In Search of Belonging – Reflections by Trans-racially Adopted People
Edited by Perlita Harris, British Association for Adoption and Fostering
STAR RATING 5/ 5
This is a remarkable anthology of writings, artwork, poems and photographs of children, young people and adults, all of whom have personal experience of transracial
adoption, writes Sheila M Thompson.
The contributors range in age from six to 56 and describe their unique experiences of growing up in an adoptive family. They include children placed both in infancy
and later childhood, and children placed within the UK and on the basis of inter-country adoption.
These are moving and personal stories of pain, sadness and loss but also of love, reconnection and healing. They provide an insight into sensory memories associated with early experiences of separation.
There is a sense of what it may feel like to be described as “attachment disordered.” There are painful experiences of racism within the family and in the outside world.
There are reminders of the importance of your name as a link to your family and cultural identity.
Some of the themes in this book are unique to people who have grown up in transracial placements; others will have resonance for a wider group of adopted children and adults.
It is difficult to read these stories without reflecting on the history of transracial adoption. There are important messages here for all practitioners involved in the placement of children.
Sheila M Thompson is a senior lecturer, University of Salford