My daughter’s parents cancelled what was supposed to be our third visit after my daughter had only been on this earth for four months. These are the emotions I felt:

First, I felt betrayed. I had just placed my daughter into their arms, trusting that they would follow through on their promises—and now they were not only canceling a visit, but weren’t allowing me to have any visits for five months. I would only be able to see her through pictures and their family blog. I didn’t understand how they could do this to me.

Next, I became confused. What had I done to make them cancel a visit? Had I said something inappropriate, had I done something that I wasn’t aware of? Did they not want an open adoption anymore? Was it because I wanted to be closer, relationship-wise, to my daughter?

Then I resigned myself to the situation. I learned I had to have patience and be satisfied with the contact that I did have until they were ready to go back to having visits. I realized that if I continued to feel angry, confused, and betrayed, I would never be able to open up my heart to having a great relationship with them in the future.

Finally I gained some understanding. When we had our next visit, I realized why they had cancelled. They were pregnant and concerned that I would be mad that they were having a baby. After that realization, I felt compassion for them. Above all, I felt happiness because I had wanted so badly for them to experience the joy of having a baby and being able to grow their family even more.

In the end, I was actually grateful that they canceled the visits for a few months because it gave me an opportunity to appreciate our usual level of openness. Now, over two years later we have a great relationship, great communication, we show our love, and our appreciation for each other in a very healthy way.

While I was able to grow through this process, I believe that the key here was more open communication. If I had understood the reasons behind the changes in our visits, the separation would have been much less painful for everyone.