Three women’s lives share a common core: They have all been profoundly affected by adoption. Karen (Annette Bening) had a baby at 14, gave her up at birth, and has been haunted ever since by the daughter she never knew. Elizabeth (Naomi Watts) grew up as an adopted child; she’s a bright and ambitious lawyer, but a flinty loner in her personal life. Lucy (Kerry Washington) is just embarking with her husband on the adoption odyssey, looking for a baby to become their own. Though Karen and Elizabeth are strangers to each other, they both struggle with the past’s emotional repercussions. The same unanswered questions resonate for both these women: Who was that absent daughter or mother? Would trying to find her be a mistake? Can forgiveness be sought or given? For Lucy, who longs to be a mother, adoption is both a great hope and a scary leap of faith. The men in their lives offer support (and, in one instance, disappointment). With both humor and pathos, Mother and Child reveals the emotional complexity of families lost and found.