- Communicate with Me
Let me know how the child is doing after placement. Keep me updated on his emotional, spiritual, physical, and mental status with updates when agreed upon. I not only want to know WHAT he is doing, but HOW he is doing.
“Making an open adoption work requires commitment to ongoing relationships, despite their ups and downs. While adoptive family and birth family relationships may seem awkward at first, over time the involved individuals typically become more comfortable.” – Child Welfare Information Gateway
- Keep Your Original Openness Agreement
Don’t shut me out when things get hard. We can communicate and work together by staying open with each other.
“Ultimately, open adoption is in the best interests of the child. Maintaining a relationship with a child’s birth family can be immensely rewarding for adoptive parents, although it can also be challenging sometimes—like parenting, it may be the hardest, best job you will ever have. Birth parents often live in complicated circumstances. Some are leading happy, full lives; some are struggling with the grim realities of living in poverty or other difficult issues. Sometimes adoptive parents are afraid that younger children will be frightened or harmed by the complexity of their birth parents’ lives, but in fact the children are more likely to learn acceptance of a complex situation if they can see their adoptive parents model it, instead of being left to figure out a “taboo” subject on their own. Open adoption works best for adoptive parents if they always return to the central belief that what matters is what is best for their child, not only in the present but in the future—and it is likely that will always involve as much information and knowledge as possible.” – PactAdopt.org
- Tell Me You Love Me and Appreciate Me
Loneliness is something that can be curbed by knowing that you appreciate me and love me for the sacrifice that I have made and the gift that I have given.
“By choice, we have become a family, first in our hearts, and finally in breath and being. Great expectations are good; great experiences are better.” – Richard Fischer
- Focus on The Child
Take care of that child with all of your spirit and soul. Ultimately, that’s what I need in order to be able to heal. My decision to place that beautiful child and your decision to care for that beautiful child is what binds us. That is our first priority, no matter what.
- My Healing is My Responsibility
Understand that while I may have needs and desires, it is not your responsibility to heal me, only to help me at times feel connected.
“Christ will make His home in your hearts as you trust in Him. Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong.” – Ephesians 3:17
Lindsay is a guest blogger for American Adoptions. She placed her son for adoption 7 years ago and hopes to use her experience to support and educate other expectant mothers considering adoption, as well as adoptive families.