Adoption Unfiltered authors Sara Easterly (adoptee), Kelsey Vander Vliet Ranyard (birth parent), and Lori Holden (adoptive parent) interview dozens of adoptees, birth parents, adoptive parents, social workers, therapists, and other allies–all sharing candidly about the challenges in adoption. While finding common ground in the sometimes-contentious space of adoption may seem like a lofty goal, it reveals the authors’ optimistic aim: working together with truth and transparency to move toward healing.

Healing isn’t possible, though, without first uncovering the hurts–starting with adoption’s central players: adoptees, who are so often in pain, suffering from what the latest brain science validates as the long-term emotional effects of separation trauma. By encouraging others to vulnerably share their stories, the authors discover that adoptees aren’t the only ones in the adoption constellation who are hurting. Birth parents regularly shut down after being shut out by adoptive parents. Adoptive parents often struggle with unique parenting challenges and hidden insecurity, feeling the need to hide the fact that they are not the Super Parents they led the agency to believe they would be. Across the industry as a whole, misinformed and even unethical practices abound.

Adoption Unfiltered models the importance of adults in adoption working together in the spirit of curiosity and empathy–to learn and do better for future generations of adoptees and their first and adoptive families.

Adoptee Author: Sara Easterly

Authors: Lori Holden, Kelsey Vander Vliet Ranyard

Publication Year: 2023


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