Diary of an Adoptive Mom #19

Focus on Adoption magazine

In the nineteenth of our series, our mom of three kids--Emily and her new siblings, Grant and Lynn--wonders why so much information about her childrens’ past is still unavailable, and why she’s listed as Mom on their birth certificates.

The other day I started to think about all my kids’ personal information being completely sealed and stored in some undisclosed location in Victoria. I just don’t understand why we can never access it again. 

One mom's method

Focus on Adoption magazine

Every September, I speak to my daughters’ teachers about adoption. I always bring a copy of AFABC’s “Positive Adoption Language” with me, and I set privacy boundaries for the teachers around publicly discussing our daughters’ circumstances. This visit also gives me an opportunity to find out about any family-related assignments that might impact the girls. I’m careful to point out to teachers that the adoption language sheet will help them when discussing family circumstances with same-sex families, single-parent families, and separated, divorced or blended families.

Planning permanency WITH youth

Speak-Out Youth Newsletter

I'm a youth who was in foster care. I know what it's like to meet with social workers and have conversations about my future. I think that planning permanency and adoption is a good thing because it gives youth a sense of stability and belonging. Permanency is important because it sets the ground work for the youth's future; it sets up a permanent family life and also might help to make sure that positive outcomes are possible for the youth in the long run. Here are some suggestions I have for people who work with youth in care or adoptees!

Fiction vs facts about youth in care

Speak-Out Youth Newsletter


  • They are unwanted
  • They are sexually promiscuous
  • They are too old to be adopted
  • They do not know how to love and interact with others
  • All foster parents treat their foster children unfairly
  • Incapable of getting a job
  • All kids in care have many counsellors in their lives
  • They will all grow up to live on the streets
  • They are all thieves/criminals
  • They are all angry and dramatic


  • They are very smart people, even if their grades don't show it all the time
  • They are ve

Foster parents can help change the stigma of mental illness

Focus on Adoption magazine

I’ve certainly benefitted from the care of some very supportive foster parents over the years since my placement in goverment care at the age of 15. My need for care was determined by the presence of serious mental illness in the family. My beautiful and brilliant mother was a professor of linguistics at the University of Victoria when she experienced the onset of schizophrenia. It certainly doesn’t discriminate. All of the degrees, merits and accomplishments did not matter in the slow decline of her beautiful mind.

Opening hearts through film

Focus on Adoption magazine

Making documentaries on adoption is more than just making movies.

After the film is completed, the complexities of adoption continue. In documenting adoption and orphan  experiences, we saw many opportunities to get involved.

"Perfect" parents for teens

Focus on Adoption magazine

Parents who are willing to wait for personal gratification.
Attachment with teens can take longer and may look very different than attachment with younger children.

Someone with a great sense of humour, patience, tolerance, and adaptability.
Self explanatory if you know teens.

People who can see beyond the rebellious teen to the blossoming young adult that they are becoming.
Are you able to quietly nurture the child that is still crying out for love and attention?

Wanted: Imperfect families

Focus on Adoption magazine

As awareness and recruitment around teen adoption grows, hope is on the rise for youth who were once considered  "unadoptable." We talked with Wendy's Wonderful Kids recruiter Anne Melcombe about how she looks outside the box to find families for the unique kids on her caseload.


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