Before entering into an adoption agreement with adoptive parents, what are some things you want to know about them? What are aspects and values that you hope your child has as they grow up? Part of the adoption journey gives you, the child’s birth parent, the opportunity to select the adoptive parent(s) that you feel best fits the needs and desires you want for your child.
This portion of the adoption journey is called the matching process. An instrumental part for birth parents, as it gives you the control to choose what kind of life your baby will have growing up. Need some inspiration? Adoption Choices of New York has you covered! We’ve put together this resource and included some great questions for birth parents to ask adoptive parents. Please note that the following list is non-exhaustive.
What do You Believe makes You Good Parents?
Asking this will reveal what qualities and traits adoptive parents believe are successful or appropriate for parenthood. It will also let you know how well they are prepared for starting a family of their own. How far they have thought things through.
What is Your Family like?
Every birth parent is curious about what kind of family their child will be adopted into, making this an excellent question to ask. It will help you learn who the adoptive parents are as people, what they value and what kind of family structure they hope to have with your child. If the adoptive parents have any additional children, you may also learn about them through this question as well.
Do You have any Experience with Adopting?
Adoption is not a decision that should be taken lightly. Thus, you’ll want to make sure that the adoptive parents feel the same way. That they have thought long and hard about growing their family through adoption, and if they’ve done their research. If they are first-timers to the world of adoption, they may share with you how it’s always been a dream of theirs. Or, if they have adopted before, they may share past experiences.
Is Your Family Happy/Supportive of Your Decision to Adopt?
Knowing that the adoptive parents have a strong support system is crucial. Additionally, making sure that the adoptive parents’ family is excited about their decision to adopt will make any future visits less problematic. You won’t have to worry that you’ll receive the cold shoulder or awkward silence. Instead, you’ll be welcomed with open arms and become a part of the family.
Are You Supportive of Open Adoption?
This also applies to the two other types of adoption as well — closed and semi-open. What makes this such a good question for birth parents to ask adoptive parents is it tells you if you and the adoptive parents see eye to eye on the kind of arrangement you want. The amount of contact and involvement you want after the adoption becomes finalized. Particularly if you do want an open adoption agreement and look forward to getting to know your child as he or she grows up. If you want one thing, and the adoptive parents want another, this could create complications or be a sign that it isn’t a good match.
How will You Explain Adoption to Your Child?
Research shows that telling a child that he or she is adopted from day one is the most beneficial decision a parent can make. It establishes trust, opens the lines of communication, and normalizes a topic that is still stigmatized in society. So, as the birth parent, you’ll no doubt want to know how the adoptive parents will tell their son or daughter their origin story. Will they wait until the child is old enough to understand? Will they tell him or her at all?
How will You Talk about Me to Your Child?
In the same way, how will the adoptive parents speak about you when you’re not present? Will the truth be told, or will you be shoved under the rug or placed on the backburner like you’re not important? Asking this question will tell you a lot about the adoptive parents. If they have integrity, if they value honesty and if they are good people overall.
Do You Plan on Teaching Religious Values at all?
If religion isn’t important to you, this is an optional question. Though, if you are interested in learning more about the adoptive parents and their background, you might want to ask anyway. Just to confirm whether or not it will be an issue for you. Each and every birth parent is different on this topic. Some birth parents want adoptive parents to have religion or the opportunity for it in their world, while others do not. There is absolutely no right or wrong to this. Only what is best for you and what you’re looking for in a family for your child.
Bonus: Other Great Questions
- How did you two meet? (if speaking to a couple)
- What do you do for work?
- When you have arguments, what is your conflict/resolution strategy?
- Do you have pets? Other children?
Questions for Birth Parents to Ask Adoptive Parents
As aforementioned, we acknowledge that the above list of questions is in no way complete. There are so many more excellent questions for birth parents to ask adoptive parents on a wide variety of topics. If you have questions in mind, or have any concerns on what would and would not be appropriate to ask, don’t hesitate to reach out. One of our adoption professionals would be more than happy to assist.
A good thing to keep in mind, though, is to ask questions that best reflect the kind of life you want your child to have. Highlight any specific details — pets, education, religion, etc. — that you find especially important and make sure you communicate that those are “must have” qualities. No adoptive family will be perfect, of course, but we do our best to present you with adoptive parents who share similar values to yours.
Adoption Choices of New York
For more information on adoption or if you are currently in the process of adopting a baby and have any questions or concerns, feel free to contact, Adoption Choices of New York.
Support Adoption Choices
Adoption Choices, Inc. is partnering with Crowdrise, a fundraising website for nonprofits, to help our adoptive parents and birth parents with much needed financial assistance. We understand that expenses keep clients from fulfilling their dreams. Both with birth parents making a plan for adoption, and with adoptive parents growing their family. It is our mission to provide financial assistance through grants and scholarships, awarded annually in November, in honor of National Adoption Month. Funds assist adoptive parents with matching and placements, adoption finalization and helping birth mothers improve their lives through higher education — and much more.
However, we can’t do it alone. Please read up on our programs and donate money where you are able. Your donation will make a huge impact.
About the Author
Rachel Robertson is a published journalist, book editor, certified Publishing Specialist, and aspiring novelist. She graduated from Central Washington University (CWU) in March 2011, having found her writing voice within the Creative Nonfiction genre and grew to work as a freelance book editor for small presses all across the United States.
In June 2018, she embarked on an internship with Virginia Frank and came on board with Adoption Choices Inc., Not for Profit 501(c)(3), in December 2018. Between her mutual passion with adoption and surrogacy, and her own personal history with adoption, Rachel is excited to research and share topics each week that will spread awareness and better serve the faithful patrons of Adoption Choices Inc.
When Rachel isn’t haunting her local Starbucks or Barnes and Noble, she’s avidly pouring over her Writer’s Digest subscription or cozying up with a cup of tea and book. She currently resides in the beautiful Pacific Northwest with her beloved wife and Border Collie.
“Adoption Interview Questions: What to Ask Adoptive Families or Birth Parents.” Considering Adoption, consideringadoption.com/adopting/open-adoption/adoption-interview-questions.
Adoptions, Lifelong. “Questions Every Birthmother Should Ask Adoptive Parents.” LifeLong Adoptions, www.lifelongadoptions.com/9-for-birthmothers/138-questions-every-birthmother-should-ask-adoptive-parents.
McNaughton, Jessie. “13 Questions Birth Moms Should Ask Prospective Adoptive Parents.” 13 Questions Birth Moms Should Ask Prospective Adoptive Parents, www.adoptfamilyconnections.org/blog/birth-mom-questions-for-adoptive-parents.