Search and reunion is a post-placement process in which either an adoptee or birth parent attempt to reunite with someone else in the adoption triad. While the leading reason for search and reunion is to obtain medical information, plenty of adoptees and birth relatives are simply curious about one another. This is most common after one experiences an important milestone in life, such as a graduation, marriage, pregnancy, birth or death.
The ease of the search process and finding information about the one's birth parents or the adoptee's adoptive parents depends on the record laws in the state in which the adoption was finalized. All adoptions are filed with the state and searching parties can request information with their state's registry. Certain registries require both adoption parties to register before the department releases contact information, called mutual consent registries. Confidential registries will contact birth parents at an adult adoptee's request but can only supply information with the parents' permission. Some states may reveal non-identifying information without mutual consent. Searchers may also seek information from the agency that facilitated the adoption, if applicable, hire investigators or petition the courts for a confidential intermediary to access the adoption record and facilitate communication between the two parties. There are also search angels who may offer their services for free.
Whether a domestic or international adoptee is looking to find answers about his or her pre-adoptive past or a birth parent or sibling is trying to reach out to an adoptee, the search and reunion are both emotional and time-consuming. Searchers are advised to find a support group or counselor with whom they can share their experiences and talk through any difficult situations that the process presents.
The search is generally expected to be difficult, but the reunion can also be a disappointment if a searcher has too high of expectations. Sometimes, the process of searching is enough to satiate one's curiosities as it allows one to reflect on the desire to search as one gets closer to finding a biological strain of themselves in someone who may feel like a complete stranger.
Another difficultly with the search process is for the adoptive parents who may not understand why an adoptee is compelled to search. Being supportive and helpful are all adoptive parents can really do, though, if an adoptee is an adult.
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A Mass to celebrate November as National Adoption Month will be 4 p.m. Saturday at Rosary Cathedral in Toledo.Religion Offerings: 11-23
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Search and Reunion: The Lessons
September 6, 2013, 8:33 am
Has there been anything that search and reunion has taught you? 1. I was a step father adoption and learned to appreciate EVEN MORE my only mother's family and extended family. They are good, kind, and loving. They encourage getting along and treating other members well. We are also there for...
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