What An Adoptee Wants You To Know About Closed Adoptions [Podcast].

When we adopted our first daughter, Jaala, her birth mother chose a closed adoption. We also know many adoptive families who have chosen this route. In today’s interview, Jaala shares her perspective on closed adoptions.

Season 2-Episode 19.001

We understand why birth families and adoptive families choose a closed adoption. For Jaala, her birth mother wanted her to have the best life possible. We are eternally grateful to her for making this amazing decision. But over the past decade of our adoption journey, we have formed great relationships with several of our other children’s birth families and the benefits are many.

We have become big fans of open adoptions. In fact, over the past year we have taught thousands of people how to form healthy relationships with their children’s birth families.

We love Jaala’s perspective. She has a very healthy view of this topic. The content she shares in today’s interview is insightful and encouraging to birth parents, adoptive families, and most importantly, fellow adoptees.

Listen to the podcast.


Notes and Quotes from the show.

Our daughter Jaala did an amazing job sharing the realities of closed adoption. Here are a few take-aways she shared during our interview…

[shareable]It’s hard to have a closed adoption because you have lots of questions that are unanswered.[/shareable]

In talking about the decision to have a closed adoption or an open adoption, Jaala shared this…

[shareable]It’s a good idea to leave your options open.[/shareable]

We loved her take on finding your identity and where the source for your identity comes from…

[shareable]Your identity is who you are constantly surrounded by.[/shareable]


As promised in the show, here are the links to upcoming events that we will be a part of…

Resources and Links.

Here are a few adoption resources we mentioned during the show…

  • Adoption Support Center– This is the agency we adopted Jaala through in Indianapolis. We love these people and can’t say enough about the amazing work they do for families!
  • Bethany Christian Services– This is another great agency that has locations all over the country. We know many people who have adopted through Bethany and had great experiences.
  • AdoptUSKids.org– We love this site. They provide so many great resources for pre and post-adoptive families, and professionals.

Thank you for joining us for this episode of The Honestly Speaking Parenting Podcast. If you have missed any episodes, you can catch up by clicking here. If you have questions for Jaala feel free to send us an email by clicking here.

We hope you will join us next week as we kick off a brand new season, Season 3, with all new topics and interviews!

[reminder]What are your thoughts and feelings when it comes to a closed adoption verses open adoption? Share your answer with us in the comment section.[/reminder]

8 thoughts on “What An Adoptee Wants You To Know About Closed Adoptions [Podcast].”

  1. Pingback: What about closed adoptions? | Our adoption experience

  2. I am an adoptee with a closed adoption and I honestly can’t imagine having it had been open! I am not saying this is not a good idea for many but I think it was honestly best for me. I don’t think with my personality I would have wanted that extra piece in my life…I hope that isn’t bad to admit!

  3. Courtney Baltazar

    Hi there, Berry Family!

    I just finished listening to this podcast, and I loved your insights, Jaala!

    I am currently at the pre-adoption stage of an international adoption. The country that we’re looking to adopt from only facilitates international adoptions in the cases of children who have been abandoned, effectively making them closed adoptions.

    What, if anything, could you suggest for this kind of scenario? I imagine that it would be a combination of dealing with a closed adoption, a (partially) transracial adoption, and may likely involve a child with learning, social, and emotional delays.

    All the best.

    Courtney Baltazar

    1. We have 4 internationally adopted kids so I can only speak from my perspective but I do have some thoughts. Your children will almost definitely have learning, social and emotional delays. Of my 4, 3 have IEPs and 2 have significant emotional delays. Trauma is trauma but there is something about living in an orphanage for months to years that children in foster care do not experience. They experience something similar for sure, especially if there is neglect. But the not being touched piece is significant for them. And kids in orphanages are many times not even touched. Then there is language and not looking alike and culture to be addressed. We try to be purposeful about having friends and acquaintances in our lives that look like our kids. We purposefully live in diverse areas. We are very open and honest. We also point out things in the community that are common or from their countries of birth. We always speak positive about it. Always. We do not have them in language classes or religious classes to keep that “culture” part of their lives like some do. But we do talk about it and speak positively about it and try to bring it up as much as possible so they become comfortable with who they are and where they came from. If you live in a big city, there can be adoption groups that meet from time to time so that your child can be with others who were born in the same countries. We have found this to be very helpful for us and important for our kids as they get older. We’re not perfect at this at all but have found there are ways to deal with closed adoptions. I have 1 child that I literally know nothing about which is sad since I know something about my others. I took a trip back to the country after the adoption and visited all the places I knew she was at. Birth city, hospital, orphanage. I took pictures of me in front of them. She may not know the who or why questions. But she will know her mommy loved her enough to go to those same places to be where she was even for a moment. And that is something. Congratulations on your upcoming adoption. It is a beautiful journey.

      1. One thing I found regarding language that I didn’t expect is that our daughter came to us at 2. She was terrified of spanish speaking people the first 2 years she was with us. It brought up bad feelings for her. And especially if it was from someone speaking the same dialect. She would literally hide from them. Just something you might want to be aware of.

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Mike and Kristin Berry are the Co-Founders of The Honestly Adoption Company and have been parents for nearly two decades. They are the authors of six books, and the host of The Honestly Adoption Podcast.

Sarah Gray

Sarah Gray is the executive assistant to Mike and Kristin Berry. And she is the best in the land. In addition to providing a warm and friendly response to the many emails our company receives on a weekly basis, she also manages Mike and Kristin’s speaking and meeting schedules, and makes sure that team events go off without a hitch.

Nicole Goerges

Nicole Goerges is a Content Contributor & Special Consultant for The Honestly Adoption Company. She works with Mike and Kristin as a recurring co-host for the Honestly Adoption Podcast, and co-host of Kitchen Table Talks, exclusive video content for Oasis Community, along with Kristin. She is a fellow adoptive mom, and former foster parent.

Matt McCarrick

Matt McCarrick is the Content Production Specialist for The Honestly Adoption Company. If you’ve loved listening to our podcast, or enjoyed any of the videos trainings we’ve published, you have Matt to thank. He oversees all of our content production, from video edits, to making sure the tags are correct on YouTube, to uploading new videos to Oasis, to hitting publish on a podcast episode, he’s a content wonder!

Karen Anderson

Karen Anderson is the Community Engagement Specialist for The Honestly Adoption Company. She spends the bulk of her time interacting with, and helping, people through our various social media channels, as well as providing support for Oasis Community members through chat support or Zoom calls. In the same spirit as Beaver, Karen is also passionate about connecting with parents and making them feel loved and supported. Karen is also an FASD trainer and travels often, equipping and encouraging parents.

Beaver Trumble

Beaver Trumble is the Customer Care Specialist for The Honestly Adoption Company. Chances are, if you have been in need of technical support, or forgotten your password to one of our courses, you have interacted with Beaver. He is an absolute pro at customer care. In fact, he single-handedly revolutionized our customer care department last year. Beaver is passionate about connecting with parents and making them feel loved and encouraged.

Kristin Berry

Kristin Berry is the co-founder of, and Chief Content Specialist for, The Honestly Adoption Company. She spends most of her time researching and connecting with guests for our podcast, as well as direction, designing and publishing a lot of the content for our social media channels, blog and podcast. She loves to connect with fellow parents around the world, and share the message of hope with them.

Mike Berry

Mike Berry is the co-founder of, and Chief Marketing Specialist for, The Honestly Adoption Company. He spends the bulk of his time and energy designing and building many of the resources you see within our company, as well as social media and email campaigns. His goal is to use media as a means to encourage and equip parents around the world. He is also the co-host of The Honestly Adoption Podcast.