Issues and Perspectives in Adoption: Then and Now (Part 3)

This is the third part in a three-part series on the history of adoption, and adoption practices “then and now.” Much of the information was taken from the Infant Adoption Awareness Training Program manual (written by Spalding for Children.) To read the first part, please click here, and you can read the second part here.

Search and Reunion

Then: Adoption records were closed “forever.” Birth parents who placed their children and adoptees were discouraged from any future contact. Birth parents and adoptive parents were promised that they did not have to “worry” about any future contact.

Now: Many birth parents and adoptees look for and are reunited with each other. Today, most infant adoptions have some level of openness. While each adoption is different, Adoption STAR believes that an open or semi-open adoption is what is best for all members of the adoption journey in most situations.

Adoptable Children

Then: For the most part, formal adoptions dealt with healthy white infants. Unhealthy or potentially unhealthy infants or children of color were not offered for adoption.

Now: Children adopted now include:

– Infants of all races, ethnic origins and disabilities.

– Older children who have experienced life in the child welfare system and/or have other special needs.

– Children from other countries in need of adoption

Adoption STAR primarily places newborns of all races. The agency has placed many children with special needs.

Who can adopt

Then: Middle class, two parent, childless Caucasian couples.

Now: There are less restrictions on who can adopt today. Adoption STAR, specifically, works with clients of all races, ethnicities and religions. The agency also works with single clients as well as couples and has many same sex clients.

If you would like more information on Adoption STAR’s adoption programs, please visit the Adoption parent section of the website. For information on making an adoption plan, please visit the birth parent section. You may also contact Birth Parent Department Supervisor, Sue Shaw, by email or phone at 1(866)691-3300.