Tuesday, June 06, 2006
Adoption Books Continued
I decided that it was taking me too long to read all of the books that I wanted to review today, so I thought- why not just review what I have read, and then do the next batch when I finish. I will add all reviews to my main Adoption Book Review page for reference.

Toddler Adoption- The Weaver’s Craft by Mary Hopkins-Best (1997)If you are adopting a toddler (especially internationally) this is an essential book to read. I heard before I read it that it is a really hard book to read – that it might scare you out of adopting. I didn’t find that to be the case at all. The book was interesting, but not compelling. I mean I didn’t just devour it, but I wanted to read it and I got a lot out of it. I think this book is important because it addresses issues such as what to expect of your toddler when he or she comes home with you. There is a little too much information about what the caregivers should do. I doubt the orphanage caregivers will be reading this book. However, there is also a lot of good information for the parents about understanding the child’s transition (from orphanage to home), your child’s development, and the child’s grief, attachment, managing your child’s behavior and taking care of yourself. There are some practical useful suggestions in here. I liked it because it was toddler specific and not too general. My copy has been thoroughly read and underlined throughout. I learned a lot with this one.

Yes, You Can Adopt! by Richard Mintzer (2003) If you want to try out this book, I recommend checking it out from the library, rather than purchasing it because it is too general- unless you have just decided that you want to adopt and you want to read about every possible path. However, if you know what type of adoption you are going for, or if you are along the process at all than this is not for you. It gives a basic overview about making the adoption decision, preparing for adoption, the homestudy, domestic, independent and international adoption choices. It also touches generally on adoption in the media, adoption fraud, open adoption, adopted & biological children, relative adoption, gay & lesbian adoption, single parent adoption, financing your adoption, positive adoption language, sharing information about your adoption and adoptees: understanding adoption. Overall I felt like the book was easy to read and understand with some good information, but was too general and broad for me to get much out of it.

The Post-Adoption Blues by Karen J. Foli and John R. Thompson (2004)I wanted to like this book more than I did because I think there is a big need for such a book. What is great about this book is that it talks about feelings (secret feelings) that you may have about your adoption, that you don’t feel you can express- and if you do have these feelings, to realize that you are normal and not alone. The message also comes across that you need to have realistic expectations of yourself. This book could be a God-send to someone who is going through post-adoption depression, which according to this book is quite a large percentage of adoptive parents. It might speak to your hurting soul. However, it won’t give you a whole lot of advice about what to do about it besides seeking professional help. However, there is a personal assessment you can take of yourself if you think you have the post-adoption blues in chapter 13 and in chapters 14 and 15 there are some coping strategies and ways to help you identify the problems. I found those chapters to be potentially the most useful.

The Complete Adoption Book by Laura Beauvais-Godwin and Ramond Godwind (2005)This book says that it is a complete guide, and that is the biggest problem with it. It is just too huge and general. I found only two chapters that applied to my personal situation and the information was too general to be worth anything. This book is even more general than Yes! You can adopt. I say, skip this one. If you want an overview get the Yes! You can adopt book.

The Family of Adoption by Joyce Maguire Pavao (2005) This book has some interesting adoption stories (scenarios). She tells stories to teach points about adoption. The stories are from all different types of situations. I read some of them, but did not feel compelled to read them all. Overall I didn't really like it.

Becoming a Family by Lark Eshleman (2003) This was the first book that I read after deciding on adoption and I loved it. It is a short book with lots of practical advice. I read the whole thing very quickly and took lots of notes. The book focuses on attachment, preparing to bring your child home and getting the proper health care, school services and therapy that may be required for your child. The book is assuming you are adopting a baby or toddler.

Raising Adopted Children by Lois Ruskai Melina (1998) This book is not specific and refers to all adopted children. It is not about taking you down the path to adoption; it is about raising your adopted child. The book addresses- transitioning the child into the family and attachment issues, talking about adoption with your child, how adoption affects the family, adoption risks, behavior issues, cultural identity, etc. However, there were a lot of chapters that I felt didn’t apply to everyone who has adopted children (i.e. chapters on special needs, racism, contact with birth parents, and special situations). For this reason I would recommend you check this out from a library if you are interested in it, rather than purchase it so you can read just the chapters that fit your child. Overall it is a high quality book with useful information.

Happy Reading!


Blogger Lauri said...
I agree that the Weaver's craft is a must read and has been the most helpful in preparing us for Olivia. Its the one book I keep on my night stand and go back to often
as a reference.


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