Recently, a family contacted us full of excitement. They had been messaging on Facebook with a birth mother who was due in March. She was eager to learn more about them and they talked a lot. Everything was perfect, or so it seemed.
Birth mother Jayne had found their Facebook page and contacted them immediately. She said she was 8 weeks pregnant and hadn’t really thought much about adoption until she saw them. She said from just looking at their photos, she knew her baby was theirs.
The weeks and months had progressed, getting to know each other, until the adoptive mother was in daily contact with Jayne. They had agreed on a name for the baby, were making plans for getting together before delivery, and it seemed to be a match made in heaven.
When they mentioned it to their coordinator, she encouraged them to complete the forms needed so the birth mother could be evaluated, attorney referrals given, and preparation made for the next step. In completing the evaluation forms, the couple began to realize how little information they really had about Jayne.
They did not have a proof of pregnancy.
They didn’t know her doctor or what hospital she would deliver at.
They didn’t have solid information about the father.
Additionally, they had some conflicting information and some true concerns that they had basically ignored, because everything else seemed so positive. Jayne hadn’t asked for money, so it hadn’t entered their mind that she might not be legitimate.
Very quickly, with questions supplied by their coordinator, they were able to discover that Jayne was likely not pregnant, but was scamming them emotionally, simply by talking to them and getting their hopes built so high.
When asked for a proof of pregnancy, she stated that she had one but her purse was stolen. Which was why she didn’t have ID either.
When asked her doctor and hospital she was going to deliver at, she shared that she didn’t like her doctor and was going to try to find a new one at a better hospital.
When asked to call the attorney, she made promises, but never did or claimed she tried but no one answered.
Finally, when the adoptive parents told Jayne that they needed a medical release and their attorney could get her proof of pregnancy, she disappeared. Her Facebook account came down, her phone number was disconnected, and it was like she never existed at all.
Emotional scams can be just as devastating as financial ones. These people prey on your emotion and desire, in order to steal your time and attention. Lean on your coordinators to help you learn to discern who is a good possibility for placing a child and who is a waste of your time and emotion.