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Understanding Open Adoption in Maine

Why “Goodbye” Doesn’t Have to Be Forever in Your Adoption

The vast majority of adoptions today are at least semi-open — something that wasn’t common several decades ago and is good news for expectant mothers placing their baby for adoption in Maine.

Adoption used to be associated with secrecy and shame. Because of this poor understanding of adoption, many mothers had no control over the process and never knew what happened to their baby.

Today, if you are an expectant mother considering adoption in Maine, you can create an open adoption plan to make sure “goodbye” is not forever.

But what is open adoption? What type of communication is involved in an open adoption in Maine? What about semi-open adoption? And does Maine have any laws specifically addressing open adoption?

These are all common questions. If you don't find the answers you're looking for in this article, contact one of our adoption specialists today. In the meantime, let’s take a look at open adoption in Maine:

Open vs. Closed Adoption in Maine

There are three basic options available for your adoption in Maine: open adoption, semi-open adoption and closed adoption. What’s the difference between these three choices?

Open adoption in Maine: Open adoption refers to an ongoing relationship between the birth mother, adoptive family and child. Identifying information, like last names and phone numbers, is shared. Generally, an open adoption in Maine would be navigated by the birth mother and adoptive family without the help of an adoption professional. The level of communication in open adoption can range from photo updates to in-person visits. Open adoption is the second most common type of adoption relationship.

Semi-open adoption in Maine: Semi-open adoption, also known as mediated adoption, is the most common type of adoption relationship. A semi-open adoption in Maine means that ongoing communication between the adoptive family and birth mother is facilitated by an adoption professional, like American Adoptions. In this situation, identifying information may or may not be exchanged. The level of openness is determined on a case-by-case basis, and any two semi-open adoption plans in Maine rarely look alike. Semi-open adoption creates a situation where the birth mother can continue to receive updates and know her child is being cared for and loved.

Closed adoption in Maine: Closed adoption in Maine is the least common type of adoption today, as research has found that 95 percent of adoptions share at least semi-open contact. In a closed adoption, there is very little, if any, contact between the birth mother and adoptive family. This maintains the privacy of everyone involved, but cuts off the chance of future contact and relationship. Most expectant mothers desire some sort of contact from the adoptive family, but open adoption isn’t right for everyone. Depending on your situation, closed adoption could be the right plan for you.

Open Adoption Facts

Open adoption in Maine may seem like a new or intimidating idea to expectant mothers and adoptive families. But after a quick look at the facts, it starts to make a lot more sense.

  • Open adoption is common today. The majority of domestic infant adoptions are at least semi-open.

  • Open adoption in Maine is beneficial to everyone involved. It is helpful for expectant mothers to know that they will continue to receive updates on their child, and it helps confirm that adoption was the right choice. Women who have placed their baby for adoption and are in an open adoption situation report less grief, regret and worry, and report more peace of mind. Adoptive families gain a lot from contact with the potential birth mother and often find the relationship to be a surprise blessing.

  • It is good for a child to know their own adoption story. The days of adoption being a secret are almost entirely a feature of the past. Most children know their own adoption story, and American Adoptions encourages every family to tell their child about adoption from a young age. This can help children form a positive self-identity around adoption instead of being ashamed of it. 

  • Nearly 100 percent of American Adoptions’ families have at least a semi-open adoption. Every adoptive family who works with American Adoptions agrees to a semi-open adoption at the beginning of the process. Unless a birth mother specifically requests a closed adoption, all our adoption plans are at least semi-open.

Maine Laws About Open Adoption

Maine’s adoption law does not have any specific stipulations about open, semi-open or closed adoption. This means you will want to work closely with an adoption professional you trust to create your plan and help facilitate any contact post-placement, if necessary.

Your Open Adoption in Maine

While considering adoption for your baby in Maine, it’s important to remember that you are in control and this is your decision. You set the terms when you work with American Adoptions to find the right adoptive family for your baby. This means that you decide what level of openness will be best for you.

Your Maine adoption will be unique from other adoptions based on your specific situation and the adoptive parents you choose. An American Adoptions professional will help you navigate the whole process and help you feel at peace with your decision.

If you have more questions about open adoption in Maine, you can call 1-800-ADOPTION at any time to speak with an adoption specialist, or you can request free information about choosing adoption for your baby.

Information available through these links is the sole property of the companies and organizations listed therein. American Adoptions provides this information as a courtesy and is in no way responsible for its content or accuracy.

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