Book Review : For the Love of a Child: The Journey of Adoption

Monica Blume, a social worker and counselor with LDS Family Services, once saw a young woman who had been adopted watch a film entitled “ Adoption and Unwed Parents”. Tears ran down the young woman’s face. “I never knew that my birth mother loved me,” she said. Blume, who has worked with many, many birthmothers, birth fathers, birth grandparents over the years, wrote For the Love of a Child: The Journey of Adoption not only in hopes of being helpful to birthmothers, birth families, and clergy who may be involved in adoption decisions, but in hopes, she says, that she … Continue reading

Book Review: In My Heart, by Molly Bang

I finally have my wish, which I blogged about nearly three years ago, to see pictures of adoptive families in books that aren’t specifically about adoption. In My Heart, by author-illustrator Molly Bang, is a wonderful author and illustrator who has received three Caldecott Honors. In My Heart is a book that will be wonderfully reassuring to all children. It helps them deal with separation from a parent. It portrays the life of a working family, narrated by the mother, who tells how she misses her child when she is at her job (a veterinarian), but then reminds herself to … Continue reading

Book Review: Secret Thoughts of An Adopted Mother

“Dedicated with love to my son’s mother and mine,” writes Jana Wolff in her memoir Secret Thoughts of An Adoptive Mother. This sentence, as well as Wolff’s chapter “Mother’s Day or Mothers’ Day?” reveal Wolff’s understanding spirit, which shines through her memoir even as she discloses the conflicting thoughts and feelings that we all have. In her introduction, Wolff says that while she was a parent-in-waiting beginning the (domestic newborn) adoption process, she found books and articles about how to adopt, but none which talked about feelings brought up by different stages of the adoptive process. This book is an … Continue reading

Book Review : For the Love of a Child: The Journey of Adoption

This book is called For the Love of a Child: The Journey of Adoption (not to be confused with another book called For Love of a Child: Stories of Adoption). This book is published by Deseret Press especially for Latter-Day Saints, but it is very useful for all expectant parents considering placing a child for adoption and their families, as well as informative for relatives, school personnel, counselors and church leaders. The book is unique in its exploration of the spiritual journey many people go through in dealing with an unplanned pregnancy, infertility, and/or adoption. The first part of the … Continue reading

Book Review: Children of Open Adoption and their Families

Children of Open Adoption and their Families, by Kathleen Silber and Patricia Martinez Dorner, is an important read for adoptive parents, whether their adoptions are open or not. Other books describe the process of adoption. This book explores how the children in open adoptions actually feel and think, and how the adoptive and birth family members feel. These stories of children and their parents are a gold mine for those of us who’ve always wondered, “But how does open adoption work, exactly?” This book was written in 1987, but open adoption had already been in place in some agencies for … Continue reading

“I’ll Take That One”

“Oh, my, look at all these beautiful babies,” says my eight-year-old daughter Meg, in high-heeled dress-up shoes and a feather boa. “I want THIS beautiful baby,” she coos, swooping her five-year-old sister into her arms. You’ve got to be kidding me, I think. We’ve told you over and over that we decided to adopt you before we ever saw you. You know perfectly well about the 6 a.m. phone call when Mrs. S’s voice said, “you have a daughter”. You’ve seen the video of yourself that the workers sent us from Korea after you’d had your visa medical check at … Continue reading

Book Review: The Girls Who Went Away

I wrote a blog last week that mentioned that teen mothers who place their babies for adoption are more likely to stay in school and remain off welfare than teens who choose to parent. I said that today, the peer pressure among teens is along the lines of “how could someone be so unnatural and irresponsible as to give up her own baby?” My writing probably showed that I wish more teens knew about adoption and thought of it as a positive solution. This blog reviews a book about the other side of the story. The Girls Who Went Away: … Continue reading

Book Review: Birth is More Than Once

Birth is More Than Once: The Inner World of Adopted Korean Children was written by Hei Sook Park Wilkinson, Ph.D. Wilkinson is a clinical psychologist. She has been in private practice and also consulted with hospitals and human development centers. Besides her psychology background, she has another source of insight into the inner worlds of children adopted from Korea. Wilkinson herself is Korean. While she was not adopted, she shares the experience of moving to a new country with a new language in which she is a racial minority. In addition, while she was a student in Korea she volunteered … Continue reading

After the Rains – Deborah Raney

We first met Nate and Daria when I reviewed “Beneath a Southern Sky,” about a couple who goes to Columbia to serve as missionaries. In “After the Rains,” it’s now seventeen years later and their daughter, Natalie, is in high school. She’s feeling confused about her mother’s remarriage to Cole, and wishes she had a closer relationship to her father, Nate, who is still in Columbia. She’s confused about who she is and how she fits into her family, and when her stepsister is asked to Homecoming by the boy she’s been in love with forever, she’s even further confused. … Continue reading

Book review: A Quilt of Wishes

A Quilt of Wishes is a charming little book. It tells how, while a baby girl sleeps in China, her mother waits across the ocean, wondering about her baby. She finds an old quilt that her mother had made for her, and hopes that her baby is warm and loved. She decides to make a quilt for her baby. She uses her own old baby clothes, and friends learn about the project and make squares for the baby’s quilt. They send wishes for the new baby and for the family’s happiness, which the mother repeats to herself as she sews. … Continue reading