Table of Contents: Spring 2016


Open access to this issue courtesy of:




The Adoption Process from the Expectant Mother’s Perspective

What is it really like to decide on adoption, look through parent profiles to choose a family, and place your child in their arms—and how can the adoption process better serve these women?  |  BY BARBARA HEREL

[BOOK EXCERPT] Attaching Through Love, Hugs, and Play

Using fun and games to connect with your child can reduce stress for both of you and lead to a secure, enjoyable relationship. A leading attachment therapist explains playful yet powerful ways to build lasting bonds.  |  BY DEBORAH D. GRAY

A ‘Lost’ Daughter Speaks, and All of China Listens

“I went to China to find the birth mother who left me on a street corner. Instead, I became the focus of a nation’s buried pain.”  |  BY JENNA COOK

A Nation’s Buried Pain

Kay Ann Johnson spent more than 20 years listening to the anguished accounts of Chinese people who relinquished, adopted, and hid “out-of-plan” or over quota children in the face of the country’s One-Child Policy. Here, she shares some of their stories.  |  BY KAY ANN JOHNSON

Personal Essays

Growing Up and Growing Older

As our children change into teens and young adults, so must our parental roles evolve. Even if, in our mom and dad hearts, we’ll always remember holding onto tiny hands and pledging never to let go…. | BY JEAN MACLEOD

Worth the Risk

Our failed adoption left our hearts shattered. But, as we learned, this is true no matter how you come to be parents, whenever you choose to love someone or something other than yourself. | BY JENNIFER PALMER


Adoption Cost and Timing in 2014-2015

How much does adoption really cost? How long does it take? We share the results of our latest Adoption Cost & Timing Survey.

Further Decline in International Adoption in 2015

U.S. Supreme Court Reverses Alabama’s Refusal to Recognize Same-Sex Adoption

Bill Proposes More Leave for Adoptive Parents in the Military

For Some Parents, International Adoption Decision Reflects Racial Bias

State Adoption Law Updates, Spring 2016

Intercountry Adoption Updates, Spring 2016

The Experts

Marriage Equality Does Not Ensure Adoption Equality

It remains to be seen exactly how the landmark Obergefell v. Hodges decision will affect adoption equality, so here’s what LGBT parents must still do to protect their families’ rights. | BY MERYL B. ROSENBERG, ESQ.




PARENT-TO-PARENT: Embracing “Older” Parenthood

AF PICKS: Best Apps for Adoptive Parents

2016 First Family Photo Contest Winners

Thank You to This Issue’s Sponsors:

Adoption by Shepherd Care
Bethany Christian Services
Children’s Connections Inc.
National Background Check

Adoptions from the Heart
Cono Christian School 
Texas Children’s Hospital

Dr. Jane Aronson
Jerri Ann Jenista, M.D.
Ellyn J. Bullock, Solberg & Bullock, LLC
Jennifer Fairfax, Family Formation Law Offices