Rhonda, adoptive mother:
“I want people to understand that open adoption is a gift – not a burden. Some say, ‘Don’t worry, in a few years, she will move on and you won’t have her in your life so much.’ On the contrary, we hope we will have a relationship with the birth family forever and we want that for our son.”
Lisa, a birth mother:“My advice to birth and adoptive parents would be the same: kids deserve to know who they are and where they come from. It can be painful and complicated in the beginning, but it gets easier. Adoptive parents need to remember that birth parents don’t want to parent. We made a choice, and it was not made lightly. We can provide guidance, be a confident, a close and special friend, but we are not parents.”
Juliana, whose adoption was opened when she was in her early teens, speaking atage 19:“I know that if I had had the option of connecting to my birth family when I was younger, I wouldn’t have felt so lost. It’s the little things, like whose eyes do I have, that really matter – you don’t know what life is like without it. Not knowing these things can build and build until you are lost inside. I feel so different as a person now that I know who I am.”
Alisha, whose adoption was opened when she was seven, speaking at age 13: “My advice to birth and adoptive parents is that they should ask themselves how would they feel about not having an identity, not knowing where they came from. Knowing your birth parents makes you feel just like everyone else and you can feel better about yourself. If you had a choice, you would probably say yes to knowing more about who you are and I am glad my family has given me that choice!”
“Open adoption is not a trend – it is the wave of the future. Making Room In Our Hearts helps us prepare for that future by providing an ethical and child-centered perspective as it puts a human face on open adoption. You will meet real people revealing, as well as struggling, with the ups and downs of these complex relationships. This book fills an important need by providing adoption professionals, birth and adoptive families and their extended familial networks with a wealth of practical and personal information.”
–Brenda Romanchik, MSW
Open Adoption educator, Birth Parent advocate, and Director of Insight: Open Adoption Resources and Support.