We the Experts:
Virtual Adoptee Speaker Series

Adoption Mosaic's "We the Experts" series brings adult adoptees and their loved ones together to share personal experiences with the intention to discuss best practices and tangible tools, to connect among peers and to engage in learning with other adoptees.

“We The Experts” monthly virtual events will offer a presentation or panel discussion and an array of resources focused on the topic of the event. 

Bringing a Non-Adoptee Support Person?

AWESOME!!! Please note they will be asked to sign a Non-Adoptee Waiver (a statement of understanding):  “I understand I am a guest to this adoptee-centered space and my primary intention is to listen and learn.”

Attendance fee is $10 for adoptees, $15 for non-adoptees. (No adoptee is turned away due to financial hardship. Please email events@adoptionmosaic.com or call 971.231.7184 for scholarship information.)

Important info for all WTE locations and events:

  • Fee is $10 for adoptees, $15 for non-adoptees and helps to cover paying the panelists for their time and to our adoptee community in need of scholarships.
  • This is NOT an adoptee exclusive space, but is an adoptee-centered space.
  • If you are interested in participating on a panel please fill out the following form

To register select the appropriate month below.

Upcoming: We The Experts - Virtual Adoptee Speaker Series

May 2021

Adoptees and Names

When: Saturday, May 8, 2021 from 10:00 am-12:00 pm PST

Theme: Names have power. Some adoptees have experienced life under more than one name. Join us in a conversation about adoptees and the names that have been given to them at birth, given to them at adoption, and given to themselves. We will explore questions such as: 

  • How do our names impact our identity? 
  • What is it like to change your name? 
  • Who has the right to decide our names? 

You must REGISTER to receive the link to ZOOM. Cover charge is $10 for adoptees, $15 for non-adoptees*. No adoptee is turned away due to financial hardship. Please email events@adoptionmosaic.com or call 971.231-7184 for scholarship information. 

*Please note a portion of your fee goes towards paying the panelists for their time and to our adoptee community in need of scholarships.

Past: We the Experts - Adoptee Speaker Series

Did you miss out? You can now purchase previously recorded events (beginning with April 2020). 

April 2021

Adoptees and Foster Care

When: Saturday, April 10, 2021 from 10:00 am-12:00 pm PST

Theme: Foster care is an integral part of the adoption system in many countries. People who have experienced these systems as children are returning as adults to advocate for change and reform. Join us as we speak with four individuals who will share with you their lived experiences of the foster care system and who are also working to change the foster care system by: 

  • Developing new services through technology
  • Sharing individual stories to give insight and power change
  • Advocating for awareness and reform

PURCHASE the recording of this event for $15. 

March 2021

2nd Generation Adoptees

When: Saturday, March 20, 2021 from 10:00 am-12:00 pm PST

Theme: Adoption is a legacy that extends beyond the individual adoptee. A deeper exploration of epigenetics, genetic memory, and generational trauma is happening. This panel explores the impact that adoption has on our next generation. Hear from children of adoptees who have deeply contemplated what it means to be raised by an adoptee. Including thoughts about: 

  • Navigating relationships with the adopted side of your family.
  • Conflict about searching for biological family. 
  • Forming your racial identity as a biracial second generation adoptee.
  • The importance of creating community for the second generation adoptee experience.

Learn how these adoptee authors have successfully navigated the art of sharing their work through written expression.  

PURCHASE the recording of this event for $15.

March 2021

Adoptee Authors

When: Saturday, March 13, 2021 from 10:00 am-12:00 pm PST

Theme: As adoptees, we find our own ways of expressing ourselves and our lived experiences. This month, we will hear from four incredible adoptees who have put their words on the page and written about their perspectives in:

  • Fiction
  • Nonfiction
  • Academic research and writing
  • Personal memoir

Learn how these adoptee authors have successfully navigated the art of sharing their work through written expression.  

PURCHASE the recording of this event for $15.

February 2021

Adoptee Change Makers

When: Saturday, February 13, 2021 from 10:00 am-12:00 pm PST

Theme: Because of our lived experience as adoptees, it is natural for some us to feel a desire to give back to our community. In the past, there were very few options for adoptees to do work or service in relation to adoption, often just social work or religiously affiliated missionary work. However, now because of trailblazing by our fellow adoptees we all have a larger diversity of outlets to channel our desires to serve the adoptee community. 

February’s We the Experts panel will feature adoptees working for change in the adoption community:

  • Through artistic expression
  • By reimagining child placement policies
  • By changing laws
  • Through community building and healing

PURCHASE the recording of this event. 

January 2021

Birthdays

When: Saturday, January 9, 2021 from 10:00 am-12:00 pm PST

Theme: For us adoptees, our birthdays can carry so many mixed emotions. Some of us don’t know our real birthdays. Some of us discover our birthdays were changed. We all know that our birthday was one day we all spent some time with our birth/first mothers.  Even if you know exactly when your birthday is this day is often a reminder of a tremendous loss. Join us as we share and discuss:

  • What our birthdays mean to us as adoptees
  • Why our birthdays might feel  hard
  • How we celebrate or just hold space for grief
  • How we handle not knowing our birthdays

PURCHASE the recording of this event. 

December 2020

Adoptees and Religion

When: Saturday, December 12, 2020 from 2:30 pm-4:30 pm PST

Theme: The nature of faith, spirituality, free will, and how it connects to our adoptions. Join us at the next Adoptee Speakers Series, “We The Experts,” as we unpack the complexities of Adoption and Religion. We will discuss the history of religious practices in adoption and how personal experiences and exposure (or lack thereof) to religion has shaped our identity. This conversation will include a discussion of religion in our: adoptive families, birth families, birth countries, and what happens when our worlds are not in line with each other, religiously speaking.

PURCHASE the recording of this event. 

November 2020

Adoptees and Therapy

When: Saturday, November 14, 2020 from 2:30 pm-4:30 pm PST

Theme: November is Adoption Awareness Month and this month we are highlighting adoptees who have chosen a career of supporting our adoptee community. 

PURCHASE the recording of this event. 

September 2020

Adoptees, Mental Health and Suicide Awareness:
Breaking the Silence, Breaking the Stigma

When: Saturday, September 12, 2020 from 2:30 pm-4:30 pm PST

Theme: Adoptees, Mental Health and Suicide Awareness: Break the Silence, Break the Stigma. Research indicates that Adoptees are 4x more likely to attempt suicide than that of the non-adopted community. This panel will focus on bringing a taboo topic out into the open. It’s time adoptee mental illness and suicide stop being swept under the rug. We are in this together!

PURCHASE the recording of this event

August 2020

LGBTQ+ and Adoptee Identity

Date: August 8, 2020

Theme: Amplifying the voices and experiences of the Adoptee/LGBTQ+ community. We will be discussing:

  • Intersectional Identity
  • Sexual orientation impacting coming out of the fog
  • Dating/Adoption and sexual identity
  • Coming out to Adoptive Families
  • Sexual orientation impacting adoptees engaging in reunion
  • … and much more.

PURCHASE the recording of this event

July 2020

Adoptees and the Pros & Cons to DNA testing

Date: July 11, 2020

Theme: Adoptee Liberation or Exploitation: Pros & Cons of DNA Testing

Many of us adoptees are lacking information regarding our origins. In this age of developing technology, most of us have access to DNA information as well as potentially finding relatives via genetic testing, however does that mean we should? The decision to complete a DNA test has many layers and complexities. Join us as we discuss the pros and cons of DNA testing.
  • Why aren’t we talking about the racial inequity in gathering DNA data?
  • What happens when the DNA data is different from one brand to another?
  • How have adoptees benefited from DNA testing?
  • How are the DNA companies exploiting the information we are providing them?
  • Do adoptive parents have a right to access information on the adoptees behalf?

PURCHASE the recording of this event.

june 2020

Adoptees and Our Relationships with Fathers

Date: June 13, 2020

Theme: ADOPTEES and OUR RELATIONSHIPS WITH FATHERS.
With Father’s Day right around the corner, we are focusing this month on the relationships we have in our lives with fathers. This portion of the adoptee experience often goes unacknowledged and rarely discussed. In this powerful panel we will be diving into several different adoptee experiences with the fathers in our lives (birth fathers, adoptive fathers, foster fathers, men in our lives who have played the role of father). Join me as four male adoptees share their experiences as to how adoption and their relationship to fathers/fatherhood has shaped who they are today.

PURCHASE the recording of this event

May 2020

Adoptees Who Are Also 1st/Birth Mothers

Date: May 9, 2020

Theme: ADOPTEES and MOTHER’S DAY. For many adoptees Mother’s day has always been a day focused on our adoptive mothers or women who have played an important role in our up bringing but not our birth/first mothers. In this powerful discussion we will be discussing the meaning of Mother’s Day with 3 adoptees panelists who have also placed a baby for adoption.

~ How did you celebrated Mother’s Day growing up?
~ Did you think about your birth/first mother on Mother’s Day growing up?
~ What would it have meant to you if you had been given space, as a child, to also celebrate your first/birth mother?
~ How did placing your child for adoption affected your ideas what Mother’s Day meant for you?
 

PURCHASE the recording of this event

April 2020

Adoptees and Parenting (or choosing not to)

Date: April 11, 2020

Theme: ADOPTEES and PARENTING (or deciding NOT to parent)

How does our experience of being adoptees affect our parenting or our decision to even become parents? As panelist we bring a variety of experiences which include (not limited to):
~ how adoptees talk with their children about their OWN adoption
~ deciding not to parent as a result of their adoptee experience
~ how adoption affects an adoptees attachment with their children
~ being both an adoptee AND an adoptive parent
~ being transracially adopted and trying to navigate how to talk about race with same race or mixed race children
~ adoptees who returned to their birth countries with their children
~ how/if adoptee’s non~adoptee children identify as members of the adoption constellation
 

PURCHASE the recording of this event

March 2020

“Funny You Don’t Look Irish” Transracial Adoptees & Identity

Date: March 11, 2020 (Portland, OR)

Theme: “You don’t look like an O’Conner”
March’s theme – Identity and Belonging. Because every adoption is a Transcultural Adoption, whether you are transracially adopted or not, so many of us adoptees have asked the questions:

~ How would it have been if I had grown up with people who looked like me?
~ If I looked like my family would I fit in more?
~ How does race and racism play out in my adoption?

February 2020

Adoptees and Our Romantic Relationships

Locations/Date: Portland, OR (02/12/20) Seattle, WA (02/08/20), Denver, CO (02/28/20)

Theme: Dating, partnering, marrying or deciding to stay single: HOW does being adopted play-out in your decisions with romantic relationships? What do/did you look for in a partner? When do you tell a potential partner you are adopted? Have/do you date adoptees? If you’re a transracial adoptee, do/did you have racial preferences in terms of dating? If you are self-partnered (a conscious decision to not be in a romantic relationship) what role does your adoption have if any in this decision? If you are partnered please consider inviting your significant other to this event.