Vol. 6, No. 2 May 2002
with the foster/adoptive child's attachment to the birth family
Adoption Reunion Survival Guide
was an avid gardener. She could grow anything with ease. I have
a clump of day-lilies that were a gift from her some 28 years ago.
She sent them home with me in a box with a large clump of soil surrounding
the roots. My husband carefully planted them in the yard of our
first home. That clump of lilies has been moved and left behind
at seven homes in four states.
The Adoption Reunion Survival Guide: Preparing Yourself for the Search,
Reunion, and Beyond, by Julie Jarrell Bailey and Lynn N. Giddens,
helped me to see that my Grandmothers lilies are a lot like the
children we foster and adopt. Without the roots from where they have
been, they could not thrive where they are. If you want to become a
better gardener of children, I suggest you read The Adoption Reunion
me get inside someone elses feelings and understand anothers
actions and reactions. The Adoption Reunion Survival Guide exposed
me to ideas I had either never considered or had considered and dismissed
as having little merit. It made me revisit some of my preconceptions
and let go of some faulty thinking. I am a long-time foster parent to
very young children (primarily newborns) and have no plans to adopt
a child. What could a book about adoption reunions teach me?
As it turns
out this book had a lot to offer me. After reading it, I feel even more
strongly that foster and adoptive parents must become accepting of the
idea that they are only one part of the parenting picture for their
children. Talk with older adoptees in an environment where they are
comfortable and listen carefully to what they have to say. Recognize
the incompleteness they struggle with, the longing they have to understand
the why of their adoptions, and the inner conflicts they
fight as they try to reconcile the importance of knowing their past
with the possibility that they might hurt their adoptive parents.
Adoption Reunion Survival Guide is a brief but powerful book.
In addition to offering a blue print for a search for birth family this
book offers insight into the adoption triad from the perspective of
birth parents. There are some excellent, thought-provoking questions
for birth parents and adoptees to consider as they plan a search.
do not naively assume that each search and reunion has a happy ending.
They carefully set out a wide variety of scenarios and help the reader
examine the approaches that might best meet his or her own needs.
As the Adoption
Reunion Survival Guide makes clear, no child exists in isolation.
No child simply is with no attachments or influences prior
to becoming part of our family. The emotional health of adoptees, foster
children, and foster and adoptive parents will be enhanced as everyone
involved accepts the importance of roots.
NCFPA by purchasing this book online through our website at www.ncfosterparents.org
and click on the Amazon link. The price is $11.16, with a portion of
the price going to NCFPA. Thanks and happy reading.
If you have
comments about this book or another book you would like to see reviewed,
please contact me (919/870-9968 or [email protected]).
2002 Jordan Institute for Families