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Open Adoption:
Double the Love

  • Linda R. Sexton

Excerpt from Truth #3. Present Your Authentic Self. No Second Guessing

“Birth parents aren’t looking for the most attractive parents—they’re looking for people they consider to be the best parents for their child…”

~The Open Adoption Experience, Melina and Roszia

Putting together a compelling, authentic profile can be overwhelming for adoptive parents. However, expecting parents have many prospective adoptive parents to choose from, especially for placing infants.

The agency will help, but the adoptive parents will need to think deeply about this. Sincere and thoughtful messaging and photography matter. You can even think of this as marketing yourselves. Marketing is probably outside their comfort zone, so adoptive parents need to dig deep, get comfortable with it, and get to work.

Simply browsing through The Book gave us pause. The couples all seemed so happy and confident—what competition we would face. And then it got worse. Not only did we need to write this compelling Dear Birth Mother letter, but we also needed to get great pictures—we wanted to look good—and young enough! We were already worried about age and being rejected again. In retrospect, our looks were the least of our worries, but it sure didn’t feel like it at the time. Nevertheless, we went to work.


We had to enlist friends and family members to vouch for us. But their statements were just the start because, in addition, we had to answer some tough questions. Will you take only a newborn? Are you willing to adopt an older child? What about race? How important is that to you? And what if you are matched, and the baby has significant health issues? Are you still willing to go through with the adoption? Are you willing to match with someone with no health insurance and pay all the costs? And by Texas law, the birth mother is not allowed to relinquish parental rights until after the baby is born. Sometimes she changes her mind after the birth—are you prepared for that?

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