Psychotherapy and Training Collective of New York

Adoption Psychotherapy

Wendy Freund, LCSW — February, 2010

A psychotherapist in private practice since 1987, I see people who are at crossroads of their lives. Perhaps they are having trouble forming or maintaining meaningful relationships or are unsatisfied with their careers, or are seeking clearer insight into themselves. Many of my clients are establishing careers in the arts, including film and theater, and I am especially attentive to their unique needs. I work with individuals, couples and families.

But I have particular expertise in adoption issues, including search and reunion. I am familiar with the needs and concerns of all members of the “triad:” people who have been adopted, parents who adopt, and birth parents who don’t raise their child. I also supervise and educate other clinicians and professionals on adoption-related issues.

I appeared on ABC”S Nightline (July 17, 2008), “Where Did I Come From? One Adopted Woman’s Journey to Find Her “Biological Mother [see 3 minute video excerpt], discussing search and reunion matters with the adoptee. I also contributed to and appeared in the Emmy award winning VHI Rock Docs production “DMC: My Adoption Journey” which follows the search of Darryl McDaniel, founding artist of “RunDMC,” for his birth mother. I was consulted for and was quoted in an article in The New York Times (“An Adoptee’s Search for Roots, Loss and gain Collide” by Sarah Kershaw, August 11, 2008). In the article I explain potential confusions and risks in a complicated search and reunion situation.

As an expert on the long term effects of adoption and foster care, in conjunction with the NY Foundling’s 140th Homecoming, I was interviewed by Joe Donahue for his show, The Roundtable on WAMC, on September 2nd, 2009. On Friday, October 9, 2009 I was interviewed for WNYC’s Morning Edition by Soterios Johnson. Charles Wilson interviewed me for “Orphan Homecoming; 140 Years in the Making” which appeared in the AARP Bulletin Today on October 19, 2009. On January 21, 2010 I led a conference call dedicated to search and reunion issues for the NYS Citizens’ Coalition for Children.

These are some direct questions that members of the triad raise and that I address in therapy:

People Who Have Been Adopted:
Should I search?
How should I search?
How do I talk to my adoptive family about searching?
What should I do if I find my birth relatives?
What are the ways to make a successful reunion?

Parents Who Adopt:
Should I adopt?
What does adoption mean to my current situation?
What avenues are open for adoption?
What makes an adoption work?
What makes an adoption difficult?
What can I do when problems come up?

Birth Parents Who Don’t Raise Their Child:
How will my child feel about meeting me?
How will her/his birth parents react?
What should I tell my children?
What should I tell my spouse?
What are the ways to make a successful reunion?

Adoption is a deep and powerful experience for all involved in the triad. Psychotherapy with an adoption-sensitive therapist provides special opportunities for growth and understanding.

Wendy Freund, MSEd., LCSW
Union Square, New York, NY
Phone: (917) 523-8143