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
You tell a small lie or you keep the truth out of something, and your intention is to go back and tell the truth. But then you forget, or you get comfortable in that missing truth part, and it just gets bigger and grows.
And so it was this energy that was accumulating. Nobody was saying anything about until I was like,
“I can’t do this anymore. I have to tell him.”
— Clemencia Deleon, birth mom in a kinship adoption —
Imagine you are 18 years old and parenting a 4 month old boy, a path you don’t feel prepared for or supported in at all. You have an older half-brother; he and his wife have been struggling to conceive. You end up placing your baby with them in what is agreed to be an open adoption.
But in practice, it’s not open. Sure you have contact at family get-togethers. You get to see him. But years later, his parents have declined to tell him that he was adopted and that you are his birth mom. As he grows older, you are pressed to either stay complicit with this lie of omission, or spill the beans without their permission.
In this new podcast episode of Adoption: The Long View, Clemencia Deleon tells her story of a kinship adoption gone wrong, her quest for emotional intelligence over the years, her moment of truth in finding her voice, and lessons learned to share with you.
Continue reading Clemencia Deleon: Truth-Telling & Emotional Intelligence in a Kinship Adoption