Although most mental health and behavioral health professionals have encountered adoption triad members—birth parents, adoptive parents, and adopted persons—in their clinical practice, the vast majority have had no formal or informal training on adoption issues. The Handbook of Adoption is the first text designed for mental health practitioners to specifically address the many dimensions of adoption-related issues which can and do affect adoption triad members, specifically in the United States.

Chapter 32: Reflections


Penny CallanPartridge

Portrait in Five Parts of a Daughter of Four Parents

My Face

It turns out my face

is from my birthfather.

My fifty year old face

a mirror image

of the portrait

of our father

on the wall

in my brother's study.

My brother says

the older I get,

the more I bring him

our father,

Billy Duckett,

whom I never knew.

And I tell you

what is either

a sad commentary

on my life

or else inevitable

in my life;

This bringing someone

to someone else

without lifting

a finger

is one of the

thrills of my life.

It is also what has made me

really like my face.

My Sense of Humor

It turns out my body

is my birthmother's.

My sense of humor, too,

if you are willing to grant

that either of us had one.

I've rarely told a joke

(or told one right) and I cried

at Abbott and Costello movies,

they were so mean

to the fat ...

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