Dee is The Boy's birth mother.
We have an open adoption and see her and/or her family about once a month. We get together for lunch, movies, the park, birthdays/holidays, even just hanging out.
We love her to pieces.
We are often asked how long we are required to have contact and how much contact we have to have.
This is the thing, we aren't required.
We aren't forced.
We have chosen open adoption and we love it.
We love being a part of theirs lives and having them be a part of ours. We love spending time together and we love sharing all of the different aspects of our lives with them. We love that The Boy will always have that connection and that he can see how much they love and care about him.
They are part of our family. We are part of theirs. Dee is like a sister to me and her parents are just like any other grandparents to both The Boy & The Girl. The Boy and The Girl love them just as much as we do and are always excited to see them. We are all second best to The Boy when D (D's dad) is around. The Boy has D wrapped around his little finger and The Girl is Dee & P's little buddy (P is Dee's mom). We love it.
We couldn't imagine a better relationship, a better situation.
We recently spent the weekend at P & D's house in southern Utah for the second time. I can already hear so many of you saying "what in the world? how could you ever?" We thought the same thing when we first started the adoption process, we never in a million years imagined that it would be THIS open. I still remember going to the adoption classes and thinking to myself, we can never do that. We had many conversations with friends who had open adoptions who we thought were crazy. Now The Boy's adoption is more open than any of theirs and they are the ones thinking that we are crazy :-). But, really we aren't.
The day we first met Dee and her parents, we feel in love with them. We had an instant connection and we never wanted to leave. We talked and talked about all sorts of things and we wondered how it would be to just send letters and pictures through the agency (which is how it was at the time). We hoped that somehow we would be able to find them or they would be able to find us. At the time we were not able to share any identifying information. Thankfully, we were able to get Dee's last name and address at placement (thanks, Dee!) and were later able to email her directly.
We were excited but so nervous the first time we met her for dinner after placement. It was so great though. And from there, we got to know her and her family better and better. They are such great people. And they truly make it easy to have the contact that we do. I know that it doesn't work for everyone nor does it work in every situation but Dee and her family are amazing.
I think what truly makes it work is that we all have a mutual respect for each other and for the role that we are in The Boy's life. We love and respect Dee for blessing our lives with The Boy and her and her family love and respect us as The Boy's parents. We talk about things openly and while our relationship didn't start out being this open, it has grown and evolved over time.
The way we see it is that it is more people who love and adore our children as much as we do. They have a special connection with them and they with us. And we truly appreciate having them in our lives.