This is all just speculation, of course, and may not apply to any individual situations (and yes, I do understand that in some cases the adoptive family is open to more contact whereas the biological family is not), but allow me to continue on this track for a bit. Let's imagine that I am the child as described above and someone comes to me and says, "Would you like to meet your birth mother?" How would I respond? What range of complex emotions might come up for me?
Now imagine that the question was put to me a different way. Imagine someone saying, "I have a message for you from your birth mother. She wants you to know that she loves you and misses you. She thinks of you every day and she would really love to meet you. She understands that you may or may not be ready for this, but she wants you to know that anytime you want to meet her, she's available." How might this land with the adoptee as compared with the previously mentioned approach?
Shifting back to my own closed-adoption story, why did it take me until age 30 to search? Would it have made a difference if I could have somehow known that my original mother had registered, years earlier, with our state's adoption reunion registry ... that she wanted to be found? Or what if I had found out earlier that there was a crack in the seal of my closed adoption and my adoptive mother actually had information that would make it possible to locate my biological one ... that she was simply waiting for me to ask the right question?
Maybe they really do exist -- those adoptees who have no desire to know their biological family because they truly are just fine without any contact. But for most adoptees, the emotional landscape is much more complicated. A desire to know and be known by the biological family may be present but overshadowed by other factors, including a deep-seated (even unconscious) fear of rejection by the birth family (and especially the birth mother) as well as fear of disapproval from the adoptive family. Even those of us who have been reassured our whole lives of the unconditional love of both families may not entirely trust that it is so.
There are some adoptive parents who breathe a sigh of relief when the adoptee expresses hesitation or ambivalence in relation to the biological family. But as tempting as it may be to view such ambivalence as a testimony to the strength of the bond with the adoptive family, that's probably not the right interpretation. The two things are, in fact, unrelated; an adoptee can love his or her adoptive family completely and still long for a connection to the biological one.
I'm not entirely sure where I'm going with all of this. There are some posts that just flow out of me and others in which I am struggling to grasp something elusive. This is one of those struggling posts. But I think the place I am trying to get to is this: it is important for adoptive parents to be aware that all adoptee expressions about the biological family occur in the context of the adoptive family and the specific adoptive situation that the adoptive parents helped to create. Adoptive parents are powerful players in this dynamic, and if their own ambivalence toward the biological family has been a driving force, they may have unintentionally created a situation that seems appealing at first glance but ultimately is not in the best interest of the adoptee.