Father’s Day 2023 is upon us. In celebration of this special day, we bring you a story about two adoptive dads who recently shared their adoption journey. The same-sex couple, Josh and Daigle, have a three-year-old daughter. They adopted her through Adoptions With Love and had such a positive experience, they have returned for a second adoption. With Father’s Day coming up, we wanted to share their story.
The Road to Parenthood
Josh and Daigle always knew they wanted to grow their family through adoption. The couple began working with Adoptions With Love in January of 2020. By November, they were placed with their daughter.
Making an Open Adoption Plan
The couple has an open adoption. This means there is ongoing communication with their daughter’s birth parents. As Josh explained, they are in frequent contact with their child’s birth parents and it is helping to build a strong relationship between the two families.
“Daigle and I have a group chat on our phones where we chat frequently with our daughter’s birth parents,” Josh shared.
“We share photos, messages, and updates on how our daughter is thriving at being her best self. We visit with them once a year, we pack up the car and drive to see them. We typically stay for a few days and catch up. It is so great to see everyone’s shared love for our daughter. We make an effort to get photos of all of us together so our daughter can have those memories.”
Josh and Daigle were “adamant” from the start that they wanted an open adoption, if possible. They understood the many benefits of open adoption. They also understood that not every birth mother would want an open adoption. They were hopeful that their child’s birth parent(s) would want to keep in touch. When it came time to begin making the arrangements, the couple admitted to feeling the typical cold feet.
“We remember that we were both extremely nervous in the beginning. This was so new to us that the jitters of the unknown were definitely palpable,” Josh explained.
“Now, almost 3 years later we have become more comfortable and knowledgeable about our personal story with open adoption. We embrace the unknown now and are glad we chose this path for our family and the openness we are able to have with our daughters’ birth parents.”
The Right Open Adoption Plan for Their Families
Josh and Daigle frequently communicate with their daughter’s birth parents over text messages.
They enjoy in-person visits, as well.
This once-a-year visit was decided in the hospital.
“We wanted this to happen from the beginning in hopes it would create a healthy, lasting relationship with everyone involved in our daughter’s adoption.”
The families had an instant connection from the very beginning.
“We knew once we met them that these two were incredible human beings,” Josh said.
“They wanted the best for our daughter, and you could see that the moment we met them. It was not hard to want an open adoption with them. I remember thinking, ‘I hope they want openness because we knew how much this would benefit our daughter and everyone involved.’”
So far, the visits have proven to be positive for everyone.
“We have seen our daughter’s birth parents a handful of times now, each time bringing new memories and experiences,” Josh said.
“We love it, we believe as time goes on, they will continue to happen, and our daughter will just see it as something that has always been a part of her life.”
Josh and Daigle recalled making an open adoption plan that would meet everyone’s needs.
“We listened to our daughters’ birth parents and what they felt they needed. We came to a mutual understanding and have done what was best for our daughter.”
Josh said they are flexible with their open adoption arrangement and will adjust the meetings and communication in their daughter’s best interests, as she grows.
Birth Dad is Involved, Too
Josh and Daigle are building a relationship with their child’s birth mother. They are building one with her birth father, as well.
“Both birth parents are involved. They are amazing people, truly. We have come to respect and admire each of them and what they have achieved since they chose us to parent,” Josh explained.
“Our relationship is developing naturally through every text and meet up. Our relationship keeps growing and becoming so much more and we are both glad our daughter gets to see that.
Keeping it Open and Honest
Josh and Daigle have completely embraced the open adoption arrangement. They practice what Adoptions With Love recommends to adoptive parents: Communicate early and often with the child about their adoption story.
“Our daughter’s adoption story is like any other memory or experience she has in her life. We explain, age appropriately, how she came to be and how she ended up as our daughter,” Josh explained.
“To help with this we have created a box of everything we have collected from the beginning. We have our profile book that her birth parents saw before we met. We have all the letters and correspondents throughout the process. We have all her medical information from the beginning in case she wants to know what time she was born or how much she weighed.
“We have pictures and memories written down so she will know what we were all feeling the exact moments throughout her journey before she was able to understand and comprehend for herself. We have photos of her birth family, and she has access to it and when she grabs it, we answer questions about each of them. Her birth mom wrote everyone’s names and who they were to her so we know and can relay that to our daughter. It will never be a surprise and last minute after thought on where and how she came to be with us.”
Hopes for the Future
Josh and Daigle have been very thoughtful about their open adoption plan and how it will impact their daughter.
“We hope, hope, HOPE it is a positive pathway for our daughter with our decision on the openness we are having,” said Josh.
“We hope that she will see that we had no ill intent and that we chose things before she had the voice to help manage an openness that would continue once she is able to let us know what she would like to do moving forward. So far, the openness has been great. We are still going with the flow and feel it is still super positive for our daughter.”
The couple is also hopeful that their growing relationship with the birth parents will continue to help guide them along the way.
“Our daughter is Hispanic, and my husband and I are not…My biggest fear was her birth parents would not want to continue a relationship and we would fumble through her heritage in hopes we were doing our best.
“The openness makes us happy to know we will have them around to help when our daughter has questions we are unable to answer. At this point the relationship is helping naturally. We understand that as our daughter ages, she will have more questions and want to understand more about her story. It was important to have everyone involved in her story to be around in some way for her to understand. We are so glad [about] this and look forward to what the future brings.”
Advice for Adoptive Families
When it comes to advice for other adoptive parents or those considering open adoption, Josh had this to say:
“Our only advice is to be open. It is harder to open a door that was never opened in the first place. Do what is best for you and your family and if you are considering open adoption and it is safe to do so just remember it can and likely will have a healthy and positive impact on your adopted child.”
Working with Adoptions With Love
It is important, when planning an adoption, to work with a reputable adoption agency. When asked about their experience working with Adoptions With Love, Josh described it as:
“AMAZING. They have been around [for] a long time. That told us they knew what they were doing, and they did it well. We were not disappointed. Before we went back to AWL for our second adoption, we asked our daughter’s birth mom [about] her experience and because of her personal response that is why we came back to AWL for a second time.”
Happy Father’s Day to Josh, Daigle, and all the other dads out there! Whether you are looking to adopt or place your child for adoption, you deserve to celebrate. Learn more about adoption. Contact Adoptions With Love 24/7 at 800-722-7731 or visit us online.