6What do visits with your birth parents mean to you?
Darcy: I love when she visits. It’s the greatest
thing in the world because you can’t really get
the emotion behind computer screens or letters or text messages—it’s just words. When
you meet, you can feel the emotion in someone’s voice. I personally feel a lot closer when
Gabriel: I think that an in-person meeting
is way, way better than anything you can
achieve online. As good as Skype is, being
able to be there in person, in the flesh, with
no speed-of-light delay where everything is
half a second behind, is meaningful.
Justin: I think it’s been very important to be
able to meet and talk with my birth parents
rather than being pen pals.
7What qualities of your adoptive parents do you appreciate and
Justin: My parents are kind, caring, respectful, trustworthy, easy to talk to, good listeners, good advice givers, and just good people
Brianna: My adoptive parents raised me,
so that’s definitely something I appreciate.
They’re very understanding of the fact that I
want to be a part of my birth family’s life and
they want that, too, so it’s never been a strug-
gle. That’s a really big part of what makes this
whole thing work and I very much appreciate
that from them.
Nathan: My mom is extremely compassionate, caring, kind, and she always knows what
to do. My dad is one of the smartest people
I have ever met, and he’s always there for
me. He’s a huge resource in my life. They’ve
taught me how to be nice to others, how to
take care of people and how to be a decent
Claire: My adoptive parents have so many
qualities that I appreciate and value. I think
one of the main ones is that they’ve always
been honest about answering any questions
that I might have and open to talking to me
about my adoption. I feel like some adoptive
parents might feel threatened by an independent relationship between an adoptee and his
or her birth mom or birth father, and I never
felt like my parents felt that way.
8How has open adoption made you who you are today?
Nathan: I believe in things more easily and
I’m more accepting. I mean, I have four
Adoptees Speak Out
This article was adapted with permission from “Open Adoptee Experiences,” a video created
by Open Adoption & Family Services. Watch this video and all of the adoptees’ video diaries
( openadopt.org/open-adoptees) to hear directly from them about growing up in an open adoption.