Adoption is a sensitive topic





Benefits of Open Adoption

Adoption is a sensitive topic. Biological parents may give up their children for different reasons, for the state may take children away from their parents when they find it necessary. The main reason why children are separated from their parents is when their parents can no longer care for them adequately or when they have suffered some form of abuse while with their parents. In any case, giving up or losing a child is often a painful process for a parent. These children still need a loving home and parents to care for them, which is where adoption comes in. individuals or couples who feel the desire to adopt a child goes through official processes where they are vetted. If approved, they choose which child or children they would like to adopt. Millions of children have found loving homes in their adoptive families, a happy ending to often difficult situations. Despite the many positives of adoption, one primary concern is the grief process that both birth parents and children experience after the adoption is complete.

The New York Times published a story on the grief and pain around adoption. Steve Inskeep, the author of the story, was adopted fifty years ago. He was happy with his new parents and grew up to be a responsible adult, and he adopted a child as well. During the adoption process for his daughter, the social workers told him that the child might have questions about her birth parents. The child was from China, and it was natural that she would want to know more about her origins when she was older (Inskeep 1). This information brought up similar feelings that Steve had while growing up. At the back of his mind, he always wondered who his birth parents had been and why they had given him up for adoption. However, at that time, many states In the US kept adoption records a secret, reasoning that it would be best for all parties involved. For Steve, this secrecy gnawed at him and made him want to know his story even more.

Steve’s story is not unique. Naturally, any child would want to know who their birth parents were, no matter how happy they are with their adoptive parents. Steve had accepted the fact that he would never know anything about his birth parents as most states, including Indiana, where he was adopted, had a closed adoption policy. His daughter’s story inspired him to keep trying, and he got a break when Indiana changed its adoption law and allowed adoption parties to obtain information about each other. Steve explains that he would never want his daughter kept in the dark as he was about her birth parents. He knows from personal experience how lost he felt, not knowing his birth story. He has met many people whose lives were severely affected by their adoption and struggled to come to terms with their situation. Every child deserves to know their birth story if they wish; it helps with their feelings of self-identity. For those children who wonder why their birth parents abandoned them, learning more about their birth situation would help them resolve their issues and understand what happened.

Many birth mothers struggle to give up their children for adoption, though they may be forced to do so due to unavoidable circumstances. Just like Steve, not knowing where their children is a difficult situation for birth mothers. Closed adoption rules further complicate the situation as mothers have no way of comforting themselves with the idea that they made the right decision giving up their children. Lisa Krahn and Richard Sullivan explore how open adoptions reduce the grief that birth mothers experience letting go of their children. The process of giving up parental rights is a significant psychological burden on birth parents (Krahn & Sullivan 29). These parents then have to go through the process of mourning their child who is still alive. They wonder if they made the rights decision if their child would hate them for their decision, and who their child might grow up to be. Open adoptions make the grieving process easier, knowing that they can see their child or find out about them when they choose to. Open adoption leaves a channel of connection open, giving birth parents the comfort of knowing where their child is and how they are doing.

Many birth mothers who give up their children for adoption do so because they know they cannot care for their children as they would like. Most of these mothers tend to be very young and choose adoption as the best way to give their children a better life. Lynn Clutter explored the benefits of open adoption for mothers in their twenties who give up their children for adoption. The study involved fifteen women giving their opinions on the benefits of open adoption. All of the women interviewed agreed that giving up the children was a painful and difficult decision, but they knew it was the best choice they could make (Clutter 349). However, open adoption gave them comfort, knowing they could see their children and the better life they lived after adoption. The birth mothers reported that they knew their stressful situations meant that they could not afford their children the lives they deserved, and adoption would give them better opportunities. Open adoption eased their grief.

To summarize, open adoption goes a long way in easing the grief of birth mothers and adoptees in adoption. Giving up a child is never easy, and birth parents will likely struggle with guilt for the rest of their lives. Adopted children also have questions about their birth parents and why they were given up. If left unanswered, these questions could cause a lot of personal grief and turmoil in the adoptee. Open adoption eases both birth parents’ and adoptees’ grief and peace of mind. Birth parents get the comfort of knowing how their children and doing, and adoptees learn about their adoption story, giving them closure. Open adoption has many benefits for all parties involved.

Works Cited

Clutter, Lynn B. “Open adoption placement by birth mothers in their twenties.” MCN: The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing 42.6 (2017): 345-351.

Inskeep, Steve. “For 50 Years, I Was Denied The Story of My Birth.” The New York Times. 26 March 2021., Lisa, and Richard Sullivan. “Grief & loss resolution among birth mothers in open adoption.” Canadian Social Work Review/Revue canadienne de service social 32.1-2 (2015): 27-48.

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