Adoptive Families Blog

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 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?

7 of the Most-Asked Questions About Open Adoption

Posted by Lifetime Adoption on April 13, 2018

Most birth parents today seek some form of open adoption, and many adoptive parents do too. Once you've adopted and are joyfully living out your open adoption story, you may get questioned by those who are unfamiliar with the concept, asking "how does open adoption work?" 

Lifetime is sharing 7 of the most frequently-asked open adoption questions adoptive parents might hear about their relationship with their child’s birth parents. Plus, we're providing the answers to these questions, too!

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Topics: Adoption Questions, Open Adoption, open adoption visits, what is open adoption like?, is open adoption co-parenting?, open adoption questions

How to Develop an Open Adoption Relationship

Posted by Lifetime Adoption on May 1, 2017

So, you've agreed to give your baby’s birth mother updates as he grows up.  Now that you’ve returned home with your baby, how do you know which info to share? Working through the unfamiliar emotions that can arise in an open adoption relationship isn’t always easy. Today, Lifetime gives you tips on how you can develop a healthy relationship with your child’s birth mother!

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Topics: Open Adoption, open adoption visits, relationship with birth mother, semi-open adoption, what is open adoption like?, is open adoption co-parenting?

Is Open Adoption the Same As Co-Parenting?

Posted by Lifetime Adoption on February 20, 2017

Question: My wife and I have been through several rounds of failed IVF treatments, and so we’ve started to look into infant adoption. We heard that to adopt an infant these days you have to have an open adoption with the biological mother. We're worried that might be like co-parenting or that we wouldn't be seen as the baby's parents. Does open adoption mean the birth mother could just drop by anytime or have a say in how we raise our child?

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Topics: Open Adoption, open adoption visits, semi-open adoption, what is open adoption like?, is open adoption co-parenting?

The Complete Beginner’s Guide to Open Adoption

Posted by Lifetime Adoption on June 9, 2016

New to adoption? You’ve likely heard the term “open adoption” being thrown around a lot. What exactly is it? In today’s post, we’ve created a beginner’s guide to open adoption.

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Topics: Open Adoption, open adoption visits, semi-open adoption

Cookie Cutter Adoption?

Posted by Mardie Caldwell on May 19, 2016

Open Adoption With One Birth Mother,
Semi-Open With Another?

Dear Mardie,

We are ready to adopt again, but this time, we do not want to be as open to birth mother contact.  Specifically, we do not want to be open to visits. Our daughter’s birth mother had specified that she only wanted pictures and letters. We wouldn’t want one child to have visits with a birth mother and not the other – it would just seem unfair and maybe confusing.  Is that okay?

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Topics: birth mother, Open Adoption, open adoption visits, relationship with birth mother, semi-open adoption

7 Photos that Illustrate the Beauty of Open Adoption

Posted by Lifetime Adoption on March 21, 2016

There are many feelings associated with open adoption: excitement, elation, harmony, acceptance, expectation, friendship, thankfulness, and optimism.

Lifetime Adoption has curated this photo series, to illustrate the emotional facets of open adoption. A shared feeling in these photos is that open adoption means love!

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Topics: Open Adoption, Adoption story, Lifetime Babies, open adoption visits

What Are the Benefits of Open Adoption?

Posted by Lifetime Adoption on November 17, 2015

With an OPEN ADOPTION, birth parents have the opportunity to select the family who will parent their child. The adoptive parents and birth parents may speak, meet, and get to know each other before the birth, and then communicate afterwards, as well. As the birth mother progresses in her pregnancy, she can send ultrasound photos and share additional photos, if desired.

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Topics: Open Adoption, Mardie Caldwell, open adoption visits

Open Adoption – Does It Intimidate You?

Posted by Mardie Caldwell on November 2, 2015

Many times when speaking to potential adoptive parents, I find that they become a little nervous when the conversation gets to the open part of open adoption.

I've found that many parents simply don't know what to expect. When they hear about sharing letters and photos (or even visits) with a birth mother, they often become quite uncomfortable.

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Topics: Open Adoption, Talking to Birthmothers, visit with birth family, open adoption visits