5 Famous Birth Moms

“I know (my birth mother) must have had a lot of love for me to want to give (me) what she felt was a better chance.” –Faith Hill

Being a birth mom is not an easy position to be in. It takes a lot of love, a lot of sacrifice, and a lot of heartache to place a child for adoption. Many birth moms live with the secret of placing their child for adoption; they don’t talk about it for the pain it causes them or for the stigma that can be attached to the title of birth mom. There are however, some celebrity birth moms who are brave enough to bare the scrutiny and judgement that occurs when they share that they are indeed a birth mom and they advocate for adoption. It takes great bravery and strength. Here are a few of those famous birth moms who had tremendous courage to share their story of placing a child for adoption.

Catelynn Baltierra

She was on MTV’s 16 & Pregnant and Teen Mom. She and her boyfriend at the time (now husband) Tyler, had a baby when Catelynn was just a junior in high school. Their parents didn’t want them to place their baby for adoption, but as the show documented, the young couple pursued adoption and placed their daughter with a loving adoptive couple in May 2009. Since then the couple has even written a book together, Conquering Chaos, which describes their raw thoughts and feelings regarding the adoption of their daughter Carly.

Rosanne Barr

She was the star of the sitcom Rosanne. In her late teens she had a car accident which left her with a head injury and because of that, she was in a mental institution for just under a year. Shortly after that experience, she gave birth to her daughter, Brandi, whom she placed for adoption. She and her daughter were reunited many years later.

Joni Mitchell

When the singer was younger, about 20 years old, she gave birth to a daughter. Being a struggling musician at the time, she didn’t feel she could provide for her daughter. It was said that she wanted to find a way to stay with her daughter, but she decided to make the best choice she could for her daughter and place her for adoption. She has since been reunited with her daughter and has an ongoing relationship with her. 

Kate Mulgrew

This famous actress on “Orange is the new Black” is also a birth mother. When she was 22, she gave birth to a daughter, whom she placed for adoption. She has even written a memoir, Born with Teeth, about her experience as a birth mother placing her daughter for adoption.

Mercedes Ruehl

A famous actress who has appeared on numerous shows (The Fisher King, Power) and has won multiple awards (Oscar, Golden Globe) is also a birth mother. She gave birth to a son, Christopher, when she was 28 years old and placed him for adoption. She has since been reunited with her son (when he was 21 years old) and he is now the godfather to his half-brother, her second son, Jake (who is adopted).

These famous, courageous, and brave women have stepped out of the shadows of their personal lives and faced the media when they shared their stories as birth mothers who placed their children for adoption. Their children have been blessed by adoption and have also been blessed to know their birth mothers as well. These women prove that adoption can be a beautiful thing and can be a blessing to all involved, despite how painful it can be for a birth mother to have to say goodbye for a time. As Skye Hardwick puts it:

“A birth mother puts the needs of her child above the wants of her heart.” – Skye Hardwick

These famous women have done that and their stories will hopefully encourage others too, especially those who are facing an unplanned pregnancy.

Are you considering placing a child for adoption? Not sure what to do next? First, know that you are not alone. Visit Adoption.org or call 1-800-ADOPT-98 to speak to one of our Options Counselors to get compassionate, nonjudgmental support. We are here to assist you in any way we can.