Is Birthparent Contact What’s Best for the Kids?

June 8th, 2011

voss The hardest decision my husband and I have had to make in the seven years since we got our kids is whether to allow contact between them and their birthparents. We first fostered, then adopted, a sibling group (ages 8, 5 and 16 months) who were taken away from their birthparents for substance abuse, domestic violence and mental illness. For the first two foster care years, the  birthmother had one visit with my daughter and no visits with either son. The birthfather had a handful of visits with all three kids as a group, but he missed many more than he kept. By the time the kids were freed for adoption, the birthparents had lied to them, stood them up for visits, and promised… [more]

Finding Therapeutic Help

April 12th, 2007

I’ve been reading and digesting Focal Point for two months now, feeling as if they must have taken notes from my house alone. The entire issue is devoted to traumatic stress and 38 of my 39 children fall squarely into that category. One does not lose one’s initial caretaker and not feel stress; most of my children were also abused and neglected. My birth daughter and I have absorbed much of their stress, we’ve become nearly as traumatized after all these years of going between our family’s gratitude, resentment, happiness, grief and ten million other emotions, it has beat us both down over the years. Moments of pure, unadulterated joy also occur. Watching her son play happily with my children and grandchildren has certainly been priceless, yet she… [more]