“…whoever welcomes a child like this…. welcomes Me.”
Stay in Touch With Birth Grandparents
The most important ingredient to any successful family is love. Families created through Christian adoptions may feel their children need even more love, from more places, than most. They may decide to expand contact with the biological family to include birth grandparents.
How to Build a Relationship With Birth Grandparents
Biological moms, especially those who are young, tend to strongly rely on their parents during the adoption process. These people are often nearly as invested in the future of the child as the birth mom herself. Likewise, they may experience grief and mourning from the loss of the grandchild, even though they know adoption is the right choice.
If the birth grandparents are available and active in the adoption, adoptive parents may ask them if they wish to be included in the contact agreement. Make the question inviting, but without pressure. Adoptive parents should explain why they believe ongoing contact between child and birth grandparents is a good idea. Should the biological grandparents agree, arrangements can be made for regular phone calls, letters, emails or visits.
Explaining Birth Grandparents to Extended Family
Some adoptive parents worry that their extended family may feel confusion at the presence of the birth grandparents. They should not. A Christian open adoption simply means the child grows to know his or her biological family. Though not always included, the grandparents are clearly a part of this family. Adoptive parents who face great skepticism can point to years of research showing that almost all families in open adoptions desire as much contact with the biological relatives as possible, especially as the children grow older.
Adoptive grandparents will not feel as though they are in a competition with birth grandmothers and grandfathers. Just as adoptive grandparents have multiple grandchildren, they are aware their grandchildren have many relatives who love and care for them. Adoptive parents should not worry about their own parents feeling jealous or rejected.
Many Ways to Include Biological Relatives
It is commonplace for adoptive parents to set up websites devoted to the growth of their children. A website that focuses solely on that child’s life, including updates and photos, is cherished by any family member who cannot be a part of that life on a daily basis. For safety and security, most families opt for websites that require password protection.
Another option is to friend biological grandparents and other relatives on social media. They can interact as often as they like. Emails that are more targeted to each other let you be personal even from a long distance.
The most effective contact is often one-on-one. Invite biological grandparents to church, family gatherings or an afternoon playdate with the child. This regular, personal contacts show the child that many people can give support in many different ways.