4 Surprising Facts about Open Adoption in Kansas
Adoption hasn’t always been around. In fact, what was considered to be modern adoption laws came into effect in the United States in the nineteenth-century with the 1851 Massachusetts Adoption of Children Act. Open adoptions gained popularity with research in the early 1970s, showing it was better for children. Since then, there has been even more research proving the positive impact open adoption has on the children and the adoptive parents and birth mother.
You may know what open adoption is, but there’s probably a lot about it that you don’t know or haven’t thought about. Don’t worry. Adoption Choices of Kansas is here to provide you with a deeper understanding and some incredible facts about open adoption to consider as you begin your adoption journey. With adoption, the more you know, the better!
- Open Adoption is More Common Than You Might Think
Popular media might have you convinced that most adoptees live their whole life not knowing their birth parents, but that’s not actually the case. Open adoption is the most common choice in the U.S. Not long after research started surrounding the benefits of open adoption, the number of open adoptions skyrocketed in the U.S. From 1990 to today, more and more birth moms and adoptive parents are choosing open adoption. A little of 90% of adoptions today have some degree of openness, splitting between fully open and mediated adoptions.
- Post-Placement Agreements
Post-placement agreements are a way for the birth mother and adoptive parents to approve of communication type and frequency before the baby is born. You can agree on monthly phone calls and birthday cards, or more frequent meetings and video calls. As your child gets older, you may decide to increase or change these terms to spell out the type and frequency of contact.
These agreements can be more formal contracts if you and your child’s adoptive parents want something written out. However, more times than not, post-placement agreements are a mutual understanding instead of a written agreement. Additionally, post-adoption agreements aren’t enforceable in all 50 states.
- Psychologically, Open Adoptions are Better for Everyone
Open adoption allows for a great circle of emotional support for everyone. Adoption is a challenging situation to deal with for everyone in the adoption triad. Having each other to lean on can reduce some mental stress.
- It’s Better for the Birth Mother. When deciding to put your baby up for adoption, you might be concerned about grieving the loss of your child. However, birth mothers often find that open adoption and involvement in their baby’s life alleviates the feelings of grief and separation. Being able to get updates and check-in can help relieve worry post-placement.
- A Better Sense of Identity for the Adoptee. Research in the last couple of decades has shown that children fare better in an open adoption. When the birth mother is a phone call away, adoptees don’t spend 18 years of their life questioning their background. When the birth mother has regular contact, they can ask questions and understand where they came from.
- Adoptive Parents Get Peace of Mind. Other than a sweet bundle of joy, the adoptive parents also get reduced fear and affirmation about the birth mother and medical background. Having an open relationship with the birth mother can create a strong bond and friendship that makes the adoption situation an even better experience for everyone.
- There’s a Supportive Community For You
Finding others in your situation makes everything a little easier to navigate and process. There are tons of online and local communities of women who have been in your shoes and are more than happy to help guide you through it. Having the adoptive family as support is great, but having someone who knows exactly how you’re feeling can help soothe your fears in a different way. You may feel alone, but there are thousands of women out there who have or are currently in your exact situation, and they want to hear your story and share theirs with you.
Facts about Open Adoption
A lot of people approach open adoption with negative preconceived notions. Despite what you might have thought, open adoption is common, civil, and psychologically less traumatizing for everyone. Open adoption may not be for everyone, but for the majority of children, adoptive parents, and birth moms, it’s the option that generally serves all parties for the better. Open adoption can span a wide range of openness, and it’s not a one-size-fits-all option.
Meet the Author: Michelle Brugioni is a practiced, well-versed college-educated writer and avid coffee drinker. She has ten years’ experience as a freelance writer, and has written for an alarmingly wide range of clients and publications. She has written on topics like: life science, biopharmaceutical company acquisitions, dealing with anxiety, and creative drinking games.
As a fearless writer and masterful researcher, each time Michelle is approached with the question, “Can you write this?” she responds confidently with, “When do you need it?”