Painted Shut…Posted: May 19, 2011
I have been thinking about open adoptions a lot lately. I’m so happy for the parents I know that have open adoptions that work, and sad for those who are struggling.
I know there are many people who have adopted from foster care that can still seem to make open adoption work. We have a dear friend who keeps regular contact with her oldest daughter’s first family, but has none with her son’s first family. I think a lot of the time in foster – adoptions, it doesn’t or can’t work, and that is for the best interest of the child.
The choice is simple for some. Sometimes children are removed due to abuse or neglect. I think those cases of closure are a bit easier. Then there are the unknowns. I think this is where we are at. We don’t know much, but some of what is known is kind of scary. This makes the decision harder.
Would Mea’s birth mother like to know about her? If it were me, I would say yes. But she is not me. The circumstances of Mea’s birth and first year were unusual. There were many chances given. More chances than most parents of infants in foster care are given. Usually in our state, if an infant is removed at birth, and there is significant reason for removal, TPR is done within 6 months. Mea was over a year old.
Since I don’t know much about her case, or all the details of what happened, I don’t know if this is because BM tried, or if it was because of other circumstances. I know that she hasn’t tried to contact us, because the social workers in the county she was born in are supposed to forward anything from her to us.
So where does that leave us? Right now, I think that we are staying closed. I know enough that if I wanted to open things up, I could. I could find BM. I could find Mea’s two older siblings. Knowing that I have the information that I have is enough. For now.
It’s kind of like a window that’s been painted shut. It’s shut for now, because it’s painted closed. But it’s just paint. A little elbow grease, and chisel, and that window can be open again with no problem. It also can be repainted if it needs to be.