A new survey shows that more than 55 percent of adoption cases are fully open -- and 95 percent involve at least some relationships between birth parent and adoptive family.
The secrecy that long shrouded adoption has given way to openness, and only about 5 percent of infant adoptions in the US now take place without some ongoing relationship between birth parent and adoptive family, according to a comprehensive new report.
Based on a survey of 100 adoption agencies, the Evan B. Donaldson Adoption Institute reported today that the new norm is for birth parents considering adoption to meet with prospective adoptive parents and pick the new family for their baby.
Of the roughly 14,000 to 18,000 infant adoptions each year, about 55 percent are fully open, with the parties agreeing to ongoing contact that includes the child, the report said. About 40 percent are "mediated" adoptions in which the adoption agency facilitates periodic exchanges of pictures and letters, but there is typically no direct contact among the parties.
"The degree of openness should be tailored to the preferences of the individual participants," said Chuck Johnson of the National Council for Adoption, which represents about 60 agencies. "It points to the huge importance of the right people being matched with each other."
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