AFABC has prepared this special needs supplement on trauma because, whether we like it or not, trauma is inextricably linked to adoption. Of course, not all children who join their families through adoption have experienced trauma, but many have.
The Adoption Act 1996, regulates adoptions in BC, and is specific about what birth mother expenses prospective adoptive parents might expect to pay [see sidebar]. Medical expenses related to the prenatal care and birth of the baby are not usually covered unless the mother doesn't have medical coverage from any other source. Thankfully, our Medical Services Plan will almost always cover these expenses.
This is not the case in the United States—a fact that prospective adoptive parents considering US adoption need to consider.
“She will need extra support both at home, and in the classroom, in order to meet the widely-held expectations for this age, by the end of the Kindergarten year.”
Adoptive families exploring international adoption often wonder why "facilitators" are necessary in addition to their licensed adoption agency. This article explains what they do and gives advice to families who may work with a facilitator.
Not all international adoptions involve facilitators, but many do. Their functions vary, depending on the procedures required in the child’s country of origin. The facilitator usually arranges for translation and authentication of documents.
Like new biological parents, some adoptive parents can become blue or even experience some depression once a baby or child comes home. This can occur for several reasons. It's nothing to be ashamed about, but you do need to recognize it and get some help.
I remember walking down the streets of East Vancouver pushing my newborn baby’s stroller and sobbing. I was exhausted from lack of sleep, trying to care for a baby—something I knew precious little about—and from loneliness. I felt that I had thrown away my season ticket to freedom, and I longed to go back to my previous life.
The Asante Centre, located in Maple Ridge, was started three and a half years ago by Dr Kojo Asante who worked in Northern BC for many years and became a pioneer researcher in Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) through his work in Aboriginal communities. Asante provides assessments for people affected by FASD, a term that describes a range of disorders and effects that can occur in a person whose mother used alcohol while pregnant.
A glance at a list of adoption agencies in BC appears to indicate that whole swathes of the province are not served. All but two of BC’s licensed agencies are located in the Lower Mainland and Fraser Valley.
Marni Bodner, executive director of Kelowna’s Adoption Centre, emphasizes that while the geographical distribution may give the impression that families or birth parents in isolated communities don’t have access to agencies, this is certainly not the case.
This information applies to any individual who is functionally dependent on others in some specific areas, and who does not learn from correction, or who does not “get” why people are distressed with their behavior.
Parents, teachers and support persons of individuals with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) are sometimes faced with episodes of extreme behavior. The first instinct we all follow is to use “common sense” methods for controlling the disruptive behavior of any child.
Q: My six-year-old son’s teacher says that he has learning disabilities and wants to have him assessed by a psychologist. What would these tests involve and how will they help?
Art therapy and adoption go well together. The creative process used in art therapy can assist children and adults to understand their feelings and experiences through non-verbal means. It can also assist with the development of social skills, the management of behaviours, the reduction of anxiety and depression, and it can heal trauma and increase attachment in relationships.