Living in Open Adoption


How to maintain contact with your adopted child’s birth family in open adoption, from letters and texting to phone calls and in-person visits.

How to keep up contact with birth parents.

Keeping Up Contact with Birth Parents

Keeping Up Contact with Birth Parents

An open adoption arrangement may be buffeted by passing time and changing circumstances. Here's how to make your relationship endure.

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Her daughter's birth family joined her in the hospital

“Welcomed By Our Daughter’s Birth Family”

I asked my family not to come to the hospital when she was born, then mourned their absence. Enter her birth relatives.

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chinese birth parent search and reunions

Letting Her Go: Chinese Birth Parent Search and Reunions

The first study on this topic provides fascinating insights about adoptees’ and parents’ motivations to search, search methods used, the initial reunion, and ongoing contact.

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An image of a holiday letter to birth family

What to Share in the Holiday Letter to Birth Family

It's normal to think about your child's birth family during the holidays. What should you share in a holiday letter?

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One of the four families in open adoption.

The First Year of an Open Adoption: Four Families Share

Families with different levels of contact offer glimpses into their relationships with birth parents during their first year home.

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Should I friend our child's birth mother?

Should You Friend Your Child’s Birth Mother?

Facebook has dramatically changed the way information is exchanged in adoption. Experts and parents offer advice on navigating social media.

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Writing letter to our daughter's birth parents in open adoption

“From Our Hearts”: Letters to Our Child’s Birth Parents

Writing about the little things in letters to our daughter's birth parents often tells a bigger, warmer story in the end.

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Navigating the hospital adoption experience

How Should New Parents Navigate the Hospital Experience?

Our open adoption expert explains how prospective adoptive parents can best navigate the emotional time spent at the hospital with the birth mother before bringing their new child home.

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Understanding contact with birth parents after adoption

Visiting with Birth Parents

When we adopted our son three years ago, our relationship with his birth mother was semi-open (letters, phone calls). Since then it has grown more open, and we're discussing a visit. Any advice?

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A happy birth mother reunion

“Seeing My Daughter’s ‘Happily Ever After'”

My daughter, Rubie, has the kind of life I'd dreamed of for her, and is where she belongs. I only wish I had known that sooner.

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Our changing relationship with birth mother.

“Pulling Back in Open Adoption”

After a bump in the relationship with our daughter's birth mother, we're learning lessons about love, patience, and acceptance.

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Adoptee as a teen with her birth mother and siblings (left) and her adoptive parents (right).

Adoptees on Open Adoption: “I Have All My Pieces”

Teen and young adult adoptees who grew up in fully open adoptions talk about their relationships with their birth parents and adoptive parents and the many benefits openness has brought them.

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A family in an open adoption talks to birth parents on the phone

A Meeting of the Open Minds

Two adoptive moms and a birth mother candidly discuss the adoption match, birth siblings, contact agreements, and more.

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Adoption expert Lois Melina on talking with adopted children about unknown birth family information

A Durable Relationship with Your Child’s Birth Parents

Over the years, an open adoption arrangement may need to evolve to accommodate the changing needs of everyone involved — above all, the child.

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