At 14 I started suffering with anxiety, panic attacks, and depression. I was living with an unstable, alcoholic mother at the time and I was going through a phase of going out every night, meeting friends, smoking, and drinking. One night after my mum didn’t come home, I invited a friend over, as he was having trouble with his dad. We spent a lot of time with each other drinking. Two months later, just before I turned 16, I found out I was pregnant.
At that particular time, I was quite isolated from my family and didn’t have many friends because I had been in and out of school due to the anxiety. The first thing I did was tell my best friend, and he told me to talk to his auntie who he was living with.
Although I was scared of what she’d think because she wasn’t able to have children of her own, she was also one of the most understanding people I’d ever met. I grew extremely close to her and the family and they were very supportive over the following months. I still hadn’t told any of my family and I got into a very bad unhealthy routine of hiding my pregnancy.
After a big altercation with my mother after family members caught her staying out late getting drunk one night, I knew didn’t want that for my baby. That baby didn’t deserve to be put through that anxiety and suffering that I had to for so many years.
This child deserved to be raised in a happy, loving home with parents who could give them everything he or she needed.
Conversation after conversation, arrangement after arrangement, it was decided that my best friend’s auntie and uncle would bring the baby up as their own.
Time was to getting on and I still hadn’t told most of my family members what was going on and was still managing to hide my pregnancy.
My family was all going away for a wedding one weekend, and I had planned to try to explain everything when they got back, but that weekend was the weekend that I went into labour.
It all happened so very quickly; the only thing I remember was just holding her in my arms. Her adoptive mum, Amanda, told me I should name her. So I chose the name Kaitlyn.
I decided to wait a few months until telling my family about Kaitlyn, but as time went on, it never seemed the right time. Two months after she was born, I started college and moved into another family member’s house and everything started to change.
In 2013, after my best friend passed away, I had a mental breakdown. I started therapy and opened up about everything. I don’t regret anything of the decision I made for Kaitlyn, but I do regret putting myself through so much pain and suffering by hiding something I didn’t have to hide. I now know, after telling those closest to me about it all, that they would’ve have been there and supported my decision.
Everything was legalised 3 three years ago and the amazing family has now officially adopted Kaitlyn. Kaitlyn is now 5 and honestly such a happy, beautiful girl. I’m in regular contact with the family and see her often. Seeing her in the life she has reminds me that I made the right decision.