How to Make Room for a Child By Dealing with Infertility Grief

Q: With your own parents, how do you think writing, or some sort of grief clearing, would have served you as their daughter?

Anne: It would have felt like I was driving a car that the windshield had been cleaned, instead of driving a car with a really dirty windshield and always having to focus on the dirt.

Anne Heffron, adoptee,
in Ep 206 of Adoption: The Long View

No baby should be born with a job, as Dr Phil has said (yup, he’s more entertainer than therapist, just like Dr Laura, but in this case it is good advice). It’s just too much to expect a baby to fix anything — a relationship, a heart, a life.

But many people come to infant adoption after experiencing infertility and enduring some sort of loss. They might think that finally getting a baby and filling their empty arms will heal all the hurt.

And it does heal some of the hurt. Adopting a baby does resolve parenting, but it does nothing to address the wounds of infertility, which can be deep and enduring.

Grief doesn’t go away on its own; it needs to be addressed and processed. But how?

↑ Listen right here! ↑

This month’s guest for Episode 206 of Adoption: The Long View is an expert on one way to process and possibly even release big emotions like grief. Anne Heffron is the daughter of parents who hadn’t worked through their feelings of inadequacy and insecurity, who hadn’t resolved their own losses prior to adopting their three children. Parents who couldn’t talk about adoption when Anne tried to bring it up with them.

Anne wrote through her own big emotions one summer a few years ago, resulting in her memoir You Don’t Look Adopted. Since then, her Write or Die! method has had a profound impact helping people heal their wounded places and make way for their next chapter.

Continue reading How to Make Room for a Child By Dealing with Infertility Grief

Two Ways to Adopt a…Kidney?

Act I

Need a Kidney: Scene 1

Cam and Jordan are living their best lives, except for one thing: Cam needs a kidney, and Jordan is determined to help him get one. Their plan:

  • Find a kidney. Maybe there’s someone out there who needs $ more than they need a kidney.
  • Do an Internet search to find a kidney broker, someone who can help find a kidney.
  • Oh, looky! Here’s a consultant who shows up at the top of the Google search! (We don’t even wanna know how much money it cost to get there!)
  • Hire a kidney consultant to help broker us a kidney.
  • The kidney might be in another locale that is more friendly about this type of thing. Some locales have more rules about this than others. We wouldn’t want the kidney holder to back out once the agreement is made. We need a kidney-friendly locale with laws that are on our side, and the consultant can help us with that.
  • Get that kidney installed in Cam and live happily ever after.
Continue reading Two Ways to Adopt a…Kidney?

Ditch the Pitchforks. The Problem is She Revealed the Truth.

A few weeks ago, the “world’s most-used adoption site,” the “largest online adoption community,” the “most-read publisher of adoption articles, videos and other content” published an article titled The Baby Bust: Why Are There No Infants to Adopt?

A few days ago, the article became a topic of discussion in two of my cross-triad adoption groups.

Homes for Babies? Or Babies for Homes?

The article probably meant to explain the current baby bust and advise potential adoptive parents what to do about it. If adoption is about finding babies for homes, then perhaps the article met its mark.

But among those who believe adoption should be about finding homes for babies, the article incited quite a furor. The article has been taken down, but here are some passages to illustrate why it was so inflammatory.

Short Supply

The author, herself an adoption attorney, outlined the market forces that make it very difficult for prospective adoptive parents to find a baby.

From time to time, consumers find certain items in short supply. For example, at the beginning of the pandemic, cleaning supplies and toilet paper were hard-to-find products. In recent years, prospective adoptive parents have realized that infants to adopt are available in increasingly limited quantities.

Is adoption about finding homes for babies or babies for homes? When the system is based on supply and demand, we commodify babies.

Readers were incensed at the comparison of toilet paper and humans. Why did the author do that? I suspect it was not to put babies on par with the lowest of paper goods, but rather to elicit the feelings of desperation we all had for toilet paper a year ago, and how we had to wait for supply to catch up with demand.

Continue reading Ditch the Pitchforks. The Problem is She Revealed the Truth.

adoption, parenting, mindfulness, open adoption