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Open vs. Closed Adoption in California

Are you getting ready to adopt a child?

You might be surprised by just how many decisions you have to make, including the type of adoption you’d like to pursue.

For many families, the idea of an open adoption may seem strange; however, it’s becoming more and more common for families to choose open adoption. This type of adoption is beneficial to each person involved in the adoption: the birth mother, the adoptive family and the adoptee themselves.

But what is the difference between open and closed adoption in California?

And how can you make a decision that’s best for you?

Keep reading to learn more or reach out now by calling 1-800-ADOPTION.

What is the Difference Between Closed and Open Adoption in California?

With a closed adoption, you will have no communication with the birth family after placement. You will not exchange names or identifying information. After the adoption is finalized, your child will not be in communication with their birth family.

With an open adoption, your child will grow up knowing they are adopted. You’ll communicate with the birth parents to give them updates on your child’s life and, when you’re each ready, for in-person meetings.

Open Adoption vs. Closed Adoption in California

You have a choice in the type of adoption you pursue, and each type of adoption has its pros and cons.

Before you start the adoption process, it’s important to consider what you want your adoption experience to look like.

When it comes to open vs. closed adoption in California, the birth mother has the final say. However, it’s still important to familiarize yourself with the different styles of adoption and what they can mean for your child.

There are three types of adoption:

  • Open
  • Semi-Closed
  • Closed

Open Adoption

An open adoption means you and your child’s birth parents will have communication after placement. The communication may look different depending on different factors.

Semi-Closed Adoption

With a semi-closed adoption, you may have limited contact with the birth mother. Typically, any communication between you and the birth mother will take place through the agency you used for your adoption. You will not have direct contact or communication with the birth mother.

Closed Adoption

A closed adoption is the most limiting of the adoption styles. With this type of adoption, you will not have contact with the birth parents post-placement.

One major difference between closed and open adoption in California is that closed adoptions are designed to offer the birth parents total closure. Some birth parents do not want to have continued contact after placement, which is their choice. But, for the adoptive parents, a closed adoption can be more challenging.

This type of adoption means that you won’t have access to your child’s birth family’s medical history. It’ll also be more difficult in the future if your child desires a more open relationship or wants to meet their birth parents.

Open Adoption: What You Need to Know

While closed adoption was once the most common type of adoption, this is no longer the case.

Now, open adoption tends to be the standard for domestic private adoption in the United States.

There are many positive reasons to consider open adoption, including:

  • Less identity-related trauma for the adoptee
  • A greater sense of self for the adoptee
  • Access to the child’s medical history through the birth family

Some adoptive parents feel concerned about the idea of an open adoption, so it’s important to remember that open adoption is not the same thing as co-parenting.

As the adoptive parent of your child, you will be the legal parent. This means that the final decisions regarding things like your child’s name or where they go to school will be up to you.

How Does Open Adoption Affect Adoptees and Their Parents?

When you adopt a child, multiple relationships are formed in the adoption triad. The triad consists of:

  • The adoptive parent(s)
  • The birth parent(s)
  • The adoptee

Open adoption can provide peace of mind for everyone involved.

The adoptive parents get to know they’ll have access to the birth parents if there are ever medical or heritage questions regarding their child.

The birth parents get to watch their child grow up, which means they’ll have the peace of mind that comes with knowing their child is being raised by a loving family.

Finally, the adoptee has a chance to get to know all of their parents. This can help them form a more well-rounded understanding of who they are and where they came from.

Getting Started With Open Adoption

If you’re ready to take the first steps in the adoption process, we’d love to be there for you every step of the way.

You can visit our website to read birth mother and adoptive family testimonials, or get free adoption information when you fill out our online form.

You can also call us directly at 1-800-ADOPTION to speak with an adoption specialist today.

Information available through these links is the sole property of the companies and organizations listed therein. American Adoptions provides this information as a courtesy and is in no way responsible for its content or accuracy.

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