A friend of mine sent me a wonderful book recently, “In On It: What adoptive parents would like you to know about adoption” by Elisabeth O’Toole. There’s been so much written for members of the triad, what a great idea to have a resource for all the friends and family that support the triad members! A point I try hard to make in all of my books and speaking is that my choice to place my son for adoption was not just my own – it was a choice that had a profound effect on my entire family. I also know that my son’s adoptive parents choice to create a family through adoption had a profound effect on their family as well. Kudo’s to Elisabeth for finally addressing this!
Author Elisabeth O’Toole, an adoptive mother of three, shares insider information with the friends, family, and others whose lives are touched by adoption but who are outside of the adoption triad of birth parents, adoptive parents and adoptees. In addition, teachers, coaches, neighbors, doctors, clergy, and others who work with children will find this book extremely helpful in shedding light on a topic that is typically only fully understood by those immediately involved. Being “In on it” means taking away all the curtains and letting the world know what a wonderful, life changing, and positive experience adoption is today.
US Census data reveals there are over 7 million adoptees living in America. Add to this their birth families, adoptive families, close friends and relatives, and the number of people who have an adoption experience in their lives is staggering. It’s time that the realities surrounding this phenomenon are shared with the general public so the myths can be shattered and these children and families can finally be treated with the respect they deserve. In On It is a fantastic tool to make this happen.
O’Toole shares her experiences as strangers, teachers, neighbors and family ask questions that range from uneducated to downright offensive. She shares her frustration in feeling as though she must share more details of her children’s lives than a biological mother, simply because her family was formed by adoption. Her advice, not only for those with questions, but for other adoptive parents, is for everyone to remember that by the time the child is a part of the family that family has spend months, sometimes years, asking those same questions and finding their answers. Maybe the adoptive parents have gotten the answers they needed, but often those outside of the family have not. She offers the book as a way to bridge this gap, bring everyone into the circle of understanding, and help create an accepting atmosphere that will support the child and their family.
In On It shares what adoptive parents go through as they struggle with infertility and their fears of the adoption process, she shares the thoughts of adoptees that struggle with their self image and the struggles of birthmothers whose gift is often misunderstood. She breaks through the myths, sets the record straight, and offers practical guidance to those outside of the adoption circle. At the end of each chapter is a section titled “What You Can Do” that gives direction, including lists of specific statements, questions to ask or actions you can take.
In On It is a great gift idea for all those who touch the life of an adoptive family. O’Toole let’s them in on your secret: that adoption is a beautiful, loving way for families to be created.