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Real Life Adoption
43 minutes | 9 months ago
’The Fire’s Been Lit’
The murder of George Floyd at the hands of four Minneapolis police officers has sparked outrage in the United States, and across the world. It has forced white Americans to examine their privilege, and their deep-set, unconscious biases. Tina Purdie, an African-American adult adoptee, has never been one to stir the pot. “This is the first time I’ve spoken up in my entire life,” she said. In this episode, she talks about being raised by white parents in a multi-cultural household, and answers questions on how to prepare children of color for a world that does not always view them favorably.
29 minutes | 9 months ago
Foster Youth Finds ’Safe Space’ in Beauty Pageants
Jamerika Haynes was five years old when she entered foster care. And she longed for her birth family, through two placements, and her eventual adoption at age 13. Jamerika was determined, that once she turned 18, she was going to be responsible for her life. She turned to beauty pageants to earn money for college, and found a safe space of belonging, sisterhood, and strength. Jamerika is the current Ms. Evergreen State, and uses her platform to advocate for foster youth, and families in crisis.
43 minutes | a year ago
Foster Care Alumni of America
Foster Care Alumni of America was founded after a study of former foster youth revealed that what alumni most wanted was to know each other. A dozen years later, FCAA has 27 chapters, and around 70,000 members. In this episode, host Kristin Kalning describes FCAA’s work, and impact, and interviews two women who have been deeply involved, both at the national and state level. You’ll hear about their lives in foster care, and how they’ve found strength, purpose, and family through FCAA.
27 minutes | a year ago
National Adoption Day
In this episode, host Kristin Kalning shares what she saw at the King County Courthouse in downtown Seattle on November 22, 2019 — otherwise known as National Adoption Day. The majority of the children adopted that day were foster kids, adopted by their foster parents. And while it’s wonderful that these children now have permanency with their new families, says adoption attorney Janna Annest, it doesn’t erase the first part of their story.
45 minutes | a year ago
Worth the Wait
Chris Sullivan and Jeff Hebrank waited three years, and worked with two adoption agencies before receiving not one, but two last-minute placements. In this context, last minute means that the birth parents start adoption planning at birth. For Chris and Jeff, it meant dropping everything and rushing to the bedsides of two strangers who had chosen them to parent their children.
40 minutes | a year ago
It’s Definitely a Safe Place for Everyone
Every August, a group of adoptive families gathers at the Sun Lakes Resort in Central Washington. There’s a full slate of activities for all ages – fishing, paddle-boarding, mini-golf, and water wars. But mainly, Adoption Family Camp is a place to relax. Kids don’t need to explain why they look different from their parents. Parents don’t need to worry about second looks from strangers. Everyone gets it. Real Life Adoption host Kristin Kalning took her recording gear to Family Camp this year, to learn why this place, and this community is so important to the people who keep coming back, year after year. https://www.reallifeadoption.com/
32 minutes | 2 years ago
‘It’s Too Much Of A Wild Card’
We often hear heart-warming stories of adult adoptees finding their birth parents. And they’re often wonderful stories – filled with longing, courage, and joy. In this final episode of season one, I interview two adult adoptees – Carrie Schellpfeffer and Mike Fitzmaurice – who have consciously chosen not to find their birth parents. And why? “The fact that my parents are my parents, and that’s just the way I’ve always felt. I don’t feel I’m missing out on anything,” said Carrie. https://www.reallifeadoption.com/
30 minutes | 2 years ago
Kari Miller learned she was pregnant while living in Costa Rica. And she realized, pretty quickly, that the child’s father was in no position to help her parent their child. In this episode, Kari reads an open letter to her child, Calyx, who she placed for open adoption in August 2018. https://www.reallifeadoption.com/
48 minutes | 2 years ago
'It Was So Easy To Say Yes'
Meaghan McKracken is 35 years old. She has been in a polyamorous marriage for 11 years, and has a young son with her husband. Four years ago, Meaghan got pregnant, with a man she was dating. None of the options sounded right for her — except adoption. And not just any kind of adoption: an open, inclusive adoption. In this episode, I’ll introduce you to Meaghan, and the couple she chose, Levi and Meghan. And I’ll share the extraordinary story of how they found each other, and how they’ve evolved to be, as Meaghan puts it, a “weird little family unit.”
46 minutes | 2 years ago
‘These Kids Are Worth It': Debunking Foster Care Myths
The number of kids entering foster care is increasing, but conversely, the number of foster-care homes are decreasing. And many people believe, incorrectly, that the kids in foster care are there because of behavioral problems, or juvenile delinquency. Greg Eubanks, CEO of the World Association for Children and Parents, has a personal and professional connection to foster care. And in this episode, he dispels the myths about foster care, and the kids in foster care: “What I get to see every day is healing, and recovery, and a child find out that they’re worthwhile, and they belong somewhere.” https://www.reallifeadoption.com/
48 minutes | 2 years ago
'This Is It'
Even before they were married, Matty and Jillian Mitchell knew they wanted to adopt — specifically, through the foster-care system in Washington state. But their path to parenthood was not an easy one. https://reallifeadoption.com
40 minutes | 2 years ago
Our Path to Adoption
Real Life Adoption host and creator Kristin Kalning thought starting a family would be no big deal. But the traditional route – pregnancy – led her and her husband, Steve, down a difficult path of infertility and uncertainty. In this inaugural episode, Kristin shares the couple’s struggles, and how a deserted beach and a “This American Life” episode changed their focus. https://reallifeadoption.com
3 minutes | 2 years ago
Real Life Adoption - Preview
Here are some clips from the first season of the Real Life Adoption Podcast. Real Life Adoption is a podcast of stories from people whose lives have been touched by adoption. The bi-weekly show is written, created, and hosted by Kristin Kalning, a longtime journalist and adoptive mom of two. Each show focuses on a story (or two) illustrating themes and topics such as attachment, the foster care system, birth parents, and more. www.reallifeadoption.com
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