What are the 3 different types of adoptions?

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Once you choose adoption for an unplanned pregnancy, after careful consideration of your choices, you will need to determine which type of adoption is right for you. There are three types of adoptions: open, closed and hybrid (semi open). Most adoptions are more of a hybrid, a combination between open and closed that satisfies both the birth mother and the adoptive parent.

What is Open Adoption?

An open adoption allows personal interaction between birth mothers, adoptive parents and the child. This process of openness starts with the pregnancy and continues throughout the child’s life. The type and length of interaction varies, and can include: letters, phone calls, emails, social media contact, and/or exchanging photos and visits. The choice of which interactions and how often is determined early on by both parties.

How it Affects the Birth Mother

Birth mothers may feel less guilty and less afraid with an open adoption. An open adoption allows them to have a sense of control and certainty with their child. They are laying out the boundaries for contact and interactions throughout the child’s life. This also allows them to have a relationship with their child and be in their child’s lives even though they may be unable to care for them.

This could also lead a birth mother to feel disappointed down the road if she feels she did not make the right selection in adoptive parents. There could also be potential boundary concerns with an open adoption. Birth mothers and adoptive parents may struggle with various roles and how each one will fit into the child’s life.

What is a Closed Adoption?

In a closed adoption, there is no interaction between the birth parents and the adoptive family. Identifying information for birth mothers and adoptive parents is not exchanged. This is a private adoption. Non-identifying information such as  physical characteristics and medical history may still be exchanged between the two parties. Every adoption is unique, individual circumstances may alter this traditional closed adoption process.

How it Affects the Birth Mother

A closed adoption allows all parties privacy. For the birth mother, this can help her to feel less vulnerable and provide a reduced chance of confrontation. She may also feel a greater sense of closure, to close this chapter of her life and with time, move forward. Closed adoptions tend to allow for an easier transition for adoptive parents as well.

Some birth mothers may feel like they are abandoning their child triggering more guilt issues. Without the opportunity to talk with her child about the choice she made for their benefit, it can be more difficult for her to process her grief. Without proper counseling and therapy these feelings of guilt and grief mixed with lack of information, can lead to depression for the birth mother.

What is a Hybrid Adoption (Semi Open)?

A hybrid or semi open adoption is a combination between an open and closed adoption. Usually, birth mothers and adoptive families experience non-identifying contact with one another such as letters, phone calls and/or emails that keep everyone’s personal details private. An adoption agency or lawyer would typically manage this type of set up.

How it Affects the Birth Mother

A birthmother’s choices in a hybrid adoption can vary greatly. Her experience with the adoption process can be similar to any of those associated with an open and closed adoption. Something more unique to a semi open adoption is the potential to help with the mourning process. Regular updates about their child’s well-being and developmental milestones, from the adoptive parents through the adoption agency, may help birth moms deal with their sense of grief and loss.

Information in a semi open adoption can at times be hard to manage with all parties involved. This can leave the birth mother feeling a loss of the relationship with her child.

During your pregnancy, you and your case worker will develop an adoption plan together. This adoption plan will detail the type of adoption you are interested in including the amount of contact and what information you would like to share.

A Birthmother’s Choice will listen to your desires and will match you with an adopting couple that want the same thing. We let you make the choice you feel most comfortable with.

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