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September 18, 2009



One of the most beautiful and loving things I've read in a long time. Thank you.



I am so glad you linked today and that I've found your blog because of it. Looking forward to reading more!


I appreciate this so much, Lisa. Thank you.

Tonggu Momma

Getting over my own feelings of possessiveness and entitlement were both harder and easier than I ever imagined. Amen, Lisa. Your words are oh, so true.


#1-beautiful. #6 is a really tough one. Thanks so much for sharing.


Oh big "Ugggg" to #6! General public yes.. but do you see some changes?? It's a little better yes? Gezzz I'm so sadly ever hopeful!


I love that I can share my son with his Birthmom/first mom. And, she TOTALLY agrees with me that he is the cutest/smartest/coolest kid around!

David Toomey

Hi, I'm a little curious. You say that your adopted daugher misses her mother so much after 18 years that it makes her cry. Then you go on to say adoption works. If it works then why does it make your daughter cry? As an adoptee, I guess I just dont get it?

Lisa V

David, I think there is a difference between having a working adoption and a perfect adoption. It is not perfect. Perfect would have been for Mallory to remain solely as Noelle's daughter and have been raised by her. That didn't happen for a variety of reasons that aren't mine to speak to.

But I think open adoption "works" far better than closed adoption for us. My child knows her mother, and knows she loves her. We all enjoy a good relationship and love and respect her. I think this (open adoption and getting to be a big part of each other's lives) is the best alternative to Mallory being raised by her first parents.

David Toomey

Thanks for your considered explanation. I can't say that I agree, but I wish you, your daugher and her mother all the best.

David Toomey


Something for your consideration.


A grief point for me is that I'll never have the opportunity to share my daughter with her birth/first parents. When I talked to McKenzie about this the last time, she told me she didn't know if she'd want to meet them. We continue to explore this as she feels the desire/need.


Glad I found your blog. Our son is only 15 months old and we have an open relationship with both his birthparents and his extended family on both sides. What's amazing to me is how unbelievably hard it is. Additionally shocking is why I thought it wouldn't be. It's deep, it's cellular, it's emotionally complex. I wouldn't change anything but wow.



I have read your blog only a handful of times over the years.

Why? Because, as a first mom, I find myself wishing that it had been someone like you that I'd met over two decades ago.

(Nevermind the wish that no qualifier was set before my motherhood, nor the wish that I'd not received unethical "counsel" and relentless pressure tactics ala Bethany.)

If my child's relinquishment/adoption was going to happen, I wish I'd met someone who actively chose to work through the possessive feelings, the insecurities; someone willing to question the mythology, someone who understood that maternal love is broader and deeper and more encompassing than any of us knew going into this.

Someone who appears to have understood that human equality and dignity come first in any relationship,especially those that are unmapped, especially those that center around a child.

Having been on the receiving end of the polar opposite,for decades, I find my heart both rejoices and aches when I witness women like you and Dawn.

It rejoices for the children and their other mothers and, of course, for you.

It aches for my child, for all that was lost in the wake of a parent who opted for the society-granted pedestal and all that accompanied it.

Lisa V

Wow. Thank you for all the nice things you said, I'm really not sure that I live up to them.

I really wish you and every first mom I know-if adoption had to happen in their lives- was able to experience a better relationship with their child. It kills me when I see my friends denied what is rightfully their's concerning their child.

Tee @ Fostering Thrifty Families

This is beautiful and timely. I find myself having to defend open adoption constantly despite us not having adopted our foster sons yet. I find myself having to constantly explain myself for wanting to be in contact (and have the boys be in contact) with my foster son's birth mom. You are so, so right that the world reinforces the adoption mythology, to the detriment of birth parents, adoptive parents, and adopted children.

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