Category Archives: Adoptive parenting

What Do I Do When She Lies to My Face?

open adoption adviceQuestion:  Our son’s birth mom has been telling lies about what happens at visits. She said we didn’t let our our 3 year-old open his Christmas gifts from her. He opened them right in front of her! (He was running around not really focusing on any one present). She also lied and said that we’ve cancelled previous visits and came up with excuses for not seeing her, neither of which are true.

This has become a nightmare. She’s cut us off, which is fine with us because we’re not crazy about having contact with someone who lies to our face. This isn’t what we thought open adoption would be.  — Jessica

Jessica’s initial message led to further email conversations.

Take Out The Adoption Charge

Hi, Jessica. I’m curious. How would you handle a similar situation if this behavior were coming from your sister or mother-in-law? If you think of it this way, you can distill your response to her behavior from the any emotions you may have around your connection with her via adoption (which can be highly-charged).

Continue reading What Do I Do When She Lies to My Face?

How to Have Openness in a Foster Adoption

open adoption adviceQuestion: Can you talk about open adoption for foster kids who have been abused? We are about to adopt Daughter through foster care and there has been severe and repeated abuse. Birth Dad was the abuser and is in jail for it, and we’re not sure how to proceed with Birth Mom. By court order, Daughter hasn’t seen her in months, possibly a year by the time the adoption is final. I’m concerned about Birth Mom’s lack of understanding of the severity of the situation and her lack of concern for the safety and welfare of Daughter.      — Kate

Guest advising today is Addison Cooper, LCSW, of Adoption at the Movies. Addison is a supervising social worker for a foster care/adoption agency, and he lives in Southern California.

Safety First

Dear Kate: It’s wonderful that you’re starting from a position of wanting to be open. In any adoption, the ideal and desired outcome is a healthy openness — to the degree possible. Continue reading How to Have Openness in a Foster Adoption

Does Open Adoption Work?

My last post touched on the debate spurred by publicity for Amy Seek’s new memoir, God and Jetfire: Confessions of a Birth Mother. I started with a courtroom scene but decided to go this route instead. (You don’t have to have read that book to get this post.)

Rorschach Test

I see the debate about God and Jetfire as a sort of Rorschach test — people see in it what they bring to it. If you think adoption is a blessing, you think Amy Seek was brave. If you see adoption as abhorrent, you think Amy Seek made an unnatural choice and that she’s paid the consequences through regret over the years.

does open adoption work? it's a rorschach test.

And if you see adoption as infinitely complex, Continue reading Does Open Adoption Work?

Open Adoption on Trial: Amy Seek’s “God and Jetfire”

Note: Though tempting, please do not comment on the headline only, without reading the full post.

Recent publicity for Amy Seek’s new memoir, God and Jetfire: Confessions of a Birth Mother seems to have put open adoption on trial.

Amy Seek, a landscape architect and writer living in London, gives readers an account of her unintended pregnancy 15 years ago, her selection of parents for her son, and the complex — even competing — emotions she experienced during and after placement with her son and with his adoptive parents.

At first I’d envisioned this post with a courtroom-type presentation of the two sides. It might start something like this.

amy seek's god and jetfire: open adoption on trial

Amy Seek’s Vogue Article: Defending Open Adoption

Court is now in session *gaveltap*. The defense may present its case [we switch things up around here].

Defense: Your honor, we call  the first witness —  a Vogue article, adapted from God and Jetfire — titled  “One Writer on Helping to Raise Her Son in an ‘Open’ Adoption.” Continue reading Open Adoption on Trial: Amy Seek’s “God and Jetfire”