Lesbian, Gay, and Heterosexual Couples in Open Adoption Arrangements: A Qualitative Study
Little research has attended to the role of gender and sexual orientation in shaping open adoption dynamics. This qualitative, longitudinal study of 45 adoptive couples (15 lesbian, 15 gay, and 15 heterosexual couples) examined adopters' motivations for open adoption, changes in attitudes about openness, and early relationship dynamics. Key findings revealed that heterosexuals often described feeling drawn to open adoption because they perceived it as the only option, insomuch as few agencies were facilitating closed adoptions. In contrast, sexual minorities often appreciated the philosophy of openness whereby they were not encouraged to lie about their sexual orientation in order to adopt. Attitudes about openness varied over time, and changes in attitudes were attributed to a variety of factors such as perceived birth parent characteristics and the perceived nature of the birth parent relationship. Overall, although some participants reported tensions with birth parents over time, most reported satisfying relationships. Copyright © National Council on Family Relations, 2011.
Journal of Marriage and Family
Goldberg, Abbie E.; Kinkler, Lori A.; Richardson, Hannah B.; and Downing, Jordan B., "Lesbian, Gay, and Heterosexual Couples in Open Adoption Arrangements: A Qualitative Study" (2011). Psychology. 405.