“Openness in Adoption: From Secrecy and Stigma to Knowledge and Connections,” an Evan B. Donaldson Adoption Institute report written by Deborah H. Siegel and Susan Livingston Smith.
This survey of agency practices relating to domestic infant adoption placements found that closed infant adoptions have shrunk to a tiny minority (about 5%). 40% of domestic infant adoptions are mediated and 55% are open. In addition, 95% of adoption agencies now offer open adoptions. In the overwhelming majority of infant adoptions, adoptive parents and expectant parents considering adoption meet prior to the adoption and the expectant parents pick the new family for their baby.
Adoptive and birth parents alike report positive experiences; more openness is also associated with greater satisfaction with the adoption process. Women who have placed their infants in an open adoption report less grief, regret and worry, as well as more peace of mind. Adopted children also benefit for open adoptions, both as children and later in life, because of access to birth relatives, as well as to their own family and medical histories.
Overall, open adoptions benefit adoptive parents, adoptive children and birth parents.
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I had no idea that women who have placed their infants in an open adoption report less grief, regret, and worry, as well as more peace of mind. I can’t have kids, so my husband and I are looking into adopting a child, but we have no idea where to start. I will definitely keep your information on open adoptions in mind when deciding if this the route my husband and I want to take or not.
I’m so glad to hear that you learned something new from one of our resources! It’s a HUGE learning curve, isn’t it? You aren’t alone and we are thrilled to hear that you’ll be thinking more about it as you move forward to build your family.
Have you considered joining our on-line community where others are learning as well? It’s such a great place to hear from adoptees, birth parents and adoptive parents who have gone ahead of you. Here’s the link: http://ow.ly/p1dH30nWKCS We’d love to see you there if you aren’t already!
Due to recent circumstances, my husband and I are looking into adopting a child but are curious to know how to go about it. I like the idea of going with an open adoption, especially for the mother that is giving up her baby. That way we know what the child’s medical history is, and she and the birth-father will have a piece of mind from the process.
Thank you for the great article. You wrote that adoption agencies are terrific, as it relieves women of a lot of stress who are looking to find a family for their child. I had heard about adoption agencies, and was very curious to learn more. With how many great opportunities and options are made available to families, it makes sense that people would want to work with them.