20-Year-Old Adoptive Mom Claims Son's 'Selfish' Birth Mom Took Him Back — The Baby's Mom Says There's More To The Story

The story highlights the emotional challenges and heartbreak experienced by both adoptive and birth families in adoption cases.

adoptive mom, baby, adoption TikTok / Change.org 

Adopting a child can be a joyous, loving, and fulfilling experience for many families who cannot reproduce biologically or choose not to. Each adoption story is unique, and the complexities of it all can vary depending on individual circumstances. 

Although adoption can be an exciting occasion, it is also one that involves heartbreak and stress. Birth families may experience various emotions, including grief, loss, guilt, or uncertainty. Adoptive families need to comply with legal requirements, such as background checks, home studies, documentation, and court hearings. It is a complex process that involves legal, emotional, social, and logistical considerations. 


One woman landed herself into a social media adoption war after revealing that her son’s birth mother suddenly took him back and she was now fighting to get him back home. However, others argue that she is being untruthful about the whole story. 

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The 20-year-old adoptive mother claims that her son’s birth mother changed her mind about the adoption and back the baby. 

The adoptive mother took to TikTok following the incident, calling on others to help her bring her baby back home after he was “pried” out of her arms. 20-year-old Hope and her partner Nando of Utah adopted a baby boy whom they named Eli on January 31, 2022, the day he was born, after his birth mother opted to place him for adoption. 


According to Hope, her family has been the only home Eli has ever known and he had lived with them for his entire life. One day in May 2022, Hope was surprised to discover a police officer, officials from an unidentified adoption agency, and her baby’s birth mother after she was just expecting a baby formula delivery. 



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She claims that baby Eli was then taken from her after his birth mother allegedly received compensation from the adoption agency in exchange for the child. “He was pried out of my arms because a selfish woman needed money,” Hope says, her voice thick with emotion. 


Since the adoption was not yet finalized, she shares that Eli’s birth mother had “every legal right” to take baby Eli back if it was a case of her wanting to raise the baby herself. However, that is not what happened and Eli was taken into custody by the adoption agency. Hope says that she is unaware of where he is currently placed. 

“I need this to get everywhere. I need help,” the distraught mother begs viewers. “If anybody has gone through anything similar, then now is the time to reach out to me.” she adds that she has “not broken any laws” and that she is a “good mother” who is worried about her son’s whereabouts. 

Hope shared her story on other social media platforms, including Facebook in a now-deleted post where she claimed that Eli was born addicted to Percocets and fentanyl that were found in his umbilical cord. She alleges that he stayed in the NICU for 11 days after his birth suffering withdrawals until he was cleared to go home. A petition on Change.org was also posted for Hope and Nando to raise funds so they could hire a family lawyer to help them bring Eli home. 

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“We are in the fight of our lives to bring our sweet, precious boy home. We love this little boy more than words can say,” the petition reads. “He has been thriving so well in our family.” The petition also called for adoption laws to be changed regarding birth families. 

“What we would like to see change is a birth mother should not be able to take a child from the family she chose, to give that child to another family without just cause. Rehoming a child without relevant cause or proof of unfit to parent should be illegal.” 

Adoption laws vary by state and in Utah, the birth mother has the right to change her mind and revoke her consent to adoption within 24 hours of the adoption being legally finalized. 

Some people sympathized with the heartbroken adoptive mother and agreed that Eli’s birth mother had no right to take him back nearly four months after he was born. However, the details surrounding Hope’s supposed adoption of baby Eli have not been confirmed, and many other people believe that she did not adopt the baby legally. 


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Many people suspect that the adoption was never finalized. 

According to TikTok user @leeleegirl1985, who did some digging on Hope’s background, the adoptive mother shared that she was granted guardianship instead of parental custody of Eli because she was not married at the time he was placed with her and her partner. “I was following the birth mom’s wishes,” Hope says. 



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Additional research uncovered that Hope was applying for food stamps and unemployed when she was given guardianship of baby Eli. Many people began questioning the legitimacy of the adoption due to her young age — Utah law states that a person must be 21 or older in order to adopt a child. One TikTok user even claimed that Eli’s birth mother had not even relinquished her rights to him. 

Another TikToker, known as a man named Karlos Dillard, also began looking into Hope. What he discovered shocked and disturbed many people. According to Dillard, Hope was not in the process of a legal adoption nor did she have guardianship of Eli. 

On the day that Eli was taken from Hope, his birth mother had allegedly messaged her informing her that CPS and the police were showing up to take the baby. Hope then reportedly fled the house with baby Eli until she was caught in a parking lot by police. 

Soon after the allegations, Hope’s social media accounts were made private. Although weeks later, Dillard received a message from Eli’s birth mother recalling her version of the events. 


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The birth mother claimed that she felt her baby was in a toxic environment and wanted to rehome him. 

“I broke no laws in making the decision I made,” she wrote in the message. “[Hope] had no custody of my child at any point in time. I gave her power of attorney for a few months so she could take him to the doctor’s without me having to be there.” 



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Eli’s birth mother says that Hope “lied” and “manipulated” her during the “hardest time” of her life, as well as her family, to give her son up.

“I was seeing the true colors of this family and I did not need my child to be in that environment,” she shared. “As Eli’s mother, it’s my job to make sure that he’s safe and protected and that was not happening with that family.” Eli’s birth mother adds that no one cared to hear her side of the story regarding the adoption, and she argues that she did not selfishly strip Eli from Hope, as she originally claimed. 

Adoption remains a complex situation where both sides suffer from misunderstanding and heartbreak. Even adoptions that are not done legally involve broken hearts from both adoptive families and birth families. It is significant that all sides of adoption are treated with compassion and consideration. 


Both birth and adoptive families may benefit from professional support, counseling, and access to support groups or communities that understand the unique emotional challenges of adoption. Open and honest communication, empathy, and a willingness to acknowledge and address these challenges can help both families navigate the emotional complexities and build positive relationships centered around the well-being of the child. 

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Megan Quinn is a writer at YourTango who covers entertainment and news, self, love, and relationships.