Thursday, September 06, 2007

The Nuclear Family, Exploded--a must-read

A really excellent article from the New Yorker. (Incidentally, I emailed quite a bit with Randi for awhile, back when we were both in the process of adopting from AAI, and I've also emailed with Tracy a little in the past, also an AAI adoptive parent. Fun to read their interviews and see pics of their families!)

The Nuclear Family, Exploded

I'd love to hear your thoughts!

9 comments:

Lara said...

What an awesome article. Very in depth and very honest. Obviously I don't have any real experience in this area but I felt like I could relate to a lot of it. All the problems people have with their adoptive children, people have with their biological children too (like testing love, tantruming when they can't communicate, etc.) Kids are kids. I liked the end where she said she had too many expectations for her biological son and her adopted daughter taught her that she has no idea who either of them will become.
I love that the idea of family is becoming so much bigger these days. What a picture of Jesus.

Samantha said...

Definitely a cynical/humanistic look at family, parenthood and adoption. When you don't have God's definition of children and mother/fatherhood ruling your life, you don't have a full worldview. You only have a shadow of the truth. We love and care for our biological or adoptive children because God loves them and asks us to care for them like He does. It is never easy, whether you birth them or not. Some days liking them is hard enough! We do things for God's glory and to further His Kingdom. Period. Are there unique challenges to adopting. Absolutely, but each child God gives us presents unique challenges. They could be autistic, or blind, or deaf or mentally challenged. If we trust God to plan our family, through birth and/or adoption, we can rest that He knows what is best for us and will provide all we need. I feel sorry for the author and people in the article and the lack of Christ that is so apparent in what they had to say. I did appreciate their honesty with a subject that people tend to only talk about the positive things about. I also thought the mention of the born again Christians who are adopting into their already established families having an easier adjustment was interesting. Thanks for the link to the article!

Laundry & Children said...

To be honest, I found the article a little off putting. It had a sudo New York intectualism that always comes off as look down on any one off the island (Manhattan that is). Adoption for these families appeared more like a social statement than a way to grow their family and live out God's plan for them and their children. Perhaps it was the writing style, but I felt like the adoptive families spend much of their life look inward and doing self analysis rather than looking out and living for others. I am trying to say this in a way that does not me guilty of the very thing that I am accusing others of...looking down on others not like myself. However, you asked my opinion and that is it.

Joy said...

I loved the ending of this article. I think it is so true that we should free ourselves and our children of expectations of who they will be and who they're similar to. Just like the George MacDonald quote--helping them to grow as beautiful as God intended them to be. Period. Whether biological or adopted, I think that is our job as parents. Each child is an individual and will have hard times with various things in life. But, God is bigger than all of that and can heal us of any hurts. This is kind of rambly, but I think you get the gist. Thanks for sharing--I love how you are so educated and well-read about adoption issues. I just think you are very aware and open to everything that being a mother (adoptive and biological) may bring. You & your family are truly a blessing to all!

Brianna Heldt said...

thanks to all for sharing your thoughts on the article! personally, i loved it.

there are things about adoption (particularly with older children i would imagine) that are just HARD (whether you know God or not). i've found that oftentimes christian adoption publications/advocates fail to acknowledge the complexity of the issue, and boil it down to us being "adopted" by God (therefore doesn't adoption make sense and isn't it wonderful), this warm fuzzy idea of giving an orphan a home, etc. but i've found it's a little more complicated and i thank God that He loves me and my kids and is doing a good work in us, even when it's difficult. i agree with samantha that each of us has unique parenting challenges, whether the child is born to us or not, but adoption introduces some unusual things and it can be hard for parents (and adoptees!) to sort it all out.

from what i know about the two families in the article, they love their children and have done a lot to live for others--randi and her husband adopting a child with down syndrome, pursuing the adoption of their girls' much-older sibling, tracy tullis has done so much for ahope and aai, pretty amazing stuff. i think the journalist writing the article sets the tone for sure. i get excited when i see people doing the Lord's work.

joy i love that too, not having expectations of how our kids will be etc. pretty amazing!!! one of the neatest things about adoption is getting to know your child and wondering, who has God made them to be? what special gifts do they have? and it also reminds you to look for that in your bio children too, to not just see them as an extension of yourself.

Rachel said...

I did read some of the article, but my computer booted me off the internet so I gave up a few pages in. BUT what I really want to hear about is your camping trip. We felt ready this summer to embark on the wonderful world of the outdoors, but with so many visitors, never made the time to get away. Next summer I'll probably feel like it is too soon for Ainsley, we'll see! Oh and congrats on top score in Pick 'em!

Brianna Heldt said...

rachel i wrote up a post about it (just had to add pics), and my laptop battery ran out so it shut down and i lost it! bummer! SO i will re-write it and hopefully post it soon. i can imagine there are some BEAUTIFUL camping spots in colorado!!! (and i am quite proud of my pickem standing, and will be enjoying it while i can.)

Jeannett Gibson said...

I just want you to know that I totally have a million things to say about this article but if I sat down and put it all in a comment, I would probably have to call CPS myself to report child negligence. I do believe that this is a "in real life" conversation!

Brianna Heldt said...

oh man jeannett this sounds like a great conversation!!! looking forward to seeing you next! :)

 

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