough.

Why would you adopt in the first place? Your daughter is a married woman, so sounds like she is an adult if she is old enough to be married. Why not talk about supporting her and her husbands as parents? She is still pregnant and can decide that she wants her own baby.

Right now since your daughter is pregnant she is actually the one who calls the shots (along with her husband as far as adoption goes). Do they want children later in life? Are they 'unfit' or just nor ready for children?

I do not agree that grandparents are the best candidates to raise a child from a legal standpoint. This does not mean you are not qualified, but just because you are related doesn't make you the best candidate. Now if your daughter has children and is deemed unfit, then yes, I believe grandparents are next inline to get custody. But not while she is pregnant.

You may want to raise the baby, but your daughter may think this other couple is who she wants to raise the baby she is carrying. Talk more with them as to why you are the best candidate. You have not written any reason as to why you are the best person to raise the baby. You may be the best, but you are not writing why, so it may not be felt by your SIL or daughter either.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Dover on

You probably made the right decision but let me add that while you have the right to only see the baby once per year, the adoptive parents could be open to allowing more visits. It's at least worth mentioning to them that you would be interested in more if they were agreeable. Maybe even occasionally babysitting if need be?!?

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Boston on

Let it go. If you wanted to baby, you could have spoken up right away. It is too much for you.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Houston on

This is a very strange situation. I don't understand why they wouldn't want to keep their own child but that is not the question.

The parents have the right to decide who adopts their child. Period. You do not. Just because you are the grandparents doesn't mean that you and your husband are the best candidates. I don't know your age but it seems to me that if you are in your 50 or 60, you will not have the same stamina you had with your own children.

In the end, why didn't you tell them back in August when they started talking about adoption that y'all were interested in adopting the baby?

This is their decision. You have no "rights" in this fight.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Oklahoma City on

If it's an open adoption where they have contact with the baby you should be able to see this child anytime they see the child. Meet the family and ask the how they feel about the kiddo have an extra set of grandparents.

2 of my 7 grand kids have been adopted out and we see them when we can get together. We don't have any legal rights to see the kids but we do see them when we can arrange get-togethers. We are called grandma and papa to the kids and the grand kids we are raising are known as their brother and sister.

I don't know how this came to be that you and hubby didn't say anything sooner but now is the time to do this. I think you might consult with an attorney to see what legal right you actually have, each state is different.

There are hundreds of thousands of grandparents raising grandchildren right now in this country alone. I think you should talk to your daughter and settle this so that you can find some resolution about this.

Again, if it's an open adoption where the mom and dad get to see the kiddo then there's no reason you can't see them too.

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