In previous decades, adoption was often shrouded in secrecy. Birth mothers often did not know who was adopting their children, and the adoptive parents and children in turn usually had no contact with birth mothers. That's not the case today.
Although closed adoptions do still exist, many more children are placed in families through open adoptions, although estimates vary. One study found that 95 percent of 4,440 adoptions over a two-year period had some level of contact between parties. A 2007-2008 study by the National Survey of Adoptive Parents found that 68 percent of people surveyed had contact between children and family birth members.