It takes a strong back and a soft front to face the world.
— Roshi Joan Halifax, Zen teacher,
as quoted by NYT best-selling author
Elizabeth Lesser in Cassandra Speaks
and by Brené Brown, PhD on Unlocking Us —
And, I submit, to cultivate an vibrant and effective open adoption — as you’ll discover with this latest episode of Adoption: The Long View.
Three things converged as I prepared for this episode.
First, The Talk
I interviewed Kim Court, a birth mom who placed her son for adoption in 1988, and Linda Marie Mueller, who became an adoptive mom to a son in 1992. Both are my friends, and I have long wondered how each of them figured out how to create a healthy open adoption way back in its early days, before practically anyone else was doing it and before there was much guidance on it.
Prefer to read Episode 10? Here’s a transcript (but listening is so much better).
Continue reading Strong Back, Soft Front, Wild Heart: Two Open Adoption Pioneers on Figuring it Out
I was surprised at how much positive shift there was in families’ approaches and beliefs about open adoption. That gave me hope that adoptive parents can change and adapt. They come to see the birth family as human beings, and they’ve developed empathy for people who they may have been fearful of.
They might have initially approached theoretical birth parents with suspicion or fear.
But they open up and grow.
— Abbie Goldberg, PhD,
Professor of Psychology and
Director of Women’s and Gender Studies
at Clark University, —
Abbie Goldberg, PhD, on How Adoptive Families Evolve Over Time
In this new podcast episode of Adoption: The Long View, Abbie Goldberg, PhD, tells us
Continue reading Abbie Goldberg, PhD: What New Research Reveals about Adoptive Families
- how families tend to change over time regarding openness;
- how their level of openness/closedness impacts their children;
- the role of adoption agencies in setting expectations on both sides;
- and other wisdom gleaned from 15 years of following adoptive families.
No one ever sat with me and said,
“filling the crib is not going to cure your infertility,
it’s not going to fill the hole in your heart.”
I thought that if I just filled the crib, if I became a mom,
I wouldn’t have any more grief and loss.
And now I often tell others:
If you’re adopting that child to heal your heart,
that’s a pretty dang big job to put on a baby.
— Rebecca Vahle, adoptive mom,
Angel in Adoption®,
hospital-based adoption liaison (the first in the country),
and champion of HR3690 —
Walking with Hundreds & Talking with Thousands
In this new podcast episode of Adoption: The Long View, Rebecca Vahle shares stories of adoption and parenting from multiple — and I mean MULTIPLE — perspectives. She has an uncommon experience both deep and wide, as she’s walked and talked these difficult paths with hundreds of patients and thousands of healthcare professionals. Rebecca is now actively involved in a bipartisan bill, now working its way through Congress. It’s a pro-education bill that can improve adoption in so many ways and for so many affected. She explains how this new bill would bring standardization and a focus on ethics while housing it in the realm of healthcare.
Continue reading Improve Adoption Now: Rebecca Vahle on the Intersection of Unplanned Pregnancy & Infertility