The purpose of this photograph is to demonstrate the loveliness of an adopted child.

What I Didn’t Know About Being Adopted

What I’d like to share here is “what I didn’t know about being adopted.” This first post is about my beginnings.nLooking back, I see an adorable child sitting on the porch steps. With leather high tops, a pink dress and matching bonnet, I cuddled a well-worn Raggedy Ann. Dark hair cascaded from beneath my bonnet and long eyelashes adorned the brownist of eyes. Who couldn’t love such a child? Wouldn’t her mother and father? Wouldn’t her extended family? Just looking at toddler me on that sunny day, you’d have no clue that my life began in darkness and that a catastrophic message was embedded in my brain. 

I Like Syrup on Spaghetti

Adopted Kids May Identify with Buddy At Christmastime

Dear all kinds of parents, fellow adoptees and foster kids… Every year, I watch the Christmas movie called ELF, mostly because my beliefs about Christmas, myself, and others in my story–adoptive mother and dad, ring familiar. We can use the movie as a springboard for discussing the challenges of Christmas that many adopted and foster […]

Meet the Missionary with A Huge Heart for Adoption

My Journey Into the World of Adoption, Karen Springs

 My journey into the world of adoption began exactly 17 years ago with a visit to an orphanage, a world away from my middle-class American life. It was early November 2004 and I’d arrived in Kyiv, Ukraine, six weeks earlier for what was intended to be an eight-month postcollege ministry adventure. I was twenty-three years […]

Caustions About the Word Special

One Word Adoptive Parents Must Avoid

Whenever I teach this point during a training, many parents get upset. I wonder why. Are they offended that they’re saying the wrong word? Are they embarrassed, like someone caught with their pants down? Or, are they ticked off because they supposedly know better than anyone what the child needs…and how the child feels?” Really? Is it about the correctness of the word or how he feels and reacts when singled out?

How to Know Your Child's Special Needs

The Special Needs of Many Adopted Kids

Many adopted children have special needs that adoptive, first, and foster parents must learn  in order to become their child’s #1 cheerleader.

Use this list as needed and as age-appropriate for discussing special needs with your child. You might say, “An adopted person wrote a list of her special needs. Would you be interested in seeing it? I’m curious if you identify with any of the needs that are mentioned.”

business calligraphy close up composition

My Take On Adoption Reform

Unfortunately, the subject of escalating stress between prospective and new moms isn’t discussed by the majority of adoption agencies, child protective services, or adoption professionals. Some agencies are required by State law to provide this type of education and preparation, but for others, it’s too scary to broach the topic. What adoption professional is brave enough to tell prospective parents that their child may reject not only their love, but them? Isn’t this action like throwing a bucket of cold water on the adoptive parent’s desire to adopt? And, do prospective parents really want to hear harsh possibilities? In my research with 50 adoptive moms, the answer is a bold yes.

Adoption Freedom Podcast

Good News for the World of Adoption Via Podcast

My new podcast-20 THINGS ADOPTION-announces good news for the world of adoption! Adoptive moms and traumatized adoptees can now find freedom–adoptees from their painful past and adoptive moms from their painful self (you know, the self that reminds you you’ll never have what it takes to meet the needs of your adopted child). As an adult adoptee in her seventh decades of life, I experienced this freedom nearly three years ago. You see…I was painted into a corner circumstantially and emotionally. Someone in my current life wounded me in a way I didn’t deserve and I hated that person. Through research I learned that I could either forgive the person me or go to the Stress Center. The hate was so strong and I couldn’t get out of the situation, like I was squeezed in a vice. 

A Birth Grandfather's Letter

A Birth Grandfather’s Goodbye Letter

My son and his beautiful girlfriend conceived you out of marriage. As parents we loved the two of them and hoped they might marry, but at ages sixteen and eighteen it seemed unwise. Our children wanted to make the foolish, but understandable choice to abort their unplanned pregnancy without telling us. When they revealed their secret, we parents assisted them for a time, even to the point of taking your birthmother to a nearby town for a procedure. We couldn’t follow through with our sin—it was too painful for us all. Through God’s strength, your parents and the parents of both your birthmother and birthfather chose to see you through birth and adoption.


What Scared My Adoptive Parents

Who can even imagine how Retha felt? Perhaps, like a bucket of ice water was thrown on her? She probably shook in shock, like anyone when something unfathomable happened. Where was Mike? Was he holding her close? Knowing him for a lifetime, he was probably running for the back bedroom. And, there Retha was. All alone. No one to help her, no one who had the presence of mind to hold her close, even my grandmother.

photo of man looking on child

Cheat Sheet for Talking Adoption

What comes to mind when you think about initiating a conversation with your child about his birth family? Do you feel defensive, like the birth family is the enemy to be avoided at all  costs? Do you feel sad, and does your lip begin to quiver at the thought of their possible presence in your child’s life? Do you fear your child will love them more than he loves you? If so, this section is especially for you. Kids are experts at reading body language. You can’t pull the wool over their eyes. If you are upset about something and trying to hide it, they will sense it.