A Family Divided: The Pros and Cons of Motherhood: Roundtable

An Adoption Roundtable
Dr. Phil continues his work with a family in crisis.
Alexandra leads a roundtable discussion with a teen who was adopted, a teen who gave her baby up for adoption and a teen who kept her baby.

My mom and dad sat down with me when I was 9 or 10 and told me that I was adopted.

Alexandra: Do you ever wonder what it would have been like to have been raised by your genetic mom?

Katie: I wonder who would I have met and where would I have lived, but I'm really happy with my life.

Alexandra: Do you have any resentment toward your mom for giving you up for adoption?

Katie: No, I really admire her because...she wanted someone else to have the experience of raising a child. I'm glad that they did give me up for adoption because I have a lot of opportunties that I don't think I would have had with my biological parents.

Tara tells Alexandra: "When I was just about your age...I put my baby up for adoption. It was an open adoption. The day I left her was the worst day of my life.

It killed me and I know that's a lot of what you're feeling, but by putting her up I got to graduate with my class. I got the chance to go to prom. I still see her a minimum of three times a year. I loved her too much to try to be her mom.

You have to be 100 percent sure that you're able to put yourself second and not end up resenting the baby...those are the things you really need to think about. You need to soul search and really, really ask yourself what you want this baby to have and if it's going to be you that can provide it."

Katie: I never made it to my senior prom. I was actually in the hospital with my son. I was 17 when I got pregnant but I couldn't give my kid up for adoption...There's a lot of good things but there's a lot of really hard things too. Nothing's the same. I don't get to have fun hardly ever anymore.

Alexandra: How hard is it for you to find a babysitter if you want to go out for a night?

Katie: It's really hard. The only babysitters that I have are my mom and my stepdad when he's home. I have no money. None. My mom stays home with him every single day. She doesn't have a life. It affects everyone around you.

Alexandra: Do you feel guilty having your mom help you out?

Katie: Unbelievably guilty. I know that's not what you wanted to hear.