Saturday, February 20, 2010

Cross-Cultural Adoption by Amy Coughlin and Caryn Abramowitz

Book Review # 4 is of the 2nd book that we read in our adoption journey...I'm working backwards here!
Anyone that has adopted or been adopted and the adoption is know about by family and friends is undoubtedly going to receive questions by curious supporters. Hopefully the adoptive family can not just prepare themselves, but also prepare others around them to be sensitive in what they say and ask around the adopted child.  Sometimes an innocent word spoken at the wrong time or question asked in the wrong context can cause hurt to a child who may not have yet processed or fully understand what adoption means in their life.
The book Cross-Cultural Adoption takes questions that could pop-up in casual conversations and interactions with both adults and children. Each question has two answers...first it provides an answer for a young child, then it provides a more in depth answer for the older child and adult. Not only does this provide basic ways to avoid insensitive mishaps, it is a fabulous resource for adoptive parents to share with family and friends to provide "adoption literacy".
So what types of questions will you find answers to in this book?
What does "Adopted" mean?
Is she my really cousin?
How much did they pay for her?
In addition to the eighteen questions the authors discuss, there is also a "Do's and Don'ts for Grown-Ups". This is a really great section for well meaning family members and close friends. An example "Do" us "Do respect her privacy" and an example "Don't" is "Don't tell us we're sure to have 'our own' now". As you can see these are very important areas of blunder that adoptive parents often experience in discussing their adoption with well-meaning supporters...a book is a great way to share what may be offensive without directly telling someone, "Hey, can you just shut-up, you insensitive jerk!" Just kidding, but if you have/are adopting you know there have been times that phrase has probably crossed your mind!
The last section is provides a country specific summary so that adoptive families and friends can learn more about the child's birth country. The section on The Republic of Korea (a.k.a. South Korea) shares about the "Geography and Population", "History and Government", "Economy", "Culture and Holidays", "Food", "Interesting Facts", and "Literature and Books for Further Reading".
We are so thankful to our homestudy agency for gifting us this book! Now, I think I will have to review the literature and books for further reading and see if they have them at our local Library! Stay tuned...although there was only a five book requirement...I think you will probably see many more book reviews to come as I read and wait!

1 comment:

  1. After you recommended this book, I found it at our library. I just finished it today and thought it was a very easy and quick read with lots of good information. Thanks for recommending it!