Will your adoptive child feel accepted and included in your family and community? What impact will the adoption have on the life of your adoptive child? Here is one adoptee’s response to me:

“I have always been keenly aware of how the love, support and intervention of a welcoming community can alter life’s challenges that are not under our control.  I was adopted when I was days old into a loving family within such a community, and was lucky enough to grow up in a strong community. My brother, who was also adopted, though from a different birth family, had learning challenges resulting from a retina disease and hearing loss. I was able to see first-hand the effectiveness that a strong family life and proper support and intervention had on him as we grew and excelled together.  My experience of being a part of a reliably supportive and inclusive community is undoubtedly what determined my life trajectory—from attending and working at camps to eventually getting my Master’s Degree in Early Childhood Special Education.  After graduating college, I was completely unsure how to utilize my liberal arts degree, and instead, found a job in construction management (albeit through a member of my community!).  I soon realized that this career path was not in line with my passion or the trajectory that my life had taken through college graduation.  I did some soul searching, and in a move that now seems obvious, took a job as a teacher – in the same community that embraced me as a newborn.  Since accepting that job, I have devoted myself to establishing branches of this community— from classes of 20 to a camp of 300—whose members strive to be as inclusive, loving and productive as the one I joined 3 decades ago.”