What You Can Expect from an Open Adoption in Ohio
The Benefits of Open Adoption With Our Agency
Have you wondered if you could maintain a relationship with your child and his or her adoptive family after the adoption is complete?
Fortunately, you easily can — thanks to modern open adoption.
Maybe you’ve never heard of openness in adoption, or maybe you’ve heard some of the myths about it. But here’s the truth: Open adoption is a good thing for all involved, and it is increasingly common in domestic infant adoption.
American Adoptions recognizes the modern benefits of open adoption, which is why we promote open adoption communication in as many of our adoption matches as possible. As a prospective birth mother, you always make the call when it comes to what kind of contact you want with your child and their parents after placement. Whatever you choose, we’ll be here to make it possible.
You can always learn more about our open adoption agency in Ohio by calling our specialists at 1-800-ADOPTION or requesting free information online. In the meantime, find answers to some of the most common questions about open adoption in the U.S. below.
Why Is Open Adoption So Popular?
For decades, women who placed children for adoption had no contact with their children or the adoptive family after placement. Closed adoptions in Ohio allowed little to no identifying information about the birth parents to be shared with the adoptive parents and the adoptee.
The birth parents had no information about the child that they had placed for adoption. The adoptee had no medical history and no answers as to why they were placed for adoption in the first place. If birth and adoptive families wished to contact each other later in life, the lack of information available made it difficult or impossible to find one another.
For many years, this was the standard for adoption in the United States. But, as more open adoption research came to light, professionals across the country realized that open adoption benefits far outweighed the disadvantages. And, in the last few decades, many birth mothers have successfully placed their children into domestic open adoptions — and remained in happy contact with them for many years to come.
What is Open Adoption in Ohio Like Today?
Today, nine of 10 adoptions are open adoptions.
Experts have agreed that increased openness in adoption is directly linked to the overall happiness and wellbeing of birth parents, adoptive parents, and most of all (and most importantly), the adoptee. This is why American Adoptions encourages open adoptions whenever possible.
But, what does an “open adoption” mean? What is this kind of adoption really like?
You may be surprised to learn that no two open adoption relationships are the same. Open adoptions lie on a scale, ranging from “more open” to “less open,” or “semi-open.”
A more open and flexible adoption might involve:
- Swapping contact information so that the prospective birth and adoptive family can keep in touch easier during and after placement
- Sharing direct communication through phone calls, text, video chat, letters, emails and more
- Visits to see one another
- Anything else both parties feel comfortable with in their open adoption
Other birth mothers prefer to have a less open, or a “semi-open” adoption. This can include:
- Sharing first names only
- Providing the adoptive family with the birth parent(s) medical history for the adoptee
- Mediated communication through American Adoptions, so that no contact information is shared
Each open adoption in Ohio involves a unique relationship. When you’re a prospective birth mother, yours can look however you want it to! Your specialist can help you determine what kind of contact you are comfortable with to create a private open adoption that you are 100 percent comfortable with.
How Does Open Adoption Work in Ohio?
As you look into open adoption as a prospective birth mother, you may come across open adoption “horror stories” and common myths about the process. But, the majority of open adoptions are healthy and supportive for all involved.
Don’t fall into the trap of these myths and stories. Here’s how open adoptions in Ohio actually work:
- Adopted children in open adoptions are not confused about who their “real parents” are.
- Birth and adoptive parents do not “co-parent” their child.
- Adoptees can ask birth parents about their adoption directly and never live with unanswered questions.
- Birth parents can see their child growing up loved and well-cared for with their family instead of living with “what-ifs.”
- Adoptive families and birth families often share a healthy, genuine friendship for a lifetime.
- Open adoptions can be as open and flexible or as structured as you wish them to be.
An Ohio open adoption simply allows the lines of communication to remain open between birth and adoptive families, allowing you to stay linked through your child. And you will always have the right to decide what kind of contact your open adoption in Ohio includes, even if you change your mind after you place your child with a family.
Is an Open Adoption in Ohio Legally Enforceable?
While Ohio is a state that does allow Post Adoption Contact Agreements (PACAs), they are not legally binding. Instead, they’re an informal agreement between the birth and adoptive families that can be referenced for the type and frequency of communication originally discussed when agreeing to an open adoption together.
However, don’t let this scare you. Birth and adoptive parents rarely need reminders to stay in touch as originally promised; everyone is usually happy to do so. American Adoptions educates adoptive parents about how crucial it is to honor one’s word in an open adoption. We also hold on to any correspondence for up to 18 years after the adoption if contact is ever accidentally lost, just in case one party contacts us hoping to reconnect with each other.
Open adoption can be a great opportunity when placing your child for adoption. Many birth mothers have chosen this path with our agency, and we are happy to help you through yours, too.
You can find out more about open adoption in Ohio by calling 1-800-ADOPTION or requesting free information online.
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