Affirming the Hurt Adoptee’s Reality

by Gregory C. Keck, PhD The trauma of hurt children who go into adoptive homes is often so dramatic that the adults involved in the situation cannot deal with it. I believe that is why parents and social workers focus too much on what few “positives” there are about hurtful birth parents, and inadvertently minimize the truth for the child. Time after time, I see nicely constructed lifebooks with nice pictures of people from the child’s early life. That’s fine – especially if one is trying to create good feelings. However, the stark reality is that if everyone at home was always smiling around the birthday cake or playing nicely

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Adoptive Parent Preparation

Adoptive Parent Prep begins with the realization that moms and dads can proactively plan to help their adopted children transition into the family with a little upfront advice from adoption professionals and experienced parents. Making educated choices about building a family via adoption means investigating the pros and cons of domestic and international adoption, understanding the ramifications of adopting an older child, special needs child or sibling group, and accepting what it may require to become a multiracial family. Planning ‘how’ to parent is as important as choosing a program or compiling a dossier. Adoptive parent expectations may be based on a long-held dream, but living with a child who

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Adoption Awareness: Handling Awkward Adoption Questions and Comments

Text and Illustrations by Christine Mitchell, Written for and Published by Tapestry Books Adoption Questions and Comments are Virtually Inevitable Five-year old Ryan was inconsolable after his cousin, Marissa, exclaimed that his mother wasn’t his real mom because he had been adopted. Ryan’s mother, Natalie, explained to Marissa and Ryan that she is his real mom, because she is the one raising him. Nevertheless, Natalie noticed that her son was hostile to her over the next few days, and she felt sure it was connected to Marissa’s comment. She decided to talk with Ryan about how he was feeling. When Camilla’s friend, Trevor, asked why she had been adopted, she

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A Better Life

by Chris Winston A Meaningful Meeting On November 30, 2002, I was given the wonderful opportunity of meeting Gwang Moon Na in Mokpo, Korea. I had asked to meet a young man who had grown up in a Korean orphanage and was willing to share his story. Gwang Moon did so readily. Gwang Moon and my son, Korean name Sang Moon, share part of their name in the way that Korean brother’s share a name. They also share having spent time in a Korean orphanage – my son only for 2 1/2 years, Gwang Moon for much longer. They are not brothers by birth or adoption and have never met

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“You Aren’t My Real Parent”…And Other Joys of Parenting Adopted Teenagers

by Regina M. Kupecky, LSW Many parents have explained adoption to their children in developmentally congruent ways while the children are young and find little conflict. Relieved that the task of “telling “went so well the topic is sometimes put away. When parents were adopting their interest in adoption was very high, but as the years go by the topic usually becomes less important to the adults as the child becomes their child. Adoption is talked about less often. Conversely the infant has little cognitive awareness of adoption but as they grow older may have more questions and feel unable to bring them up. Suddenly in the teen years parents

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