Me: Hi my name is Amy. What brings you here today?
Idelle: Hi, my name is Idelle and I want to know about adoption.
Me: What have you heard about adoption? What are the good and bad things you have heard?
Idelle: I have not heard anything about adoption.
Me: Ok, since you have not heard anything about adoption, I will explain the three different types. Open, Semi-Open, and Closed.
Me: Closed is when the child and birthparent have no idea who each other are. the child grows up not knowing anything about the birthparent. Semi-open is when the birth parent has limitations on contact with the child. Open adoption is probably the best option for all parties involved. The child, birth parent, and adoptive parents all have open contact from the get go.
Me: Do you have any questions for me?
Idelle: no. I was just curious.
Me: Are you the one who is pregnant or are you inquiring for someone else?
Idelle: Not for me, but my daughter who is 25 and pregnant.
Me: Do you think your daughter would be open to coming in to talk with me?
Idelle: Probably not because of the situation of how she became pregnant.
Me: Ok, thanks for letting me know.
End of role play.
At this time my professor reflected on the role play. She asked me, "do you think you were trying to tell your client that Open Adoption is the BEST way for everyone?" "Do you think that you were 'selling' open adoption to your client?" I said, "i do not think i was selling open adoption. i envisioned myself sitting in an open adoption agency. therefore open adoption agencies advocate for open adoptions, but it is the choice of the birth parent of what level of openness she wants with her child." I also had red flags go up when the client told me that she was inquiring for her daughter who as 25, and yet the daughter didn't want to come in due to the way of how she became pregnant. I was thinking, "Why is the mother coming in?? What is the real reason of why the daughter is not coming in? Is the client not wanting her daughter to be a mom?" I know that all of these questions would come in later with answers.
Ever since my professor asked me if i was "selling" open adoption, it got me thinking. Were all of us open adoption birthmothers sold to choose open adoption?? I personally do not think I was. I knew walking into the agency doors that the agency does open adoptions. I did my homework before entering the agency. So here are my questions that I need to ask about. "How does a social worker phrase things in a way that don't sound to be 'sold'? How does one learn to not pass judgement on a mother just coming into the office and inquiring about the different types of adoption?"
I know that I have a lot to learn. :)