Adoption “Lingo” You Should Know

Adoption is all around us and I thought I’d share some “wisdom” regarding occurrences that have become the norm for us as adoptive parents. I would assume that many other adoptive families deal with the same “stuff.” When we went through adoption training a few years ago, we found ourselves educated far more than we expected to be. Unless you learn this stuff from people on the inside, you’d probably never think of it. What am I talking about? Language was a big one. Below are some examples. Our son WAS adopted. Not IS adopted. Seems like an insignificant little difference, but IS defines him. And so he WAS adopted. And our son is our OWN child. “Will we have our OWN children?” many people ask when they find out he was adopted. He is our...

Is Your Local Hospital Birthing Center Adoption-Competent?

Just about everyone knows an adoptee. Or an adoptive family, or someone who has placed a baby for adoption — or is involved directly in one. We continually improve so many aspects of patient care. What improvements are being made in the way we “do” adoption? Pioneered in Colorado at Parker Adventist Hospital, the Family to Family Support Network is going national in helping families create child-centered open adoptions from the very beginning, through adoption training in hospital labor and delivery wards. Here’s an interview with founder Rebecca Vahle on why she’s made it her mission that more and more hospitals answer this headline with a “yes.” What is the Family to Family Network? How is the Family to Family Program good for nurses? How is the ...

Kevin Costner’s “Black or White”–What it Says about Adoption & Race

Though Black or White earns its adoption stripes through simple kinship adoption (Kevin Costner and Octavia Spencer vie for custody of the granddaughter they share, Eloise, played by the luminous Jillian Estell), the bigger message for adoptive families is the devastating split a person can experience when divided in two by color, race, biology and/or biography. And how not dealing with tough emotions such as anger and grief rarely means they resolve on their own.

Special Event: Foster-Adopt Organizations bring “The Language of Flowers” Author to Denver

Denver’s Human Services Department, along with The Adoption Exchange and other organizations, are pleased to bring author Vanessa Diffenbaugh for a FREE book signing in Denver next week the evening of September 10. Vanessa Diffenbaugh is the author of the acclaimed novel The Language of Flowers, which has been optioned as a motion picture. From Amazon: The Victorian language of flowers was used to convey romantic expressions: honeysuckle for devotion, asters for patience, and red roses for love. But for Victoria Jones, it’s been more useful in communicating mistrust and solitude.

A Bold Prediction for Adoptive Families

What does the Berlin Wall have to do with original birth certificates? What should today's Elites learn from history? And my shocking prediction for people involved in adoption.

Local author and her child’s birth mom achieving success with adoption guide

Local author and nationally acclaimed open adoption advocate Lori Holden responds to questions about her new book, The Open-Hearted Way to Open Adoption.

Becoming Mothers: From Infertility to Foster Care to Widowhood to Adoption

In 2001 I started dating the handsome man that would eventually become my husband. We wanted to start a family (neither of us had kiddos yet) but were in our late thirties. Of course, I had a plan. I gave us a year to get pregnant the old-fashioned way. If that didn’t happen we would start a new journey…Adoption. I did my homework during the “conception year” and learned the good, the bad and the ugly of foster to adopt, international and domestic adoption. I presented my findings to my husband and we both agreed, fost/adopt was the route we would go. In 2007, our fostering to adopt journey began. The county was very clear from the get go: they are not an adoption agency, their goal is reunification. We were certified in 2008 and got “the call” for our f...

The Tao of Gratitude

A meditation on gratitude during yoga class prompts thoughts on how rich and abundant my life is. I find I'm grateful even for the icky parts.

Becoming Mothers: Mom via adoption — “I saw my daughter be born”

Memories from my daughter's birth include U2's Beautiful Day, a major newspaper proclaiming a "Brilliant Debut," and the ridge of a Klingon, an honest mistake.

A not-pretty 1970s Colorado adoption story

An acquaintance from a Denver-area high school told me via Facebook that her biological mom had died this year. She said that the whole thing had been a nightmare and that I should write about it. I wanted to know more about what she meant by that and so Cheryl allowed me to interview her about her life and her adoption in Colorado in the 1970s. What she’s shared with me shows the conflicting emotions held by some adoptees: dealing with what IS while longing for what could have been; the push and the pull that exists between an adoptee and her birth parent; seemingly opposite views expressed within moments of each other.

Thousands of kids are adopted from the welfare system

Images of children from distant countries, from Bulgaria to China to Russia, have been the public face of adoption in America. But that picture is overdue for an update. Most kids adopted by U.S. families now come from the child-welfare system: about 52,340 in 2010, up from 15,000 in 1988. In Colorado, the number has increased 125 percent to 1,044 in 2010 from 465 in 1995. The consensus is that it’s good to get children out of “the system.” However, such adoptions can bring with them

Denver schoolteacher Carol Wilcox role model, mom for East High’s Hendrix brothers

On the lawn in front of stately Denver East High School, Isaiah Hendrix reached out and, with the back of his hand, lightly tapped his brother, Kadeem. “He means a lot to me,” Isaiah said. “I love him.” A few minutes later, Kadeem said of Isaiah, “He means everything to me.” Isaiah is a senior tailback, Kadeem a junior quarterback for the East Angels. They are good players, good enough they probably will be able to play college football somewhere. That’s not what this story is about. This is about the love among two brothers and Carol Wilcox, the Denver schoolteacher who after spotting them as victims of abuse from their birth mother

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