Adoptive Families Blog

Celebrating Adoption Month With a Glimpse Back in Time

Posted by Mardie Caldwell on November 6, 2019

Happy National Adoption Month! Here at Lifetime Adoption, we celebrate adoption year-round. But November holds a special place in our hearts. This month is recognized across the U.S. as National Adoption Month, and it's the perfect opportunity to share the beauty of adoption.

Today, I'd like to share about how adoptions in the U.S. have changed over the years. Join me as I reveal a peek into the past of how adoption has evolved from a secretive practice to a nationally recognized and celebrated event!

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Topics: Open Adoption, Infant adoption, closed adoption, history of adoption

How to Encourage a Healthy Open Adoption

Posted by Mardie Caldwell on October 17, 2019

When most people think of adoption, they imagine adoptions of the past when closed adoption was the norm. Society's views on adoption have evolved over the years, and now most private or independent adoptions are open adoptions. In fact, only 5% of infant adoptions are closed, according to a 2012 survey of 100 private adoption agencies.

What this means for you is that more than likely, you will have an open adoption with your child's birth mother. 

There are varying degrees of contact in an open adoption arrangement, from emails sent through an adoption professional to annual in-person visits. Open adoption comes with many benefits for everyone in the adoption triad: adoptive parents, adoptee, and birth parents.

Birth parents know that open adoption does not mean that you share custody. You are the parents, and they will respect this. They simply want to know how their child is doing and that they made the right decision. I've seen so many great open adoptions and wonderful birth mother relationships. You should be open and honest about the amount of involvement she will have with the baby. 

By setting healthy boundaries, the adoption experience will be a happier one for you, your baby, and the birth parents. Keep reading to learn about open adoption agreements, the hospital experience in open adoption, topics to discuss with your child's birth parents, and more!

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Topics: Open Adoption, visit with birth family, open adoption visits, relationship with birth mother, what is open adoption like?, open adoption agreement

How to Talk With Your Child About Adoption

Posted by Lifetime Adoption on August 29, 2019

It's vital to help your biological and adopted children understand who they are, and their importance in your particular family.

Author and psychotherapist Stacie Cahill is an adoptive mother who works with parents as they tackle adoption identity issues. She and her husband were blessed to adopt a baby girl, whom they named Chelsea. The adoption happened when their biological son, Jacob, was two.

Three years later, Jacob took it upon himself to describe adoption to Chelsea. He told her the stork brought her to their house. She was upset. Not a great way to describe adoption to a tender three-year-old!

At that point, Stacie knew that she had to give a better explanation. She wrote a book and dedicated it to Chelsea, explaining how she grew in her heart instead of her body. Stacie knew that adoption was part of her child's identity from the beginning.  This is why you should start talking to your baby about adoption as soon as possible.

If you have both biological and adopted children in your family, make sure you find ways for everyone to feel special and included. The more you talk about it, the less likely your children will have identity questions as they get older. Starting the adoption dialogue early can be very beneficial for the adopted child, and creates the foundation for conversations to come. Keep reading to discover tips on talking to children about adoption!

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Topics: Open Adoption, Parenting, Infant adoption, adoptive parenting, talking to children about adoption

Lifetime Couple's Podcast Shares What They've Learned in 3 Infant Adoptions

Posted by Lifetime Adoption on August 22, 2019

Ever wish that you could hear from someone who's "been there, done that" and recently experienced an infant adoption firsthand? When you initially begin the adoption process, it can be very overwhelming. Hopeful adoptive parents benefit immensely from hearing what adoption was like for others.

Hearing other parent's adoption stories provides encouragement, along with invaluable guidance and tips as you navigate the unknowns of adoption. One of the best things that hopeful adoptive parents can do is to learn from others who have gone before them on the same path! Why not learn about infant adoption while you drive to work, do housework, or go for a run with a podcast?

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Topics: Open Adoption, Adoption Tips, Infant adoption, Adoption story, adoptive dads, how to afford adoption, what is open adoption like?, domestic infant adoption, affording adoption, adoption podcast, Infant Adoption Guide podcast, Infant Adoption Guide

How Has DNA Testing Transformed Adoption?

Posted by Lifetime Adoption on July 24, 2019

DNA testing can provide a lot of information to an adoptive family about their child. DNA testing is done for two reasons in the adoption community. The first reason is for people who are placing a child for adoption. Sometimes a paternity test is required so a biological father can rescind his parental rights for the adoption to proceed.

The second most common reason for DNA testing in adoption is for verifying birth relatives later in life. This helps with taking away an adoptee's uncertainty of connecting with their potential birth parent. However, with open adoption becoming more common, there's often no need for a DNA test. That's because the adopted child grows up knowing his or her adoption story, origins, and birth parents. By remaining in contact with their birth parents, they don't have to conduct a search for them, and then undergo a DNA test. 

Today, DNA testing is incredibly easy. A simple saliva test with Ancestry.com or 23andMe can reveal a TON of information about a child’s biological history.

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Topics: Open Adoption, closed adoption, adoption reunion, DNA testing and adoption, DNA and adoption

New Webinar This Week! Newborn Adoption Q&A

Posted by Lifetime Adoption on July 8, 2019

Have you been dreaming of starting your family through newborn adoption? Or maybe you already have children, but want to make your family complete through the blessing of adoption.

If you're thinking about adopting a newborn in the U.S., you'll want to attend Lifetime's upcoming webinar, "Newborn Adoption Q&A for Hopeful Parents." Bring your questions to our panel of adoption experts and get the clarity and direction you need to move your adoption dream to the next step.

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Topics: Open Adoption, Infant adoption, Domestic Adoption, Adoption webinar, Newborn Adoption, adoption webinars, domestic infant adoption, modern adoption

"His Adoption Was Without a Doubt Part of God’s Plan!"

Posted by Lifetime Adoption on July 2, 2019

Last year, adoptive couple Casey and Johanna were blessed to adopt a baby boy through Lifetime Adoption.

In this family’s story, we hear from Johanna about receiving "the call," the bond they've established with their son Isaiah's birth mother, and their experience with becoming parents together through an open adoption. Now a forever family, adoptive mom Johanna shares their beautiful story in this special guest blog. 

We love it when adoptive couples share the happy ending to their adoption story after the wait.  It’s a beautiful reminder for Lifetime of why we do what we do and the impact it has on creating families!

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Topics: Open Adoption, Waiting to Adopt, adoption wait, Adoption story, relationship with birth mother, what is open adoption like?

How to Deal When Your Parents Are Anti-Open Adoption

Posted by Lifetime Adoption on June 6, 2019

Today, we address a question from a hopeful adoptive mom who is concerned that she won't have support from her family during the adoption journey:

"My husband and I are so excited to adopt! We've always known that we wanted to adopt a baby.  But, our parents and grandparents don't seem to understand why we'd want an open adoption.

Yesterday, my dad asked me why we want the birth family to remain in our lives. And my grandma has made it clear that she looks down on birth mothers; she doesn't think they should be able to choose their baby's parents.

How can we get the support of our families during the adoption process? I'm worried about the impact that their negative views of open adoption will have on our future child!"

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Topics: Relationships, Open Adoption, Adoption journey, Support adoption, visit with birth family, open adoption visits, is open adoption co-parenting?

6 Ways to Celebrate Birth Mothers

Posted by Lifetime Adoption on May 11, 2019

The Saturday before Mother's Day has been traditionally honored as Birth Mother's Day throughout the US. While we think it's totally appropriate to celebrate birth mothers all weekend long, we're taking today to highlight the amazing, brave, loving women behind each adoption story.

One of the most common questions future adoptive parents have to work through, for themselves, is this:

"What would it be like to raise a child who also had another family that loved him first?"

A child's birth mother will always be a special part of his or her story. As most of Lifetime's adoptive parents share, once you get to know the ONE birth mother who has chosen you to become her baby's family, the natural progression is to grow a deep love and care for that amazing woman who made your adoption dreams come true.

So this Mother's Day weekend, as you recognize your own adoption miracle, or pray for the next step in your adoption goals, take a moment to celebrate the brave love that threads between all birth mothers. Here are 6 ways you can honor and celebrate birth mothers today:

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Topics: Birthmother's Day, Open Adoption, Christian Adoption, Birth Mother's Day, Mother's Day, birth mother stories, National Birth Mother's Day

New Webinar: Nurturing Your Dream While You Wait

Posted by Lifetime Adoption on February 20, 2019

Lifetime is excited to announce a new webinar coming up next Wednesday, "A Heart Grown Story: Nurturing Your Dream While You Wait". We'll be welcoming a very special guest speaker.

Carly is an adoptive mom who turned her own experience of longing and praying for motherhood into a passion to encourage other adoptive moms-in-waiting. Her beautiful and uplifting subscription boxes are designed to keep hopeful adoptive moms looking forward to life after adoption, while also nurturing their heart while they wait.

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Topics: Open Adoption, Christian Adoption, Infant adoption, Domestic Adoption, Adoption webinar, adoption wait, how to handle the adoption wait, adoption webinars, domestic infant adoption, modern adoption, called to adopt