Questions You and Your Spouse Should Answer When Choosing An Open Adoption

It’s imperative that you and your spouse be on the same page with the answers.

Maya Brown-Zimmerman March 23, 2017
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When my husband and I were engaged, our bishop at the time gave us a list of household chores. He suggested we write down which one of us, or both of us, would be in charge of each chore. Then, we should come together to see how our answers matched up. Whatever didn’t, well, that would be worth a good discussion. Better to work out the kinks before marriage than after!

It was a useful exercise, and one that applies to open adoption as well. Open adoption only works if there is open communication, and that starts with having honest conversations with your spouse before completing the home study process. Here are some questions to consider:

  1. How do you feel about expectant parents knowing information about you prior to an adoption, such as first and last name, cell number and home address?

  2. How do you feel about this information being known post-adoption?

  3. Are you ok with exchanging letters and photos via your lawyer or agency post-adoption?

  4. Are you okay with exchanging letters and photos on your own post-adoption? How often?

  5. Are you okay with emailing, phone calls, texting and/or Skype post-adoption? How often?

  6. Are you okay with visits? Where (your home? birth parent’s home? neutral locations?)? How often?

  7. Are you okay with connecting on social media?

  8. What factors would influence your decisions on the answers above?

  9. What, if anything, would make you stop because of the answers above?

  10. How do you feel about connecting with extended birth family members? What of the above would apply to them?

  11. How do you feel about closed adoption?

It’s imperative that you and your spouse be on the same page with these answers. I suggest taking some time to learn about open adoption, not only from your agency, but from adoptive parents who have been there, birth parents and adoptees. Adoption education isn’t complete unless it involves all parts of the triad.

What are other questions that you and your spouse discussed with open adoption?

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Maya Brown-Zimmerman

Maya Brown-Zimmerman is a mother of three, both biologically and through adoption. She has been blogging since before it was cool, and is passionate about everything from open and ethical adoption to special needs advocacy and patient-physician communication. In her spare time (ha!) she's on the board of directors for a medical nonprofit and enjoys medical and crime dramas. You can read more from her on her blog, Musings of a Marfan Mom.

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