The Rights and Wrongs of Reunification

by Alicia Moser

As a birth mother who is part of a closed adoption, I look forward to a reunion in the future with my biological daughter. I look forward to it with cautious anticipation though, because I want to do everything right, and I hope she wants to see me too and be a part of my life. I have put a lot of thought into how I can make the possible reunion a positive experience for the both of us.

I do have some ideas that I believe will help make adoption reunions have a better chance of being a positive experience. The ideas are:

  • Be honest- You may think this goes without saying, but tell your birth child about why you placed them, or like in my case, why you lost custody of them, and any information you have about their biological father.
  • Be patient-Don’t expect a loving relationship to happen right away with your birth child. Good, loving, and trusting relationships take time to develop and grow.
  • Don’t bombard your birth child with gifts and things-I have heard this is a classic mistake in adoption reunions. Some birth mothers think that they need to give their birth child gifts and things to make up for lost time and for not being able to give them things over the years.
  • Don’t be pushy-I know you will have a lot of questions to ask your birth child about their life and their upbringing, but let them volunteer what information they feel comfortable with when they are ready to share it.

With these tips, I can not guarantee a wonderful reunion, but they will definitely set you on a positive path to a successful reunion.