Open Adoption in Mississippi
Continuing Your Relationship with Your Child
Placing a child for adoption doesn’t mean that you’ll never see him or her again. You can continue your relationship through an open adoption in Mississippi. The following information can help you learn more about open adoption vs. closed adoption in MS, so you can decide whether this option might be a good fit for you.
The Era of Closed Adoption in Mississippi
Closed adoptions were the standard up until the last couple of decades. This type of adoption involves little to no information shared between birth and adoptive families. During a time when adoption was sadly considered something secretive and shameful, this was seen as the best way to protect birth parent privacy.
However, the lack of information in Mississippi closed adoptions meant that adoptees had no biological health history to help themselves or their own children, and they never knew why they were placed for adoption or who their biological parents were. Birth parents never knew what became of the children they’d placed for adoption. Closed adoptions also made it difficult for birth and adoptive families to find one another if they ever wanted to try to get in touch years later.
Moving Toward Open Adoption in Mississippi
Today, ninety percent of adoptions are semi-open or open adoptions. This is a beneficial change, as research has shown that more openness in adoptions is healthier for both birth and adoptive parents — but most of all, for adoptees.
However, there are still many lingering misconceptions about open adoption in Mississippi, how these adoptions work and birth mother rights in an open adoption.
Mississippi open adoptions are flexible and can be whatever the parties involved want or need them to be. There are no “rules” to follow. Most open adoptions fall somewhere on a scale from closed to semi-open to open. You can learn more about semi-open adoptions here.
In most open adoptions in Mississippi, birth and adoptive families share:
Their contact information so they can communicate easily and directly
Photos, emails, letters, texts, calls and more
Anything else you all feel comfortable with
Birth parents who work with American Adoptions are in charge of how open or closed they want their adoption to be. All the adoptive families that we work with are comfortable with a Mississippi open adoption that involves a minimum of sharing photos and letters for up to 18 years, a post-placement visit to Mississippi and more.
That’s the minimum that our adoptive parents are required to meet, but you can decide if you’d like more or less contact than that in your MS adoption.
Understanding What Open Adoption in MS Is (and What it Isn’t)
These basic facts about open adoption in Mississippi may help you understand more about what you can expect from this type of relationship:
Open adoptions DO give your child the chance to talk with your directly about their adoption.
Open adoptions DON’T mean you’ll be co-parenting your child with their parents.
Open adoptions DO let you watch your child growing up happy and loved.
Open adoptions DON’T confuse children about who their “real parents” are just because their birth parents are involved in their lives.
Open adoptions DO give you a special role in your child’s life and family.
Through open adoptions in Mississippi, birth and adoptive families can always stay connected.
Are Open Adoptions Legally Enforceable in Mississippi?
There are currently no Mississippi laws regarding post-adoption contact agreements (PACAs) between birth and adoptive families. PACAs are not legally enforceable in the state of Mississippi, as there is no legislation to support them currently.
Fortunately, though, legally enforceable PACAs are rarely needed. Most adoptive and birth families are happy to communicate regularly on their own without needing a formal contract to remind them to do so.
American Adoptions is diligent in counseling both birth and adoptive parents in the importance of upholding communication agreements established in open adoptions. If contact between the two parties is ever lost for any reason, American Adoptions will hold onto correspondence for up to 18 years in the even the missing party contacts us and requests to get back in touch.
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