How do parents find birthmothers for an open adoption? Here's one unusual way: head over to Facebook.
Staci and Jay Baird are prospective adoptive parents in San Francisco who are using Pinterest, Facebook and Twitter to showcase themselves to birth mothers as a way to find a child and speed up the open adoption process.
Jay said that after facing infertility hardships, he and his wife felt like adoption was, “Just kind of a natural thing to do.” He added, “And I was adopted back in the early ‘80s, when pretty much the whole process was closed, and so I actually don’t know the identities of either of my birth parents.”
The Baird’s website is host to seemingly professionally-staged photographs of the couple and their dog, their personal histories, and even a letter to the prospective birth mother. Staci explained that it was an easy transition to create and maintain all the social media outlets currently in use by the couple.
“I think because it’s part of what I do in my professional life, it was an easy leap to make for me,” she said. “I just felt like it was another marketing campaign and I needed to get on all the social channels. And I knew that would be a great way to spread the word.”
Even though the Bairds are exhausting many social outlets, the heartbreak of having a possible adoption fall through remains equally upsetting each time. Staci said that while they were contacted by two separate women who were interested in a possible adoption, ultimately neither incident led to bringing a child into the Baird’s life, which was extremely disappointing.
However, Staci and Jay are not giving up. They are currently still using an adoption agency, and the addition of using Facebook and Twitter allows Staci to feel like she is doing something proactively. “In some ways,” she said, “this is a little bit therapeutic for me.” The process of sharing and documenting the process, has opened the doors of a community the Bairds might have not been able to connect with otherwise.
Jay added, “It’s kind of like dating in a sense,” referencing the entire search for a birth mother. “We’re just waiting for that right person. That’s why, I think, you know, we like building the Facebook page, because it just allows us to really tell our story and just kind of feel like we have some little knob to twist or something to try and just show people, you know, that we would really be great parents.”