Friday, March 7, 2014

Why open adoption?

You may have wondered what we have been up to since finding out that we will be adopting two sweet baby boys in April. Well, let me just tell you, it has been crazy! For a variety of reasons, we decided that we needed to move before the boys were born, so we have been working on getting a house ready since the beginning of February. It has been a ton of work, but we do not want to move after they are born. We are finishing up painting, beginning to take a few boxes over at a time and are so excited to be in a more permanent home. We have also been working on adoption paperwork, gathering baby stuff and just keeping up with life in general. So that is where we are at.

Now for the real post, why choose open adoption? From the outside looking in, without an understanding of adoption, open adoption can look really strange. Some of you are thinking, "I don't even know what an open adoption is". Each adoption is different, but what our open adoption with with birth family of our boys will look like is this: several visits each year, pictures, cards, letters, etc. We will invite them to the boys' birthday parties and we will likely be invited to some of their family events. We have also talked about having a special day just to celebrate the situation. They will become an extension of our family and us, an extension of theirs. We already have a beautiful relationship with them that has come easy to all of us, so we are looking forward to growing that!

Now, I get that some of you are thinking, why would we, as adoptive parents, want this kind of relationship. I have heard a variety of comments that come from a place of not understanding, but that in the future could hurt our children or their birth family so I want to clear some things up. First of all, our amazing expectant mother is choosing to place these babies out of love. I'm not going to tell her story, but I want everyone to understand that fact. She could have chose a different path for herself and these babies, but she didn't. Instead she let God show and lead her in the direction that He was calling her to. I know that might sound confusing without knowing all of the details, but that is all I'm going to say. I also want people to understand that she is not "giving them up", she is placing them in our family and entrusting us to care for them, raise them and love them.

We talk a lot about women having choices in our culture. We are okay with a woman terminating a pregnancy if it is best for her, but we are uncomfortable with the idea of a woman choosing to place her children in another family and wanting to maintain a relationship with them if she feels that is best for her and her children. Why shouldn't she know who they are being raised by, how they are being raised and if they are healthy and happy? This doesn't mean that she wants to micromanage our parenting, but she wants these babies to know where they come from, who their birth family is, who their siblings are and that they are loved. Placing a child for adoption is not a decision that one takes lightly and most birth mothers just want to know how their child is doing and that they made the right choice.

In the past adoptions were closed. Birth families were left wondering how their children were doing and children were left wondering why they were placed for adoption, where their birth families were, if they were alive and well and where/who they came from. With open adoptions, there are answers. Our boys will get to an age where they will be able to decide if they want to continue with this relationship. Our hope is that by being open from the beginning, the relationship with their birth family will feel natural. We aren't pretending that there won't be questions or possibly times when they need space to process emotions, but research has shown that open adoptions are healthy and don't confuse children like many assume.

We are incredibly grateful that our expectant family are the people that they are. We could not have created a better situation if we had tried and we feel honored that they chose us and more importantly, that God chose us. I remember our attorney (who we love) telling us that maybe we shouldn't talk about our faith in our profile since it may cause some people not to choose us. I told here that I would rather leave it in and not be chosen, than for that family to be upset later that their child was being raised in a Christian home. We chose to leave it in and it is one of the reasons that we were chosen for this situation, we love that it is something we all share! God works in amazing ways and we are honored to be a part of his workings.

I know that I shared the last time that we will not be having a shower until after the 30 day revocation period is up, but if you want to get us something before that, we will be using disposable diapers for the first month and then we hope to switch to cloth soon after. Did I mention we will be going through nearly 2 dozen diapers a day in the beginning? Thank you again for loving and supporting us on this journey and please keep praying for everyone involved!