Your adoption is complete, and both you and the adoptive family have moved into your new lives. Part of your new life is your identity as a birth mother. When you made your adoption plan, you may have included the fact that you’d like to have regular updates on your child and contact with your adopted child his family family. What do you do when you visit your child?
Make a Date
Your adoption plan may have discussed how often you’d like to see your child, or you may have been more open. In any case, you’ll need to work with the adoptive parents to set a good date and time to visit. They’ll have their own schedules, and they’ll also know when your baby is happiest.
Babies can be fussy and you may feel awkward at first. That’s all right. It’s normal for your first visit to be short, and it doesn’t mean that your future visits need to be short as well. As your child grows, he or she will become more independent and able to focus and feel comfortable with others for longer periods of time. Longer visits and visits where you take your child to new places and enjoyable events may seem to be far in the future, but they’re actually just around the corner.
Consider an Activity
Having an activity planned can make your visits with your child something that you both look forward to, and it can reduce any awkwardness you feel about the visit. What would you like to do with your child when you see him or her? Whether it’s bringing a ball for the baby to play with or going to the park with a toddler, activities don’t need to be fancy to be engaging for both of you.
Talk With and About Your Child
You may have ongoing email contact with the adoptive parents, but a visit is also a good time to discuss your child’s milestones and interests. When your child is very small, this conversation will occur with the adoptive parents, as you discuss how the baby is starting to roll over, walk, or talk. Older children like to talk about their own interests, and you can ask questions that will help you choose what to bring or do next time you visit.
Create a Relationship With the Adoptive Parents
An open adoption doesn’t just bring a child into a new adoptive family, it brings your family and the adoptive family together in a new relationship. This relationship can be challenging at times, but it can also be very valuable. Try to create a relationship with your child’s adoptive parents. This will deepen your understanding of your child, but it will also connect you more deeply to your child’s parents and help you understand them as people.
We Are Here To Help
If you’d like to speak with someone on our unique team or possibly with a parent who has been in your shoes, we invite you to email or call our office for a confidential and free consultation.
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Images Courtesy of Family Formation: Client photos printed with permission.