6 posts categorized "Adoption"

Families of all configurations

January 10, 2012

Today, a friend told me, "It's twin Tuesday."  Almost every Tuesday, he and his wife go and spend time with the twins who were born of his sperm, which he donated to a friend so that she and her partner could be mamas.  They never imagined to be this close to one another, to be spending so much time together and to even be taking family vacations together, but they are.  And, it feels right.

We have other friends, also a two-mama family, each of whom bore a child.  Each of the donors remained active in the kids' lives.  "Dad-nors" as they were called.  Again, the extended family unit could not feel more right, with dad-nors joining in on birthday celebrations every year.

Good friends recently became two papas to a 7-month old boy, and they celebrate the day of each month that represents the day that they "got" (adopted) him.  Having had wanted to be papas for a while, they couldn't be happier that it is all smoothly falling into place.

Our families are not restricted to a mama, a papa, and child(ren).  We are so much more than that, with all sorts of definitions that are encompassed by "papa" and "mama", with more than one active mama or papa in any given life.  I would love to hear you share your own experiences with families of all configurations, and celebrate the diversity of our urbanMamas families.

Mamas with only one child, but not by choice?

January 05, 2010

There are mamas and papas among us who have chosen to have just one child.  On the other hand, there are mamas and papas among us who have just one child, and not by choice.  Have you shared this experience?

I'm hoping you can help me connect with local mamas who are mamas to only children but not by choice.  I am very blessed & grateful to have a healthy son - but my husband does not want any more children. It took us awhile to conceive our son and I am so THANKFUL to have a healthy child - but I am in difficult place when it comes to not being able to even try to conceive another child. I don't want to be resentful - would like to connect with others who are or have experienced this.

Family holiday celebrations on Think Out Loud

December 24, 2009

It's not Norman Rockwell any more, says the blog post introducing today's local radio hour, Think Out Loud. "In 2008 half as many people got divorced as got married in Oregon — leaving many children switching from mom's house to dad's at some point during their celebration. It means some families welcome their ex's new partner to dinner. It means family, and family scheduling, gets more complicated," it goes on.

Today's show is particularly appropriate for many of us, and dovetails nicely with some of our recent discussions. Topics of conversation included balancing Judaism and Christianity; relationships between adoptive parents and a birth family; Christmas for separated parents and divorced parents; and forging new traditions in non-traditional families. Comments from regular urbanMama contributor nopomama were included in the discussion, and single mama Jennie 7 joined the conversation with some thoughts on negotiating the holidays after her recent divorce.

"When does something you do, become a tradition?" asked the host, and this is sort of obvious (when you do it more than once, probably) but it's a nice way to open the conversation about our own traditions, new and old. What conventional and unconventional customs are your family, Rockwellian or no, doing this year? What would you like to do?

[Think Out Loud's "Family Time" show repeats tonight at 9 p.m. on OPB, 91.5 FM]

Meeting Mr. Right, who is not Dad

November 24, 2009

Introducing a new parent figure into a child's life is a big step that many of us has been through.  An urbanMama recently emailed, seeking your experience and perspective:

I have a 3 1/2 year old daughter.  I have been separated from her father since she was 15 months old. Since that time he has had NO interaction or contact with his daughter. We have no legal statements of custody (legally, I believe this means that we have joint custody. All of his parental rights are intact.) He has had NO visitation, pays NO child support. He and I do not even speak; not because we are uncivil but because when we separated we separated completely. 

I have recently met the man whom I believe I am going to marry. We have talked about him adopting my daughter.  Does anyone know anything about the adoption requirements in the state of Oregon? I am assuming that my daughter's father will have to sign adoption papers if we wish for my current boyfriend to legally adopt my daughter.

More importantly, has anyone had experience with integrating a father figure into a young child's life? My daughter has never known a father, although she has recently begun to ask things like "Where's my dad?" and "Why don't I have a dad?" as she has started to interact with friends who have both a mother and a father.  I'd love to hear anyone's story, advice, opinion, etc about introducing a father figure into her life at this age.  I have no intention of expecting her to call this new person "Dad".  He and I both feel that if that day comes, wonderful but that is something we will let her come to on her own terms. But how do you EXPLAIN the role of father if and when she asks if this person is her dad?  I believe in being honest and fair with her. I'd like to be able to answer her questions as honestly and as safely, in terms of her development, as I can. I know I don't have all the answers. So, I'd love any support or advice anyone has to share. Book recommendations are always appreciated! :-)

urbanPapas need friends too: Seeking SAHDs

June 30, 2009

For sure, we have many fewer conversations here on urbanMamas dedicated to the papas, which isn't to say that daddyhood isn't important!  But, we know there are dads who are faithful readers of urbanMamas.  An urbanPapa recently emailed seeking paparaderie with other stay-at-home dads (SAHDs):

Are there dads lurking on the urbanMamas site who have advice for a new dad who's at home with his daughter? Do stay at home dads meet up anywhere in Portland?  My partner just happened to be finishing an engineering program just as the economy tanked.  I've been back at work for two months, while he's full time at home with our five month old daughter. We'd love to hear from other dads who by choice or circumstance are taking care of the kids.

If there are papas out there who'd like to get together for a SAHD gathering or a daddy gathering, please let us know!   We can help facilitate getting that group together.

The path to Mamahood: Adoption and Surrogacy

May 07, 2007

An urbanMama who is looking to expand her family asks a really great question.  Perhaps some of our readers can share some resources:

We are beginning to consider adoption/surrogacy to expand our family.  I am emerging from 2 years battling cancer and it's side effects, the most emotionally devastating of which has been going into premature menopause.  We had a crazy rush before chemo/radiation began to freeze one embryo, so our first option would be surrogacy, a (very, very) long shot with only one embryo.  Does anyone know of any good resources to start exploring the surrogacy option?  We are also considering adoption.  Does anyone have experience with adoption agencies or other resources in the Portland area?