Biological mothers' grief: the postadoptive experience in open versus confidential adoption

Child Welfare. 1990 Nov-Dec;69(6):525-35.


Advocates of open adoption believe that it lightens and in some cases alleviates the grieving process after relinquishment. Advocates of confidential adoption, however, believe that open adoption limits and denies the grieving process that must take place for subsequent life adjustment. A study of 59 women who had placed a child for adoption through an agency--18 via open adoption and 41 via confidential adoption--revealed significant differences between the two groups on five subscales of the research instruments. Implications of this pioneer study in this new practice area are discussed and further research suggested.

MeSH terms

  • Adaptation, Psychological
  • Adolescent
  • Adoption / psychology*
  • Adult
  • Confidentiality*
  • Female
  • Grief*
  • Humans
  • Life Change Events
  • Middle Aged
  • Mothers / psychology*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires