Documentary: Here We Go!

 

We have filmed our first several shoots for our documentary! We’re so excited for this project!

Over the last few years, my son, Brendan and I have been working together shooting videos for my website, Podcasts, and short films. As I published my book, Relinquished: When Love Means Letting Go, detailing our journey of adopting our son with severe Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD), we’ve discovered how little people know, or understand about the topic of adoption and attachment. We talked at length about how different our lives would have been if we had known about RAD, if the agency had given us a thorough history of our son, or if we knew where to find better treatment. We truly believe adoption is a wonderful thing and we want more people to adopt. We also know first-hand the problems associated with parenting a traumatized child.

We kept asking, “What can we do about it?”

We couldn’t find anything in print or on film addressing our questions, so we decided to do something about that! We decided to make the documentary!

The adventure begins! We don’t know where it will take us along the way. Unlike a feature film, where you have a beginning, a middle and an end; with a documentary, we start with a question and see where it leads us.

We begin with the question, “What is adoption?”

IMG_1725Brendan and I filmed at the Institute for Attachment and Child Development (IACD). IMG_1726Forrest Lien, Executive Director for the Institute explained a great deal about attachment, how it should happen, and what families face when traumatized children don’t attach. He shared the model of treating Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD) used by the Institute. So many families could be helped with this treatment model! I wish we had known about it when Sam was in our family. I would have brought him to the Institute! Our next shoot was with Chris and Dyan Roosma. They are treatment parents with the IACD. These are a brave, well-trained, non-reactive couple who have chosen to share their lives and their home with their biological and adoptive children, as well as 4 children in treatment at any given time. These kids come into their home because they are not doing well in their own homes, and their families are falling apart. Chris and Dyan are not always successful, but they describe how they work in their home, with a treatment team, with the families, and within the community to help these kids learn to trust and eventually transition back home. IMG_2116Carrie interviewing Chris and Dyan Roosma. We’ve interviewed a young couple early on their journey toward adoption. Adam and Jamie have given us permission to follow them through the process! It was so amazing to hear their story, and get a glimpse into their hearts for adoption. We can’t wait to share their story with you! On a different note–we filmed with Kim and John Shepard for a different short documentary that we will hopefully be able to produce in the next month or so. Through my book, we discovered that the Shepards adopted from the same agency, and the same orphanage, at the same time we did! We have video of our kids in the same room at the orphanage in Vietnam! The heartbreaking part of this story is that both children are not living with their families at this time. We’ll take a look at this interesting coincidence. IMG_2120There you go! our first documentary blog! Stay tuned for updates, and share with anyone you think might be interested! If you click “subscribe,” you’ll automatically receive updates. This post written by Carrie O’Toole, M.A.

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