Pact Camp
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To Love and Let Go: Riding The Roller Coaster of Parenting Adopted Adolescents

Start time/date: Nov  2, 2013 9:00 AM
End time/date: Nov  2, 2013 1:00 PM
Place: Kaiser Oakland Medical Center
Mosswood Building, RM #1172 & 1173
3505 Broadway, Oakland CA 94611

To Love and Let Go: Riding The Roller Coaster of Parenting Adopted Adolescents

A teen's job is to figure out who he or she is in the world. The teen years, which can start as young as ten or eleven, have often been compared with the preschool years because of the dramatic changes that occur during the move to greater independence. Teens develop new views of the world, some of which often feel challenging or scary to parents. Add in adoption, genetic, racial and heritage issues, and a parent's most difficult task is to create a delicate balance of "to love and let go", helping adopted tweens and teens feel safe and connected while they move away. Offering guidance and values, while maintaining a parent’s own sanity and confidence is critical but not always easy.


This workshop will focus on how parents can maintain their own balance and clarity in the midst of the increased volatility and change of the teen years. We will explore some of the underlying issues that adoption and racial identity formation add to the mix of the issues teens and their parents are handling, including:              


  • General Identity Formation How do teens & tweens work through the question of "who am I?" What influence do parents have?  Friends?
  • Adoption Identity What do we know about what adopted tweens and teens are thinking about? Especially if they won’t talk to us?
  • Racial Identity Formation How do teens & tweens of color work through issues of cultural connection & racial identity? Where do parents fit in?
  • Life Goals What is the parents' role in helping kids develop long-term goals for their education or life in the world of work?
  • Control and Communication What decisions should parents make, which should they let their kids make & how do parents deal with conflicts about who should decide.
  • Managing anger and volatile feelings. How do we maintain communication with kids who are shut down, checked out or just plain angry all the time?
  • Sexuality, Drugs, Self-Destructive Behaviors & Other Scary Stuff How can parents talk about sex, drugs and choices, give their children resources and transmit their family values on these questions?
  • Enjoying the Journey Finding ways to laugh in the midst of all the conflict and change.


Featured Speaker: Beth Hall, Director of Pact an Adoption Alliance


Beth Hall is the white adoptive mother of a Latina daughter and an African American son (both now young adults), and grew up with an adopted sister. She co-founded Pact in 1991 to combat the discrimination she witnessed against adopted children of color and their birth families. Since that time, she has facilitated the placement of over 1000 infants of color into strong, loving homes. She is the co-author, with Gail Steinberg, of the book Inside Transracial Adoption (Jessica Knightly Publications, 2013), as well as numerous articles on adoption and race. She is a nationally known advocate for adopted children of color who regularly lectures and leads workshops on ethical, non-racist adoption practices. In 2010 she received the Outstanding Practitioner in Adoption Award from the Adoption Initiative at St. John's University.

Pricing Description:

Cost For Non-Members: $42 

Pact Members receive a 15% discount at check out.

At Door Registration: $42/member  $50/non-member

Please choose carefully when registering for Pact events. Pact is not in a position to refund workshop or event registration fees.

Online Registration Closed