Dealing with Loss

A piece on mothers for your information, which I’ll make no comment on here, as I’m not a mother of loss. However the general information on loss seems sound enough and Pauline Boss is in the bibliography! It is from the National Council for Adoption in America, perhaps we can be cheered by that or perhaps making all the right noises doesn’t necessarily mean walking the walk or walking the talk. Knowing the right words is no guarantee of good practice and past actions and records usually speak louder than self-advertisement.
When we reconcile the losses we have suffered, that does not mean we have forgotten or been unchanged by them. It does not mean that we do not still think about or remember the one we loved and lost, or have triggers that bring it back to us and make us feel it sharply. Reconciling a loss means that we are able to find a place for it in our lives that is not all consuming. It is not with us all the time, and eventually, we are able to move forward

Adoption Advocate No. 58 – Publications – National Council For Adoption.

And the Bibliography –
Boss, P. Ambiguous Loss. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1999.
Dischler, P. Because I Loved You. Madison: Goblin Fern Press, 2006.
Doka, K. Disenfranchised Grief. Champaign: Research Press, 2002.
Evan B. Donaldson Adoption Institute. Safeguarding the Rights and Well-Being of Birthparents in the Adoption Process. New York: Evan B. Donaldson Adoption Institute, 2006.
Gritter, J. Lifegivers. Washington, DC: CWLA Press, 2000.
Roles, P. Saying Goodbye to a Baby. Washington, DC: CWLA Press, 1989.
Romanchik, B. Birthparent Grief. Royal Oak: Insight, 1999.
Wheeler-Roy. Grief Counseling Resource Guide: A Field Manual. New York State Office of Mental Health, 2004. Retrieved from:
Worden, J. W. Grief Counseling and Grief Therapy. New York: Springer Publishing, 2002.
Worden, J. W. Grief Counseling & Grief Therapy (updated). New York: Springer Publishing 2009
How many situations we see where loss is not dealt with and is all consuming for the sufferer. When that is brought into reunion the difficulties will be magnified and are often insurmountable. One mother of loss has written that there is no rejection of the individual in reunion and that any rejection felt is the rejection of pain! While that may be so in many cases, it is not the experience of all adoptees who are very definitely rejected; firmly, abusively and forever. I take the point that is being made, but I do not believe from experience that it is always true. It would be comforting if it were so, because it gives a rationale, something to work with and some hope of change. There are those who believe there is always hope for change. Perhaps they have not experienced situations which are so closed, final and definite that there is no possibility of change. Some vetoed adoptees in my own State are in that situation. They go through the agony every 5 years of having the veto reviewed and then renewed. Some mothers resent that and believe a veto should be for life to save them ‘the bother’ of renewal. For adoptees experiencing that rejection, it is of little comfort to be told that it is the rejection of pain that motivates their mother!
And to finish, an essential piece of viewing on loss, adoption PTSD, attachment, relinquishment, parenting etc, even if you have seen it, but not for a while, it is well worth looking at again. There is much to take in and learn –


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