September 04, 2012

Incorporating Blogs into Adoption Counseling

I'm excited to share about a continuing education workshop for Pacific Northwest therapists, social workers, and counselors that I am lucky enough to be coordinating with my friend Meg Jeske, a Portland-area therapist with a particular focus on grief/loss, parenting, adoption, gender, and sexuality.

Earlier this year, Meg approached me with the brilliant idea of developing a workshop in which clinicians could learn more about using blogs as a resource for themselves and their clients around open adoption issues. Our hope is that it will be a very collaborative, discussion-based time and I am looking forward to seeing what comes of it.

The one-day workshop will be held down at the Lewis and Clark Graduate Campus in Portland on September 22. The description:
Introduction to Open Adoption: First Person Accounts

What is open adoption? How does it work? Is it confusing to the participants? Is it sustainable? This workshop will offer an introduction to open adoption and adoption ethics.

Open adoption has been portrayed, for better or worse, in popular media in movies like Juno and television shows such as Parenthood, Glee and Modern Family.

Another way to explore the topic of open adoption is through written accounts of people whose lives include open adoption. The blogosphere holds a wealth of information about personal experiences from people involved in adoption from many perspectives: as people facing an unplanned pregnancy and considering adoption, as first parents, adoptive parents, adoptees, and adoption professionals.

As counselors and therapists, we will all work with clients who are affected by adoption in some way. As clinicians, there are many points at which having awareness about open adoption will be useful. One is when working with an individual or couple considering placing a child for adoption. Another is when an open adoption already exists and the families involved encounter challenges with their emotions about adoption.

Participants in this day-long workshop will have an opportunity to imagine themselves inhabiting a position within the adoption constellation and to explore what questions or issues are important to them from that vantage point. Using the Open Adoption Bloggers website as home base, we will examine the lived (and blogged) experience of people in open adoptions in their own words.

Based on participant needs and interests, specific issues that arise in open adoption will also be addressed; for instance transracial adoption, same sex partner adoption, single parent adoption, adoption ethics, desires for different levels or types of openness within open adoptions, open adoption and social media, and post-placement grief.
If you're a counselor or student needing some continuing ed hours, we hope you'll check it out! For more information or to register, visit the Lewis and Clark website. The early registration discount ends on September 7.


luna said...

this sounds very cool. congrats!

Anonymous said...

I agree with Luna. Sounds awesome.

Anonymous said...

Great idea!

Addison said...

This is a great idea. I know I'm late to the table, but I hope that the training went well.

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