Posts Tagged ‘ open adoption ’

Part 1: Mom Chooses Open Adoptions for Transracial Daughters

Monday, March 5th, 2012

Rachel Garlinghouse certainly got my instant attention! She wrote, “Now we are the parents of two African-American girls. Ellis is age 3, Emery age 1, and we will adopt again, either domestic infant adoption or through foster care.”

Rachel, 29, and her husband Steve, 33, are Illinois natives and they chose “fully open adoptions” Twice! This means both families communicate regularly, exchange photos and spend quality time throughout the year.

“Steve and I also speak at adoption training sessions and I facilitate an adoptive mom support group,” said Rachel.

I knew in a moment that this high-energy mom had a good story!

Rachel said, “We chose fully open adoption because adoption isn’t about the adoptive parents. Plus, adoption agencies cater to open adoptions and realize that the person making the ultimate sacrifice is the biological parent [who might wish to maintain contact.] Adoption isn’t about what makes me happy and comfortable, it’s about what is best for my child.”

As an adoptive parent, I had to get over myself, Rachel said.

“If my child’s biological parent(s) and siblings want regular contact, who am I to say no? ”

Rachel and Steve waited an excruciating 14 months for their first child. She knows why! “For the first year, we were only open to a white, healthy child. However, we did a lot of reading and we spoke with transracial families, and we talked and we prayed. We ultimately decided that we would be great parents to a child of any race.”

Come back on Friday when we meet both of Rachel’s gorgeous daughters.

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Part 2: Failed Private Adoptions Cannot Tear Family Apart

Friday, February 10th, 2012

Part 1: Failed Private Adoptions Cannot Tear Family  Apart (continued)

Gary from Missouri  told us on Wednesday that just 12 days after his adopted son Justin was born, the birth mother changed her mind and he had to turn over the baby.

Gary said, “There was nothing we could do, short of breaking the law, to prevent her taking him from us.  It was arranged for her to come to our house the coming Saturday to get him.  That gave us two days to prepare. There could never have been enough time. Marie was so devastated she couldn’t bear to let her take him. I had to pick him up from his crib and hand him over. I walked them out to the car, and when I  realized she didn’t know how to place him in a car seat, I instructed her, kissed him and said goodbye.

During the next couple of years, we struggled with dealing with what had happened.  We continued attending adoption seminars and meetings, but our hearts were no longer in it.  We finally sought counseling, and ultimately reached the decision to remain a childless couple. We went on with our lives, no clue that our story was about to change forever.

On Gary’s 41st birthday, 15 years of trying to have a family later, Marie feeling quite right, but couldn’t really put her finger on it.  He said, “At 11:00 a.m., she called to tell me the doctor had run some tests and had found what was wrong.  After all these years, all this pain and loss,  Marie was pregnant!”

Another pregnancy ended in a miscarriage. And finally, Marie and Gary gave birth to a second son.

Today Gary said, “Regarding adoption, everyone should follow their own heart and make decisions that apply to them, not being bothered or influenced by the opinions of others.  Regarding life, just keep moving along, we can never know the reasons for the present, nor can we know what the future will bring. Thank you for taking the time to allow me to share.”

The message is “never give up hope.” Tell me about your adoption story today.

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Part 1: Adoptive Mom Chooses Family to Parent Unborn Child

Wednesday, January 18th, 2012

Jessy from Northglenn, Colo., recently found us at “The Adoption Diaries” and shot me this unbelievable email:

“I recently found your blog and was moved by the stories. I am an incredibly blessed adoptive mom who never thought I would be so lucky. Every night when we put our little girl to bed I have to tell her, ‘The story of the baby me’ as she calls it. I have told her this story every night for almost two years now about how her biological mother found us literally on our own doorstep. That day started the most incredible journey of our lives.”

Here it is! Jesse and Dave married in 2002 and became pregnant right away. Jessy was petrified because she’d had an ectopic pregnancy before and knew there was a chance it might happen again and her fears became horrible reality with yet another dangerous and painful ectopic pregnancy.

Jesse said, “My husband who had children from previous relationships was upset by the loss, but I think what affected him more was my pain. The physical pain was hard but the emotional was more then anyone should have to endure. We tried for a couple more years and at 28, I needed a hysterectomy. Devastating. I had four ectopic pregnancies, and two nearly killed me.”

Jesse also had great support. “My best friend Amy talked to her sister-in-law Denise about me because Denise and her husband were having similar difficulties. One day Denise called  and asked if we were be interested in adoption. Denise explained that her cousin was pregnant and couldn’t keep the baby and was looking for a family to adopt. I was speechless and when I hung up the phone.”

Less then a week later, the pregnant and jobless mother literally appeared on their doorstep.

“She already had one very young baby cradled in her arms and was nervous and shaking. The bio-mom explained that with the baby she was carrying she knew she couldn’t keep both, and wanted to avoid an abortion. We talked and she asked if we wanted to adopt her baby. Dave and I looked at each other and without any hesitation or discussion and said YES!”

At the time, the bio mom was 22 years old and three months pregnant with a very tough life and zero family support and one very young baby, to boot. Jesse was almost 32 and Dave was 35. Their lives were about to unfold dramatically!

Tune in on Friday to go through the tumultuous back and forth as the bio-mom comes to terms with giving up her unborn baby.

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Part 1: Mom Chooses Open Adoptions for Transracial Daughters

Wednesday, January 4th, 2012

Rachel Garlinghouse got my attention! She wrote, “Now we are the parents of two African-American girls. Ellis is age 3, Emery age 1, and we will adopt again, either domestic infant adoption or through foster care.”

Rachel, 29, and her husband Steve, 33, are Illinois natives and they chose “fully open adoptions” Twice! This means both families communicate regularly, exchange photos and spend quality time throughout the year with each others’ families. How civilized and grown-up… and how good for the babies!

“Steve and I also speak at adoption training sessions and I facilitate an adoptive mom support group,” said Rachel.

I knew this high-energy mom had a good story!

Rachel said, We chose fully open adoption because adoption isn’t about the adoptive parents. Plus, adoption agencies cater to open adoptions and realize that the person making the ultimate sacrifice is the biological parent [who might wish to maintain contact.]

“Adoption isn’t about what makes me happy and comfortable, it’s about what is best for my child.”

As an adoptive parent, I had to get over myself, Rachel said.

“If my child’s biological parent(s) and siblings want regular contact, who am I to say no? ”

Rachel and Steve waited an excruciating 14 months for their first child. She knows why!

“For the first year, we were only open to a white, healthy child. However, we did a lot of reading and we spoke with transracial families, and we talked and we prayed. We ultimately decided that we would be great parents to a child of any race.”

Come back on Friday when we meet both of Rachel’s gorgeous daughters.

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Adopting a New Daughter Over the Holidays

Monday, December 26th, 2011

Anyone who has ever been touched by adoption must ask themselves during the holidays, “How can I help other children find their forever families?”

This holiday season, I want to give each person reading  the opportunity to answer the call to help orphaned children. And orphan dogs. I think they go best served up together, kids and dogs. Dogs and kids.

One of my favorite international adoption sites offers happy successful adoption stories all year round, but specializes in placing older children, sibling groups and special needs kids who may need extra care from their new families.

Personal adoption stories like theirs touch families everywhere, inspiring people to move forward with forming their family through adoption. Be a part of this initiative and give hope to children everywhere.

While my family is still in the pre-adoption phase, we’ve narrowed the search down to foster-to-adopt programs locally in Los Angeles, and we are beginning the final 24 hours of parental adoption training in early January.

We have tapped an international adoption agency we really like and also trust to potentially adopt a young daughter from India. Unfortunately, we cannot afford that option this year. Santa didn’t exactly stuff my stocking with fivers… and you must plunk down $15,000 just to get the adoption ball rolling with that agency!

I ask you, for just a moment this holiday, send out blessings and good vibrations to a poor kid who needs a dose of Santa right around now. Or a healthy dose of a mom or dad.
I’d like to share our family’s gratitude that we were able to save another rescue dog this blessed season. She was going to be euthanized at the Downey high-kill shelter, Calif.

dog adoption, dog rescueOur new beloved daughter (and doggie sister for my biological Sam) is a new 100-pound Great Dane mix named Bette Davis.

A real Hollywood looker but with an edge — just like her celeb namesake. And yes, she is going to get much bigger!

Have a safe holiday. Merry Christmas and tell me your happy holiday adoption story or tidbit here for 2012. Merry everything!

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