Thursday, October 09, 2008

Guest blogger Laura Christianson

Captain's Log, Stardate 10.09.2008

Today my guest blogger is Laura Christianson. She wrote:

The Adoption Decision: 15 Things You Want to Know Before Adopting
by
Laura Christianson


In North America, more and more families are adding members through adoption. And there are more ways to adopt—and kinds of adoption—than ever.

This quick–start resource will help prospective parents consider key emotional and spiritual issues up front...before they plunge into the near–overwhelming mass of details and start to run into roadblocks, even dead ends.

Laura Christianson—an adoption educator and mentor, and an adoptive mom herself—brings her experience and knowledge to address unspoken but crucial questions about...

* loving an adopted child
* extended family’s reaction
* expenses
* openness in adoption
* the role of birth parents
* physical disabilities
* emotional/behavioral challenges
* racial and cultural prejudices

Recounting real–life miracles and mishaps of adoptive families, the author will help prospective parents—and their friends and family members—think through adoption’s challenges and joys, and confidently move forward from a firm emotional and spiritual footing.

AND

The Adoption Network: Your Guide to Starting a Support System
by
Laura Christianson


Do you desire to start a support network for those in your church and community whose lives are impacted by adoption? In The Adoption Network, Laura Christianson, founder and director of Seattlebased Heartbeat Ministries, walks you through the basics of planning and launching a support system for adoptive families, foster families, birth parents or adoptees. Youll learn how to Develop a mission statement Plan a budget Recruit leadership Reach out to the community Create workshops, support groups, social events, mentoring programs and more Packed with practical pointers and worksheets, this handbook will equip you with the tools you need to create a vibrant adoption support network.

Camy here: In case you haven’t figured it out yet, today my good friend Laura Christianson is guest blogging about adoption. Captain Caffeine and I aren’t seriously considering it right now, but we have both agreed we’d be open to adopting from China since there are so many unwanted babies there.

So, here’s Laura:

10 Things Camy Needs to Know Before Adopting from China

1. Adopting means choosing to love a child with whom you are not genetically connected, and affirming your child’s uniqueness.

2. Don’t expect to fall in love with your child the moment you set eyes on her. Bonding occurs naturally, over time. You may feel as if you’re babysitting someone else’s child for several weeks or months, but eventually, you won’t be able to imagine how you ever lived without this child as part of your family.

3. You can and will love your adopted child every bit as much as you could love your biological child. Our hearts are equipped to fully love our children, no matter how they arrive in our family.

4. Be prepared for friends and relatives to express reservations about you adopting and to ask questions you consider intrusive and insensitive. Those close to you need time to process and become comfortable with the idea of you adopting. Respond to their questions graciously, and use their questions as a springboard for educating them about adoption and its importance to you.

5. Don’t let sky-high adoption fees scare you away from adopting. If you are truly committed to adopting a child, you’ll find a way to make it happen.

6. Enlist support from friends, family, your church, and your community before, during, and after adopting. That way, you won’t feel like a “lone ranger” as you go through the ups and downs of the adoption process.

7. Be your child’s advocate. Always.

8. Prepare your child—in age-appropriate ways—to deal with overt and covert racism.

9. If you are planning to rename your child, consider incorporating her Chinese name into her new name (perhaps as a middle name).

10. Honor your child’s birth family, even if you don’t have any idea who they are. Every adopted child has birth parents; they deserve to be recognized and honored for choosing life for their child.

Camy here: That’s cool! Thanks, Laura!

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