Open Adoption and Diverse Families: Complex Relationships in the Digital Age.
Goldberg, Abbie E.
ix, 444 p.
Oxford University Press
198 Madison Ave.
New York, NY 10016-4314
This book traces the experiences of diverse adoptive families—including lesbian, gay, and heterosexual parent families, and families who adopted through foster care and private adoption—as they manage birth family relationships across their children’s childhood. It explores the diversity among families in how open adoption is envisioned, enacted, and experienced over time. The author uses interview data from four time points spanning preadoption to 8 years postadoption to address a variety of questions, including: How do adoptive parents feel about openness when they first learn about it, and why do their feelings change over time? How do adoptive parents’ initial feelings about birth parents inform the types of relationships that they form with birth family? How do adoptive parents who strongly valued openness cope with and handle the disappointment of matching with birth parents who do not desire and/or are unable to enact a similar level of openness? What types of complex, unexpected, and nuanced trajectories of contact unfold over time between adoptive families and birth families? What types of boundary challenges occur between adoptive and birth family members, offline and online? How do adoptive parents talk about adoption with their children, and how does this vary depending on level and type of contact? How and to what extent do adoptive parents invoke environment versus genetics (i.e., birth family) in articulating children’s strengths, challenges, and physical features (e.g., height, skin color)? How do the experiences of adoptive parents differ by parent gender and sexual orientation? (Author abstract)
ADOPTION; FOSTER ADOPTION; GAY AND LESBIAN ADOPTION; PRIVATE AGENCY ADOPTION; PUBLIC AGENCY ADOPTION; OPEN ADOPTION; FAMILY RELATIONSHIPS; SOCIAL MEDIA; BOUNDARIES