Eileen was desperate to help her son, and the only way to do it involved a perverse legal loophole. But should she dare try it? Shannon Heffernan tells the story. She’s a reporter at WBEZ Chicago.
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Andre, 6, and his 4 year old brother Luc are experiencing Christmas for the very first time. They’re adopted and recently moved to the U.S. from the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Producer Sean Cole tells the story of a former foster kid who was finally adopted in his mid-30's,and the reason he was taken away from the foster family he loved more than 20 years ago.
Gloria Harrison was pregnant and in labor when she decided that the thing she needed to do before heading to the hospital, was go to the Nissan dealership and buy a new car.
Amity Bitzel was a teenager when her parents decided to adopt a 27-year-old man. And that wasn't the strange part.
Lucy was a chimpanzee raised in captivity, who adopted a surprising number of human traits. But this proved problematic—in quite unexpected ways—when her adoptive human parents decided that Lucy should be released in the wild.
Reporter Ted Gesing interviews Mike Nyberg about adopting a little girl from Samoa, only to learn over time that her Samoan family had no intention of giving her up for adoption. The US adoption agency had told the Nybergs that their adoption would be closed, and that their little girl Elleia had been living in a foster home waiting for adoptive parents; but in Samoa, Elleia's parents were told that their daughter could come to the US and receive a better education, and that the adoptive family would send money and regular updates on their daughter's progress.
There are some situations where making judgments about people based on limited amounts of information is not only accepted, but required. One of those situations is open adoption, where birth mothers actually choose the adoptive parents for their child. TAL producer Nancy Updike talks to a pregnant woman named Kim going through the first stage of open adoption: Reading dozens of letters from prospect parents, all of whom seem utterly capable and appealing.
A couple uses a controversial therapy to train their son to love them.
Host Ira Glass talks with Cate, a white woman with a black, adopted, seven-year-old son, Glen. Sometimes Glen threatens that he's going to return to his real family—royalty, in Africa.
When Starlee Kine was a kid, she wanted to be a child star so badly that she signed up for an acting class with a famous acting teacher named Kevin McDermott. One of the class's exercises was to develop a character with a troubled past, and a real psychologist would come in for a session of character group therapy.
In Seattle, Dan Savage and his boyfriend adopted a son, DJ. It was an open adoption, so the birth mother could keep in touch with her kid.
In this act we hear two stories of people who stumbled upon a place where they instantly and instinctively felt more at home than in their real homes. Stephen Dubner, author of the memoir Turbulent Souls: A Catholic Son's Return to His Jewish Family, talks about an encounter with a Jewish man named Irving that changed his life.
Binjamin Wilkomirski and New York writer Blake Eskin try and figure out if they are related. NOTE: A few years after this interview aired, Binjamin Wilkomirski and his Holocaust memoir Fragments were shown to be fabrications. Blake Eskin chronicled this story in his 2002 book A Life In Pieces: The Making and Unmaking of Binjamin Wilkomirski.