Ok, today’s entry may seem like a rant and if so I apologize at the beginning. When we started the adoption process 12 years ago I was told by a member of my husband’s immediate family that “you can never love an adopted child the same as you can a biological.” When this was said we did not have our kids yet but we were in the process. This particular person thought we were adopting so that we could have the first grandchildren yes she said it. I do not know where this person got their reasoning. We were the … Continue reading

Book Review: Chicken Soup for the Adopted Soul

Published just last year, Chicken Soup for the Adopted Soul is another in the series of “Chicken Soup for the Soul” books which seek to offer comfort and healing to the spirit. As many of you know, the series includes fifty-plus books offering this classic comfort food for the souls of…..couples, single parents, teens, preteens, kids, mothers, scrapbookers, sports fans, brides, shoppers, college students, fishermen, dieters, horse lovers….and more. The series’ founders, Jack Canfield and Mark Victor Hansen, co-edit this volume with LeAnn Thieman, herself an adoptive parent as well as a nurse who was caught up in the Operation … Continue reading

Adoption and Inheritance, Part Two

My last blog addressed the issue of inheritance rights between adopted persons and their adoptive parents and relatives. This blog addresses the issue of inheritance rights between birth parents (and their relatives) and their birth children who were adopted by other families. Bear in mind that these laws apply to the estates of those who die without making out a will specifying who they wish to inherit their assets. As I wrote in the last blog, state laws do change, and I am not an attorney. Much of the facts I use here are taken from the Encyclopedia of Adoption, … Continue reading

Kinship Foster Care

My last two blogs defined kinship adoption and discussed its advantages and disadvantages. This blog is about the related topic of kinship foster care. Some estimates say that nearly half of the children in foster care are living with relatives. This is very hard to measure, as many families may be taking care of grandchildren, nieces or nephews informally. As with kinship adoption, the major advantage of kinship foster care is that the children are with someone familiar instead of being further traumatized or frightened by being placed with strangers. Many children also find living with relatives to be less … Continue reading

Kinship Adoption and Its Advantages

Naturally, all adoptions are about creating real kinship relationships, but the term “kinship adoption” refers to members of the extended birth family assuming a parental role. Most often, the kinship adopter is a grandmother. The next most common kinship adopter is an aunt. (The term kinship adoption is not referring to the common situation of a stepparent adopting his/her partner’s child. This process is usually referred to as “second parent adoption”.) There are many advantages to kinship adoption. The most obvious advantage is that, if the relatives are known to the child, the move will be much less traumatic than … Continue reading

Book Review: The Post-Adoption Blues

The Post-Adoption Blues, subtitled “Concerning the Unforeseen Challenges of Adoption”, is written by a husband and wife team. Dr. John R. Thompson, MD, is a child and adolescent psychiatrist. His wife, Dr. Karen Foli, PhD., is a registered nurse and a medical writer who has written extensively about children with special needs. Together they are the parents of two sons by birth and one daughter by adoption. Their daughter arrived from India at the age of five months. Karen Foli experienced many emotions upon meeting her daughter. These included some emotions which she had never expected, such as guilt, confusion, … Continue reading

Extended Family’s Attitudes about Skin Color

I know a couple of adoptive families who were interested in adopting from Korea, but said their extended families wouldn’t fully accept a child of color and that wouldn’t be fair to the child. One friend’s father had been a POW in the Korean War and held negative views ever after. Our own families were very supportive of our adopting from Korea. Nonetheless I’ve observed a couple of instances where they are uncomfortable talking about skin color. In another blog I described how my Korean-born daughter always chose the darker chair for herself and the lighter one for her brother, … Continue reading

Acceptance of Adopted Children by Extended Family

Statistics show that the least likely children to be adopted in this country are African American. Most people looking to adopt are white. One of the reasons given by people who reject these children is that they are concerned about whether their extended family members would accept them. Four of our five adopted children are African American. My wife and I are in the racial minority in our household. We would not have it any other way. Our grown children were not at all surprised. As a family, we had been doing church work that targeted disadvantaged people of color … Continue reading

Of Photos and Nostalgia

When I graduated from high school, my grandfather gave me a photo album that he had put together. In it was a photo history of my life, from birth to graduation, with hand-typed text describing the photos and what he remembered about each date. He put everything in an expandable album, and the idea was for me to continue to add to it over the years. I did a pretty good job through my college years, but then I got behind. The cover quote is: “Like gentle waves Returning to the sunlit shore… Sweet memories returning To the heart once … Continue reading

Parenting the Second Time Around by Adoption.

The look on their faces made it very clear to me everyone who heard my announcement thought I had completely lost my mind! The silence in the room was deafening until one of my aunts actually said what everyone in the room was thinking, “Why on earth would you want to start parenting all over when Sean and Tori are nearly grown?” With that question my family started to chatter and offer one opinion after another. Someone suggested that adopting children “now” would mean I might not get to travel the world in my golden days. I simple said, “It … Continue reading