Open Adoption from an Adoptee’s Perspective
There seems to be a plethora of information on open adoption from a Birth Mom’s perspective and from adoptive parents’ perspective. There is not as much information from an adoptee’s perspective on open adoption. So, we decided to interview a young man adopted through New Life to gain his perspective on open adoption and what it has meant in his life. Brandon*, now a teenager, was placed for adoption as an infant through New Life Adoptions by his birthmom, Ms. Christina*. Open Adoption, by definition, is an arrangement in which contact is maintained or allowed between a child’s adoptive and biological parents and the child.
Share one of your earliest memories of being with your birth mom, Christina.
Believe it or not, I remember one of the first times meeting Ms. Christina again, I was about 3 years old. We went to New Life and met in the meeting room. I was there with my Mom, Dad and my grandmother Nancy* and Ms. Christina was there with a friend. I remember playing with a toy truck with Ms. Christina and her friend.
Can you share a memory or favorite time that you have with your parents and your Birth Mom together?
My favorite time was when we attended the New Life Kinship Picnic. My Dad went to the picnic separately and my Mom and I picked up Ms. Christina. I liked that we spent time with Ms. Christina. I believe I was running track that year at school. Ms. Christina mentioned that she was a very fast runner and I knew I was too. She and I raced across the field to see which one of us would be the fastest. I had a great time and I will always remember that picnic for the rest of my life.
What 3 things are you most thankful for in your adoption story?
• I am thankful that God has given me an awesome birth mother who chose my amazing Mom and Dad as my parents.
• I am so grateful that I am able to see and visit with my birth mother.
• I am thankful for having a Christian adoptive family who has raised me to learn about Jesus and God.
How would your feelings / thoughts towards your adoption be different if you did not know Christina or anything about her or your birth story?
I would probably feel a little bit more confused to the feelings of why my birth mother would have placed me for adoption. It would probably make me go searching for her in the future – whenever I was old enough to do so on my own. In reality, I am so grateful to have Ms. Christina. Since I get to see her and know her feelings, I now understand what the true meaning of adoption is and I do not have to question why she placed me for adoption. I am so grateful to have a great, loving birth mother.
Do others ask about your adoption story and/or your Birth Mom? What is your typical response?
Others do not really ask about my birth mom. Depending on the relationship of the person asking, I would proudly tell them I am adopted.
Will you share one of your most recent memories with your Birth Mom?
My most recent memory with Ms. Christina was just before school started this year. I spoke with her on the phone. I was very excited to know that she was doing well at her job and it was a blessing to get to speak with her. Since my schedule is pretty packed and time consuming, I don’t get to see her too terribly often, but I love the fact that we have a relationship that I can just pick up the phone and call her.
What are your hopes for your future relationship with Christina?
My hopes are that I can go and visit her anytime and get to have a nice lunch with her – or just get to spend more time with her.
*The names in this interview have been changed to protect their privacy, but the account is true.