“In love he predestined us to be adopted as his sons through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will . . . ” – Ephesians 1:5
What is Adoption?
Adoption is a beautiful and giving act. It is the gospel played out in our very homes. There is a lot to it, so we want to help you navigate through it as best as we can.
Helpful Adoption Information
Although no more than 2% of Americans have actually adopted, more than 1/3 have considered it.
One out of every 25 U.S. families with children have an adopted child. According to the U.S. Census, about half of these have both biological and adopted children.1
Adoption is all around us, even if we don’t see it. Every day, there are children being adopted into loving families all across the country. Adopting a baby requires guidance from an experienced adoption professional.
While you have been researching if adoption is right for your family, you’ve most likely heard the term “open adoption.” Openness in adoption refers to the communication birth families, adoptive families, and adoptees have after an adoption placement. There are varying levels of openness in post-placement communication.
Open adoption requires people to think about adoption in a new way. Rather than “subtracting” children from their birth family and “adding” them to their adoptive family, open adoption means that the family has been transformed and extended to form what we call an “adoptive kinship network.” Family members find themselves entering a more complicated set of relationships, but one that is usually rewarding for everyone (Grotevant, 2015).
Here are some questions to ask yourself as you are considering if open adoption is right for you:
- How often am I willing to share updates with the child’s birth family?
- In what ways am I willing to share updates? (Telephone, Text, Pictures)
- Am I willing to keep my promises of communication/updates with the birth family?
- Do I want my child to have a relationship with their birth family?
- Am I willing to talk to my child about and help them make meaning of contact with their birth family?
- How might sharing updates or having visits affect me and my child?
- Do I want my child to have ready access to their biological family? Medical information? Biological siblings?
- Do I want my child to be able to ask their birth parents questions about why they chose adoption?
- What do I do if the relationship gets difficult? Am I willing to put the effort into the relationship even if it does get difficult?
- How will I react if my child wants more or less contact as they get older?
- Do I feel like I need my adoption professional to mediate this new relationship?
Fact #1 – Closed adoption involves no contact with the adopting family before the baby is born. In a closed adoption, the birth mother typically allows an adoption agency to choose the adoptive parents for her. She will not have any information about the family who is adopting her baby. In a closed adoption, there is no contact with the adoptive family before the baby is born.
Fact #2 – There is no future contact with the adoptive family in a closed adoption. Generally, it is not possible to have contact with the family or baby in the future in a closed adoption. Birth mothers are not required to provide their contact information to the adoptive family. However, it is possible to provide this information in case a birth mother wants future contact. Even if the birth mother provides contact information, the adoptive family is not required to contact the birth mother for any reason. This includes if they divorce or one of them dies or if either remarries and gets custody of the child.
Fact #3 – You cannot share ongoing medical information. If you do not share contact information with the adoptive family, they cannot request medical information from you moving forward. You also will not get medical information from them regarding your child. This information could be important when diagnosing and preventing illness.
Fact #4 – Privacy is the main benefit of a closed adoption. If you feel the need for privacy, that is the main benefit of a closed adoption. The adoptive family cannot contact you without your prior consent. Similarly, your child will not contact you in the future. Also, any children you have now, or in the future, will not have contact with the sibling who was adopted. However, adoptees may find their biological families today using new DNA technologies and social media.
Fact #5 – Studies show that closed adoption isn’t always best for the child.
There are some drawbacks to a closed adoption that affect the birth mother and the adoptee. Here are a few:
- Birth parents might change their mind in the future and want contact
- Uncertainty about how the baby is doing may cause depression and anxiety
- Knowing the child is happy and thriving can help with processing grief and loss
- Not knowing their birth parents can lead to a feeling of loneliness and lower self-esteem for a child
- Many adoptees feel a piece is missing when they don’t know any information about their biological family
Author: Family Formation
Single Parent Adoption
So you’re a single man or woman and contemplating adoption? You may even be asking the question; “Can I adopt if I’m single?” Yes, single women and men may adopt through Adoption Finder!
It is important to note that our ability to assist any single applicant is determined in part by the laws governing adoption in your state of residence because some states do not allow adoption by gay applicants. Please do check with your state before applying.
According to a 2013 National Survey of Adoptive Parents, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 27 percent of adoptive parents are single men and women! Approximately 22.7 percent are female, 5.5 percent male. Since the 1970s, across the country, the number of single-parent placements slowly and steadily continues to increase, both in domestic and inter-country adoption. International options are on a slight decrease but are still a viable option if you are flexible and patient.
- Most single adoptive parents are female, are most likely to adopt older children than infants, and are less likely to have been a foster parent to the adopted child.
- Single parent applicants are self-selective. Most applicants have high levels of emotional maturity and a high capacity for frustration, and are independent but linked to a supportive network of relatives.
- As a group, the single parent adopters of U.S. children tended to adopt “special needs” children who were older, minority, and/or handicapped children.
SINGLE PARENT PROFILE
2. Most single parent applicants have emotional stability and a support network of family and friends that will help them raise an adopted child.
3. Single parent adoptions are also one of the groups that adopt the most special needs children who need families.
4. Unmarried women are more likely to pursue international adoption over domestic adoption.
5. Single women often pursue motherhood for the same reasons married women do.
1 Jahng, Kenny. “Adoption Awareness: 10 Facts about Adoption That Will Surprise You.” The Adoption Journey. June 17, 2012.
2 Domestic vs. International Adoptions.” American Adoptions. 2013.
3 Adamec, Christine and William L. Pierce, PhD. Adoption. 2nd Ed. New York, NY: Facts on File, Inc., 2000.
4 “Adoption Facts.” Adoption Research. 2013.
5 “Research: Adoption Facts.” Evan B. Donaldson Adoption Institute. 2013. Accessed: September 17, 2013.
6 “Adoption Facts.” Adoption Research. 2013.
7 “Adoption Facts.” Adoption Research. 2013.
8 Evan B. Donaldson Institute, 1997
9 Coughlin, Amy and Caryn Abramowitz. Cross-Cultural Adoption. Washington, D.C.: Lifeline Press, 2004.
10 “Facts about Adoption.” Children’s Rights. 2013.