Saturday, December 17, 2011

Is Semi-Open Open Enough?

Erica and Tyler are sick -- horribly, no-fun-at-all, wishing-they'd-gotten-flu-shots sick. This is especially sad because tonight was the night that we had planned to drop Ashley off at their apartment for a few hours so they could have their Christmas celebration.

Is Ashley devastated? Heartbroken? No, she's fine. She's mildly disappointed, but she understands that this is not a cancellation, it's just a rescheduling. Our visits happen frequently enough that there is not an extreme amount of pressure on any individual visit. The Christmas visit with Ashley's brother and first mom will still happen, just later.

A few minutes ago I received an email link to this article. I really feel for these people, and I hope they get the photos and letters back. But at the same time, I found myself thinking, "Wow, how sad to have all your 'memories' of your birth mother fit into one folder." It's not my place to judge; I don't know all the circumstances. Maybe for this family and first mother, this was the best possible arrangement. And, admittedly, it's still a step in the right direction from the old, closed adoption model. I had no such folder when I was 24.

But I'm glad that Ashley's memories of her first family will be more plentiful, and that they will consist of real experiences, rather than pieces of paper in a folder. I understand that such openness and the possibility of real relationship isn't feasible in all cases, but it's what I truly wish for every child.


  1. Oh! That is sad! I don't have much photos/letters wise of either of my kid's birth/first moms. I wish I had more, but I'm sure in time both with want to share more. We have open adoptions where we share all about the kids, but not so much in return.

  2. I live in fear of what happened to that family... I have a binder (maybe I should invest in fire proof lock box) that has every scrap of paper, 4 priceless pictures and 1 birthday card in it. I have become compulsive, doing the same thing for Liam, but in this digital age I have several soft copies stored in different places of most things, but still have the hard copies in a binder at home.

  3. What a heartbreaking story. Rebeca I'm always amazed at how you put your daughters feeling first. Both of your girls are so lucky to have as their mom!!

  4. I have a similar situation with my biological father - I have one photo of him (at my birth mom's Junior Prom). That's all.

  5. I know - I really hope they get them back!

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