Tax Adoption Deductions - Birthparent Of Adoption
The Complete Book of International Adoption: A Step by Step Guide to Finding Your Child
by Dawn Davenport

This book is for anyone thinking about any form of adoption because it has a great discussion and comparison of all forms of adoption. Although the book goes on to a thorough coverage of international adoption, The author is clear that all forms of adoption should be considered and there is no one type of adoption that is best for everyone.

The book covers everything a prospective parent needs to think about, but the author is nonjudgmental about many of the choices parent will have to make. With each choice she urges parents to be honest with themselves and to put the interest of the child first.

The first couple of chapters most helpful if you are just starting the adoption process: are you ready to move on to adoption, what type of adoption is best for us, how to choose a country, and how to choose an agency.


Tax Adoption Deductions -

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Tax Adoption Deductions
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Tax Adoption Deductions * Birthparent Of Adoption

Birthparent Loss and Grief   
Patricia Roles

In the last decade, there has been a growing acceptance that a loss occurs
for birth parents when adoption takes place.

In the past, the emphasis in the
adoption process has largely been on the reception of the child into the
adoptive family rather than the reciprocal <hl>loss of the baby for the birth
parents and extended family. The bonding process for the birth mother, who
carried the baby inside her during pregnancy and experienced the miracle of
birth with this baby, had not been previously acknowledged in society at large
or by the professionals working in adoption and mental health.

Article to continue below----------------------------------------------

SERI ISKANDAR, March 6 (Bernama) -- Petronas will intensify its school adoption programme dubbed "Program Bakti Pendidikan Petronas" (PBPP) following the satisfying results scored by pupils under...


Adoption relinquishment involves a grief process not unlike other types of
grief such as death or separation. There are, however, some significant
differences for birth parents, due to the nature of the loss, which will be
noted during the description of the grief process.

Article to continue below----------------------------------------------

Philip N. Cohen: International Adoption Under Siege? (The Huffington Post)
After a day at the 2010 Adoption Policy Conference. I'm not an adoption expert, but I know more today than I did yesterday. Spend a...


Grief Process:

Numbness and Denial: During the initial phase of grief, the
birth mother is trying to cope with the realization that the birth has become a
reality. In the midst of the physical and emotional strain of having given
birth, she faces the decision of relinquishment and the loss this decision
involves, all in a very short space of time. Trying to make such a painful
decision in the middle of all this change and intense emotional upheaval can
lead to a period of shock, numbness, confusion and at times denial. Denial is a
very primitive defense mechanism that can be effective in protecting a person
from emotional collapse. Denial may have been a mechanism the birth mother
utilized to cope during the pregnancy. Defenses such as denial need to be

Numbness, confusion, shock or denial can result in
birth mothers having little recall of events such as the baby's birth, or they
may forget significant details such as the day or time of the baby's birth.
These episodes can result in terrible guilt and can, as well, diminish her
already-limited store of memories of the baby and events to validate the birth
and the ensuing loss.

Eruption of Feelings: As the shock and confusion</hl> lessen and the denial or numbness
recedes, floods of intense feeling may erupt without specific triggering
events; this eruption can be an overwhelming experience involving a range
of feelings such as sadness, emptiness, anger, fear, panic, anxiety,
despair, guilt, shame, helplessness, hopelessness, loneliness,
irritability, fatigue, or difficulty concentrating. Feelings might get
expressed indirectly through physical symptoms such as headaches, sleep
disturbances, nightmares, back pain, stomach pain, or bowel problems. As
emotions find avenues for direct expression, they gradually decrease in
intensity and become more connected to triggers associated with the memories
and loss.

Secrecy, shame and lack of public acknowledgment of
the loss by family, friends and society mean that the fact of the loss is never
validated. What follows, then, is a subsequent lack of natural opportunities
for expression of feelings and therefore diminished opportunities for support.

Accepting the Adoption Decision: The fact that the adoption process involves a birth
mother's active choice in determining the course of events sets this loss
apart from other losses such as death, aligning it instead to the loss
experienced when an individual decides to separate from a spouse. In a
marital separation, the initiating spouse is motivated to the decision
because of some type of untenable situation and may feel anger toward the
spouse, allowing emotional distance. In contrast, the decision resulting
in loss of an innocent baby or child only brings sadness and guilt, even
when others try to reinforce that it is "in the best interests"
of the child and that the child will be "loved." The love of others
for the child does not cancel out the pain of the loss for the birth

This aspect of decision-making is complex, as birth
mothers may have experienced coercion, pressure or lack of support for options
other than adoption, reducing their effective control of the adoption decision.
This can leave birth parents with a great deal of legitimate pain, anger and
regret. Ensuring that birth parents are in charge of their decisions and that
they retain control of their choices is vital to the process. However, it is
this very act of making a conscious and informed decision that then provokes
the birth parents' feelings of responsibility for their own and their baby's
loss. It is painful to feel responsible for such a difficult choice. However, birthmothers and birthfathers who have retained control of their own decisions, rather than
surrendering to the influence of others, find it easier to accept
responsibility for these choices and are less likely to hang onto anger. This
sense of responsibility does not necessarily lessen the grief process, but
birth parents who have retained control may be less likely to find themselves
stuck in anger and blame in years to come.

to and Living with Uncertainty:
If feelings are granted expression, then
the feelings gradually become more manageable, and emotional reactions are
in manageable response to natural reminders of the loss. Birth parents can
find ways to live with the repeatedly sensitive areas: the child's
birthdays, others' pregnancies, their own future pregnancies, baby
showers, meeting children with the same name, and other losses. Birth
parents have to find ways to answer such questions as, "Don't you
want to have any children?" or "You'll know what being separated
from a child is like when you have children of your own." Birth
mothers listen in silent pain to other women's stories of labour and
delivery, often unable to join in this connecting female discussion.

Birth parents with closed adoptions live in a
state of limbo, forced to create fantasies as they envision their child growing
up with the adoptive parents. False hope can also be created if it is suggested
to the birthmother that an open adoption will result in only a temporary and
transient sense of loss; expectations born of such misinformed counseling can
lead to disappointments later in life. Open-adoption contracts or potential
reunions do not come with guarantees.

When loss comes from death, the survivor may still
feel an impulse to search for something. However, this sort search is
eventually recognized as irrational, as the individual comes to appreciate the
permanence of the loss and move past the behavior. But <hl>in loss through
adoption, the search behavior is not irrational. The form of search that birth
parents may undertake may include checking birth dates of children the same age
as the child who was relinquished; looking for children who look similar to birth
parents, scanning faces in a crowd; seeking more information about the child or
adoptive family; or seeking out the relinquished child. In part, searching
allows birth parents to form a mental image of the child, validating that the
loss indeed occurred; it also provides reassurance that the child is doing well
in the adoptive home.

Re-evaluating and Rebuilding: The secrecy, shame, guilt, self-blame, feelings of
selfishness and loss leave scars on birth mothers' self-esteem. Birth
parents may struggle as they re-evaluate their decisions later in life.
Birth parents might feel incapable of making decisions, feel unlovable, or
feel unable to handle having another child. At such moments, they need to
realize that they made the decision at a particular time and place,
perhaps as a vulnerable teenager without adult skills or resources. Restoring self-esteem is an ongoing process, and rebuilding self-esteem
also depends on the degree of self-esteem possessed prior to the pregnancy
crisis and relinquishment.


Resolving birth parent loss and subsequent grief is an individual process.
The issues highlighted here are only a guide illuminating the complexity of
loss through adoption, a loss<hl>that interweaves with other elements in a context
of diverse societal, cultural, religious, and family values. It is, however,
important to encourage birth parents to focus on this issue. By attending
openly to the grief of this loss, those working in the adoption field and those
personally affected by adoption can acknowledge, validate and value this
experience and its losses. This process, though painful, is hopeful as well,
helping to break down the barriers of judgment, secrecy, and consequent shame
for birth parents. It can enable private grief to be publicly acknowledged,
providing the context for grief's expression, highlighting the need for
increased support, and ultimately increasing respect for the voice of birth
parents in the adoption process.

© Patricia Roles, Virtual E-counseling Room,, Burnaby, BC, Canada

Go To Patricia Roles' Virtual Counseling Room

Patricia Roles, MSW, RSW, BCATR, is a registered social worker and registered art therapist with over 20 years counseling experience specializing in family therapy, eating disorders, adoption, divorce, bereavement, family communication, and chronic illness. She has published in the field of birthparent loss, teen pregnancy and eating disorders.She provides online counseling via e-mail through her site at:

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In the articles shown above on this web site you will find information that has been collected from many independent sources. Each article or item may offers a different point of view, but not necessary that of the CPA Mom's. This information is for general information only.