Contributors

Alissa column topper
OAHeadshotAlissa
has been blogging in one way or another since 2003, and is thrilled to be included as a regular contributor to OAB. She writes from the location of a white heterosexual married woman, adoptive mother, denizen of the Pacific Northwest, Episcopalian, seminary student, and city dweller. Alissa and her husband have two delightful daughters who came to them through domestic infant adoption, now ages 2 and 4. When she isn’t studying, parenting, working, or home-making Alissa likes to spend time with close friends and family and read way too much YA fiction. She blogs monthly at OAB about openness without contact in adoption, and about race, adoption, parenting, theology, urban life, and whatever else crosses her mind at www.notavisitor.com.
Ethan column topper
eblEthan Brooks-Livingston and his wife *A* began the paperwork process to adopt their first child in January 2013. Since the beginning, both were committed to and hopeful for an open adoption. Ethan began recording their story on their personal open adoption blog, The Littlest Brooks-Livingston where he attempts to tackle tough questions that have been part of their decision-making and paperwork process, when the hope of both birth parents and the some-day child(ren) are still in the (hopefully not-too-distant) future.
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PNR Header-1Heather Schade is the founder and caretaker of Open Adoption Bloggers. She started this blogging network because of her belief in the power of telling our stories and listening to the stories of others. She is a parent to three young children through open, domestic adoption and writes at Production, Not Reproduction.
Kat column topper
photo (40)I’m Kat and am always learning how to juggle an increasing number of commitments and wear an ever expanding collections of hats. As proud as I am to have the letters MSW after my name I’m currently working to displace them with PhD. Before I became a social worker and long before I became a doctoral student I became a birth mom. I write about adoption from an academic viewpoint as well as from a personal viewpoint.Despite my many years living, working, and researching adoption I’m not “The Expert”, I’m Just Kat, but if my story can help anyone else in the adoption world then I’m glad to have shared it.
Kim column topper
275705_1329983051_2119810_nI’m Kim. I’m a writer, blogger, former Disney cast member, wife and mom. And I’m also a birthmother to an amazing young man, whom I placed in an open adoption 25 years ago when I was 17. My son’s mother, father and brother exemplify what it means to be a solid, loving family. Their circle of love instantly made room for me, my family and the birthfather’s family – something that was unheard of in the early days of open adoption. There are times when I want to scream from the rooftops how wonderful open adoption can be – and yet intuitively, I know that it’s not for everybody. In fact, I’m acutely aware of just how unique my experience is. There are still myths, stereotypes and huge misconceptions about what open adoption means. Through this column, I intend to borrow a popular phrase and “lean in” to the conversation. I welcome your thoughts, your ideas and your perspective. And I’m honored to be part of this community.
Meg column topper
McKivigan HeadShotMeg and her family make their life in a beautiful rural suburb of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Her and her husband began their adoption journey in 2010, and welcomed their son home in 2011 through domestic infant adoption. They are currently waiting to add to their family again through domestic adoption. Meg holds a Bachelor’s in Christian Ministry from Messiah College and a Master of Education from the Counseling and Development program at Slippery Rock University. She is a certified K-12 school counselor. Meg has spent the last six years working with the birth-three year old population through the state Early Intervention program, for which she is a developmental specialist. Meg has both led and participated in adoption groups, both professionally and personally. These programs range from support for teenage adoptees to groups of adoptive parents. Meg also has experience working with premature infants, children born addicted, and attachment in adoption. Meg currently works very part-time in her role as a developmental specialist while her children are young, and writes about their journey at www.godwillfillthisnest.com.
Racilous column topper
Connecticut (1)Racilous is a 30 something woman living in New York City. In 2010 she gave birth to her first child, a son she relinquished and placed for adoption. Her son’s family–a gay couple who also live in New York City–have maintained a relationship with her, and they have what would be referred to as a very open adoption with regular contact and visits about once a month. A few months after relinquishing, she was pretty desperate to find support and began to navigate through the online world of adoption forums and blogs. Realizing it was important to share her story in order to find her path, Racilous started her own blog Adoption in the City, it has become a place where she writes about both the realities of open adoption and the impact adoption has had on her. When not thinking about adoption, her favorite activity is getting lost in stories, she’s been a book nerd since early childhood, and has had a love of theater since watching her first musical. No matter if it’s television, movies, theater, or books, she will happily spend a day being drawn into a fictional world. She’s excited to write about when fictional stories cross paths with adoption in her monthly column.
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Robyn chose adoption when she was 13 and saw a 20/20 special about Romanian orphanages. Fast forward 17 years. Romania was closed. Due to a disability, Robyn and her husband couldn’t adopt from Russia, so they looked into Ethiopia. Then, her husband innocently asked, “If we’re going to adopt a black child, can’t we do that here?” She soon learned that most of what she “knew” about domestic adoption was myth. She threw herself into the adoption community in 2005, was one of the first members of the Open Adoption Bloggers, and still tries to learn everything she can about the endless journey of adoption. Robyn and her husband have 2 children through transracial, domestic, open adoption. She blogs about adoption and life at The Chittister Family. Robyn makes her living as a technical writer and editor.
SW column topper
ID-1006603Hi, I go by Socialwrkr24/7 here on the internet. I’ve been a child welfare professional for the past 10 years and began blogging about work at Socialwrkr24/7: Eyes Opened Wider since January of 2009. I’m passionate about families, however they come to be. I always knew I’d be a foster parent and even figured I’d adopt one day, but never imagined it would be as a single person in my early 30’s! But life doesn’t ever go as planned, so I’m embracing this adventure. I fiercely believe that openness is important in all adoption, but even more so in foster adoption. It has already been life altering how my professional views inform (and sometimes) conflict with my new perspective as a foster parent.
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