This post is part of a series on creating an Adoption Lifebook. These posts reflect my personal journey creating an album for my son. I welcome your thoughts and tips on making an adoptee or foster care Lifebook as we go along.
Last time we discussed how to start and Adoption Life book and talking about when your child was born.
This time we delve into the discussion around birth parents. I know this is a big decision for you as parents. How much do you want to share with your child? Do you want to share anything at all?
There is one thing for sure, if you child knows they are adopted and/or looks different from the rest of the family they are going to have questions. They are going to what to know where they came from, who were their birth parents, and why did they give them up.
We can’t answer most of these questions but we can strive to make it as whole as possible.
Birth Parents: Filling in the Blanks
The general idea is to find information and photos about where your child came from to give them a grounding on their beginning and heritage.
Open adoptions have a lot more information to pull from but for those with closed adoptions finding any information about birth parents is challenging. The ideas below are more for those that will have to hunt for details.
1) Pull Information from the Birth Certificate
There may be little to pull from here but you may find our what town, province, or state they came from.
If you have a location you can google it for some information about the area and some photos. Add these to their Adoption Lifebook to give then an idea about where their birth parents grew up.
In the examples below I found our where both birth parents were from which led me to a map, their provincial seal, and photos of attractions in the area. All things that help to pieces together his past.
Start looking through any paper work you received early on from the social workers. They will have put down some facts and observations from their meetings with a birth parent or with your child.
If you are lucky the social worker met with a birth parent and captured some of their story. Take these little nuggets of information and put them together to produce an image of their birth parent.
In these examples an interview with the birth mother gave us a glimpse into the personality and background of both birth parents. Where they were in their lives at the time the child was conceived.
Then looking through other reports I found physical characteristics of the birth parents that gave you a visual image of them
Pulling together where they were from, what they may have looked like, and a bit of their personality and upbringing makes the birth parents real in the eyes of your child. They can know they came from somewhere and have a past.
Next time we will talk more about your child’s journey as they begin working though the adoption.
Thank you for joining me on this journey. I look forward to sharing it with you and would love to hear from you too. Feel free to share in the comments below or e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org
- LifeBooks: Creating a Treasure for the Adopted Child by Beth O’Malley
Scrapbook Page Layout Credits:
- Adoption Lifebooks(parentsofcolorseeknewborntoadopt.wordpress.com)