parenting adopted teen

Regarding Anti-Adoptionists & Teenagers

Who is Anti-Adoption and What Can We Learn from Them?

If you’ve ever been in a cross-triad adoption group, you’ve probably encountered someone who seems vehemently, angrily, staunchly anti-adoption. Some say there is NO circumstance in which adoption is called for. It’s just that devastating, that inhumane, that unnecessary.

parenting adopted teen

When coming across such a tirade, you probably think that the rational choices would be to 1) engage to tell that wackadoo all the reasons she’s wrong, or 2) click the red X on the window before any of the venom burns your eyes, your heart.

Surely there is no value at all in reading such vitriol.

Is there?         ==> Continue reading at the source ==>

I wrote a post for Adoptimist recently that I think is important, so if you haven’t already seen it, please click over. I invite you to come back here and respectfully tell me your thoughts ( no comments section there). 


Helping Your Teen Develop Their Identity

This Thursday I’m presenting a webinar for the Embryo Adoption Awareness Center on how to have the hard talks about adoption — traditional, embryo, or even donor egg or donor sperm. The webinar is free and will be archived and available sometime after the live event.

Don’t let the title deter you. Even if you’re not yet thinking about parenting teens, we’ll cover information you might want to start thinking about.

8 Concepts; 2 Dreaded Questions

From the webinar host’s website:

It is a vital part of an adopted child’s identity to be told how they came to your family. Most parents with embryo adopted children agree that the real conversations about how they came to you happen in pieces, small moments, and spontaneous questions. Children will learn their story and gain a better understanding about their origins over years, as they put their puzzle pieces together.

Join us as Lori Holden, reviews 8 concepts to consider as you prepare to parent an adopted teen (even if you don’t have one yet). Gain insight from the experiences of multiple families that adopted embryos years ago and now have teenagers themselves.

Especially if you’re interested in parenting by adoption or third-party reproduction, I hope you’ll tune in. Even if you’re not yet ready to raise teenagers (who is? ever??)


This post is part of #MicroblogMondays? Whazzat? A post that’s not too long. Head to Stirrup Queens to join the fun.

10 thoughts on “Regarding Anti-Adoptionists & Teenagers”

  1. I read through the article about anti-adoption and am thinking about it from my self years ago vs myself today. My self years ago would have been offended because adoption is suppose to be this selfless act. My self today, though, is wondering how advocating for rights is in any way “anti.” Adoption is complex and individualistic. Even when well intentioned, there can be trauma.

    Thank you for the links. And may the webinar be wel attended.

  2. I’ve talked to people who say they would personally never consider adoption, but no one who is flat-out against it. Yikes.

    Also, I was just listening to an episode of the Beautiful Stories from Anonymous People podcast where a woman called in and shared about having found her sperm-donor biological father and 23 (!) of her half-siblings. Some of them have become close and even go on trips together. The bio. dad turns out to be a pretty cool guy, who has embraced this extended family – but I doubt he had any concept of that when he was short on cash and donated in college!

  3. I do think it is helpful to listen to opposing viewpoints, especially when they strike a nerve and cause us discomfort.
    that is when and where we must ask ourselves why there position distresses us. Does it reveal a bias? Or a willingness to views something through a very narrow lens.
    As we listen to understand, what can we learn? Often, we can learn a lot. Sometimes something very important to know even if it makes us uncomfortable. Listening does not require agreement, just a willing ear and open heart. Costs us nothing but our time. And, perhaps, the opening of our minds.

  4. Besides the benefits of introspection when I listen to an opposing viewpoint, I’ve learned so much from the comments that can come afterwards when the communication is online.

    The anonymity of the Internet can enable trolls and bullies, but it also can allow people to search their souls and sort out their thinking in a way that is harder to do in person with someone you might see the next day at the office.

    I’ve been part of internet adoption discussions for more than 20 years now, and the interactions with people whose adoption mileage has varied, sometimes markedly, has been an essential part of my education. I’ve learned to distinguish between “adoption as social policy” and “adoption as part of my family story.” I’ve learned to be less defensive about my own opinions and perspectives. I learned from adults how to listen to and talk with adults about adoption, and now I can use that experience in listening to my adult children.

    1. THIS -> “I’ve learned to distinguish between “adoption as social policy” and “adoption as part of my family story.” ”

      Is something that seems to be the hardest lesson to grasp when adoption is the topic. Two, totally, separate subjects.

      Thank you.

  5. I thank you for opening my eyes to different perspectives in adoption and donor gametes. I feel like being in that uncomfortable place, listening to perspectives not your own and not arguing with them, just hearing what is said and experienced, has been so very valuable. I wouldn’t have opened myself up to reading so much about the birth mother experience and the adoptee experience if not for your posts and links. It gives me a lot of fodder for when people don’t understand all perspectives in adoption — people who think adoption just makes you a parent and you don’t really need to talk about “all that other stuff.” Oh, you do. And I am going to try real hard to tune in for your talk, because I’ll be a heck of a lot older when I parent a teenager, but I teach them every day, and I am afraid…very afraid of having one in my house full time. 🙂 Ha. Seriously, it sounds great.

  6. There is one more group of people made up of mothers of adoption loss, adoptees, adoptive parents and others who see what a little support can do for a mother in a crisis pregnancy.

    These people use the pain that adoption has brought into our lives and channel it to help mothers keep their very wanted infant and help them build up the faith they’ve lost in themselves. Mentor them, help them build a support network and show them how to find resources in their local areas. We may even pay a bill or two while Mom is on maternity leave. Giving her time to focus on her baby, and allowing her to feel the bond they instinctively have.

    Using the grief, anger, frustration, and pain they or their children have been forced to endure due to their “adoption situation” into helping others avoid making a permanent decision at one of the most vulnerable times in her life, and then being there for the family as long as the mother chooses allows this group of people to heal. It gives back the purpose they may have lost when they lost their child, mother, family and other connections that adoption took from them.

    We like to think of it this way:
    Pro-family preservation when possible yes. Pro-mother and child yes. Anti-adoption, I guess it depends on the lens you are looking through, but we say.,

    The thank you’s and the pictures of watching these families as they were meant to be is the band aid to the gaping holes left in the minds, bodies and souls of our group.

    Don’t forget about this group. We are preventing unnecessary adoptions, and everyone should want to do that. Most of our “adoption situations” were so very preventable and totally unnecessary.

  7. I encounter anti-adoption people on the transracial adoption facebook group I’m part of. These are adoptees and first parents. It’s hard to read, but I feel like knowing all the facets of adoption can only help us as a family.

  8. You have such a good heart, and this was so well said. I think you’re right that people on either end of the extreme aren’t telling the whole story. And sometimes listening is the best thing we can do in the moment.

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