In an open adoption, everyone involved in the process knows the identity and location of everyone else. A birthmother will have regular communication with adoptive parents before the adoption and this can typically continue after the placement, in the form of letters, birthday cards, e-mails, telephone calls and visitation. An open adoption can provide both adoptive and birth parents with greater reassurances that the adoption will be in everyone’s best interests, but there are also a number of drawbacks.
Concerns for Adoptive Parents
There are a number of potential challenges for adoptive parents when the location and identities of all parties are known:
- Adoptive parents can easily be manipulated because of a fear of not getting the child. This can lead to significant expense if the birthparent becomes manipulative and asks for money to cover cost of living and other items.
- The relationship will be ongoing—If everyone is a healthy adult, this may not be a problem. But if the birthmother is emotionally unstable and knows who you are and where you live, you’ll face challenges the rest of your life.
- You may add an unwanted member to your family—The birthmother may assume that, because her child is a part of your family, she is too. She may show up unannounced or assume that she’ll be part of family gatherings.
Concerns for Birth Parents
Birth parents also face challenges related to open adoption proceedings:
- The birth mother may be afraid to change her mind when she knows the adoptive parents personally, either because of concerns about the emotional commitment or financial investment of the adoptive family
- The birth mother can also be manipulated by adoptive parents, who can make demands based on the amount of money they are spending or the argument that they are providing the child with a good home
Contact Our Office
To set up an appointment, call us in Haddonfield at 856-429-5005 or in Woodbury at 856-845-2555. We can also be reached in Philadelphia at 215-563-2150 or by by e-mail. For clients with personal injury or workers’ compensation claims, we offer a free initial consultation, and will represent you on a contingency basis, only charging attorney fees if we recover compensation for you.
Our offices are open weekdays between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. Weekend and evening appointments may be arranged upon request. We will also come to your home or the hospital, if necessary.