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Tips for Better Handling Social Media, Your Teenager and Adoption Reunions

Adoption Reunions Are Becoming Easier Thanks to Social Media

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Facebook has been responsible for numerous adoption reunions.

Facebook has been responsible for numerous adoption reunions. Are you ready to face the reality of social media and it's impact on adoption?

Some adoptive parents prefer closed adoptions for many reasons or fears, but with social media outlets like Facebook, once an adoptee reaches 15 or so, the child may take matters into his own hands and find answers with you or without you.

Gone are the days of strict closed adoptions. Recent media coverage regarding social media and adoption: Facebook Fuels Honesty, Unpredictability in Adoption has struck a chord with the adoption community. This ABC News.com article seemed to gain positives from the adoption community as it promotes honest dealings with adoptees and facing up to the fact that most adoptees want to know about their birth families. So, I gathered a few tips from the above mentioned ABC article by Ki Mae Heussner, to help prepare yourself and your teen for social media and adoption reunions.

  • Now is the time to be open with the adoptee with information about birth family and the child's past. Help your child find their answers – otherwise they will find them on their own without support.

  • Know that even if your child is not seeking out birth family, birth family may be seeking him out through social media. Prepare your child for the possibility of contact. If you are open and honest, they will be more likely to clue you in when contact does occur.

  • Know that birth family is not the enemy and not all adoption reunions are risky, each case is different and people do change and grow over the years.

  • When talking to your child, choose to show empathy about their birth family and the circumstances that led to the child being placed for adoption.

The Potential Problems with Immediate Social Media Adoption Reunions

All those involved or participating in an adoption reunion need educational support and emotional support.

  • Social media contact may trigger past abuse issues for some children.

  • Most adoptees and adoptive parents will need council on how to handle information once it's found. Will that support be available?

  • All adoption reunions benefit from preparation and communication. The immediacy of social media negates preparation and effective, honest communication.

Again, most adoptive parents worry that once contact with birth family has occurred it will have a negative impact on the relationship with their child. If you, as an adoptive parent, show a genuine interest, and that you are open to talking about adoption and birth family connections with your child. The relationship you have with your child will in turn be strengthened.

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