What are the Different Types of Adoption?

The different types of adoption are Open, Semi-Open, and Closed. Our agency offers all three types of adoption. In an Open Adoption, each member’s identity of the Adoption Triad is known by all other members (Birth Parents, Adoptive Parents, and Child). In an Open Adoption, it is typical for Adoptive Parents to meet and get to know the Birth Mother/Parents. The Adoption Agency Staff always supervises the meetings until after finalization.

In Open Adoptions, Birth Parents can have updates on the child, photographs, letters, emails, and personal visits. Visitation is something that is worked out before placement and which continues, as agreed, until the child reaches adulthood. In an open adoption, Birth Parents and Adoptive Parents know the other party’s identity. Usually, Birth Parents and Adoptive Parents will meet and form a relationship. This relationship is very important as they will share a child in the future. A level of trust needs to be established and ground rules set for future contact between Birth Parents and child. Our Adoption Counselors will work with both parties to facilitate relationship building and contact/update planning.

In a Semi-Open Adoption, basic non-identifying information is exchanged. In some cases, the Agency will make the Match; in others, the Birth Mother chooses the Adoptive Parents. Usually, there are updates in the form of letters, pictures, and sometimes emails, but no person-to-person contact after placement.

In a Closed Adoption, no identifying information will be shared. In these cases, the Birth Mother and Adoptive Parents wish to remain anonymous. Of course, in these circumstances, it is impossible to have visitation after placement.

Our Agency provides education for both Birth Parents and Adoptive Parents so that each knows their responsibilities for contact and updates after placement. During the Matching process, we consider the wishes of all parties so that we don’t match a Birth Mother wishing for an Open Adoption with Adoptive Parents who want a Closed Adoption.

We find most Adoptive Parents want some level of contact with the child after placement. Adoptive Parents who are only willing to consider a Closed Adoption may find their wait time for a Match is long.