Good News for Missouri Adoptees

As of last Sunday adults who were adopted in Missouri are able to learn the identify (name, date of birth, place of birth, and last known address) of their birth parents if the biological parent authorizes the information to be released.

You can read the news article from the Missourian here.

Before Sunday, permission had to be obtained from both the biological and adoptive parents before the identifying information would be released and if the biological parents were deceased the records would be sealed.

Imagine if you had to get permission from your parents to do anything once you were legally considered to be an adult. Absurd, isn’t it? This new law is indeed progress toward treating adopted adults like adults and not children.

I have all of the identifying information about my own birth parents and recently I made inquiries to see if I could obtain a copy of my own original birth certificate (OBC) from Saskatchewan where I was adopted. The answer is complicated as both of my birth parents have deceased; in order to obtain a copy of my OBC I need to have permission granted from another relative like a sibling of my birth parents, which is also complicated since they have all deceased as well.

Continuing on down the family line: I am in contact with a distant cousin on my mother’s side and my sister on my father’s side so receiving “permission” is not impossible, but I have to confess that the idea of obtaining “permission” to have my own birth certificate is very distasteful to me. I’m not yet sure if I will pursue it.

I’m celebrating for the adult adoptees in Missouri today. It’s one more step toward transparency and honesty in the adoption climate.


I’m a writer, reader, and creative. I thought by now I’d have things figured out, but I keep coming up with more questions. I think that’s okay. I’m here most mornings pondering ordinary things.
  1. Your post today, Linda, made me realize, once again, just how little I know of the lives of others. Nothing about adoption really. Nothing about searching for and finding–or not finding–biological parents.
    Nothing about needing permission to do so. Nothing about having to be grateful for a law that recognizes a right. Thank you for drawing my attention to all this. Peace.

  2. […] Read More from original source- Good News for Missouri Adoptees […]

  3. I hope that you will find that birth certificate. I know how precious my own is, and how much of the world in which I was born is reflected therein. You are right about being treated like an adult instead of a child. I agree with Dee: thanks for bringing this to my attention

  4. Part of the reason why I write about adoption is to increase awareness. I’m happy to hear that is happening!

  5. Linda, what great news. I’ve adopted two kids and our adoptions were “open” (sort of), so we don’t have this kind of issue. I have been really happy the way it has worked out for us. Our kids are still too young to understand much of it but with our oldest as questions arise we have all the info on hand as it becomes necessary.

    I asked a lot of adopted adults for their advice when we were adopting about they would have liked to been told about being adopted and every single one I talked to said they would have liked for it to just always be part of the conversation from day 1.

    I love the open adoption process. I know it might not work for everyone but I think it is very helpful for the children.

  6. Linda,
    Thanks for sharing this update. It is encouraging for all adoptees to be able to search for their roots without being encumbered by all those restrictions. As I have shared with you in the past, my ex-husband and father of my children was adopted at 6 weeks and within the past few years discovered just the names of his biological parents as well as his birth name. Even though he has not pursued it any further, somehow just that bit of information was freeing to him and even to me. It is so important to know where we come from and I applaud you for your tireless efforts to share your experience. In doing so, you open the door for others. You have a very important story to tell.
    Write On!

  7. Wow. It’s bizarre that you once had to have that sort of permission to obtain your own birth certificate! I’m glad to hear that law is being changed.

  8. One small step at a time. It’s pretty interesting how stone-ages the laws around adoption still seem to be. I hope you’ll persist in your attempts to get your birth certificate – for your own need as well as for the light your journey provides for us all.

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