When a woman decide to place a child up for adoption, she will often decide between an open or closed adoption. After she decides, an adoption agency will typically provide the birth parents with profiles of potential waiting adoptive parents.
In the past, most birth parents in the United States have opted for closed adoptions or were forced into closed adoptions. However, more birth parents are choosing open adoptions and they are no longer forced into closed adoptions or secrecy. As a birth parent, you will decide what type of adoption is best for you.
Here are some things to consider as you decide between an open or closed adoption.
Open Adoptions – An open adoption is an adoption that allows the adoptive parents to stay in touch with the birth parents. Most open adoptions allow the adoptive parents to access the following information about the birth parents:
- First and last name
- Phone number
- Personal email
In open adoptions, the adoptive parents may use this information to contact the birth parents before or after the adoption takes place. Some birth mothers become friends with the adoptive parents during the pregnancy. In these situations, birth mothers often carry on relationships with adoptive parents through regular contact. Other birth parents choose to only contact the child and parents for events like birthdays or holidays.
While these are some common scenarios of open adoptions, they are not the only options for open adoptions. Every adoption is unique. As a birth parent, you can decide what level of contact you want with the adoptive parents and your child.
Birth parents may choose an open adoption so that adoptive parents are able to fully answer any questions the child may have about his or her birth parents. Birth parents may also choose an open adoption so they can have the option to see the child in the future. Often, open adoptions can help a child better come to terms with his or her adoption because of the available information.
Some birth parents and adoptive parents choose a semi-open adoption. Often, this adoption type involves a very limited number of visits between the birth parents and the child. Adoptive parents and birth parents may also allow annual letters or exchanged pictures. Both adoptive and birth parents who choose a semi-open adoption should always specify what terms the adoption involves to avoid issues in the future.
Closed Adoptions – In certain cases, a closed adoption may be a more appropriate option. Closed adoptions almost entirely restrict contact between birth parents and the adoptive parents of a child.
When birth parents choose a closed adoption, the files related to the adoption are often physically sealed. Even if the birth parents and adoptive parents meet each other during the adoption process, the parties will not stay in touch afterwards. In closed adoptions, the adopted child typically won’t have any knowledge about his or her parents, especially while the child is a minor.
Sometimes adoptive parents can receive medical records of the birth parents in closed adoptions. However, they rarely receive any further information. Keep in mind that some birth parents may choose to change the adoption type over time. A birth parent may decide to limit contact after choosing an open adoption. Other birth parents may even allow an open adoption after formerly choosing a closed adoption.
States usually have different rules and processes about opening a closed adoption. In fact, most states require a court order to change an adoption. If you decide to change the type of adoption you want, always consult the other party first. Clear communication is important to create a cooperative, successful adoption.
Consult Adoption Choices of Kansas & Missouri as you consider the best option for your circumstances. The professionals at our agency can answer any questions and help you through the adoption process! Call Us 877-903-4488 or Text Us 316-209-2071