Giving a child up for adoption is one of the most difficult and heart-wrenching acts a mother can face. However, young mothers, or those who find themselves facing too many hardships, often feel that they are unable to provide their children with the life each child deserves. As such, they opt to give their babies up for adoption in the hope that the babies will be raised by loving families.
However, giving a baby up does not break the maternal bond a mother will always have for her child. Over the years, this love, coupled with curiosity and a range of other emotions, often drives mothers to search for their lost children in the hope of reconnecting and learning that they had made the right decision.
Finding a child that has been given up for adoption, many years after the adoption has taken place, is not a simple task. Most countries have strict laws to protect the identities of adopted children and the families that adopted them. In many cases, it is up to the child to find his or her birth mother by accessing the adoption file at the adoption agency. In general, most laws rule that this can be done only when the child reaches age 18.
Furthermore, each country has different laws and agencies that govern the rules and processes of finding out the whereabouts of a child that has been adopted. In the United Kingdom, for example, a new act allows parents and/or relatives of the adopted child to access birth records and identifying information, at the discretion of the adopting agency, under the guidance of an independent review panel, and only if the information is to the benefit of all those involved, especially the child. Like all searches today, the best place to start is the Internet. Searching for the laws that govern the access of information, in addition to the plethora of organizations and Web sites dedicated to finding adopted children, is a good starting point.