Monday, May 2, 2011

So, how long are you going to do the Open Adoption thing?

You would be surprised to know how often this question comes up.  And every time some one asks this I feel like I just got punched in the stomach.  I try to relax and realize  they don't fully understand that we choose open adoption because we want an open adoption.  The door is staying open.

Awhile ago, while doing a clients hair, who is an adult adoptee who has been reunited with her birth mother and has a relationship with her.  She said something that totally threw me for a loop.  While I was talking to another  friend, about a recent visit with Charlee's birth mom.  Out of the blue she just blurted out;

 "Why do you let her stay in your life?  She needs to just move on.  She made her choice, you let her have too much say in your lives.  It is just weird."

I was shocked, I was hurt, I was fighting the tears.  I cut her off, I told her that was not an option, we were going to continue to keep things open.  We love both Elle and Kolby.  We know this is right for us, for our family.  I explained that most of the visits we initiate.  I love watching Charlee with them, it was a good thing for us.  Elle and Kolby are not just Charlee's birth parents, they are a part of our family.

Well, we didn't see eye to eye on this and we dropped the subject.  A few months later, I learned more about this client really had some huge emotional issues.  I realized her comments were coming from her own hurt and unresolved issues.

From this I learned that some people, even those who adoption has touched their life, do not fully understand the benefits of an open adoption.   We all look at things from our own experience and perception, which is why educating others is such a big deal.  Also as an adoptive mother, with an open relationship with birth parents it is important that I am honest about the situation and also positive.  I would never want to paint a false picture, that it just happens.  Like any relationship it take time and work.  And also like any relationship it has enhanced our life.  And is worth the effort.

Before Charlee was born, when we would talk to Charlee's birth mother about the open adoption, neither of us knew how it would work or exactly what we needed.  Elle, being so wise and loving said, "I just want what is best for my baby", if visits work great, if they effect her then we can step back.  Of course we agreed on pictures, and emails. Since then, it has always been about what is best for Charlee.  I feel that as long as we all keep her needs and interests as a priority.  If we continue to love and respect each other and the boundaries that exist these relationships with Elle and Kolby will continue to grow and remain open.

Our family hearts open adoption!!

1 comment:

DisabilityDiva said...

We get the same questions too about Open adoption. LOVE you Kim and your open hearts!!!