Nobody Told Us
Have you heard this from a birth parent?
- No one told me it would hurt this much for this long.
- No one told me how much I would see myself in my child.
- No one told me how my feelings would fluctuate over time.
- They told me about open adoption, but no one told me how hard it would be to navigate these relationships and feelings.
Or this from an adoptive parent?
- Wasn’t it supposed to be easy if we adopted at birth? No one told us there could still be issues of loss and grief.
- No one told me how much I would want my child to have his/her whole story.
- No one told me parenting by adoption would be different from parenting by biology. In fact, we were told the opposite, that it was exactly the same.
- No one told me I would be open to so many people loving this child.
Continue reading #NotInTheBrochure: A Plan to Make Adoption World Better
Question: I just read your article and am an adoptive mom to a beautiful 10 month old boy named Quinton. We have a good relationship with the birth parents and have stayed connected though we reside across the country from them.
We tell almost everyone that Quinton is adopted, often because people exclaim how much he looks like both me and my husband. We feel no shame and only gratitude and pride in and for this beautiful child. But your article gave me pause — is this not my story to tell? Are you saying we should let him reveal that he was adopted to who he wants to rather than us telling them before he’s even ready to understand?
We believe so strongly in the concept of open adoption, that it is better for everyone involved if he grows up without a secret and knowing that we ALL made a loving choice for him to be raised by us.
But I see how this could be seen as me telling his story rather than my own. I mean, it is my story, too, but it certainly isn’t mine alone.
Continue reading Where is the Oversharing Line in Our Adoption Stories?
The Winter/Spring issue of Pathway 2 Family is out. The magazine’s target market isn’t people considering traditional adoption, but those considering embryo adoption*. The issue contains an article I wrote about the consequences of openness in adoption. Here’s an excerpt and a link to the issue (read for free). Continue reading Consequences of Openness in Adoption
If you’re interested in adoption issues and able to be in the Cleveland area the weekend of March 18-20, you’ll want to know about the Annual Adoption Gathering hosted by Adoption Network Cleveland. Coinciding with the first anniversary of this, ANC offers this:
From Adoption Network Cleveland’s Open Invitation:
The Ohio adoption community has experienced a transformative year since Ohio’s Opening Day. Please join us Friday, March 18 through Sunday, March 20, 2016 as we continue our journey together, to celebrate, discuss, process, grieve, and commune with others.
Where: DoubleTree in Westlake (1100 Crocker Road, Westlake, OH 44145) Rooms are at the group rate of $99/night. The hotel has a free airport shuttle for guests.
What: A conference to facilitate conversations about adoption that will be shaped and driven by its participants. After the tremendous outpouring of interest, support, and participation surrounding the implementation of Ohio adoptees’ right to access their original birth records in March of 2015, Adoption Network Cleveland recognized the enormous need to continue fostering the community that organically developed among Ohio adoptees near and far. This conference is an outcropping and continuation of the conversations that originated in the aftermath of last year’s monumental events.
There are nine breakout sessions and two award-winning theatrical presentations from New York City. Other highlights include filmmaker Jean Strauss and footage from last year’s Ohio opening day events, Six-Word Stories from adoptees and found birth family members, and a time for sharing with an open mic.
Event hashtags are #OHadopteesSOAR (SOAR = Success Opening Adoptees’ Records) and #Journey2Unite16.
Click to register. Get an early bird rate – $100 for Adoption Network Cleveland members and $135 for non-members – by registering before February 5, 2016.