Many hopeful parents pick up the phone each day and call Gladney to begin their adoption journey. On the list of pre-planned questions they likely jot down prior to the call comes the question “what about drugs and alcohol exposure?”. This is a hard, honest and vulnerable question for almost every parent who is interested in adopting.
It’s also a hard question to answer because the surface level research is so unclear. What we see when we look at research regarding children who have exposures to teratogens in utero is hard to differentiate with adoption. But why is the research so hard to find on such a common question? Simply because the studies don’t follow adoptee’s who have in utero exposure mitigated by long term stability, consistency and resources. Typically the data follows children who are exposed to teratogens and continue to live with the caregivers who struggle with a substance use disorder. The data is just simply grey when we dig into it.
The frustration with that grey data is what led me on my yearlong hunt to find the perfect educational opportunity for our Gladney Families and what lead me straight to the Adoption Medicine Clinic out of the University of Minnesota. The Adoption Medicine Clinic has served Adoptive and Foster families since 1986 and has completed over 30,000 pre-adoption reviews for children world wide. The clinic serves Domestic, International and Foster Care Adoption Families. No grey data there…
Working alongside the Adoption Medicine Clinic to meet Gladney’s specific needs has been a dream. They deeply understand the research, need, and have the gift of content delivery from an adoption lens.
They have created a two-part workshop to give information to adoptive/foster parents on the basics of pre and post adoption/foster care parenting and what to expect. The pre-adoption session will focus on some of the main risk factors that parents need to consider prior to parenting. The post-adoption session will discuss initial screening for the child with history of adoption/foster care and what may be needed to maximize their potential.
I hope you join us on September 16, 2019 to question the grey and dig into the literature and experience of the Adoption Medicine Clinic Team.
Meet the Presenters:
Judith K. Eckerle, MD is the Medical Director of the Adoption Medicine Clinic (AMC) at the University of Minnesota. Dr. Eckerle assists families pre and post adoption with consultation, referral and clinical services. Her academic interests include FASD research, adoption and foster care issues and global advocacy for children.
Megan Bresnahan is an Occupational Therapist at the University of Minnesota Masonic Children's Hospital. She has worked closely with the Adoption Medicine Clinic for 13 years. Megan has a passion for working with children along with their families and caregivers to build trusting relationships to achieve desired progress and outcomes.