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Navigating through birth parent/family visits


So we have an open adoption plan with BM and our daughter is now 4 y.o.  Everything has been going well since birth… we send a yearly letter/pictures along with an in person visit at a restaurant and then amusement park.  But I’m wondering if I am doing enough?  We have had some talks with our daughter so far about who she is and how she came to be, etc.  She’s had minimal questions so far and I understand that will change as she gets older.  At what age should we be inviting BM to our house?  Or ever?  Or if it doesn’t go well is it awkward to go back to the restaurant visits?  Do we keep it like it is if everything is going well?    When do you invite extended family into the pic?  Should you?  What do you call them… Joe?  Uncle Joe?  Birth Uncle Joe?  Do you introduce them to the rest of our family aunts, uncles, cousins etc.??  If so at what age do you feel is appropriate?  I feel like that is up to my daughter when she is an adult to share her story when she wants to or even IF she wants to with whomever SHE chooses to.  I feel like it might be compromising her privacy to invite her birth mom/family into my husband’s and mine.  I don’t really want to leave it up to my daughter as a child to decide the level of visits.  For example, as a child she may think the more the merrier let’s have BM, birth grandparents and birth aunts over for Xmas and birthdays every year… but then as an adult she may change her mind and resent so much of her privacy shared and resent me for not protecting her as she was so young and didn’t know any better.  Just looking for some feedback for someone that can share similar experiences??

Replies

Each open adoption is up to the level of comfort for all involved based on a child’s best interest. Personally I say no home visits, I prefer public places. If things are going really well consider meeting twice a year. As for extended family I would wait till first mom or daughter ask for this. You don’t want to overwhelm your daughter and it really is her time with first mom. Ask first mom how her parents are and see if this opens questions.  She may then decide to bring pictures to visits. We have a Facebook Secret Group to share photos with first mom.

Posted by C3 on Aug 13, 2017 at 2:29pm

Everything I have read has said that the more the child understands where he/she “came from”, the better. We had met birth grandparents on BM’s side and great-grandparents on BF’s side the day our daughter was born, so we’ve been happy to have them involved in our annual visits. BM asked to join us for our daughter’s first birthday, and plans to do that indefinitely, so she’s already been to our house. I wasn’t thrilled about it originally, but it was fine. As for what you call them and who they meet - everyone in my life knows my daughter is adopted, so they are introduced as birth family. Every day, the line of where my comfort level moves just a bit more because I have witnessed that it’s really all of us wanting the best for her - so I remind myself of the first sentence of this reply. smile

Posted by Sidney's Mom on Aug 14, 2017 at 4:09pm

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