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Wheaton adoption lawyerAdoption is a beautiful gift that allows a child to have the safe, loving family he or she deserves. If you and your family are considering adopting a child, you likely have a myriad of questions about the process. One issue you may be thinking about is whether or not to have an open adoption. In an open adoption, the adopted child’s biological parent(s) continue to have contact with the child. The communication between the biological parents and the child may involve anything from a few letters or emails a year to frequent in-person contact.

Advantages and Disadvantages of an Open Adoption

In a closed adoption, the biological parents do not communicate with their child or the adoptive parents once the adoption is finalized. In an open adoption, the biological parents continue to have some degree of contact with the child. There are certainly benefits to open adoption. The child may feel more secure and have a better sense of identity. The adoptive parents can benefit from the biological parents’ support and friendship as well as the ability to ask the biological parents questions about their family medical history. However, having an open adoption can also be tricky to navigate. The biological parents and adoptive parents may not see eye to eye about the child’s education, extracurricular activities, religion, or overall upbringing. Honest communication and firm boundaries are the keys to successful open adoption.

The Child’s Best Interests Must Come First

There are many different reasons why a child may be placed for adoption. In some cases, the child’s biological parents realize that they are incapable of adequately caring for the child. Other times, the child is removed from the home because the parents were abusive, neglectful, suffered from substance abuse addiction, or were otherwise a risk of harm to the child. The most important factor to consider when deciding the level of involvement the biological parents should have in the child’s life is the child’s best interests. If the child’s mental or physical well-being could be harmed by spending time with his or her biological parents, it may be best to limit the biological parents’ degree of participation in his or her life.

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Parents who wish to divorce often grapple with the idea of moving forward. This conflict often comes from fears about how their children will fare during and after the emotional process. A new study on the effect that children may experience after divorce may not ease those concerns, but it does offer some advice on how parents can do things differently. Learn more with help from the following information.

Children Often Internalize Divorce

In an analysis of 10,000 surveys from children and parents of divorce, a child psychologist determined that children often internalize divorce. Many see themselves as the cause of the stress that fractured the relationship between their parents and often lie about their feelings, telling their parents what they want to hear, instead of divulging the truth. Even worse is that approximately 70 percent of children who attended therapy during their parent's divorce felt it had not helped. The study author said this lack of benefit may have been due to a lack of connection between the child and therapist, and may also be attributed to the overall awkwardness of disclosing one's deep, personal information to a stranger.

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In every family law case involving children, the judge is required to make decisions that are in the best interest of the child. The phrase "best interests of the child" can seem vague and difficult to understand. However, when judges are evaluating parenting time and allocation of parental rights options, there are many factors that are always considered.

Factors Judges Consider

The law requires judges examine all the relevant factors when deciding what is in a child's best interest. This gives judges the power to consider almost anything related to the child. Major factors that judges consider when deciding what is in the best interest of the child include:

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The Impact of a Child's Age on Illinois Parenting Time and Parental Responsibility Decisions

DuPage County family law attorney, Illinois parenting timeJudges are required to make decisions in family law cases in the best interests of the children and take into account several different factors. One of the major factors is the age of a child. Children have different needs as they grow up and judges often take those needs into account when making decisions about parenting time and parental responsibilities.

Young Children

Newborns and toddlers require special care and have unique needs that older children do not. If children are still breastfeeding, it is usually going to be in the child's best interest to spend most of his or her time with the mother who is doing the feeding. These young children are particularly vulnerable and need to be in homes where they will be kept away from dangers and will receive the nurture and high-levels of supervision they require.

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