However motherhood comes to you, it is a blessing. But what if motherhood doesn’t look like you thought it would. You may struggle with infertility, or maybe you are a foster mom. You might be a mother who has suffered the loss of a child. Maybe you are a birth mom or an adoptive mom. Maybe you chose not to have children. Maybe you suffered the loss of your own mom. Mother’s Day can be a celebration for some and a struggle for others. But there is hope and unity in our struggle. In this guest blog, the author discusses the idea of spiritual motherhood. Being a mom takes on a plethora of different meanings, so let’s celebrate them all.
Read more here:
Maya Angelou: “Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better”
Many adoptive families choose to celebrate and recognize the day their child’s adoption was finalized or the day they became legally a family. It is an important milestone in the journey for the family and the adoptee. However, at Hope’s Promise, we have been discussing new ways to mark this occasion appropriately, sensitively, and without the much-used old terminology of “Gotcha Day.”
We are always striving toward accurate and neutral adoption language as well as continuing to listen to adoptees’ experiences of adoption. Through listening and learning, we are finding that the term “gotcha” is not accurate or neutral. For the adoptee, the day they joined their new family also is a day that they forever left their birth family’s care and/or homeland. As with many things for adoptees, there is both/and – both joy and grief.
We have come to wonder if “gotcha” seems to either gloss over the loss of birth family or gloat over the joy of the adoptive parents. Some adoptees feel that this language sounds a bit like abduction or not being sensitive to the power structure of adoption. Adoptees have no power over any of the decisions that so dramatically changed their lives. In terms of relinquishment, we choose not to use the terms “give up” or “keep” because it objectifies the adopted person. In the same way, “gotcha” can objectify the adoptee.
Does this mean families cannot celebrate the day they became a family? By no means! But we would suggest using the term Adoption Day or Family Day, which is more accurate and neutral than the language “Gotcha Day.”
Want to learn more? Here are some articles from multiple perspectives we encourage you to read about this issue that helped inform our thoughts:
As Hope’s Promise begins to certify foster families, we also have a great need for families willing to be certified as respite providers. We desire for Hope’s Promise to stand out as having outstanding support of our families and a record-breaking retention rate! It’s been said that about two-thirds of foster parents quit fostering within one to two years because of the hardships they face. We want to see that number be much less at Hope’s Promise! To do so, we know we need to go above and beyond in the support we have for families, and respite care is one of the most important!
Much like grandparents and family members often provide help and time away for parents to have time to breathe, respite providers offer foster parents and youth in foster care a break from their daily lives and a chance to get away and recharge. Sometimes it is a needed break to reset and care for their mental health, and sometimes it is for an already planned trip or vacation which the foster child cannot also take part in for a multitude of reasons. Many foster parents state is the number one thing that helps them maintain longevity in their calling as foster parents – it is that important!
Respite providers receive the same training and certification as foster parents and are often in high demand as there are many more foster parents than there are respite providers! Many respite families also get the opportunity to provide other supports for that youth and family as they build a relationship and become part of the foster family’s community long-term.
If you are interested in exploring what it would mean to be a respite family, please consider attending our free monthly virtual informational meetings – you can sign up here: https://www.hopespromise.com/events/ or email Tami Davidson at [email protected] to set up an individual time to meet with her and learn more.
How can something be both beautiful and a struggle at the same time? Both wonderful and heart-wrenching? Welcome to the world of being a foster parent. Where you advocate for reunification while caring for a child as if they were your own.
It’s hard, it’s messy, it’s gratifying, it’s God’s work.
Read more from Foster the Family blog, where the author, Jamie C., writes beautifully about her experiences as a foster parent: http://www.fosterthefamilyblog.com/foster-the-family-blog-1/i-dont-want-to-hand-him-over
You know the saying “hindsight is 20/20”. We’ve all heard it before, but this exercise for adoptive parents, takes the saying to a whole different level. Writer, author, and adoptive parent, Lori Holden, revisits a letter she wrote to her adoptive children answering the following questions:
Read more to learn how this practice can help all adoptive parents outline what their adoption goal are and then see how well they are aligned in years to come. In writing the letter, parents not only practice seeing through their children’s eyes, but they also clarify what they want of their own parenting in the long run.
Read more here: Cringey! Midpoint of the Adoptive Parenting Feedback Loop