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The New Wave: Growing Up in the Age of Openness

March 12th, 2013

paula 2 Well before my daughters reached the age of reason (which I mark as that Easter Sunday they refused to wear those adorable matching dresses) their adoptions were a regular part of the daily conversation in our kitchen, right up there with nail polish and ponies and the tooth fairy.  Lucky for us, in our community they were surrounded by children from all sorts of complex, un-matching, created families.  Many of their friends are also adopted.  They attended adopted family picnics at their elementary school.   Now in their twenties, they are in the vanguard of the new generation of adoptees who have grown up with openness-in which adoption is definitely NOT a family secret. Both girls came into my life as infants, both… [more]


March 6th, 2013
Categories: Adoptive Families

me and lilmanMy mom never really talked about the hard times she had with me as a kid, but there was one story I remembered hearing her tell another young lady who had adopted a child that always kind of stuck with me throughout the years. When I was three days old my parents came and picked me up. It was a pretty amazing story, they were expecting to get a daughter in a few months but had received a last minute call from the adoption worker saying that a young mom had chosen them as parents and that if willing they could come pick their son up the next day. This threw everything in to chaos. First off they were expecting a… [more]

Reunited With My Birth Son After 27 Years

January 30th, 2013

ReunitedI have been searching for my son since I was 18 years old. I gave him up for Adoption when he was just shy of a year, because I was not capable at the time of taking care of him. I wanted Joey to have a chance at life, an education and parents that would LOVE him and provide for him 100% and give him everything I could not.  I found Joey on Myspace, back in 2011. I reached out to him without any response back. I then wrote to his address in which he lived growing up and still no response after sending 3 letters. I looked on Facebook many many times, and could not find him, until November of 2012… [more]

Space for Older Foster Children: The Importance of Space of Love

November 21st, 2012

unicornRumor warned against becoming foster parents of older children while having younger children. That's the advice I'd heard for years. Younger children can't always express their feelings or what's going on, and sometimes it's just easier on everyone if the ages of the children in the home either match or you become a foster parent after they have all gotten older. Sadly, that was my mindset for quite awhile. And with a toddler and two elementary school kids, I stuck pretty firmly with that. But then everything changed with just one phone call. One Phone Call, One Emergency My best friend, Cassie, works at DSS, monitoring foster care cases. At times, Lake and I had thought about becoming foster parents. After all, we have this… [more]

From “Gooooal!” to “Bravo!”

November 21st, 2012

soccerRasmussen's are soccer players.  Whether you were born into our family or adopted in, that's what we do…or so I thought.  We have six kids, 3 bio, 3 adopted.  Our adopted kids are sandwiched in the middle with an older brother (13) and younger twin sisters (4).  We have two boys adopted from Ukraine (age 10, not bio brothers) and a daughter (9) adopted as a newborn (a domestic open adoption). Did you know that everyone does not like the same things?!?  Yes, I knew that was probable, bio or adopted, kids are all different.  I assumed a child with my DNA would be more likely drawn to the same activities that I was programmed to enjoy, and to some extent that is… [more]

Adopting a Child Living with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder

November 21st, 2012

1319861_children_crossingFetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) is an umbrella term used to describe a range of effects that can occur in a child whose mother consumed alcohol in the pregnancy. FASD occurs in all economic, racial and religious groups around the world. Not all individuals prenatally exposed to alcohol are necessarily affected. Yet, many have physical, learning, and/or sensory challenges that result in behavioral issues. Although similarities exist, no two individuals are affected the exact same way. It is considered a whole body disorder. It is a lifelong medical diagnosis that the child will not grow out of. Although there is much in the media describing isolated tragedies of living with FASD, there are also many, many stories of hope and success. There are over… [more]

Handling Those Fears About Your Adopted Child

October 19th, 2012

Adoption vs. Pregnancy: Two Ways to Build Your FamilyWhen an adopted child first comes into your home, the joy and excitement the little one brings is magical. There is nothing like that euphoria. You fall in love. However, when the child's health or behavioral challenges surface, an adoptive parent's imagination can easily drum up dark fears.   While a birth parent worries about the child's issues, as an adoptive parent, you may also worry about the issue plus the unknown or known history of the adoptee's background. You may even hear the haunting voice from a family or friend who was against your adoption, "Why adopt?  You don't know what that child has in her background." This is when you must stay strong. Separate the facts from fiction.  Your… [more]

Time to Celebrate Life

October 18th, 2012
Posted By: on Adoptee

Happy BirthdayGrowing up, birthdays always turned into some sort of sad memorial for the birth mother I never knew. I guess it was the realization of never having known her which turned a festive day into a full-blown day of mourning. On birthdays, If I focused long enough, I could imagine her eyes peering out at me from some unknown corner of the planet, or maybe, I thought she was looking down upon me from the heavens. I always wondered if she thought of the baby girl she had left in that cold downtown hospital, patrolled by nuns regimenting young unwed mothers while viciously  guarding tiny newborns. “It’s my party and I’ll cry if I want to” remained my birthday theme song… [more]


October 17th, 2012

reunionI have known for as long as I can remember that I was adopted. I don’t remember the specifics of my adoptive parents telling me, I just know they were always open with me about it and supportive of my decision whether to search for my birth family or not. My mom always told me she would go with me to look for my birth family and meet them if I had the opportunity. Due to my adoption being a closed adoption the only information I had to go on was the details my parents told me about the paperwork that my adoption agency gave them at the time of my adoption (paperwork my birth mother had filled out up to the time… [more]

Finding a Place to Belong

October 16th, 2012

yellow_house_2I’ve mostly seen adoption from the other side--from the perspective of the child. I’ll never forget the look in Boipelo’s eye when we told her. Boipelo, who had waited so long and so patiently. Boipelo who had asked almost every day for a year when she was getting her “new” family. Boipelo who dreamed about the princess bedroom her new parents would prepare for her. Boipelo, seven going on eight, who was classified as mentally retarded with no clear diagnosis. Boipelo who had seen her other children adopted into families before her. Boipelo who was deemed by almost everyone as “unadoptable.” Boipelo who waited. Amy laid a book before her. A book with wonderful pictures inside and a little story her adoptive family had… [more]