Category Archives: Open Adoption

The Adoption Split in “This Is Us” & How to Help Heal It

Did you tune in to NBC’s This Is Us last week? Randall brings up the Adoption Split.

And with this meme I reiterate a remedy I often talk about: openness. It’s with openness (not necessarily contact) that the grownups in an adoption can help their child integrate and heal.

randall on the adoption splitRandall Pearson, a transracial adoptee on the show, says, “My whole childhood I felt split. There were these people I lived with and then there were my birth parents who I never met. But I thought about them all the time…like a ringing in my ears. It quiets down sometimes…but then there are sometimes where it’s so loud.”

How to Help Heal the Adoption Split

The premise of my book is this: “Adoption creates a split between a person’s biology and their biography. Openness is a way to heal that split.”

Now. Who’s going to send a copy to Rebecca? (Randall’s fictional adoptive mom.)

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

 

4 Problems with NBC TODAY Parents Adoption Article

Beware any article that paints open adoption as terrible. Beware any article that paints open adoption as wonderful. Open adoption — which occurs when people come together under less-than-optimal circumstances — is a mix of the sublime and the sorrowful.

I was encouraged when I saw a headline for a TODAY Parents article: “Open Adoption is not something to fear.” That statement, I believe, is true. If parents are entering into the lifelong responsibility of adopting a child, they need to be willing and able to give her, over her lifetime, all she needs to become whole and integrated. This means adoptive parents must be willing to identify and resolve their own fears and insecurities  about not being the Only in their child’s life. (As the author says, she was “scared to death” about having to share her child. But she worked through that fear, as adoptive parents need to do).

So I’m on board with the title.  But much of what comes after that is problematic. Here are the top 4 issues that jump out at me.

4 problems with today parents adoption article

1. The Word “Our”

The article’s subheading “Finding Our Birth Mom” violates two oft-invoked rules in cross-triad groups, groups that seek to understand the perspectives of adoptees, birth parents, and adoptive parents.

Continue reading 4 Problems with NBC TODAY Parents Adoption Article

Update: the Mom Whose Son Left to Live with Birth Mom

A year ago I published a letter from Charlene that explained her son had found his birth mother and they had all attended his college graduation. The reunion had gone so well that the son had decided to move to another state to live with his birth mom and get to know his biological family.

Charlene was happy for her son, yet also had many other emotions and was feeling confused by their coexistence.

That post resulted in a lively and helpful discussion. Charlene wrote in this week with an update, and she doesn’t mind that I share it with you. We both feel there is value in seeing what happens when a person has no choice but to trust the process (well, I suppose you can fight the process, but in adoption that rarely ends well).

adoption reunion live with birth mom

Continue reading Update: the Mom Whose Son Left to Live with Birth Mom

9 Tips to Long Term Success in Parenting Through Adoption

Technically, the title is “9 Steps to Long Term Success in Parenting Through Embryo Adoption.” But practically, this webinar applies to parenting through adoption of other types: traditional, international, foster, open, as well as other third party reproduction methods like donor egg, donor sperm, donor embryo.

And closed. This message is especially for people inclined to choose a closed adoption.

adoption webinarThrough the Embryo Adoption Awareness Center, I delivered a webinar recently, available to you for free. Its description:

Many couples worry about how they will handle some of the big moments when parenting a child that came to them through embryo adoption. How they tell the story over time? Will they be able to answer questions that come up? How will they navigate things if their child asks if they can meet biological siblings? Join Lori Holden as she shares tips for long term success with an embryo adoption regardless of the level of ongoing contact you have with the placing family.

Cliff Notes for “9 Tips to Parenting Through Adoption”

Here’s a cheat sheet. Tune in to get explanations and details. Continue reading 9 Tips to Long Term Success in Parenting Through Adoption