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Anthony Brown: My Son Jonathan

Lt. Gov. Brown is scheduled to answer questions about adoption, after 12 years parenting an adopted child of his own.

By Lt. Governor Anthony Brown

I became an adoptive parent 12 years ago when we brought my son, Jonathan, into our family. As we considered expanding our family through adoption, I had an overwhelming sense of the tremendous thing we were doing for this child. But upon bringing Jonathan home, we quickly learned the truth—that we were the recipients of a gift that continues to change and enrich our life every single day in ways we couldn’t possibly imagine.

The most important factor in a child’s life is a stable, loving home in which he or she can laugh, learn and thrive. That’s why Governor O’Malley and I have made improving outcomes for children who need permanent homes a priority. Since the launch of our Place Matters initiative, almost 3,200 children have found permanent homes through adoption, guardianship or reunification with family, and we’ve reduced the number of children in foster care by 35 percent.

Although we’ve seen significant progress, there is still much work to be done. It is my hope that by sharing Jonathan’s story, other families will come to know the gift of adoption.

In honor of National Adoption Month, I’m excited to announce that I’ll be hosting a Twitter Chat this Wednesday, Nov. 28 at 2 p.m. We’ll be answering questions and providing information on various topics related to adoption. I’m also hoping the conversation will inspire other families to share their own experiences. Please help spread the word and join in the conversation using the hashtag #LGBrownChat.

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Mary Klopcic November 27, 2012 at 01:28 PM
That's great but now can you please provide funding for resources necessary for raising these children? We have adopted 5 children with special needs and MD is a resource black hole when it comes to getting the help they need to heal from the damage done to them before they came into our family. This state especially needs to provide on-going mental health care to these children and their families. Dealing with issues like attachment disorders and fetal alcohol spectrum has brought our family to the brink of financial ruin since we have been forced to turn to private resources that are very expensive. I know many, many families in similar situations in MD. Getting long-term respite outside the home so that families can rest and have a chance to heal is made nearly impossible by the demands the school system places on parents to turn over guardianship in order to place children in schools out of district with willing friends or family. Living in MD has literally made my life hell in terms of finding resources for my family to be successful with the placement of these children. Mental health care in particular makes *me* go a bit crazy as I come to one closed door after another after another after another trying to get help for my family with kids who are damaging themselves, my other children and their adoptive parents.
Brigitta Mullican November 27, 2012 at 03:35 PM
Adoption is great and it shouldn't be so difficult to process. A big "thank you" to all people who have adopted children. Thank you Lt. Governor Anthony Brown for bringing this to the public's attention.
Brigitta Mullican November 27, 2012 at 04:56 PM
Mary, How did you come to adopt 5 children? That is one big financial commitment. God bless you. Sorry to hear of your difficulties with your special needs.
Buzz Beeler November 28, 2012 at 03:58 AM
I had a chance to blog on the Lt. Governor at a private affair and he impressed the hell out of me and I had no idea he had adopted these children. Family is everything. The man has done it all and did it well.
Amy Leahy November 30, 2012 at 02:27 AM
Buzz: Children as in one child? Shameless self promotion. Getting him ready to win the Gubernatorial race in 2014. Two sessions ago the legislature pushed to raise the alcohol tax to 9%, promising the extra money would go to special needs families. Another big fat lie. I know we're not talking about special needs kids here, but don't try to convince me that MOM and Brown care about anyone but their political careers. Families in Maryland have seen and experienced the lies.

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