Our First Parenting Seminar
Updated: Nov 4, 2020
So, as prospective adoptive parents, we are required by the state to complete a certain amount of parenting education. This can take place through books, films, workshops, and seminars. Today, we took a seminar on connecting with birth families. The relationship you develop with a birth parent(s) is going to be crucially important both for the process of adoption, but for the rest of you child's life. In our reading on adoption, we have learned that there more and more adoptions are "Open" or "Semi-Open", meaning there is some contact between birth and adoptive families.
This contact could mean the exchange of photos and letters, communication through the agency, or, in some cases, visitation. We're still very early on in the process, so we are figuring out what we would feel comfortable with, but what we learned is the agency works hard to pair prospective parents with birth mothers not only on criteria that each party has requested, but are also pairing families looking for similar pre and post adoption contact.
We heard wonderful stories of success, sad tales of loss of contact, and learned that a lot of other couples have the same concerns we do. And right now, we're thinking in terms of what works for us and for the birth mother, but as soon as our child is born, we have their wants and feelings to consider. And that is the part that is scary.
Thinking about them wanting or not wanting a relationship with their birth parents is something we will have to discuss and journey through. The fear comes from the possibility of the birth parents wanting the opposite, and the potential heartbreak that will come with that. I think what we're learning more than anything is that this process is much more nuanced than we ever could have imagined!
K & J