News And Events

No Recourse- Illinois parents try to stop family separations by taking the child welfare system to court.

On August 8, 2003, my husband, Tom, was on the back porch of our home with Ryan, our 4 month-old-son, and Briana, our 18-month-old daughter. Tom was holding Ryan when he threw the diaper bag into the house and stepped backwards—on to Briana’s foot. Trying not to hurt Briana, Tom lost his balance and fell with Ryan over the railing into the grass below.

I called 911 immediately and Ryan was taken … Read More

‘You Will Pull Through’- I came out stronger as a parent after a painful split.

When I was growing up, I learned about different styles of parenting by comparing other parents to mine. When I became a babysitter as a teen, I saw that in some homes, things ran on schedule, with clear bedtimes and meal times. I liked that. Later, as an adult, I liked that my day at my job was organized, so with my children I began scheduling a daily routine.

I also found … Read More

‘Mommy, I Know You Try Hard’- I’m succeeding in college with my family’s support.

Last spring, I enrolled at LaGuardia Community College. For years Ihad wanted to prove to myself that I am smart enough to get a college degree. I never felt like I had the chance to finish school because I didn’t have anyone to count on when I was young. My birth family gave me up and my adoptive family abused me.

But after 20 years of using drugs, I went to treatment and … Read More

‘We’re Poblanos’- Connecting my son to the country I left behind.

Translated from Spanish

Ever since my son was little, I hoped to be able to travel to Mexico with my new family. I wanted Jason to know his grandparents and the place where I was born and lived until I was 12 years old.

It was necessary for me to come to the United States to work and help support my mother and younger brothers. In Mexico, the salaries are very … Read More

Mind Games- Getting high felt like the only way to keep myself sane.

I rolled the meth pipe between my fingers and watched the smoke as it moved toward my lips. I looked around the bathroom I had secretlybeen getting high in despite my enormous eight-and-a-half month pregnant belly. My boyfriend, Mike, had torn all my things off the walls the last time he had beat me in there, and I’d decided to redecorate.

As I climbed on the counter to put up an aquatic … Read More