Midland, MI (PRWEB) August 9, 2004
This is the true story of a child born to a nineteen year old unwed mother. Placed lovingly for adoption, he is instead thrust into the quagmire of the Michigan foster care system. "Stability" would be a word found in a dictionary, not in daily life, as he is moved fourteen times in eleven years. He is finally rescued and given a "home" at Boys Town. At eighteen, cast into the world of the unknown, without anyone or anyplace to call home, he goes forth with only hope and determination. Growing into adulthood, he searches for birth parents, an unknown heritage and sexual identity. Discovery of "true self" enables him to confront and overcome brutal and emotionally damaging realities from childhood which can no longer stay buried deep within his memory. This is the story of his difficult life battle, but more importantly, his ultimate victory...healing!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR/SPEAKER:
Birth Place: Detroit, MI USA
Resides In: Midland, MI USA
Mr. Adams received his education at Boys Town, Nebraska and Midland Lutheran College. He has had a professional career in government, non profit, academia and private industry.
Recipient of Presidential Volunteer Award from President Reagan in 1982. Recipient of New York's Eleanor Roosevelt Volunteer Award 1983. Recipient of numerous awards for web site presentation 1998-2003. Founder & former Director of Helping Hands; a program providing respite to parents of children with disabilities. Former Director CityMeals-on-Wheels Program; a NYC based foundation providing meals to the elderly on weekends and holidays where federal funds did not provide. Volunteer for a variety of AIDS programs in cities from 1980-1998.
Mr. Adams has written articles on the need of reform to the foster care system for Adoption.Com Weekly E Magazine, Fostering Families, and Today Magazine. He has begun a quarterly column in Spotlight Recovery Magazine, the first column to appear in the summer of 2004. He is also currently working on his second book entitled Reflections of a Foster Child. It includes his poems, short stories and articles about the need to completely revamp the foster care system so "in the best interest of the child" becomes a reality rather than the current myth.
He has also associated, on a volunteer basis, as an advocacy ambassador for IAC (Intercountry Adoption Congress). This non profit group provides a program to streamline the foster care system and adoption programs in the United States as well as foreign countries to make "in the best interest of the child" a reality. He recently did a well received presentation before this group in Atlanta, GA.
He is available for radio, telephone or television interviews with prior arrangements. He is available to speak before organizations or companies for expenses and a negotiable speaker's fee. His speeches are inspirational and motivational for any audience. He can also speak directly about the need for foster care/adoption system reform, the search and reunion process for birth parents and adoptees. Contact the author directly via E mail or telephone for further information.
It is the author's intention that ALL royalties received from his book will go to IAC. (http://www.iacongress.org)It is hoped that through the organization he will be able to help other "throw away kids" have one or more of the opportunities in life that he has been blessed with. Therefore, he will receive no financial enrichment from this book. His enrichment will come from knowing, in some small way, the world has become a better place.
"Another traumatic yet inspiring story told on the level of David Pelzer's "A Boy Called It." Mr. Adams and David Pelzer should not only shake hands but join together in their efforts to inspire others that anything can be overcome as well as reform the foster care system. Why do I have this feeling that he will be traveling all over the nation soon? What a noble task to undertake. I admire him. It humbles me to think there are people such as David and he that will tackle such difficult tasks.
"One day he will appear on Oprah's show and the rest will fall into place. His story is incredible and is from the heart. He not only survived, he has accomplished much and have yet more to conquer!
Good luck and God Bless you and your work."
A Fellow PublishAmerica Author
"In Lost Son, Adams takes you on a heart wrenching journey of loss, pain, reunion, and joy. He leaves no stone unturned when he illustrates the horrific inadequacies of the foster care systemÂwhich were plentiful. This book should effect a change in the existing foster care system. Touched by foster care or adoption or not, we can all take heed of his advice. Triad members and mental health professionals need to read this book to learn about the issues that are general to adoption but specific to foster care survivors. Lawrence, your message will not soon be forgotten by this reader for sure."
Kasey Hamner, M.S., adoptee in reunion, psychologist, and author of Whose Child? and Adoption Forum
"Lost Son" is a book for everyone. While it depicts the life of Author, Lawrence P. Adams, it also addresses the flaws in the foster care system in this country and the consequences that befall the children in our country...those who do not have a voice. It is heart-wrenching, yet inspiring and motivational story. You journey through his life story feeling as though you are a part of it...feeling the heartache, the betrayal and the good. Never once does the author portray himself as a victim...but as a survivor who savors life!
Lost Son? takes you through more than one-half century in his life. He was put up for adoption at birth, when his unwed mother was unable to care for him.
From there, he basically "fell through the cracks" of the foster care system. He was institutionalized and moved to numerous foster care homes. One family, with whom he spent six and one-half out of his first eleven years attempted to adopt, but were refused. This
included attempts by both the foster parents, and also their oldest married son and his wife.
The Michigan foster care system finally gave up on him at age eleven, and sent him to Boys Town, Nebraska to let them deal with him. He arrived there a terrified, angry young boy. Fortunately, with the guidance of some concerned teachers and Msgr. Wegner, who was at the time in charge, he was able to turn his life around and look to the future...leaving Boys Town with a full college scholarship.
During his college years, he began to question his sexual identity, fearing he might be gay. He eventually met his life partner, with whom he shared 22 years...ending only when his partner proved to be unfaithful.
In his early 30's, he suffered his first heart attack. He was embarrassed that he was not able to provide family history.
Shortly thereafter, while planning a vacation to Greece, and in need of a passport, he realized he needed a copy of his birth certificate. Boys Town was able to provide this, and for the first time, he saw the name of his mother.
He was determined to find her, at first just to obtain medical information. After much searching, they were reunited during an emotional visit she made to New York City, where he then resided.
He was also eventually reunited with his siblings, but that proved to be fruitless.
He also located his birth father, but again, communication was sparse, and only one strained visit was ever held. Sadly, the rocky relationship with his mother ended 12 years later when she found out he was gay, and wished him dead because of it. All further attempts to contact her were in vain, with phone calls being aborted by hang ups, and letters being returned. She died three years later.
From information gathered from his mother, he was able to find his Polish heritage, and several "leads" that began a journey into his ancestry.
Over the years, he has located and met many extended family members who have welcomed him with open arms and made him feel he is truly a part of their family. Writing the book and publicly speaking out is a part of his healing process. Sharing the book may cause some awareness in those of us who take so much in life for granted.
How he has dealt with his pain and suffering, turning those into forgiveness, growth and healing offers a lesson in perspective to all of us. This is truly a must read and be heard story! It is a story that will touch your heart and soul and will not soon be forgotten!
Editor, Lost Son?
Lawrence P. Adams has penned his autobiography. Some may say "Who is he?"...after reading this amazing book I feel as if I really know who Lawrence P. Adams is and I also know that he now knows who he is, too.
Some might say, "Why is this so important?" To this I say, it is more important than anything else. You see, Lawrence P.has overcome a pitiful past with grace and class and strength. He is to be commended. Living in numerous foster homes, going from place to place with his possessions in a paper bag and ending up at Boys' Town could have left him broken and bitter. But this remarkable individual overcame his less than ideal upbringing to become one of the finest people I have had the pleasure to get to know via email.
I am an adoptive mother and Larry has encouraged me through a rough time of feeling the loss of my daughter after her birth relative reunion. His caring ways and wisdom have given me insight into the mindset of the adopted/foster child. But it was nothing compared to the in depth glimpse I experienced by reading this incredible autobiography.
Two thumbs up for this must read! Now I get it!
Lynn Barry, author of "Puddles"
Lawrence P. Adams gives us a taste of reality so few of us ever experience. Yet, with so little in common with him, his story reached straight in and grabbed a hold of my heart. Eleven foster homes, Boys Town, college and an impressive career path are all, the backdrop to the search for family and love in this a journal of a life. His struggles and personal growth overcoming a society plagued with red tape and trite deserves more than a brief summary. It deserves to be read.
Gaylen M. H. Sharp, Author of "Tipple's Eve"
The casual book shopper may think that anyone who grew up in this country's child welfare system could write a memoir of his or her experiences. It's not that easy. First, you've got to physically survive the system itself. With the all too common excessive numbers of foster home placements and replacements and the inconsistent quality of physical, emotional and medical care in those homes, that's not easy to do. Stability is a word such kids find in a dictionary, not in their daily lives.
Not all the kids who enter such a system do survive. Too many of those who do are so damaged in one way or another that they wind up in prison or mental hospitals. Of those who do survive their passage through the child welfare system and manage to make something of their lives, many may wish to leave those experiences buried 'way back in some distant corner of memory rather than share them with others. How many would want to recall such difficult experiences and share them with those who may find such accounts incredible and unbelievable? How many would even have the strength to try to share such experiences?
That's why Mr. Adams' willingness to share his life as a bastard child, a newborn infant consigned to the not-always-tender-mercies of Michigan's child welfare system, is so amazing.
His journey through the strange and bewildering world he had entered through no fault of his own has enormous emotional impact. The cost of surviving in such a world was high, very high!
This is a story of great pain and suffering. It's also a story of what one can accomplish when someone has great strength and, every once in a while, discovers that someone may actually care about him. Pain can't be erased, but perhaps one can move beyond it. Sometimes that hope may be enough to survive.
Mr. Adams tells his story with grace and warmth. It is highly readable and filled with a humanity which is all the more surprising in coming from one who experienced so little of it.
Roger P., former employee Michigan Department of Child Services
Lost in the foster-care-system, he was NOBODY'S CHILD. Through the turmoil and tears he survived and became strong. Now the one nobody would listen to as a child; found his voice somewhere along his journey in life, and shares his story.
He was no one's son. At birth he became a ward of the state as a foster child. Thus began his eighteen year agonizing journey. It took him to eleven foster homes, three institutions, finally a modern day orphanage...Boys Town, Nebraska.
He got use to the unfamiliar, to switching schools, leaving behind friends and struggling to make new ones. He called foster parents "mom" and "dad", as he felt it was expected of him. Most of them were nice enough. They provided the basics and did the best they could.
Arrival at Boys Town helped him to chart a new path for his young life. By then, he already realized that he had to take care of himself, because nobody else would. He was only eleven years old!
"Instead of becoming jaded and bitter," he hoped to see the world full of opportunities to make a difference. Yet, he would always carry the burden of his past. He shares the years after foster care. His journey goes through his accomplishments, his struggles with himself, the search for his biological family and finally the healing that was necessary for him to be made whole.
"Some wounds of the past will never completely heal," but he shows how they can be overcome. Reading and hearing his story has truly been a journey of hope, search, discovery and healing. It is a story that should be read by all within the foster-care-system and anyone who cares about children.
Mr. Adams has a wonderful way of capturing his audience. I believe part of that charismatic catch comes from his honesty and sincerity. His emotions and feelings ring so real and true. His words have a way of gently tugging at one's heart-strings. When one begins reading this book, you won't be able to put it down.
This story will touch your every human emotion. It's impact will have a real healing effect on many. It could also bring about the beginning of change within the foster-care-system.
I highly recommend it!
Sharon, a 30 year foster parent, Ohio
His life is one of tragedies and triumphs. He never portrays himself as a victim. He feels he is responsible for what becomes him and accepts that responsibility. He shows in the end, no matter what one is faced with, if one has faith, hope and works hard...one can overcome anything. He proves it and is an inspiration to anyone who reads his story. He appropriately titled his story a journey of hope, search, discovery and healing.
Mr. Adams has written a spellbinding book. He grabs you from the very beginning and holds his grip on you until the very final word.
Each chapter leaves the reader wanting to know what happens next...it puts one in the position, no matter the hour, to keep reading and reading.
Mr. Adams does not use flowery words to tell his tale. He uses everyday language that anyone can understand. However, in using simplicity of words his sincerity and honesty are made to shine through. You can more than picture yourself traveling his journey with him, feeling his pains and well as his joys.
This book should be required reading for all who play a role within our child welfare system. It will show the potential damage that can be done to a child if their "best interest" are not always kept to the fore front of their work.
Anyone dealing with problems in their lives, children or adults, would also greatly benefit from reading this work or hearing him speak. You will realize you do not have it so bad. More importantly, you will realize, if he can overcome...so can you!
You will never regret having picked up this book and begin reading it, however, you will not put it down until you are finished.
A long time Foster Parent in Australia
Visit the author's web site at http://www.larrya.us or
information. E mail is: firstname.lastname@example.org
Lost Son? A Bastard Child's Journey of Hope, Search,
Discovery and Healing
By: Lawrence P. Adams
ISBN: 1-4137-1709-8, 166 pages / US $19.95
Publication: June, 2004
Publisher: Publish America
The book is available on line at: Publish America,
Amazon, Barnes & Noble
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