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Inconsistent Visits - Need Advice

Hi Friends -
    I need some advice. My daughter is now 6. We have an open adoption although its very informal (nothing every written out or agreed upon). We view BM as a little sister and she’s our friend on social media so she gets a ton of updates and pictures. However, we have had issues with our physical visits. We visit her state once a year on vacation and like to meet up with her. Its worked out well 2x. The other times she will cancel the day before for whatever reason. We bought her an airplane ticket to visits us a year ago and she didn’t get on the airplane. She is really nice and I know she wants to see us all but she makes bad decisions (like showing up 15 minutes before a flight to the airport). My daughter is starting to become very disappointed and hurt when BM doesn’t show. Even I feel sad because I love her. Have any of you been in a situation like that? I’m not looking to cut out BM but I also realize it’s not healthy that she keeps disappointing us all. What do you think? Thanks!


Unfortunately there isn’t anything you can do to protect your child from disappointment.  The most you can do is be emphatic to how she feels and say we will try again at a later date.  There is no black and white answer.  You shouldn’t cut off contact as that is important for your daughter as well.  The best advice I can give you is, the next time a visit is scheduled, to prepare her for it not happening.

Posted by justaminion on Mar 09, 2017 at 7:15pm

We have a similar situation. The birth mom to our twin sons has not been a reliable person when it comes to meeting up. We do however, have a roughly written plan of contact.  My advice to you would be to leave the ball in her court.  If she wants to have an active role in your daughters life then maybe it’s time for her to put forth the effort to have it.  I don’t think that it would be healthy for you to cut her out of your lives, because in the end it’s going to essentially hurt your daughter. But maybe it’s time for the birthmother to really put forth energy and effort into a visit,  such as, coming to see you and paying for her transportation to get to you. I would also not share it with your daughter until right before the visit in hopes of protecting her from any “flaking out”  from the birth mother. We love the birthmother to our boys so much, she such a special young lady but we have realized in our relationship with her that we can’t do for her, she has to do for herself, and because she’s young she really hasn’t learned that in life yet.  Sometimes it’s hard to stand aside and watch someone walk the journey of their own life, as you can see them making mistakes. But it’s important to let them walk their own journey, and you and your family have your journey together to walk.  I hope this helps 😊

Posted by Pacificnwartist on Mar 09, 2017 at 8:30pm

either don’t tell your daughter about the visits in advance, or else put a hold on visits until she’s older and able to understand better. you can still write and send letters and do phone calls.

Posted by rn4kidz on Mar 10, 2017 at 1:38am

I agree with others who say to not tell your daughter about visits in advance for now. See how that goes for awhile and keep your communication with her BM open. It sounds like you have a lovely relationship, there seems no reason to risk that by offending BM. Though, of course, always protect your daughter and yourself. I mean…don’t pay for another flight. If she asks why then just be honest and let her know that you understand she has lots of things going on, but you can’t afford another canceled ticket. Maybe do FaceTime visits in the meantime.

The only drawback I see is that your daughter may be unsettled by the unpredictability of surprise visits. If that becomes a problem, just adjust the plan again.

In my opinion, in the adoption triad, our job as adoptive parents is to keep all of the points connected. The child’s needs are top priority, the birth parents are second priority, and realistically we are last priority. I bend over backwards for my daughter’s birthmom (she’s worth it and I could never repay her for bringing my daughter in to this world.) The only way I would ever risk upsetting her would be if I was doing so to protect my daughter.

Good luck! It sounds like you are doing a wonderful job so far. It’s amazing that sometimes we gain more than one family member when we adopt. It’s a beautiful thing.

Posted by wannabe on Mar 19, 2017 at 5:50am

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