Finding your relatives.
Helping to set up the first meetings.
We can help:
By searching for biological parents and other relatives.
By helping with the personal contact of biological relatives on behalf of adopted children and adults.
We can provide assistance for adopted persons in the following ways:
- by advising if the search for biological parents can be successful and how to go about it.
- by undertaking the search for biological parents and making contact with them.
- by assisting with meetings between adopted children or adults and their biological parents – which includes preparation on both sides, accompanying those involved during the first contact and psychological support.
- by providing counselling for problems experienced during this process.
The process consists of many small steps each of which will be discussed with the client as we go along.
Complete confidentiality is guaranteed.
The process of searching and meeting adopted adults with their biological parents or other relatives:
- We gather all accessible documents (birth certificates from the registrar, any court decisions and so forth) with the help of the client. We hope to identify those searched for based on the information in these documents. The time scales in this phase vary because of several factors. Sometimes it is necessary to go beyond the persons who are the subject of the search and to question neighbours or office staff, for example. The smallest item in any of the documents can be a major factor in the search. Sometimes the search fails to yield the information sought for but this is unusual.
- When the identification of the person(s) searched for is made, those involved are contacted by the consultant. The consultant collects together all the possible information from the past and the present. Afterwards the consultant explains the procedure and discovers the opinion of those searched for. Then the consultant forwards all the information to the client which may include photographs.
- The consultant discusses the information that has been found with the client. The client then decides what to do next, whether to start a written conversation, a phone conversation or to arrange meeting. Usually a consultant accompanies the client during the first meeting. First meetings can be very emotional and it is the consultant´s task to support both sides.
- The consultant is available in case of any complications or insecurity. The search usually continues with the aim of finding more relatives (siblings, grandparents and so on).
Helping adoptive parents contact a child´s biological family
- If your child wishes to meet his or her biological parents we can advise whether this is a good idea, what might be the right time to do it and how to maintain the safety of child and adoptive family. We can suggest the best way of making contact. We can search for the biological parents and select the best way of making contact with them - by letter, telephone or in person. We can arrange the actual meeting. There is the possibility of arranging a single contact between child and the biological parents in a safe and anonymous way.
- We can provide assistance with the inquiry into the health and other relevant information of the biological parents whilst maintaining the anonymity of the adoptive family.
- We can provide advice as to how to tell a child that he/she is adopted, how best to give them information about their family and their family‘s history.
- There is the possibility of obtaining a letter – perhaps with photographs - with an explanation from their biological parents to give to the adopted children at the time they start to ask questions. We could obtain material for a Life Story Book and provide assistance with the setting up of a Life Story Book for a child.
The procedure for the personal contact of an adopted child with his/her biological parents:
The procedure is very similar to the one used with adult clients, with one exception that adoptive parents agree to the search and meeting and that they participate in the process. Every child needs their support.
A meeting should be set up only if a child feels secure in his/her family and has no serious issues and is not going through a tough period in their life.
The child usually does not need any regular kind of contact. The majority are happy to have met their biological parents once and to have received their photos. Sometimes a biological parent is able to admit his/her responsibility for not having care for the child (so the child realises he/she is not at fault) and that he/she is happy to see the child growing up happily in a good family. After that, the child can go back to his/her own life with all questions having been answered. No further meeting is usually required,with the exception perhaps of phone contact or another personal contact after a few years.
By making contact through a third person it is possible to maintain the privacy of the surname of the child and all contact information of the adoptive family.
Don´t let your child search for their roots alone.
Support him/her during this important phase in their life.
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