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ElizabethAnn last won the day on February 11 2021

ElizabethAnn had the most liked content!

About ElizabethAnn

  • Birthday 12/18/1962

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    Home Office, San Antonio.
  • Interests
    All things adoption! Plus my two darling sons, playing piano, going to church, cool jazz, hot gospel, chick flicks, reading cookbooks, traveling & retail therapy (aka shopping)!


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    Adoption Professional

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    "Soul Survivor" by Philip Yancy

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  1. Loving the updated Forum! (Thanks, almighty webmaster!)

    1. TexasFamily


      I need to get the hang of the navigation but it looks awesome!

  2. The whole "kid thing" is a wild card, frankly. There are times, when birthparents and adoptive parents have compatible parenting styles, that spending time all together can be very positive, but folks rarely know each other well enough before their first meeting to make such evaluations in advance. I can imagine that some readers may be secretly thinking "why should a birthparent judge the parenting skills of the adoptive family, if they're not even capable of raising the baby themselves?" Yet bear in mind that most of Abrazo's birthparents are raising other children, however effectively, and any parent who is thinking of letting someone else raise their child does, frankly, need to consider whether or not it's in their child's best interests (which does require some level of judgement on the placing parent's part.) We've just seen it backfire too many times, when * a prospective birthparent perceives that the adoptive parents' child is not ready for a sibling or is ill-behaved, or * if the adoptive parents are perceived to be too strict (or too lax!), or * if the adoptive parents seem too anxious or overwhelmed with their existing child (or dismissive of), or * if the child/ren of the expectant parent and the child/ren of the adopting parent do not get along, or * if the adult conversations are continually interrupted by the kids, etc. In some matches, it can work very well to schedule "joint" family activities after the initial match meeting, but typically, it seems to go better if the "kid factor" is added in after the adults have built some trust and gotten to know each other... first.
  3. People Adopting Children When Most Are Thinking of Retirement Is 60 Too Old To Adopt a Newborn? When Are You Too Old to Adopt? At Abrazo, we do not maintain an "upper age limit" for adopting parents, nor do we subscribe to the classic social work theory that parents should not be more than 40 years older than the child they seek to adopt. That said, however, the majority of placing parents with whom we work are in their twenties, so understandably, their idea of "optimal parents for a baby" may not include those who are their own parents' age... or even older than their parents. (Occasionally some do, but it's not very common.) This doesn't mean that older couples cannot adopt successfully, of course! Most can and do, eventually. Yet it is important for older couples (and yes, even those who don't consider themselves "older") to be aware that expectant parents may have very valid concerns about mortality (which is particularly relevant, given adopted children's proclivity for loss issues) and to recognize that this can potentially slow down the adoption process for folks pushing fifty or beyond. Again: this doesn't mean you cannot adopt successfully. It just means that you may need to be patient, and be ready to be receptive to whatever possibilities do come your way. Here are a few ideas for expanding your possibilities: * Open yourself up to the widest possible range of possibilities, in terms of the ages, racial backgrounds and number of children you are willing to consider adopting. * Make sure your profile shows off the active, fun-loving people that you are. If a picture is worth a thousand words, then photos of you and your spouse going places and doing things will say a lot more than pictures of you sitting or posing like couch potatoes. (Unless that's all you usually do, in which case you may want to re-evaluate your ability to keep up with a small child, anyway!) * Cast a wider net by posting your adoption profile on additional sites such as Adoption Profiles (http://www.parentprofiles.com/couples/) and Adoptimist (http://www.adoptimist.com/.) Abrazo can still screen calls for you and handle the casework like any other match, but by doing this, you may catch the eye of a mama who would otherwise have never found you and earn yourself a considerable fee discount as a result! * Resist the urge to try to come off as younger than you are when talking with prospective birthparents. It won't seem genuine anyway, and chances are that if you have to pretend to be more youthful or "hip" than you are just to appeal to somebody, it won't be a comfortable match from day one. * Spend plenty of time around children of the age(s) you intend to adopt, on up. (Babies are only newborns for a matter of days, of course, and they turn into toddlers and preschoolers before you know it.) Volunteer in your church nursery, or babysit for friends. Take a childcare class and be sure you're comfortable in a hands-on way, because your competency will be very important to any prospective birthparents with whom you match. ------------ Disclaimer: This post is written by an "older parent" whose sons are acutely aware that both their mom and dad are older than the parents of most of their grade school classmates, however young their mom may like to think she is!
  4. When you finish your rough draft of your profile, why not read it aloud to your spouse, and have them listen like a frightened, prospective birthmom who's been warned already about people who are in this just to get her baby and probably won't bother to keep in touch afterwards? Does the text of your profile alleviate such fears? Does your letter suggest ways in which you hope your future child's birthparent/s can enjoy an ongoing connection with you and your child over the years? Does your profile reflect an authentic interest in the reader? (Or does it read like it's just "all about you"?) Do phrases like "we promise to provide your child with a wonderful life" and "your child will always know how you loved them" feed into the warnings that every prospective birthmom hears from those who don't trust the options she's contemplating? Adoption expert Jim Gritter prefers to refer to "open adoption" as "hospitious adoption" (see http://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/ED504496.pdf). Obviously, being hospitious means welcoming others in, and implementing "the practices of goodwill, respect and courage to create a smooth relationship process that enriches children’s lives." Is your profile an invitation that encourages a prospective mother to join your life in a meaningful and ongoing way? Or does it sound more like a couple who prefers that she just drops her baby off and goes away? (Which option will mean most to your child someday?)
  5. Thank for you mentioning the obituary, Nicole... it's at http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/sanantonio/obituary.aspx?n=robert-estrada&pid=170678479&fhid=7331. Please do add a favorite photo of Bob from your finalization to the gallery on Legacy, if you're so inclined! We know Bob's wife Barbara and the rest of the family would enjoy seeing those pictures of him with Abrazo's clients! He so enjoyed being part of your adoption stories (especially the happy parts!)
  6. My heart is so heavy as I type the words I dreaded to hear for so long... but our dear friend and beloved attorney Robert Estrada passed away today. Bob had represented Abrazo and its clients for more than a decade. A "local boy done good," Bob was well-respected at the Bexar County Courthouse and much-loved by the AbrazoChicks over the years. He was a highly-skilled lawyer who took great pride in Abrazo's placements and who enjoyed very much the adoptive families and children he met at our finalizations. In his free time, he enjoyed bicycling, tropical fish and collecting motorcycles. He is survived by his beloved wife Barbara Estrada, his children and grandchildren and his faithful paralegal Monika Haeglin. May he rest in peace and in the certainty that his efforts truly did make the world a better place!
  7. We're not sure whether it's blowback from the healthcare reform act or what, but recently, we are seeing a huge (and horrifying!) jump in medical bills in healthy newborn cases. One family's insurance got a nearly $9k bill-- for the pediatrician's care, alone! We've gotten several hospital bills lately topping $13k for single babies discharged in the routine 2-3 day's time, which is more than four times what Abrazo typically collects from adoptive families for baby's hospital care at placement. (We're also finding, suddenly, that fewer local pediatricians are willing to see babies being adopted for single visits outside the hospital, for some reason? We've found one or two who will do us a favor and get our clients in, but only on a private pay basis, because they don't want to have to mess with insurance.) And keep in mind that a mother's Medicaid coverage does not apply to her baby if relinquishment is being done before she leaves the hospital, unless the hospital bills baby's costs to Medicaid in error? And such coverage can be reversed and charged back should Medicaid learn the child is not in her care. Rest assured, we're fighting outrageous medical billings as best we can, but we don't yet know whether this is a fluke or a trend, so just be forewarned... http://www.nytimes.com/2013/07/01/health/american-way-of-birth-costliest-in-the-world.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0 http://www.nerdwallet.com/blog/health/2014/03/27/having-a-baby/
  8. We are pleased to have been able to match the mama referenced above! Thank you for your prayers on her behalf. ----------- We are presently seeking a home-studied African-American or interracial couple for an expectant mother who is already dilated and expects to deliver a baby girl very soon (and before her due date). Interested families should email their current homestudies with a Dear Birthparent profile to info@abrazo.org. Thank you!
  9. Awesome, Lindsey! Thank you... we NEED families, so their timing rocks!
  10. Mick Jagger is mourning the death of his longtime girlfriend, who happened to be an adoptee: http://www.azcentral.com/story/entertainment/people/2014/03/20/lwren-scott-hated-adopted-life/6642301/. Lorraine Dusky, a birthmom whose relinquished daughter also committed suicide, writes about L'Wren's tragic passing here: http://www.firstmotherforum.com/2014/03/saying-goodbye-to-adoptee-lwren-scott.html?m=1. May Ms. Scott find in death the peace (and the answers) that appeared to so evade her in life...
  11. He may have been an Adoption Angel recognized by Congress, but this adoptive dad does not get my nomination for "Parent of the Year"... http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/as-i-lay-dying-frontman-pleads-guilty-in-murder-for-hire-plot-20140225
  12. Hate to sound like a broken record... but a recent crop of matches has left Abrazo in need of more adopting couples! Lately, we've had special requests from expectant parents who are particularly interested in Hispanic couples, as well as childless Texans, so if you know of infertile, traditionally-married couples who would fit Abrazo program requirements and be excellent parents through open adoption, please encourage them to apply!
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