Last updated on September 8th, 2022 at 08:07 pm
Adopting a child isn’t a one-time “event.” It’s a life-long journey of mistakes and lessons (and of course, love) for both the adoptee and the adopter. As society has come to understand this, various studies have been conducted to explore the issues surrounding adoption and the impact on those involved. One of those issues is whether closed or open adoptions are more beneficial to the adoptee.
With adoptions in the past mostly being closed, and the impact on the adoptees appearing to be less beneficial, several trusted non-profit adoption agencies, like afth.org, suggest that open adoption is the best choice for birth parents, adoptive parents, and adoptee. Open adoption has proven to be essential in helping children fill in the gaps they felt were lacking.
You may be wondering what open adoption can offer your child, your family, and the adoptive parent that a closed one can’t. To enlighten you a little further, below are five reasons why open adoption may be best for your child.
Open Adoption Benefits
Increased Sense of Identity
It can be confusing, and even painful, for a child to grow up wondering why they don’t look like their known parents. In an open adoption, children are given the chance to know their biological family and even have some bonding time with them if it’s agreeable to the adoptive parents.
Aside from that, as an adoptee, knowing who you look like and why you possess certain characteristics (which may significantly differ from your adoptive parents) provides a sense of belonging and a better understanding of where you fit in the world. If a child has a hard time understanding and accepting themselves, open adoption can help them cope.
As a parent, another reason an open adoption is good for your child is that it provides a sense of identity, security, and increased self-worth for them as their questions will have first-hand answers, and they won’t be left in the dark. Your child will also be provided a connection to their ethnic and cultural ancestry.
Provide Sense of Control
Birth parents can select, preview, and interview potential adoptive parents for their child to ensure that they’ll be in good hands. Open adoption can also be of great help to give the birth parent a sense of security, empowerment, and control as they can do background checks on their child’s future adoptive parents to be sure they’re fit to provide for the needs of the adoptee.
Nowadays, there are many background check sites online that even allow you to do it yourself. This can be a good way to get confirmation and additional peace of mind that the people you’re considering are upstanding citizens.
Full Understanding of The Adoption Placement Situation
Children might not be able to fully comprehend why they were placed for adoption. Many children who’ve been adopted find it difficult to understand the complex reasons behind their adoption placement.
The chance of these children blaming themselves for the adoption placement is real, and these children sometimes create a story about their biological families that may be far from the truth. However, with open adoption, your child will have the facts available to them if they need it–at age-appropriate times, of course. They don’t have to live in a make-believe world and fear the uncertainties as that’ll be explained to them.
Improved Relationships with Birth Parents and Extended Family
One of the most important things that closed adoption is lacking is the relationship with birth siblings and other extended family members. This type of adoption may offer a chance for adopted children to know their birth families and bond with them.
In many instances, the adoptees usually hesitate, and then have to scramble to make up for lost time when and if they decide to search for their birth family. They may be deprived of this chance in some scenarios, like if a family member has passed away. With open adoption, children are more likely to develop a stronger bond with their birth family and extended family members, which can significantly help them feel connected and whole.
Easier Access to Medical Information
Open adoption allows adoptive parents to have better access to the medical history of their child and follow up on medical conditions that may exist in the birth families.
Apart from more serious medical concerns, adoptive parents also have the chance to have information that most people take for granted like being aware of possible allergies, predispositions, and other minor health-related issues. Open adoption provides the much-needed information about the adoptee’s family medical history to ensure that the child is well-taken care of.
While an open adoption may be better than a closed one for all the reasons we’ve discussed, there’s only one goal that needs to be met in this arrangement or any adoption. Open adoption may offer various benefits, such as helping the child develop an increased self-identity, giving their birth parents a sense of control in choosing the best adoptive parents for their child, allowing the child to have a full understanding of the adoption placement, improving relationships with birth and extended family, and giving the adoptive parents easier access to the adoptee’s medical information.
However, regardless of the type of adoption you may choose for your child, what’s most important is that a child has parents who can provide not just for their necessities, but also provide the love and support every child needs.