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Did anyone catch the 7/7/09 episode of Dr. Phil-a 15 y/o placing for adoption? It seemed that she was being discouraged (a lot) from open adoption...

OK, lots of you know that my DH and I are trying to adopt thru foster care. I was watching yesterday's show of Dr. Phil (who I like, but don't worship....LOL!) and was a little taken back by the way this 15 y/o was discouraged from open adoption. A guest who had been adopted maybe 40+ years ago, who was raised in a closed adoption, search for her parents as an adult and met them. She said the RU went sour when dad asked for a paternity test (ended relationship) and mom was so "guilt-ridden" that it affected their relationship. They have spoken in 5 years.

I don't care what side of the adoption triad that you are on, it seemed pretty one-sided, and I was disappointed that there wasn't any pros & cons, just cons.

The adoption agency worker seemed to want to lower her expectations of OA, saying "a lot of adoptions don't start out as with any relationship, you want that trust to develop." Huh? (Con't. below)

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Asked by doodlebopfan at 6:09 PM on Jul. 8, 2009 in Adoption

Level 20 (9,525 Credits)
Answers (11)
  • OP continuing...Also, she tells the adoption atty that she wants an OA, and the response is cut off, it picks up with the atty saying that she "can't sign the papers until at least 24 hours after the adoption." The family (not the teen) seems torn about the decision to place, but also because the teen has REFUSED counseling! She's gonna deal with this first, and worry about that later. Oh, it just made me sick for her. The only redeeming feature was a PAP (of course, (flips hair back) LMBO! J/K) who has attempted recent adoptions 5 times and each time the mom chose to parent. (At least 16-27 y/o mom's mentioned.) She apparently has 4 children in which at least some are in OA, and she is encouraging the teen emom toward OA. When the teen says (to the above-mentioned adoptee who said that OA would have been confusing...) that she has friends in OA, and the AP she met does it too, they shut her down.

    Answer by doodlebopfan at 6:21 PM on Jul. 8, 2009

  • This is the link to 7/7/09 show about adoption. 

    This is the 7/6/09 show where she says she won't consider abortion, so they tell her she has to choose between keeping the baby or placing it for adoption. Sadly, the grandparents-to-be would rather see the pregnancy terminated than her put their grandchild up for adoption. But they don't want to help her with the baby, so what choice does she really have at 15 y/o? 

    All I can say is, Wow! Talk about the pressure of teenage pregnancy!


    Answer by doodlebopfan at 7:00 PM on Jul. 8, 2009

  • I'm anti OA myself for several reasons, but I did see this and it did piss me off.

    Answer by SarahColbert at 7:06 PM on Jul. 8, 2009

  • I didn't watch it. I'm not suprised it was one sided, though.

    Answer by babycakes254 at 9:14 PM on Jul. 8, 2009

  • I did watch the series....
    A couple of things... I honestly didn't get the vibe that the agency was trying to steer her from OA.. I got the impression that she was trying to prepare her for the possibility that it could close at any time. How many times have you heard a first mom on here say that their OA closed without warning? It is pretty common for that to happen.
    Also, as far as signing TPR.. it depends on the state and the laws about when papers can be the first mom. It is typically several days after birth that papers are signed and then there is a period of time that the first mom can decide to parent the child.
    As far as the woman that reunited with her parents and is now against OA... it was just bizarre to me. I am in a closed adoption because our dd was adopted internationally. I wish I had info about her bio parents...sigh..
    It did irk me that the teen was not willing to go to counseling.

    Answer by mcginnisc at 9:22 PM on Jul. 8, 2009

  • I didn't see the show, but it would bother me if someone who knew very little about adoption (presumably Dr. Phil) tried to steer her away from OA. She should know that the agreements generally are not legally enforceable and that they do sometimes close, but it is her decision. It is sad that she refused counseling. An unbiased counselor with no conflict of interest could help her to examine her reasons for choosing whatever choice she is leaning toward. Maybe she doesn't understand the grief she will feel if she chooses to place (and certainly if she aborts). I think counseling would really benefit her. How sad that her family would rather see the baby aborted instead of placed for adoption. I just don't understand that way of thinking.

    Answer by Iamgr8teful at 11:36 PM on Jul. 8, 2009

  • I am 28 and am placing my child up for adoption and have chosen the route of OA because I could not imagine my child being raised by someone that I have not met. But I can tell you that ALOT of people are against OA and it seems like most people would have rather me abort than do this

    Answer by Anonymous at 12:03 AM on Jul. 9, 2009

  • Anon 11:03 - I'm an adoptive mom, and I have found that a lot of people don't understand OA. I've also met many who are against it, but it seems like they usually don't know much about it. The research on real live people shows that adoptees growing up in OA benefit greatly, and are emotionally healthier on average. It has been a good experience for my family. I find myself explaining what it means to people who think it is co-parenting. You do what you think is best for you and your child! Good luck!

    Answer by Iamgr8teful at 12:14 AM on Jul. 9, 2009

  • I used to like Dr. Phil.....but, despite all the shows he has done involving adoption, he is still woefully uneducated about adoption. Didn't see the show, but, if they were "warning" the young woman about open adoptions closing, I consider that a positive act. In fact, I would rather see open adoption portrayed in a more honest way rather than making it sound like a perfect solution. Too many birth moms that I know went into open adoptions with unrealistic expectations and then felt slammed and hurt when things did not happen as they expected. If a mother cannot imagine never seeing her child again, maybe adoption is not the best option for her.

    I consider open adoptions better than closed ones for children, but they still leave a mother and child with loss issues and often pain. Rarely are the ideal solution that they are portrayed. Relinquishing a child is hard no matter how you do it, and has permanent effects.

    Answer by Southernroots at 12:25 PM on Jul. 9, 2009

  • Be sure to set your DVR for the final "16 and Pregnant". It's about adoption. And this expectant mom doesn't even want to see her baby when she has it!


    Answer by onethentwins at 5:10 PM on Jul. 10, 2009

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