Element #7 - Andie Coston

Hello! I hope you had a safe and Happy Thanksgiving! I know that I am super thankful for you! Welcome back to another discovery of our 7th element! I am super excited to see the reception from everyone and I hope that you are enjoying reading and learning! I know that I have gained new perspectives along this journey. I highly recommend looking further into everyone's accounts because they are sharing meaningful content that helps increase your view on adoption. please enjoy our next element of adoption, And! :)

ANDIE COSTON - she/her(s) - Adoptee

Instagram - @andie.ink & @traumainformedeverything

Birthday: 12/04/1982

Who are you and what do you do?

My name is Andie and I am an adoptee and an adoptive mother. Though I see primarily through my adopted lens. I share my story and educate through social media and podcasting. I am currently getting my Master of Social Work so I can become an Adoption Therapist.

How are you impacted by adoption?

I was adopted and have adopted.

What is the biggest challenge you faced related to adoption?

My biggest challenges have been the mental and physical repercussions of my adoption. I have physical trauma both in the structure of my brain as well as my body. This comes out through mental illness and autoimmune disease which I have to battle daily. It is a constant reminder that I experienced traumatic events and my Body Kept the Score.

What do you wish people knew about adoption?

I wish people knew how nuanced adoption was. I wish they knew adoption was trauma both to the adoptees and the biological families. I wish they could recognize their own saviorism and spiritual bypassing when it comes to adoption and interacting with adoptees. This just perpetuates the trauma and harm done to both adoptees and biological families.

What have you done to support the adoption community?

I share my story as well as educate. I offer Adoption Advising. I do a podcast with a fellow social worker and adoptive parent called Trauma-Informed Everything. We started this podcast in hopes to get trauma education in the hands of more people. The adoption community was definitely in mind when we were brainstorming.

How has your opinion about adoption changed as you got older?

At 34 I abruptly came out of the adoptee fog when I learned about Trauma in a foster care training class. I finally had a name to what was happening in my body. I immediately entered into therapy and have been working on my trauma processing, healing, and recovery ever since.

Since then, I now understand the nuances of adoption. I know understand the pain that adoption brings to adoptees and biological families. I can acknowledge the dichotomy that lives inside me and the adoption community that the industry wants to silence.

What has helped/supported you through learning your adoption story?

Finding other Adoptees. Hands down this has saved my life. Leaning in with Birth/First Moms who have shown me that not all Birth/First moms are like mine. Therapy. I needed a wise counsel to lead me through some of my darkest moments. I needed a place where I could go to be heard and speak through my anger and trauma without shame or expectations. I am learning to love myself and stand up for my silenced voice because of these communities.

What is your favorite quote/lesson you learned?

I am badass.

Tell us a wacky fact about yourself no one else would expect!

I married my ex boyfriends best friend.

Tell us anything else you want people to know.

You have value.

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