Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Again, a post so defining, it must be shared

(Lori) Lavender Luz gets open adoption.  She completely and fully embraces openness.  The real kind of openness where her children's fullness is her first priority, therefore her children's first parents are a part of their family.  Because they belong there.  They are as much a part of her children's sense of identity as is their membership in her family.

But this post that she shares about how open adoption is not necessarily a spectrum based on level of contact, but more like a grid, is completely and totally profound and spot on to me.  Openess is not determined just by amount of contact, but by quality of interaction.

The open adoption spectrum and grid

Please read and let me know what you think.  It just amazed me that she is so introspectful and able to articulate these concepts so well.

Here is the graphic that she includes...

openness and contact in adoption


Dana@DeathByGreatWall said...

I saw this last night, and I was blown away. My son was adopted from China where because there is no legal way to relinquish a child for adoption, children are left in places where they will be found. Therefore, there is no record anywhere of the birthparents of adopted Chinese children. (I suppose the exception would be if the child is in the system because both parents died.) We grieve that there is no info on my son's original family because we feel like this information will be important to him some day. I loved this grid because it helped me see that even though we have no contact with his birthfamily, we can still have high openess to discuss them and other adoption issues with him, and that the openess of our hearts has value to him as well.

Anonymous said...

I am relatively new to your blog so I am a little confused. Were you promised more contact/updates/more of a relationship with this child than you are getting? Have her parents broken a contract or promise that allows you more, or have you simply changed your position on what kind of a relationship you wanted after the fact?

J said...

Anonymous -

It's clear from your comment and approach that you are in fact not new to the blog (and you'll note the archives are available to read). I suggest if you're interested in a discussion to take another approach.

Anonymous said...

I honestly am new to the blog, but that's fine.

Lori Lavender Luz said...

Thank you for this, LisaAnne (thanks also to Dana).

I'm honored, truly.

Anonymous said...

This is a great article and I much prefer it to the "spectrum" we often hear about when discussing open adoption.

We're a Box 3 family. Low contact & high openness. We met our (now 1-year-old) son's birth family at placement and on one other occasion the week after while we waited for ICPC. Those gatherings were surprisingly easy. We live several states apart but were also able to be with them last summer when we passed through on our vacation. I also send monthly updates - pics and letters - through her social worker, with whom she has a very close relationship.

We have (at first secretly and lately not-so-secretly) longed for more contact, for our son. His birth mom is amazing and he has beautiful siblings. Maybe he won't care about his bio roots at all as he gets older, but IF he does, I would really like them to be available to him. We have nothing to offer but photos. Not a single letter, or birthday card, or Christmas trinket. And so when folks talk about open adoption, often we hear about adoptive families being difficult. In our case, while I certainly wouldn't call his birth mom "difficult", I will say it's really disappointing that she can't or won't offer him more. We, like you, Lisa, will just keep trying.

Box 4's description talks about the parties being like extended family. I want to point out that we, in Box 3, see our son's birthmom as our extended family. I have a sister who has distanced herself from all of us, but I try for more contact with her too. The boxes' descriptions seem directed at adoptive families, but the relationship really is a 2-way street.

**I'm posting as "anonymous" to protect our kiddo's birthmom. I know several other moms who read your blog and don't feel like our story is anyone else's business. I hope that's okay.

Deanna Shrodes said...

Hello LisaAnne, my new BFF <3

Just wanted you to know I'm here perusing your blog. I could hardly get past your photos. I'm sitting here crying just looking at the header.

A picture paints a thousand words.

You are in my prayers. So glad we are connected.


Deanna Shrodes said...

p.s. Just added your blog to my list of resources on my blog. You are my first birth mother blog that I've featured. <3


LisaAnne said...

Thank you Deanna. I am honored because I think your blog is absolutely amazing.