Pact Camp
Online Registration Closed

Honoring Birth/First Parent Stories

Start time/date: Dec  7, 2013 9:00 AM
End time/date: Dec  7, 2013 1:00 PM
Place: Kaiser Oakland Medical Center
Mosswood Building, RM #1172 & 1173
3505 Broadway, Oakland CA 94611

Honoring Birth/First Parent Stories

First Families: Relating with Integrity, Creating Opportunities for Y/Our Children

Every adopted person has at least two sets of parents (birth/first and adoptive) and maybe several others. How do they make sense of themselves in the context of what is known and what is not? Traditionally, the voice and perspective of first families has been excluded from the discourse on adoption. When thinking about a child's first family, it is important to include not only birthparents, but also siblings, aunts, grandparents, nieces, etc. as relationships with extended family can be especially meaningful to a person who is adopted. Adoptive parents may have conscious or unconscious biases, judgments and feelings about their child's first family. By cultivating more familiarity of what it means to be part of a first family, adoptive parents may be able to address their own blocks, which influence what's possible for their child.


Hear from several birth mothers/parents about how they are processing and managing their own adoption experiences. After the presentations, the audience will have the opportunity to ask questions and discuss different adoption scenarios including:  open adoptions where contact is ongoing; adoptions where contact is challenged; adoption search and reunion and birth parents who have engaged in harmful or dangerous behaviors.

Featured Speakers: Susan Dusza Guerra Leksander 

Susan Dusza Guerra Leksander, LMFT, is a licensed psychotherapist who works with first/birthparents, former foster/adopted youth and adult adoptees in agency and private practice settings. Susan placed her daughter for adoption in 2001 in an “open” adoption, which was subsequently closed by the adoptive parents. She is also a transracial adult adoptee who, with the support of her adoptive parents, reunited with her first/birth families as a teenager. Susan is the author of the “Ask a First (Birth) Mother” column published in Pact’s quarterly newsletter and an On Your Feet Foundation Board Member, where she serves as Chair of the Public Education Committee and co-facilitator for their first/birthmother retreat.


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