Adoption Resource Book

Overview

With the heart of an adoptive mother and the eye of a journalist, Lois Gilman navigates the often complicated but ultimately fulfilling world of adopting a child.

This practical, wise, and encouraging book contains all the information a couple or an individual needs to investigate adoption alternatives, arrange for and complete a successful adoption, and raise an adoptive family. Beginning with a broad overview of options for both domestic and foreign adoption, the author ...

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Overview

With the heart of an adoptive mother and the eye of a journalist, Lois Gilman navigates the often complicated but ultimately fulfilling world of adopting a child.

This practical, wise, and encouraging book contains all the information a couple or an individual needs to investigate adoption alternatives, arrange for and complete a successful adoption, and raise an adoptive family. Beginning with a broad overview of options for both domestic and foreign adoption, the author provides details about agencies, home studies, paperwork, and legal issues. Also covered are procedures for agency and independent adoptions as well as concerns about intercountry adoption, special-needs children, preparing for a child's arrival, and longer term questions about the impact of adoption on your family over the years.

This newly revised fourth edition features:

  • more information on open adoption and creating the relationship with birth parents that's right for you and your child;
  • the latest on financing an adoption, including loans, government subsidies, and tax credits;
  • the best sources for pursuing an international adoption;
  • new stories throughout from birth mothers, adoptive parents, and adopted children to illustrate adoption issues today, and a detailed bibliography for further reading;
  • and completely updated listings of over a thousand domestic agencies, parent groups, information exchanges, and public service offices.

A consistent adoption bestseller since the publication of the first edition, The Adoption Resource Book contains all the information a couple or individual needs to investigate adoption alternatives and arrange for and complete a successful adoption. An essential guide for anyone considering adoption.

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Editorial Reviews

Jill Smolowe
While it is impossible to predict where anyone's adoption journey will end, it is easy to suggest where that quest should begin: right here, with this book.
Lois Melina
Lois Gilman has concisely compiled a wealth of essential information for prospective parents in a book that is not only readable but a valuable reference.
Ours
Lois Gilmanhasn't missed a thing in this comprehensive, informative and well-organized source of information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780062733610
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 10/28/1998
  • Edition description: Subsequent
  • Edition number: 4
  • Pages: 592
  • Product dimensions: 7.96 (w) x 10.92 (h) x 1.39 (d)

Meet the Author

Lois Gilman is the author of The New York Parents book and a freelance journalist writing on adoption, parenting, and other topics. She is the adoptive mother of Seth, who was born in Chile, and Eve, who was born in South Korea. She and her family live in Mount Kisco, New York.
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Read an Excerpt


Learning About Adoption

Once upon a time there lived a man and woman named James and Martha Brown. They had been married for a long time and were very happy together. Only one thing was missing in their lives. They had no babies of their own, and they had always wanted children to share their home.
So begins The Chosen Baby, Valentina P. Wasson's adoption classic for parents to read with their young children. James and Martha, so the story goes, meet with Mrs. White at the adoption agency. She asks them many questions and then visits their home to see where the child would sleep and play. A little baby named Peter is eventually placed in their home. When Mrs. White introduces them to Peter, she says: "Now go into the next room and see the baby. If you find that he is not just the right baby for you, tell me, and we will try to find another." But Peter is. An adoptive family is created.
The Chosen Baby, first published in 1939 and reissued over the years in updated versions, has been read by three generations of parents to their adopted children. Had Wasson written her story today, however, it might tell quite a different tale:
(c)James and Martha Brown contact Mrs. White at the adoption agency. She informs them that her agency places infants, but that it is the birth mother who selects the future parents of her child. Helen Doe looks at the autobiography that the Browns have prepared at Mrs. White's suggestion and Helen chooses them as Peter's adoptive parents. When Helen goes into labor, she calls to ask them to join her in the delivery room and witness their baby's birth. Afterwards, the Browns care for Peter at the hospital.
(c)James and Martha Brown have threechildren: two boys (ages ten and eight) and a girl (age fourteen). They have always wanted many children to share their home. They contact Mrs. White at the adoption agency to tell her that they would like to adopt two teenagers. They see a description and pictures of siblings John and Suzanne, twelve and eleven, in a photograph book distributed by their state that focuses on children needing permanent homes.
(c)James and Martha Brown have no babies of their own and they want children to share their home. So they place a classified advertisement in a newspaper in their state: "Adoption: Happily married couple wish to adopt newborn." Helen Doe calls them up about the baby she is expecting.
(c)James and Martha Brown contact Mrs. White at the adoption agency. Her agency places children from Russian orphanages. After she studies their home, she sends their application to Russia. A year later the Browns travel to Russia to pick up their nine-month-old son, Petr.
(c)James and Martha Brown have been nine-year-old Peter's foster parents for the past three years. They contact Mrs. White at the adoption agency to ask whether they might adopt him.
(c)Martha Brown has always wanted children. But she's forty and single. She contacts Mrs. White about the possibility of adoption. She learns that there are many infant girls living in orphanages in China and about the agency's adoption programs there. Martha travels to China to adopt eight-month-old Miao Miao.
(c)James Brown has always wanted children. But he's forty-five and single. He contacts Mrs. White about the possibility of adoption. He adopts eight-year-old Peter.
(c)James and Martha Brown contact Mrs. White at the adoption agency. She tells them that her agency will not take any applications but she will put their names on a waiting list. Five years later James and Martha Brown are still waiting.

The story of adoptive families has changed. Childless couples are still adopting, but so are couples with birth children, and so are singles. Agencies are still involved with the adoption of babies, but they are also placing older children, sibling groups, and children with physical and mental disabilities. Families still come to agencies for help in becoming parents, but they also pursue adoption on their own. They are also forming families by adopting children born abroad. And birth parents, once the unseen participants in the adoption story, are playing an active role in the formation of the adoptive family. The portrait of adoption today is a complex one, a composite of many different practices.
In fact the very definition of adoption is no longer as straightforward or as simple as it was once understood to be. Adoption traditionally was seen as an event that culminated when the new parents went to court and vowed, before a judge, to take a child, whose bonds with the birth parents have been legally terminated, as their new son or daughter. The child's past history--the documents that record how the child moved from his or her relationship with the birth family into the relationship with the adoptive parents--was sealed away. The adoptive parents then raised the child as their own, following the model of the family created by birth. To take a child as one's own often meant to cut him off from his genetic past. The Adoption Resource Book. Copyright © by Lois Gilman. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.
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Table of Contents

Preface
Ch. 1 Learning about Adoption 1
Ch. 2 Exploring Adoption through an Agency 31
Ch. 3 Searching for a Baby Independently 73
Ch. 4 Understanding Open Adoption 109
Ch. 5 Searching for a Waiting Child in the United States 137
Ch. 6 Pursuing an Intercountry Adoption 163
Ch. 7 The Home Study 201
Ch. 8 Paperwork 221
Ch. 9 Preparing for Your Child 253
Ch. 10 Adjustments 303
Ch. 11 Raising the Adopted Child 341
App. A Getting Advice 391
App. B Adoption Directory: A State-by-State Guide 397
App. C: For Further Reference 521
Notes 547
Index 561
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