FROM BEARS (Barry Neil Kaufman): Recently, a member of my birth family insisted shared blood defined family. I said, among my six children, three are adopted children (from situations of trauma) and do not share blood. Nor did any of my five grandchildren whom I adore. Choices create families, whether or not blood is shared. Being Moms and Dads are not defined by titles but earned by loving action and caring.
Many of us have educated ourselves to learn about math and science and many professional endeavors. Few of us have studied how we want to parent and the key loving and successful components of child-rearing. Often, we stumble, not out of lack of wanting to love and teach our children to be happy and respectful and motivated and inspired but ... because we lack of clear purpose and a clear teaching/training model. In our Parenting Program, we discuss the notion of love as a verb – as a choice and an action. We can honor our pedigree and genetics but perhaps more significant is to honor our place in a larger human family where all children are our children….no shared blood required.