Monday, August 23, 2010

FWL Episode 07 - Falling In Love, Adoption

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My wife joins me in this special episode. We talk about our journey to foster care, bonding, heart ache, adoption, reunification, schedules, bio parents, and much more. Join the conversation by leaving comments on the blog:

Yes, that is a low flying plane and our dog eating in the background, but only in a couple brief places :)


  1. Yay! What a great episode! Once again, your candor is so much appreciated. Katie (is that right?) mentioned being afraid to voice feelings of ambivalence about the 9mo. Not only is it healthy to voice, for one's own sanity, but so that others can know that having those feelings are normal. I like that you foresee the possibility of falling in love once more time goes by -- and once he becomes lighter! Sometimes, like you said, it just isn't right. Adoption is more like marriage than giving birth. You get acquainted, bond, and eventually make a commitment or end the relationship. We had a weekend visit with 3 toddlers, whose issues were not fully disclosed prior to the visit. (Grrr!) I knew the second I saw them something was very, very wrong. Every cell in my body SCREAMED that these kids weren't The Ones. But I was afraid to speak up to their caseworker and my husband, afraid it was just cold feet or something. Come to find out, he was feeling the same way! We decided against the kids, as they were more handicapped than we felt prepared to handle. They were all on antipsychotics -- it just wasn't right for us. I am also glad to hear you voice your anger at a system that so protects the birthparents that the children suffer. The system won't change if people don't speak up. Your listeners won't benefit if they aren't prepared for facing this reality. Supposedly it's all about the kids. It isn't. It's all about preventing biofamilies from litigating. There ARE biofamilies who deserve another chance and who are victims themselves of a hurtful past. But, you're right! It isn't okay for people to practice on their kids and get chance after chance after chance. It also shouldn't take a year or more to get one's act together for one's kids. Sing it sister!! Don't hesitate to voice anger at the foster care system. As stated before, no one wants to tune into an entirely negative, ranting podcast every week. But it IS a broken system, and foster parents need to be prepared for dealing with it. Thanks so much, too, for your candor regarding potential for loss. Great job!

  2. I am so sorry I am so wordy. I appreciated, too, the details regarding your efforts to help your babies catch up and bond. Those are things traditonal parenting books don't tell you. Hearing that stuff, and hearing your struggles is so helpful to everyone who listens. I do hope, as I suggested in my comments on your previous episode, that you will check out my (equally verbose) comments on #84 of T&W's podcast. (I used my real name on there without thinking.) We came to foster care from similar places and I'd like to know your thoughts on the things I speak of there. However, I realise reading my posts and responding to them could become a full-time job, so no pressure! ;)

  3. It was fun hearing Katie's perspective on this podcast. I was laughing out-loud while you guys were talking about how many kids you thought you should have. I married someone with 3, then we adopted 1 from China and thought...hey, four isn't bad-let's do one more! Then did another one from China...then figured what they heck...why stop now?! heehee So here we are with the Foster Parenting, and SIX!

    Our son came home from China at a little over 2 1/2. I really related with what you guys were saying about your 4 month old being behind because he was held all the time and the crying. Our son was (ironically) in foster care in China. He was quite pampered and frankly spoiled rotten. We think our son was carried on his foster mom's back all the time. He came home not being able to climb stairs and cried ALL THE TIME. Our first year or so was NOT good.AT.ALL. He's been home over 3 years now and while almost 6 is really more like 4.5. He's made a lot of gains, but it's been tough.

    I remember thinking the same thing in our PRIDE classes that there was NO way we were going to "get to know" the birth parents. We've had only had one situation where it was really awkward with the birth family. I think it was because it was an after hours case and the SW couldn't get to the baby, so I had to meet law enforcement and gather baby from the parents. Talk about being the "bad guy.."

    While I do have a good relationship with our birth mom, she only has my cell number. I trust HER, but I don't trust those around her. At this point there is no way I would have her in our home. It was good that you guys emphasized the SAFETY aspect of it. Common sense for sure.

    Anyway good episode!

  4. OH see...Now I'm catching up to JAF...
    I forgot I wanted to also comment on your little guy being left in the crib all the time. Our little guy (we think) was left in a jumper all the time. He didn't want to be held or cuddled and pushed against us. He was happy to be left alone. :( It's only within the last 4 weeks (he's been with us 6 months) that he has really settled down into being held and rocked. I bought a Moby wrap and that has been a great help (not only keeping me hands free) but it keeps him close up against me without him struggling to get out of my hold. Hang in there with those babies. Sounds like you guys are doing a great job!! I'm done.

  5. I am glad that you enjoyed our podcast together. It was kindof fun to do with Dan. JAF, I agree that it is important not to bash the system, which was not my intention, but rather to defend children who are defenseless and have no say in what happens to them. I think as capable adults we have to defend and protect kids, and what is in their best interest.

    Stephanie, I would LOVE to have that many kids. I really like having them around, they make our home so light and happy. I think (or hope) Dan will come around to my side when he realizes we need babies here (not like the duggars though) :)
    And, congrats on all your adoptions! Thank you for the encouragment on our little guys, we are already seeing so much improvement in both of them, it really makes it worth it. God bless, Kadi

  6. Thanks for the great comments! It sounds like you have both gone through a lot. It's really cool to share stories with others who have been through similar situations. We're a rare breed :) Thank you so much for sharing and your kind words.


  7. Dan & Katie,

    Thanks so much for your honesty in this episode. You certainly have faced a big challenge. I prayed for you this morning as I listened to the podcast on my way to work.

    I recently wrote about experience of bonding & love with our kiddos: This has been our experience. Also, Tim & Wendy did a great episode on "Love at First Sight" a while ago.

  8. Hi, Dan and Katie,

    I just came across your podcast via Tim and Wendy's podcast. Your family is in our prayers. We are newly licensed (Dec. 2009) and have had one little boy placed with us for 5 weeks. He went back to his mother and back to her native country. We still miss him. Now we have 2 year old twins (brother and sister) and are navigating the system. They have been in our home for 2 months now. In fact, I picked them up from their visit today and had a good conversation with their mom. I appreciate hearing you talk about being torn in wanting the parents to get their act together and also wanting the kids to stay with you. I feel that way right now. I'm leaving it in God's hands, but it is a struggle for me to do that. Keep up the good work.

  9. Just a quick update. Court yesterday placed baby with us until the next court date in February. The Feb. court date will be the permanency day at a day at a time.

  10. I can't seem to save the mp3 from this episode. I can do all the others. Is there a problem with it? It could be on my end but I just wanted to check. I'm really looking forward to hearing this episode!!

  11. Jenny,

    Thanks for the great comments. All we can do is leave it in God's hands, but that's not easy :) That's really cool you had a good conversation with their mom.

    Wow, more waiting eh? We hope this February will be a joyful month for your family.


    Sorry about that, it was my bad - but now it is fixed and you can download the mp3. Sorry about that! Thanks for letting me know, and thank you so much for being patient to hear the episode and for listening to this podcast. I'll make sure that doesn't happen again - I myself always download podcasts and listen to them later. You can always subscribe in iTunes so it downloads automatically as soon as it's available too. Thanks again!

  12. K,

    Thanks for your prayers and comments! :)