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  • Nicole J. Burton

Adoption in the Global Community

This was the theme of the phenomenal American Adoption Congress conference I attended last month in Portland, Oregon. The biggest surprise was how much I learned. I've written a book, Swimming Up the Sun: A Memoir of Adoption; I've lived adoption for decades; how could I be so ignorant?

The keynote address from Sharon Kaplan Roszia on "The Constellation of Adoption" floored me. Sharon's author of The Open Adoption Experience, and directs The Kinship Center in California. I learned it's not an adoption triad, it's a constellation, affecting spouses, our children, grandchildren, teachers, and so many others. And adoptees aren't in charge of managing or soothing the feelings of their various parents - neither as children nor as adults. As someone who's always felt responsible for my adoptive and birth parents' feelings, Sharon gently lifted a hundred pound weight from my shoulders.

Swimming Up the Sun was well received. Between the author signing at Broadway Books and the Conference Book Room, I almost sold out of the books I'd brought with me!

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