Years after reconnecting with her son, a birth mother explores her place in his life.
Real Adoption Stories
Adoptive Families’ collection of personal adoption stories, written by adoptive parents, adoptees, birth parents, and others touched by adoption. We hope the stories will make you nod your head in recognition, help you reminisce, make you laugh—or fight back tears—and encourage and inspire you on your adoption journey.
“My Cardiologist Opened My Heart to Adoption”
The defective structure of my physical heart ultimately led my emotional heart to pause and consider—do I try for pregnancy, or for parenthood through adoption?
Sometimes, you go somewhere expecting it to be totally different, and it ends up seeming familiar. I had that feeling as I led a group of students on a trip to China—and then again, back home, as we met an expectant mother.
“A Visit to My Daughter’s Homeland”
Our trip to her birth country gave my daughter a picture of her early life. She discovered that she was, and had always been, real.
“The Adoption Advantage”
Coming to parenthood on equal terms lets my husband and me appreciate the experience all the more.
2017 Cover Photo Contest Winners
Congratulations to the winners of the 2017 Adoptive Families Cover Photo Contest! See the nine photos selected from more than 1,200 entries, and read stories from the proud parents.
Becoming My Own Beauty Role Model
“Growing up, makeup felt like a mask—a cover-up for my true inner self.”
“The China Sisters”
Two families, linked by a shared adoption experience, discover that they are bound by DNA, as well.
“Three Real Families”
When my granddaughter asked me if I was the “real” mother of her mom, whom I adopted as an infant, I found a way to help her explore her many real connections, through biology, law, and love.
“Parenting After Foster Adoption—Like Playing Jenga, Backward”
As a father who raised a child from birth and is now parenting older children adopted from foster care, I’ve come to see that the game and pieces may, indeed, be the same, but you have to play in an entirely different way.
“My Journey Through the Stages of Adoption”
Much like the trimesters of pregnancy, I moved through phases of worry, disbelief, and pure joy while I waited to adopt.
“Amanda’s Journey Home to Her Birth Country”
“You belong to two heritages-Jewish and Latin American-and at this special time in your life, when many Jewish families travel to the Mideast, we’re heading south.” More than a few heads turned when I announced this in my speech to my thirteen-year-old daughter, Amanda, on the occasion of her bat mitzvah.
“Keeping Up Appearances” – Our Skin and 4C Hair Care Routine
As the parents of four black children, we drop a small fortune on lotion and products and build time into our schedule to style their hair, all the while questioning whether we know what we’re doing. A recent conversation offered some much-needed reassurance.
“Waiting on a Dream”
Matched out of the blue with an expectant mother, we were told the next call might come within days. But as the wait stretched to weeks and then months, I despaired—would our dreams ever come true?
Motherhood? Me? You’ve Got to Be Kidding!
Having children was something that other people did. But giving birth has given me a sense of connection I never felt before.
“Visiting Our Son’s Birth Country: The Land of Contrasts”
“Make the trip, you won’t be sorry.” Our journey to our son’s birth country—and to visit his foster mother—was an exhilarating experience.
“Can Black Children Wear Watermelons?”
Many symbols commonly found on children’s clothing connote racist stereotypes of black people. Knowing this, should transracial adoptive parents still dress their black children in onesies and shirts featuring monkeys, zebras, and watermelons?
“Caught on Camera: Our Surprise Adoption Match”
Have you ever been at a baby shower where they play a home video of the mother-to-be surprising her partner with news of her pregnancy? As we grappled with infertility, my wife and I hated those videos, even as we desperately hoped for one of our own.
“Our Summer Vacation House Swap”
One summer, we traded our Hawaiian home for Berkeley, CA so our son could learn about more ethnic differences and similarities.
As parents, we shape the memories our children will carry through their lives. What a delightful, and intimidating, prospect!