Many parents initially underestimate the challenges associated with international adoption, but fortunately a wealth of resources exists. The following books and Web sites will help both you and your child adjust.
Books for Adoptive Children:
At Home in this World: A China Adoption Story by Jean MacLeod. Written from a young Chinese adoptee's perspective, this book stresses the importance of both personal reflection and supportive love from family members in adjusting to a new country and home. (Ages 9 to adult; EMK Press; $15.95)
I Don't Have Your Eyes by Carrie A. Kitze. This multicultural book teaches adopted kids to look beyond physical differences and celebrate the unique bond that ties them to their caregivers. (Ages 2 to 7; EMK Press; $16.95)
We See the Moon by Carrie A. Kitze. Translated into several languages besides English, this beautifully illustrated book encourages adoptees to ask questions about their birth parents. It's been lauded for its ability to foster communication between adoptive parents and children of any age or origin. (Ages 4 to adult; EMK Press; $16.95)
W.I.S.E. Up Powerbook by Marilyn Schoettle. This useful workbook prepares kids to handle inappropriate questions about their adoption. A pull-out guidebook for parents is included. (Ages 6 to 12; Center for Adoption Support and Education, Inc.; $14)
Books for Adoptive Parents:
Adoption Parenting: Creating a Toolbox, Building Connections; edited by Jean MacLeod and Sheena Macrae, Ph.D. This 400-page guidebook, which includes contributions from more than 75 adoption professionals and parents, offers advice on cultivating a deep bond with adoptive children. (EMK Press, February 2006)
Beyond Good Intentions: A Mother Reflects on Raising Internationally Adopted Children by Cheri Register. This collection of insightful, candid essays addresses the challenges adoptive parents' face, such as helping their kids express anger and sorrow. (Yeong & Yeong Book Company; $18.95)
Here, parents of internationally adopted children can learn about reactive attachment disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder.
National Adoption Information Clearinghouse
Easy to navigate, this site provides detailed information about both domestic and intercountry adoptions.
New York State Citizens' Coalition for Children, Inc.
This site offers articles on common post-adoption challenges, such as raising separated siblings.
Pact, An Adoption Alliance
Focusing on children of color, this site provides placement services for birth parents and educational resources for adoptive parents.
Parents Network for the Post Institutionalized Child
This site informs families and medical professionals about the effects of orphanages, hospitals, and institutions on children.