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New study looks at effect Internet has on dynamics of adoption

In the not-so-distant past, infant adoptions were typically closed adoptions, meaning that the biological parents’ information was kept confidential. This kept biological parents and adoptive parents from knowing about each other. This practice still exists today, but it has become less and less common, especially with the rise in popularity of the Internet.

The results of a study that was conducted by the Donaldson Adoption Institute were released recently. The study look at how the Internet has affected adoptions. Researchers asked 2,000 adoptees, adoptive parents, biological parents and professionals questions regarding adoption and the Internet. One of the questions asked adoptees if they have used the Internet to locate their birth families. Almost 75 percent of those questioned said they had.

When adoptees find their birth families, they tend to stay in contact. Researchers found that 61 percent of adoptees kept in touch with their birth families through the use of the Internet via social media sites and e-mail.

Adoptive parents who were surveyed said that the Internet has helped their children as well. They feel that it gives their children a knowledge of where they came from without having intimate contact with their birth families. One adoptee said it was comforting knowing her birth family was there.

If you are considering adoption, you may wish to speak with an experienced family law attorney. A lawyer can help you navigate through the sometimes complicated steps and paperwork of adoption so you can rest easy. He or she can also ensure that your interests are protected.

Source: The Boston Globe, “Adoption families, online at a distance,” Joanna Weiss, Dec. 15, 2013

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