On TV and in movies, she said, "It just amazes me that we're always these unsavory people who really don't deserve to keep our babies. The sympathy is always with the adopting parents. If the mom changes her mind, nobody says, 'Oh good, that baby's going to be raised by his or her mommy.' Everybody feels sorry for the couple that wanted the baby."
Openness in infant domestic adoption has become the norm, according to a report from the Evan B. Donaldson Adoption Institute. But such arrangements, with contact ranging from cards sent to biological parents once a year to regular visits, are often misunderstood by those outside of the adoption community, the report said.
"In the case of open adoption, I think people might intellectually understand, but this show sheds light on the emotional and experiential level," said DiSanto, "The Baby Wait" producer who with Gateley is behind such reality hits as "Teen Mom" and "16 and Pregnant."
"This show sort of starts where most other shows would climax, so it starts with the birth and the hand-over, and the fact that that could change," said DiSanto, himself a parent with his wife through a surrogate mother. "We thought to really tell the story the right way you need to have that parallel path and tell both sides. We look at this as being one way that a modern family is formed."
Come Nov. 1, Morgan will turn 1. Diggs will be there for a party planned by Krieger and Siebold two days later at the couple's second home in Pennsylvania. Now 19 and about to earn her GED, she has no regrets but does have tearful moments of loss despite seeing her baby once or twice a month.
"I'm in a great place," she said, explaining that she's back in touch with Morgan's biological father, who now also visits the baby but is absent from the show. "It's an amazing feeling that I still get to be her mother."
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