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What should I do if I am not feeling "the bond" yet?

I don't feel a strong love with my adopted son yet. It's nothing at all like when I gave birth to my first child. I am not depressed or detached. I like and love him. We laugh, cuddle, coo and I chat about his cute features. But it is more like the love I have for my nephews or close friends who I have babysat, not like I felt when my elder son was born. I think it might be because I was very physically attached to my first due to breastfeeding, so using bottles, etc feels like babysitting. It's been two months and he is an infant... Any suggestions? Is this just normal and I should accept that it is a different kind of bond? Or will it grow in time? Anyone else have these feelings?


Asked by Anonymous at 10:20 AM on Jun. 9, 2010 in Adoption

This question is closed.
Answers (5)
  • I hate to say it (because I'm guilty of this) but it's not always just adoptive moms who don't immediately feel the bond with their babies. My third child (biological) was born when our adoptive daughter was just 6 months old. I had a newborn and a 6 months old. It took me almost 4 months to bond with our newborn. I think I was just overwhelmed, tired, and exhausted from already caring for an infant. But the lack of immediate bonding didn't negatively affect her at all. She's 3 years old and loves to cuddle and snuggle with me.

    Oh my gosh!! Do I sound like a bad mom for saying that?!?! :-) Just give yourself time and patience and the bonding will happen.

    Answer by mommytoadam at 6:47 PM on Jun. 9, 2010

  • Many adoptive moms do not feel an instant bond with their new child. It is completely normal. The reasons I've heard from many women is that once the wait is over for them it seems more like babysitting since they are waiting for the adoption to be finalized. It doesn't seem "real" to them until it is finalized and TPR has been signed.
    My advice to you is to continue to hold your son while you feed him, cuddle as much as possible and give yourself permission to love him as your biological child.
    I have one of each myself- my biological child came after our older dd was adopted. I didn't allow myself to bond with her for quite a while since my first dd was stillborn at 36 weeks. After our youngest was born she spent 3 weeks in NICU so it took me longer to bond with her than it did with my older dd that was adopted. Now, she is almost 2 and the bonds I have with both of my girls are the same...

    Answer by mcginnisc at 1:41 PM on Jun. 9, 2010

  • It will grow in time. Mothers who give birth have 9 months to bond and to "fall in love" with their babies, give yourself some time. Look in his eyes when your feeding him, talk to him, tell him you love him, snuggle with him while he is sleeping just like you did with your bio child. Good luck.

    Answer by Anonymous at 2:25 PM on Jun. 9, 2010

  • It might also be because this is your second child. I've heard lots of women say that they just feel closer to their first, even though they love their second. Give it some time and don't beat yourself up. Congratulations!

    Answer by Iamgr8teful at 3:45 PM on Jun. 9, 2010

  • I have a friend who didn't immediately bond with her 2nd child AND she was breast-feeding him. She said he was about 4 months old when she finally started feeling it. She felt like a bad mother, but I think it was the exhaustion of having 2 kids versus one who was "trained" a bit by that point. Her kids are 2 years apart. It happens to ALL moms. Give yourself some time and try to get some rest.

    Just to add-I've heard of Amom's suffering from post-partum like symptoms and if that becomes the case, seek a dr's help.

    Congratulations! :)

    Answer by doodlebopfan at 11:35 AM on Jun. 10, 2010