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Adoption Reunion in the Social Media Age: An Anthology Paperback – January 10, 2014
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I urge anyone involved with adoption--wherever you might be in the constellation--to read this book. You will hear the voices of US and international adoptees, those from the Baby Scoop Era in the US and Australia, and those in closed, private adoptions. You will hear the voices of original parents, and their approach to adoption reunion will range from exuberantly happy to stoic, or even forbidding. And that spectrum is indeed what reunion can be.
One of the most important insights here is the impact of adoption on "extended family." Adoption practice tends to focus on the birth/original parents, the adoptee, and the adoptive parents. "Adoption Reunion" reminds us of all the others: the siblings, the half-brothers, the cousins, the aunts, the uncles, the grandparents--their place in reunion is hugely important as well. Sometimes when doors closed on reunion with a birth mother, it opened on a reunion with (sometimes previously unknown) siblings.
An additional value of the book is being able to listen to the voices and stories, and digest the variety of experiences. What one person defines as "success" in reunion can be very different to the next person. "Reunion" itself is a multi-layered, complicated term. The process of search and reunion is a labyrinth. Some people get through easily, some get rebuffed at every corner, some start and stop, sometimes over the course of years.
For adoptive parents, it's our responsibility to join our children on their journey. That, to me, means listening carefully, being open to hard, painful truths, providing counsel when asked, accepting what they decide, and sharing in their joy and sorrow. "Adoption Reunion in the Social Media Age" provides an opportunity to listen, and to receive the gifts of these varied stories and experiences. In the Afterword, Amanda H. L. Transue-Woolston writes "...the most important commonality between each author is the fact that these are their memories. Together, these memories make up a larger ocean of memories within the adoption community. Our memories create the history of adoption, and our memories shape the future of adoption." Exactly right.
Welcome to the life of the adoptee.
The broken hyperlink is, I believe, an appropriate metaphor for an adoptee’s life. By virtue of nearly universal laws and practices based on shame, denial and misinformation, most adoptees have a broken link at their earliest beginnings. A broken link to their blood, to their heritage, to their ancestry, to their medical history and to the core of their very identity.
The stories in this anthology are written by brave souls who have dug deep into the source code hidden behind their broken links. Who have looked behind the unreal façade of the “happily ever after” adoption fairy tale, and repaired the links to their identity. Their stories inform, illuminate and provide hope to the millions of adoptees (and I might venture, their biological/first parents) who wish to do the same.
It is no accident that the interconnectedness created by the Internet is facilitating the repair of broken connections in the lives of adoptees. This e-book itself is a shining example of repair-in-action. The authors have become connected through the Internet and their truth telling is being further disseminated and shared through this medium.
Anyone seeking to repair their own broken links, to find the source code to their own lives, will be inspired, educated and moved to tears, smiles and laughter by these heartfelt and heart-rending stories. We are born to be connected. HTTP Code 200: Page Found.
Most recent customer reviews
Adoption Reunion in the Social Media Age, edited by Laura Dennis, is an a eclectic collection of reflections and insights by...Read more
feel-good veneer and exposes very stark realities faced by those
affected by adoption.Read more
There will always be a need for them because although some things about adoption haven’t changed – many things have.Read more