ERIC Number: ED303754
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1988
Reference Count: N/A
Pregnancy Counseling: Traditional and Experimental Practices.
Seader, Mary Beth
In response to complaints by some birthparents who agreed to transfer their parental rights and obligations to adopting parents in the past, agencies and persons interested in adoption have reexamined their practices in an effort to be more responsive to the long-term needs of birthparents and children. Before entering into any discussion of a controversial issue, it is important to examine the rhetoric. The debate has been defined, for the most part, by proponents of the new, experimental practice known as "open adoption" or "openness" in adoption. Traditional adoption, labeled "closed" adoption, suggests secrecy and narrow-mindedness. Terms such as "traditional" and "experimental" adoption would be more appropriate. Pregnancy counseling should include: (1) a realistic assessment of the birthparent's needs and resources; (2) decision-making on all options open to a woman; (3) carrying out the decision; (4) mourning of the loss of role, status, and relationship as a parent; and (5) acceptance and integration of the pregnancy and adoption experience into the individual's life. If there are problems with outcome in adoption, it should be known what has caused them. If the cause of adoption problems is more closely related to unresolved reasons for pregnancy, family problems, etc., the client is not served by focusing on only the adoption. (Author/ABL)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: National Committee for Adoption, Inc., Washington, DC.