This by far the most emotionally challenging part of the journey.
Don’t rush in. Go Slow. When in doubt, Go Slower!
Step 9: Prepare for Contact
Find contact information (on-line groups like DNAAdoption can often provide free help)
Prepare yourself by defining what you do and don’t want in a relationship with your newly identified birth relative. Surround yourself with people close to you to provide emotional support.
Develop an understanding for the other person
Step 10: Make Contact
Don’t try this alone! Consult others with experience in this area; you want to avoid common mistakes than can poison outcomes.
Choose your method – letter or phone – and get feedback on what you are going to write or say from a support group. Use the guidance below to help your craft your message
Before you do it — Making Contact with Adoptees/Birthparents…
Writing the First Letter to your birth mother (or a sibling)
Birth Family Contact
Be patient; give them time to process and respond.
Step 11: Reunion
Reunions are filled with anticipation, excitement, and fear, so preparing oneself for the flood of emotions is important. Following are suggested readings:
Review “The 5 Stages of Reunion” from Birthright: The Guide to Search and Reunion for Adoptees, Birthparents, and Adoptive Parents, by Jean A.S. Strauss
“After the reunion: How do (found) mothers and daughters relate?”
“Why Reunions Go Awry: What Memoirs of Adopted Daughters Tell Birthmothers”
Search and Reunion Etiquette
Reunion is only a single step on this journey of may miles
Step 12: Afterward
… the choice may be made to have an ongoing relationship or continue on alone. Problems arise when the two sides choose different paths. This phase is continual and includes setting goals… Jean A.S. Strauss
Choices will be made but evolve over time. Review “The 5 Stages of Reunion” from Birthright: The Guide to Search and Reunion for Adoptees, Birthparents, and Adoptive Parents, by Jean A.S. Strauss