One of the hardest decisions you can make in your adoption will be what the future may look like for you and your child. The most difficult decision will be to place the child for adoption; however, deciding what your relationship will look like in the future can be just as grueling. When deciding whether you would like an open or a closed adoption, it is vital to remember that your mind may change over time and that is okay. It is also important to note that there are middle grounds.
Think of it as a spectrum.
In making the decision between an open or closed adoption, many think that a closed adoption will mean no contact, and an open adoption will mean yearly visits. These are the most common types of adoption portrayed in the media. It is helpful to view adoption relationships on a spectrum rather than and either/or situation. Adoptions can be as open as visits for big events and regular contact or as closed as no communication or release of records. You may decide that you are not yet ready to do visits but would like an update every few months as well as communication with the adoptive parents for important information such as health changes, etc.
Remember: People change
What you choose will be up to your preferences and the wishes of the adoptive parents you have chosen. It is important to talk through your wants with the agency and the adoptive parents. It is best to be honest and to have a plan for moving forward. If you are unsure at the time of placement, make that clear. Adoption relationships often ebb and flow. People change, situations change, and relationships will change as your child grows. Lay your cards on the table and express what your desires are. If you would prefer a closed adoption, be certain before completely closing that door.
Lita Jordan is a master of all things “home.” A work-from-home, stay-at-home, homeschooling mother of five, she has a BA in Youth Ministry from Spring Arbor University. She is married to the “other Michael Jordan” and lives on coffee and its unrealistic promises of productivity. Lita enjoys playing guitar and long trips to Target. Follow her on Facebook.