This popular option lets the adoptive and birth families share identifying information and have contact with each other during and after the adoption process. However, no two open adoptions are alike.
Visits and phone calls are examples of the ongoing contact your daughter can have in an open adoption, but they are not the only types of contact. Contact could be photos, cards and letters, or emails and texts. In fact, open adoptions cover a wide variety of types and amounts of contact shared between parties. It all depends on what the birth parents and the adoptive family have agreed to.
Your daughter may want to meet with or talk to the adoptive family before the birth, and that’s an option.
A closed adoption is one in which the adoptive family and birth mother remain confidential, with no contact prior to or after the placement of the child. Communication and information to be shared between birth parents and the adoptive family must go through a third party, often an attorney or adoption agency, until the child reaches legal age (18-21, depending on the state).
Although closed adoptions have waned in popularity, there are some advantages:
- Emotional closure: For some, an open adoption might be too painful. Some birth parents can feel that a closed adoption will provide a sense of closure for them.
- Privacy: If a birth mother chooses to keep the pregnancy and adoption plan secret from some, closed adoption may make it easier for them to keep this secret.
- Options down the road: With Friends in Adoption, you have time to change your mind. So even if you initially want a closed adoption, you can always reach out to Friends in Adoption down the road if that changes, and Friends in Adoption will work with you and the adoptive family to facilitate opening up the adoption.
This is the middle ground – a semi-open relationship. The agreement may involve limited phone calls, emails and texts after placement of the baby. There may also be meetings before the birth. Birth and adoptive parents typically know one another’s first names. The plan is made based on the needs and wants of the birth parents and adoptive family.
Whatever type of adoption is best for your daughter, we recommend she set down her wishes in an adoption plan.