Newsflash: Our popular Domestic Adoption: Communicating with Birthparents Workshop will be held on Saturday May 16, 2009 in the Pennington office. This is our best in-depth opportunity for you to learn more about the birth parent perspective before, during and after the adoption. We believe that this will help you in preparing for the domestic adoption process; talking to your child about adoption and specifically birth parents; and understanding your choices in open adoption. In March we held the Family Stories: How to Talk to Children About Adoption and Donor Origins Workshop and here are the five top reasons I loved it! 1. We brought together families formed through adoption and through donor origins and in this way were able to reinforce exactly what we want the children to know: Families are formed in different ways.2. The audience loved hearing the personal perspectives of our panelists including:
- Parents through adoption, donor egg and donor sperm
- A Birth parent
- Two teens sharing their perspectives on their adoption and donor origin stories respectively
- An adult adoptee
3. Collaborating with Judy Kottick, LCSW of www.jkfertilitycounseling.com and exploring the similarities and differences in talking to children about adoption and
donor origins.4. The IAC Center Counselors: Lauren Scheiner moderating the panel on talking to kids from ages 7 to 12 about adoption; Sasha Martone speaking about transracial family adoption issues and how to use lifebooks with children; and Beverly Andres' creative perspective on using movies and other impromptu opportunities to communicate with children and teens about their sense of identity and other feelings related to adoption. 5. And most of all I loved that by the end of the day many of the parents shared their own feelings and experiences, and in this way connected the most important dot. Parents can learn the developmental and psychological information about the ages and stages that children go through in understanding their family stories; and even some of the better verbal responses to children's questions at workshops; by reading books or even from magazine articles these days. But, the reality is that talking to kids about their origins is difficult primarily because it touches on the parents' own issues. In making this connection, I believe that these parents are really on their way to more effectively communicating with their children about their family stories. Children will pick up their parents' tone; the aspects of their story that their parents avoid or focus a lot on; and basically how their parents feel about adoption and specifically about their birth parents. Children take their parents' feelings very seriously. At the IAC Centers, we believe that helping parents with their feelings about adoption is the first and most critical step toward helping the children understand their stories; building self-esteem and confidence in their identities; and towards building all different kinds of happy families.In response to the amazing energy at this conference, I created a Life Cycle Adoption Issues At A Glance Chart to further the dialogue and understanding amongst all adoption triad members. My hope is that this chart simply serves to stimulate your thinking about adoption and the way it touches your own life and the lives of those you love; as well as talking points to promote further discussion about adoption in your own family, in IAC Center Groups and with whomever else you discuss these topics. Toward that goal, let's start the dialogue now. Please send any comments, reactions and points of view about this to me at JMantellMSW@iaccenter.com While I cannot promise a response to every email, I will with your permission create a composite of all of the responses for the next newsletter. We are here for you at all points along the way in your journey,IAC Center Director
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Upcoming IAC Center Workshops
To sign up contact IAC Center at 609-737-8750 or follow the links above to locate registration links.
Groups with Openings
Pre-adopt Groups starting in Pennington and
Red Bank, New Jersey.
A North Jersey Pre-adopt Group will be starting
as soon as we have enough
NEW Children's Groups forming for the
fall in Pennington and openings in Children's Group in Monmouth County
- Daytime Parent's
Group in Pennington has openings
NEW Teens Group forming
and NEW Parents of Teens Group
forming. Interviews for these groups are being
held now so that we can create a teen group that
Contact firstname.lastname@example.org to sign up or
if you would like more information.
contact us now even for Fall groups as we need to
match the participants and determine whether we have
the right mix, or need to form
If you were at the IAC Center Holiday Party
you met Jun, a local woman who was serving the
most delicious pears and wearing beautiful
clothing from her country. Now Jun is
inviting families to her house for an
authentic Korean lunch.
Jun has extended an invitation for you to
join her on:
Place: at her home in
Jun is a lovely, sincere and generous
woman and we believe that you will find this to
be a wonderful opportunity to learn about either
your child's birth culture or this culture if you do
not have a personal relationship to it.
Please note: this
event it not limited to families formed through
adoption from Korea. Jun welcomes anyone interested
in that culture.
RSVP - please
contact Emily at email@example.com
Counseling offers a non-biased overview of family building options to facilitate individuals and couples in making timely decisions that are mindful of long term implications. Using a life-long short-term counseling model, counseling is available throughout the adoption life cycle for all adoption triad members.