Adoption—How similar are you to your Mother?

Judith Land | Adoption Detective

My fundamental belief in the inheritability of psychological traits, preferences, attitudes, and spirituality gave me the confidence to believe that I would be comfortably matched physically, socially and psychologically with my biological parents and siblings, if I chose to find them.

Twin studies have been highly valuable for estimating the inheritability of certain traits, including academic ability, personality, and interests; family and social relationships; mental and physical health; and physiological measurements. Researchers have been particularly interested in the prevalence of psychopathology, substance abuse, divorce, leadership, and other traits and behaviors related to mental and physical health, relationships, and spirituality. Research suggests that genetics play a strong role in the development of personal characteristics by serving as a blueprint for physical, social, and emotional development. Twins separated at birth and reared in different families have an equal chance of being similar to the co-twin in terms of personality, interests, and attitudes as one who has been reared with his or her co-twin. Researchers have produced surprising results showing that social attitudes, behavior, and dental health all have a genetic influence.

Consensus amongst the scientific world is that behavior can be explained by a combination of both nature (genetics) and nurture (environment). This leads to the conclusion that similarities between twins are due to genetics and the differences between twins reared apart are due to the environment. Heredity is an important determining factor in shaping physical appearance, mental acuteness, preferences, personal characteristics, and personality. Researchers have uncovered remarkable similarities between twins raised in separate homes with different parents to be remarkably strong. Examination and scrutiny gives significant weight to the importance of genetics as a key factor in determining physical appearance and attributes, as well as personalities and inherent abilities. The inheritability of academic ability, personality and interests, family and social relationships, mental and physical health, and other physiological measurements has inferred correlations for children raised outside their genealogical, biological, and ancestral groupings, but psychologists are not satisfied to rest on that conclusion alone.

Questions still remain regarding to what degree certain behavioral traits can be explained by genetics and the environment. Many studies have been conducted to understand how siblings interact and influence one another, how family environment has an impact on the mental health of adolescents, and how adoptive families are similar to and different from biological families. Extensive research on environmental and biological influences on adopted children and children biologically related to the parents has allowed sibling and parental influences to also be incorporated into the research. The Minnesota Twin Family Study has provided scientists a clearer understanding of the role of genes and environment on human development. The landmark series of investigations have helped identify genetic and environmental influences on the development of psychological traits; findings that have received both praise and criticism. On multiple measures of personality and temperament, occupational and leisure-time interests, and social attitudes twins raised apart were found to be about as similar as those reared together. This evidence for the strong inheritability of many psychological traits should never detract from the value or importance of parenting, education, and other interventions.

Judith Land


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“Adoption—communicating with poems, songs and love letters”

Judith Land - Adoption Detective

“A circle is round. It has no end. That is how long I want to be your friend.”

Many adoptees are preoccupied with deep thoughts of past events that are regrettable. They are prone to laying face down, talking to themselves, crying in pain and praying in solitude. When their emotional lows are lower than the highs and the negative influences in their life far outweigh the positives, most often it is because someone is missing in their life—a parent, a sibling, a friend, or a person of trust. When they experience homesickness, lonesomeness and isolation they are naturally drawn to songs, poems, and love stories that introspectively reflect their own feelings.

In this age of Facebook, Twitter, Linked-in, Pinterest, YouTube, Tumbler, Instagram, dozens of social dating apps and social networking sites, casual writing is at an all time high. Computers allow anyone to put themselves out there in crazy ways with no restraints. Modern communication has shifted entirely toward the informal and the difference between creepy and romantic has become entirely hazy. Casual communication without much thought often occurs by chance. Lacking a high degree of interest or devotion and showing little concern, intent or commitment, social conveyance of ideas is often insensitive to the feelings of others. We seldom write in cursive anymore and pay little attention to the real meanings of words, classic literature, poetry and quality writing. The social fears of ostracism, criticism and misunderstandings prevent adoptees from taking action or saying how they really feel and when they don’t express themselves clearly, what they intended to say isn’t always how others interpret their words.

In this modern era, it is safer, far quicker and easier to communicate with abbreviations, emoji, and acronyms than it is to take the time to thoroughly compose our thoughts, transmit our ideas, and clearly express ourselves from the heart. We are reluctant to use poetry to express a yearning for love and communicate our sentiments with the words of a song because we fear what others may think. Poetry is an inherently dramatic method of communicating tangled abstract thoughts and simple expressions of complex ideas. Songs stir our emotions, make perception inevitable, and leave residual feelings of satisfaction as understanding merges into appreciation. In this world of text messaging and emails, good old-fashioned handwritten love letters have become very rare special treats. I cherish ancient love letters, poems and songs that cinematically paint images with words that clearly project the personal thoughts, perspectives and experiences of the writer to convey eternal messages of love and hope—memories of a bygone era recorded somewhere in time in handwritten script on parchment paper and encapsulated in a faded envelope.

Writing is therapy for many adoptees. When reminiscing about the past or thinking about someone who is missing, choose your words carefully. Be creative in word and thought. If you are uncertain how to begin, find a good quote. Don’t worry about the length of your message. A few simple sentences are often best when speaking from the heart. Don’t be concerned about what the handwriting looks like. The message is more important than the format. Don’t be afraid to open up. Regardless of the method chosen, the aim should always be to reveal the truth and use the meaning of your words to create understanding. If you are an adoptee separated from your mother, or someone very dear to you that is missing, perhaps this is a good time to let them know how you are truly feeling in a poem, a song, or a love letter?

Judith Land



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“Adoption—the exhilaration of accomplishing something extraordinary”

Judith Land | Adoption Detective

Nothing in reality can match the exhilaration of having accomplished something a little out of the ordinary.

“To live a purpose driven life you must learn that the only way to beat the fear of the unknown is to take the first step. If you listen to the voice of your fears, you’ll live an empty life. But, if you listen to the voice of your heart, you’ll live a remarkable life.”  Judith Land

You can’t sit at home in your pajamas and expect the world to have a sense of purpose and meaning. To live a purpose driven life you must give unconditionally from an open heart without expecting much in return. The reward that you will receive is a sense of purpose and meaning that comes from feeling fulfilled as the result of the autonomous choices you make and the results you achieve. If you want to adopt a child, initiate an adoption search to reconnect with the lost, or form a new relationship, you must leave skepticism, suspicion, mistrust, and doubt behind. You must learn to choose action and accomplishment over idleness and indolence; alertness and enterprise over weakness and surrender; and vigor and vitality over stoppage and laziness.

The fear of what may happen leaves many individuals in a frozen state of mental paralysis and lethargy—an inert emotional condition characterized by depression and melancholic blues resulting from a befuddled sense of genealogical bewilderment—afraid that by carelessly entering new and unexplored territory they will upset the lifestyle and relationships they already have. Apathy prevents them from taking action because they are afraid of what might happen if they invite a stranger into their home. They fear that meddling in the affairs of others may land them in hot water. They view adoption as overly complicated and may lack the will to initiate an adoption search and reunion because they view these situations as high-risk events that may expose something that is undesirable with unforeseen consequences leading to negative life transitions.

To be ecstatically happy, make life an exciting adventure. Dream. Explore. Discover. Show enthusiasm for life. Jump for joy whenever the spirit moves you. Demonstrate that what is inside you is more important than what lies behind you or what is in front of you. Release your cares and worries by celebrating small victories. Let everyone know how good you feel. Know that jumping for joy is the most dramatic way to tell your story—no words are necessary. Work hard to succeed and learn to overcome the barriers that restrict your thinking and prevent you from making your dreams come true. Remember that nothing in reality can match the exhilaration of having accomplished something a little out of the ordinary. After all, the architect of the Universe didn’t build a stairway leading nowhere.

Judith Land




adopción | adoção | adopție | antagande | 양자 | 采纳 | принятие | benimseme | adozione

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“Adoption—Don’t be a worrywart!”

Worrywart | Adoption Detective | Judith Land

“Worrywarts are insignificant, pessimistic, annoying, obnoxious individuals with defects and unattractive features that cause needless worry in the minds of everyone around them. They are a pest and a nuisance, a pathetic rather than funny character who annoys others by causing constant worry over nearly everything.” —Judith Land

There are many fears and worries associated with adoption. The expression “worrywart” was first used in the popular American comic strip “Out Our Way” by James R. Williams in the 1930s—a time when warts were thought to be caused by stress and excessive worrying. “Worrywart” was a young boy from a small town family who perturbed and agitated others. He was a pest and a nuisance, a pathetic rather than funny person who annoyed others by worrying loudly and constantly over nearly everything. The label became a popular American moniker for simple, weedy, bedraggled cowboys and typical Americans of a generation ago. Nobody wants warts and anyone associated with this label was thought to unduly dwell on difficulties and troubles, to worry habitually, incessantly and needlessly. Worrywarts were insignificant, pessimistic, annoying, obnoxious individuals with defects and unattractive features, fussbudgets that caused needless anxiety in the minds of everyone around them.

Worrywarts have a persistent sense of urgency about the future because they imagine something bad will happen. Their anxieties are all about anticipation paralyzed by a sense of dread that something will go wrong. Nervousness and unease about an imminent event with an uncertain outcome leads to a surge of anxiety, a normal reaction to stress, but chronic worrying can cause illness and even lead to panic. Excessive anxiety manifests itself in changes in health, appetite, lifestyle, relationships, muscle tension, sleeping disorders and job performance. Feelings of impending doom may lead to depression when fears are exaggerated and unrealistic. Excessive worriers tend to be sensitive to their surroundings and view the criticism of others as potential threats.

Adoption is undeniably a traumatic event for individuals on all sides of the adoption triangle. Women who give their child up for adoption worry about identity issues when interacting with the adoptive family. Stigmatizations and negative psychological effects of separation may lead them to chronic worrying and depression. Adoptive parenthood can bring tremendous joy but what if the birth parents change their mind? What if the adopted child has special health care needs and learning disabilities? Will the family qualify for financial assistance and tax credits? What if the community isn’t accepting of a transracial family? At what age should I tell my child about adoption? What should I do if my child experiences feelings of grief and loss about their family, culture and country of origin? Divorce and parental alienation erode feelings of internal safety and security. Overprotective parents may develop the mind-set that the world is not such a safe place. Adoptees want to belong and feel connected. They know their experience is real but those wanting to make sense of their life story may worry if they are the product of rape or incest and if there was corruption in the adoption system. What if there is a birth mother that had her child stolen from her who has been desperately searching ever since?

Adoption is a lifelong process and chronic worriers need to learn how to accept uncertainty and prepare themselves emotionally and psychologically for predictable outcomes. Nobody wants a nervous breakdown but separations, relationships and transitions are difficult hurdles throughout the lifespan of children whose earliest experience was separation from their birth mother. As we mature and learn to make sense of our feelings we must learn how to respond appropriately rather than simply react to unexpected events by acquiring the skills needed to provide an overall sense of well-being. When our worries become overtly challenging and bothersome it is advisable to seek the advice of a clinical professional counselor.

Judith Land

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Adoption—a warm blanket of complacency

Judith Land | Adoption Detective | Complacency

“Baby blankets offer security and psychological comfort for a small child that takes the place of the mother-child bond when the mother cannot always be there. The blanket is especially important as a defense against anxiety as the mother gradually separates herself from the child for increasingly longer periods of time.” —Judith Land

My baby blanket was amazing—it was soft and warm and it provided a physical barrier between my toes and the imaginary monster under the bed. Blankets are symbols of happiness, bliss and contentment that are imprinted on a baby’s mind at an early age that provide comfort, security, softness and warmth. The experience of being wrapped in a blanket and held in the arms of a parent offers sanctuary from the elements and protection from real and imagined external threats. Some infants eventually become so attached to their blankets that they refuse to be separated from them. Adult victims suffering from depression or sickness try to recreate those same blissful childhood feelings of security, complacency, and comfort by wrapping themselves in a soft warm blanket to insulate themselves from the pressures of the world.

The experience of being lulled into complacency is often the mark of a wasted life—a false satisfaction with our own abilities that prevents us from trying harder—a feeling of contentment and self-satisfaction accompanied by a lack of awareness about an apparent need and apathetic feelings about the future. Persons on all sides of the adoption triangle should never accept their current reality, if it isn’t truly benefiting their life and the lives of others. A passive and self-congratulatory prideful life, smugly lived in the cloaked misery of complacency, stifles achievement, smothers success, fails to consummate victory, and only produces a torso of what might have been a regal statue. Signs that someone is in danger of sabotaging their life by being overtly complacent are: the fear of uncertainty; avoidance of new skills, technologies and talents; a lack of enthusiasm and a drive to do one’s best; a lack of attention to events, details, and relevant information; an avoidance of new job possibilities and opportunities to make new friends; and the fear of sharing of one’s thoughts and ideas. The roots of complacency are derived from smugness; self-centered feelings of importance; an uncritical satisfaction with oneself; gloating over one’s achievements; contentment with one’s honors, accomplishments, prestige, and the status quo; a lack of awareness of threats and future consequences; and the tendency of putting off for tomorrow something you could have done today. Complaisance is dangerous in both love and technology because it negates our drive to work, to inspire others, to write, and the desire to live a life of compassion, love, and forgiveness. Parents should never be lulled into complacence when it comes to the love and care of children.

To live a stalwart life we must identify what it is we want and energetically work to achieve it. Passionately living a purpose driven life is far more fulfilling and rewarding than a life lived under a blanket of complacency. It’s easy to get stuck too long in the thinking and planning phase and it is disheartening to see so much negativity and self-pity from those who pout and blame others for their place in life. Life is about overcoming obstacles, making decisions, and taking action. Adoptees can’t alter what happened yesterday, but they can change the future by taking action today. Each step of every journey sends ripples into the world that reveals new vantage points that empower us to keep moving forward toward the accomplishment of our goals. Anyone who has ever dreamed of solving the mystery of their origin to reconnect with the lost because they are curious about their native culture, pedigree, language and medical history must begin by overcoming the psychological blanket of complacency before they can learn to master the art of taking action.

Judith Land

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“Adoption—Internal fears lead to procrastination”

Adoption Detective |Judith Land | Between a rock and a hard place | Between the devil and the deep blue sea | On the horns of a dilemma

“There are times in life when we find ourselves between a rock and a hard place, between the devil and the deep blue sea, and on the horns of a dilemma. A dilemma is a choice between two or more unacceptable alternatives; Catch-22 is a logical paradox; a bind is an awkward situation where each alternative yields equivalent undesirable results; and choices resulting from extortion lead to negative consequences. Much to our chagrin, regardless of the situation in life we find ourselves in, procrastination is seldom the appropriate choice—the hands of time are always spinning and the best time for action is often now.” —Judith Land


Innate forces beyond basic human needs drive self-actualizing people to explore and reach their full human potential. Without action it is impossible to experience profound moments of love, understanding, happiness, rapture, and feelings of being more whole and alive. Paralysis arises from a perception of danger leading to confrontation or an escape from the perceived threat. Dragging ones heels and chronically putting off impending tasks to a later time impedes normal functioning and the habit of chronic procrastination may be a sign of an underlying psychological disorder.

The most burdensome and wearisome hindrances to conquer in life are our own internal fears. Fear triggers chemical changes in the body that affects sleep patterns. Fear is a source of procrastination and a foundation for inert unhappiness. The thought of calling my birth parents triggered spasms of fear and bouts of terror that left me feeling light-headed and faint. The thought of meeting them in person made my heart palpitate rapidly and my mouth go dry. My own self-generated insecurities absorbed vital emotional energy, reduced my physical stamina, shortened my attention span, diminished my mental drive, and triggered delays in action. My thoughts had been shaped by childhood dreams and fantasies that had remained constant for over three decades. Suddenly, the reality of meeting them for the first time stirred my confidence and caused me to become less certain and even frightened at times. Doubts bubbled to the surface leaving me to wonder if the early part of my life was a dark place with evil people with nefarious agendas where I shouldn’t go. Would my actions generate complications and problems as the result of my unwise interference in something from long ago that was tragic and undisturbed? I was initially scorned and coldly rejected on my first attempt to communicate with my birth mother but I refused to give up. Through stubborn perseverance I eventually achieved the result I wanted—conciliation and life-long friendships. Finding my roots and meeting my birth parents was a peak emotional experience—an extraordinary moment of self-actualization that left me feeling more self-directing, emotionally stronger, mentally wiser, and significantly more self-confident with fewer doubts and insecurities. My sense of well-being was liberating and gave me a spontaneous will to live life to the fullest.

My emotional drive to find my biological parents was the fulfillment of a childhood dream. Researching the topic of adoption inspired me to read many books about human psychology and mother-daughter bonding. The more books I read the more I learned and the more stimulated and motivated I became to find my roots. My psychological and emotional senses were greatly heightened knowing that heredity is a key factor in shaping our physical appearance, mental acuteness, preferences, personal characteristics, and personality. Over the years I had developed the habit of studying the faces of strangers to identify others with physical features and ideas similar to my own. After I discovered the identity of my parents, I finally understood what scientists had been saying all along—perhaps it was because the goodness in my heart was an inheritable personality characteristic. Valuing the task at hand is what gives us the confidence to overcome the social stigma of procrastination. Believing in oneself and trusting your own instincts is what is needed to overcome our greatest internal fears that prevent us from taking action.

Judith Land


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Are you planning an adoption reunion?

Judith Land | Adoption Detective | Interview

The purpose of an adoption reunion is the same as it is for a job interview: to provide others with insights into your abilities, interests, character and intent and allow you the chance to discern their personality, background and history to see how you fit in with their family or business. When both parties listen intently and speak truthfully, the process can be mutually beneficial. Knowing how the other side feels about you sets the tone for what is to be expected in the future.


Planning for an adoption reunion is like rehearsing for a critical job interview—you only have one chance to nail the job interview and make a good first impression. The anticipation of what might happen is highly emotional for many adoptees that worry about further rejection. Adoption reunions can be one of the most drawn-out and intimidating encounters—a once in a lifetime experience where everyone wants to come off as a genuinely likeable person that is poised, articulate and confident. First-time encounters are unique affairs that should be planned and prepared for ahead of time. Participants should learn to visualize positive ways of conducting themselves that reflects their desires and demonstrates how they fit in as valued individuals. Visualizing how these meetings should be arranged ahead of time helps to assure success. Practicing with a friend can be helpful for increasing confidence. Why do some reunions fail while others exceed expectations? Sometimes the lack of preparation is a problem. Other times, people give up too soon because their expectations were too high or unrealistic and their feelings were hurt.

How should reunions with significant others be conducted? What is needed to create positive outcomes? How should you engage the other person? How should you dress knowing that your wardrobe is a sign of your professionalism and competency? What can be done to make sure others picture you as honest, courteous, polite and respectful to others? What questions should you anticipate and what questions should you ask? How much should you learn ahead of time about the other person’s cultural background, heritage, personality, career and family relationships?

Adoption searches often require diligent complex detective work and perseverance. Whereas, adoption reunions require a completely different set of personal skills and attributes. Participants should strive to be amiable and lovable and generate feelings of inspired friendliness. Those who express themselves clearly without mumbling will be better understood. Being broad-minded and tolerant in thought and opinion avoids confrontation and argument. Showing a good moral understanding demonstrates conscientiousness. Showing a strong interest and an eagerness to learn about the other person increases opportunities for friendship. Steadfastness in aim, demonstration of a persistent desire for a continued effort, and a refusal to give up generates interest in future gatherings. The ability to convey motivation and inner reasons for acting increases understanding and patience. The open display of an optimistic nature stimulates buoyancy and cheerfulness. A belief that good prevails over evil shows that you are honest and sincere. Evidence that you are responsible, trustworthy and reliable shows that you are steadfast, mature and dependable. Demonstrating a strong interest in others and an eagerness to learn about them shows that you are devoted and faithful. A practical truthful presentation of things as they are gains trust. Staying calm demonstrates patience. Respecting others and treating these encounters as highly important events in your life by planning ahead and staying people-oriented are the best ways to assure success.

Judith Land



adopción | adoção | Verabschiedung | 采纳 | 양자 | 採用 | pag-aampon | adozione

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