To New Adoptive Parents of Infants In Those First Months of an Open Adoption

Cassie Less Than 1 Day Old

Cassie Less Than 1 Day Old

This post was inspired by a birthmother I met in a forum. She recently placed her baby for adoption, and her baby’s adoptive parents have asked for some distance for awhile. She has a lot of fears right now.

Dear Adoptive Parents of a Brand New Baby,

I get that you don’t totally feel like Baby’s parents yet. I get that maybe you need some time to focus on your roles. I get that you probably haven’t had more than four consecutive hours of sleep in several months. I get that it is so hard to know your happiness means someone else’s pain. Your dream come true means someone else’s dream was dashed on the rocks of despair. 

But you are all in this for life – you, your child, and your child’s birth family. 

Realize that open adoption can be wonderful. It is hard, absolutely. But, as someone who has been in it for almost 10 years, I see how much it means to my son, and that means it’s worth it. Kids need to know their birth parents. If we lived close enough for visits, that would be so special. Keep your minds and hearts open, even if you need a little time right now.

Make sure you communicate to your child’s birth family how important they really are. They need to know how you feel too.

You’re all family now. 

You may be asking yourself – who the hell is this woman to tell me how to behave?!?! Well, I’m someone who wishes that I had this post 10 years ago… even 4 years ago… that I could do better. That I could be a better mom to my kids and a better person by understanding more about how my children’s birth families were feeling. I can’t go back, do it again, and fix things. But I can tell you – yes, by all means, take some time for yourselves, but don’t box out your baby’s birth family. You’ll see how important they are later.

Much love, peace, and happiness,

An Adoptive Mom Who Has Been There (and Wishes She’d Done Better)

11 thoughts on “To New Adoptive Parents of Infants In Those First Months of an Open Adoption

  1. Oh. my. gosh. Should be required reading for ALL new adoptive parents! I live daily with my regrets– I had no idea at the time the immense consequences of my lack of sensitivity and understanding. Hindsight looking back 17 years is 20/20!

  2. As an adult adoptee, I want to say that I have NEVER felt the need to know anything about my birth parents. I really could care less. All adoptions were “closed” and records sealed when I was adopted. Knowing will not change a darn thing.

    • Thank you for commenting and sharing your experience. Of course you know that one adoptee’s experience is not every adoptee’s experience. While some adoptees don’t feel the need to know anything about their birth families, many do. I can see first hand how important the knowing is for my son. You don’t think knowing your birth family would have changed anything, and I appreciate that. But I must disagree that knowing will not change anything for everyone.
      Again, thank you for sharing. 🙂

  3. A birth mom needs to continue to think of the child first. The first few months or years are critical for both the child and new parents. Yes, you will miss seeing your child. Yes, you will cry. Yes, your heart will ache, but it will be worth it.
    Yes, I am a birth mom and mine was an open adoption. I felt it was important that my daughters parents get all of the time to bond. As the years went by i never forgot my daughter, but school can be challenging enough without the confusion of me in the mix. I am fortunate to know my daughter now, but still respect her parents rolls in her life. I love her parents and though not perfect they were perfect for her. I thank God and pray for them each day.
    From a grateful Birthmom

  4. I am also a adoptive mother of four all open adoptions from the foster care system . Every child is truly different but I totally agree with you open adoption is allowing 2 families to merge with the common goal of the child’s best interest. I feel the more people who love them the better. We are all God’s children . The old saying that it takes a village to raise a child. I feel that you can never go wrong with truth.

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