Is International Adoption Part Of Your Family Picture? Be Aware of S.S.P.E. Measles Kills Internationally Adopted Children Through S.S.P.E. Complication

February 23rd, 2011

Measles

International adoption is a wonderful way to grow your family and share your love with a child who desperately needs a "Forever Family." If you have adopted from another country, you already know about the large amount of paperwork involved and the time it takes to complete the adoption process. The whole time, your new family member is still in another country being cared for by caregivers who are probably not doing what we would do in our country for a child. You don't know what kind of care your child is currently receiving. There are pieces of the information puzzle that are not going to be filled in by your adoption agency. You have to prepare yourself to look for specific… [more]

Risk Involved in International Adoption

January 14th, 2010

Risk Involved in International AdoptionToday's post is all about risk. As adoptive parents (or prospective adoptive parents, biological parents, and the like), there's risk to be found everywhere. There's obviously risk in adoption (both domestic and international), in raising a child, and so on. Life is essentially full of risks, but that's not necessarily a bad thing. Some risks taken can produce an outcome more beautiful than you could have ever possibly imagined. I have limited experience with domestic agencies (Robyn, want to weigh in on this one?), but it's my understanding that you are provided with as much medical information about your child's birth mom (and maybe birth father, too) as possible (at least that's what our agency states on their website)… [more]

World AIDS Day

December 1st, 2009
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1121365_single_ribbon_redDecember 1st is recognized as World AIDS Day.  You may see red ribbons everywhere and now you know why!  Last year I didn't think about World AIDS Day until the actual day.  Until April of 2008 AIDS meant nothing to me more than the average nurse:  signs and symptoms, ways it is transmitted and concern over needle sticks at work.  Now AIDS is the reason I have two of my children.  AIDS is the reason that many of us are adopting Internationally.  There are millions of children orphaned by this disease.  Millions of parents dead, leaving children to live on their own or with other family members. What can we do as parents and citizens of this world to chip away at the… [more]

When Cultures Collide

September 7th, 2009

As a modern western woman it is easy for me to get mad at societies that do not allow women freedoms that I have enjoyed my entire life. When I read this article on the Sudanese women who went to trial for wearing pants, I was outraged. The normal punishment for "indecent" dress is whipping. The fact that she may have a fine or prison time is actually a better outcome than many have had. Issues such as this, or woman being imprisoned for being raped, showing her face or arms, Female Genital Mutilation (more to come in the future on this subject) and attending school are real issues of human rights. Most Americans would agree with me on this… [more]

Saga concludes: G6PD (Glucose-6-Phosphate Dehydrogenase deficiency)

July 25th, 2007

Continued from the previous posts. G6PD (Glucose-6-Phosphate Dehydrogenase deficiency) is, apparently, the most common enzyme deficiency in humans, with an estimated 400 million people worldwide affected. It is most common in Blacks and inhabitants of the Mediterranean region, although Asians are also impacted. It is sometime also called Favism, as many people who have this condition are also allergic to fava beans. Like Sickle Cell Anemia, G6PD conveys a resistance to malaria, which is apparently why it became a genetic trait in the first place. Unlike Sickle Cell Disease, G6PD usually has little impact on health. It can sit in a body for years and show nothing of itself until it is triggered by something. The list of somethings is long, and, for me at least, unexpected: aspirin, mothballs… [more]

More Sick Kid Saga: An answer

July 25th, 2007

Continued from the previous post. By the time I arrived home in the evening, word was starting to come in from doctor friends to whom I'd passed all the info I had and asked for opinions, strategies, and so on. Being that medical care available on this island is limited, it is often necessary for patients to seek treatment abroad ... my cardiologist is in Singapore, for example ... so figuring out how soon T could be well enough to travel had to be a consideration. A look at his chart had told me that his hematocrit count (HTC) and his blood pressure were very low, so I knew he wouldn't be traveling until both had come up considerably. The fact that his urine appeared to be more blood… [more]

Sick Kid Saga: Language issues and swearing at doctors

July 25th, 2007

Continued from the previous post. Although I thought I'd prepared myself, I was shocked when I finally did see T. Looking small and frail in the hospital bed, he was yellow and very weak ... and scared to death. Because his mother didn't understand what was happening, no one had been able to explain anything to him. Well accustomed to my 'take charge' personality, he looked to me to give him a picture of what was happening. Unfortunately, I knew nothing. Preparing to hang a second unit of blood for him, there was a problem with his IV ... a minor blockage that needed flushing, no big deal. Two nurses were in the room at the time and were muttering to each other in Creole about the IV. As happens, he… [more]

A Sick Kid Saga: Or, what I’ve learned about an illness and must share

July 25th, 2007

For anyone who happened to notice that I've not posted a darn thing in a while, my apologies. I've been in the middle of a situation here that required my full attention and most of my energy. Being that I've been dealing with circumstances that could potentially happen in a number of international adoptive families, I'm taking the time today to share the experience and what I've learned so far. As long-time readers know, Mark and I were foster parents before we adopted. Our foster son, T, went back to his mother, then to Thailand, but eventually returned to Seychelles a couple of years ago. We have stayed in close contact all along, and now that T is nine-years-old, he himself takes the lead occasionally in how people that love… [more]

Adoption, AIDS and helping

July 22nd, 2007

A state-level orientation program on adoption was held recently in Lucknow, India, with the aim of increasing awareness locally on the issues of adoption in that country. Domestic Indian adoptions continue to lack popularity, with most people determined to avoid adopting a child. Also on the agenda, uniformity in adoption rules to remove much of what can be cumbersome when the many religions in the country approach the process. Also in India, the Central Adoption Resource Agency (CARA), has proposed that all children made available for adoption take a mandatory HIV test. This has long been on the books, but not enforced, and many are concerned about the costs. The Indian Network of People Living With HIV/AIDS is opposing the idea, insisting that… [more]

Cambodian news: Dengue and HIV/AIDS

July 13th, 2007

An early, warm wet season is being blamed for one of the worst outbreaks of Dengue Fever to hit Cambodia and the rest of SE Asia in recent history. A British adoptive father, along with other volunteers, set up a UK Registered Charity, The Cambodia Children's Charity, that supports orphanages and a school, that is now soliciting donations to help deal directly with the impact of the Dengue outbreak. From the dad, Mark Purser: The Cambodian government cannot cope with an emergency on this scale -annual government spending on healthcare is about $3 per person (source:World Bank). The WHO and other international organisations simply cannot react quickly enough in rural locations to save the most vulnerable victims of… [more]