As many of you will remember a while back I wrote a post To perfect? It was about a specific agency trying to portray themselves as better than the next. I read alot of the information on their website and emailed them and I finally got a few emails back.
One of the big things I noticed was the lack of involvement for the birth family. I asked about openness and contact with birth families after placement and they said they do not encourage it but if you feel the need to have it they strongly encourage that you stop all contact and communication after the age of 3. They feel it is harmful to the child's development and growth. I don't really get the logic and thinking behind that to be honest. I don't see how having some openness is going to hurt them developmentally or with their growth. Are they saying at the age of 3 you should never speak of the fact your child was adopted again. What is this like the 1960's? People don't/can't hide this any more like they did before. I think not having their birth mother for a child to have some sort of communication with when the time comes for them to ask questions, and they will, will cause more developmental problems than having her there.
I have said it before I don't think open adoption is perfect, you most defiantly have to find a perfect balance in it. It is hard to set boundaries, people most defiantly get hurt. The highs and lows of adoptive parents and birth parents are never going to be in sync. As an adoptive parent the highs of birthdays, holidays, first words, first foods, walking, hearing them say mama, Dada are ALWAYS going to be lows for a birth parent. Think about it they are missing out on that BUT with open adoption they still get to be a part of it, it doesn't make it easier but they still get to experience it. So to say to cut all contact after the age of 3 is the best for all involve is best I don't get it. I know you have experienced alot of firsts at that point but there are still so many to come.
Maybe it is easy for me to say this and fee this way, Noah's birth mother is half way across the country and we have not seen her since Noah was 4 days old. BUT we do talk on the phone send text messages, share photos on a photo bucket account, with her and her mother. We hope we get to have a visit some day. And they both have expressed how hard it is, in fact the other night when I was talking to Noah's birth grandmother she said she watches the video of Noah walking for the first time all the time and wants to write him a note so he has it and ends up having to close the screen and walking away she can't do it it's to hard, and that is ok, she will some day. People always say why do you still talk to them, I say well put yourself in their shoes, you have this perfect little person you loved and gave birth to and gave him to a family you knew only from talking on the phone for like 3 months, met 2 days before he was born but you trusted them with his life! And he is out there some where but you can't ever see him, talk to him or know how he is doing because they chose to not let you know. Pretty messed up right. Think about it that way next time you wonder.
We don't have a perfect relationship it has alot of ups and downs and I don't know where we will be in 6 months or 6 years down the road. But I know as sure as I am sitting here I will not say at age 3 I am done goodbye. So for anyone who is reading this and in the process of finding an agency, thinking of adoption, trying decide what type of adoption you want try to think of down the road and put yourself in her position and think about what you would want if you were on the other side of the table. You would want treated with respect and kindness, you would want honestly and truth. Not to be told yes we will do that just for someone to get your baby and then never hold up to what they told you they would do. I know things change but at least start out trying to do the things you said you would do and use an agency that keeps her rights in mind as well.