Counselling for Birth Parents and Birth Relatives

PAC-UK provides a range of support for birth parents and birth relatives of adopted children, and now adult adopted children.

A specialist counselling service

In the past adoption was often considered a solution for children whose mothers were unmarried, or for children whose birth parents were unable to raise them for a wide range of reasons, and then chose adoption for them. Nowadays adoption within the UK is mostly considered for children whose birth families have struggled to provide a safe home for their children. For some children who cannot be raised by their birth families other forms of permanent placement are thought to be preferable.

Whatever the reasons and events that led to a child's adoption or permanent placement, the loss of their child often affects birth parents, and in particular birth mothers, in an intense and ongoing way. Other birth relatives may be affected too. Where a reunion or contact with an adopted child is a possibility, some additional and complex matters may arise. Birth parents and birth relatives often need specialist counselling to support them with all these issues. This is where PAC-UK can help. Please feel welcome to contact us with any concern you may have, whether or not they are listed on this site.

Frequent reasons for seeking counselling

There are many different reasons for seeking counselling, these may include:

  • emotional distress
  • ongoing feelings of loss and grief
  • longing to re-establish contact with adopted or permanently placed child
  • telling subsequent children
  • questions around tracing now adult adopted child
  • unexpected contact from grown-up daughter or son
  • managing reunion and subsequent relationship with now adult adopted son or daughter

Services we offer

Advice Line (London office): 020 7284 5879

Our London office based telephone advice line is open Monday, Tuesday and Friday 10.00am-4.00pm, Wednesday and Thursday 2.00pm-7.30pm (excluding bank holidays).

Advice Line (Leeds office): 0113 230 2100

Our Leeds office based telephone advice line is open Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday 10.00am-1.00pm, Wednesday 4.00pm-7.00pm (excluding bank holidays).

Face-to-Face Counselling

Counselling is likely to be short term (usually up to six sessions). The first session serves as an assessment allowing you and the counsellor to clarify your needs. Consideration will be given to a stated preference regarding gender and ethnicity of the counsellor.

Telephone Counselling

Formal telephone counselling sessions can be arranged. An initial face-to-face session is recommended.

Intermediary Service

This service offers preparation for possible contact and/or reunion with a now adult adopted son or daughter, as well as initiation of contact with them, in accordance with relevant legislation.


A drop-in group for birth mothers takes place every two weeks at our premises at Kentish Town, London.  Other groups are time-limited and are offered at a particular time of the year.


Face-to-face services take place at PAC-UK’s premises in London and Leeds, as well as at a number of monthly outreach surgeries in boroughs around the country. Please contact us for details


Please contact us for information on fees.

Our aims

We aim to provide a safe space where any issue related to adoption/permanent placement can be explored. We also endeavour to actively help with processing intense feelings and identifying coping strategies. Careful preparation, support and guidance with regard to the many issues around contact with adopted son or daughter are sought out at all times.

Our counsellors are

  • qualified
  • experienced
  • multi-disciplinary
  • multi-cultural/multi-racial
  • experienced in working with diversity

Further information

PAC-UK General Leaflet London
PAC-UK General Leaflet Leeds