Building your family story
Whether you are just beginning to build your family, or already have children with the assistance of donor conception, it can be difficult to know how to prepare to help your child understand their origins. We provide groups and workshops to help parents and parents-to-be find answers to their questions.
We also help donor conceived children craft their narratives In our TIP TOP programs (see information here: familybuilding.net/products). In these workshops we see how much children enjoy hearing about how they came into the world, so we created a way to help parents create a gift for their children to help them understand their story.
You don’t need to wait until your child is home to chronicle your story. Beginning to construct your narrative can be beneficial to you too. Here are a few examples of the ways beginning your Lifebook can be productive for the entire family.
- Beginning My Lifebook can help lessen your anxiety. If you are building your family with the assistance of a donor or surrogate, there are likely to be many stops and starts on your path to parenthood. It can feel so frustrating to not be in the driver’s seat. You can choose the people who will help you on your path, but then you must follow their directions and often hurry up and wait. This cycle can be frustrating. Meditation and stress reduction strategies can help. Feeling productive can also be helpful. When life feels out of your control, putting your energy into a positive pursuit and seeing the benefits of that action can feel very stabilizing. Creating My Lifebook can be a perfect way to use your excess energy in a positive way.
- Beginning to work on My Lifebook can prompt you to record special or enjoyable moments, help you retain personal items that your child may later appreciate, and give you an opportunity to create an object that your child can cherish. We have found that over the years, children can continue to use their My Lifebook during times when they are exploring their identities and trying to understand who they are in the world. Like adults, some children are private and others are very outgoing. Regardless of your child’s temperament, they will treasure My Lifebook as it chronicles their unique and personal story.
Young children understand information in concrete terms and will understand more nuanced and abstract information as they grow. Since My Lifebook is an important object for your child to hold on to and cherish through the years, it needs to be appealing to children of all ages. Fortunately, My Lifebook is interactive, colorful and uses concepts that work for kids of every age.
It is never too late to start My Lifebook. If your child is in your home, creating My Lifebook can be a great project to do together.
My Lifebook is self-explanatory but if you need suggestions please contact us.
We will be co-hosting a My Lifebook workshop in April. For more information, email us at Sheila@familybuilding.net.
If you would like personal support or assistance with donor conception, pre register for our Spring donor conception support group here: familybuilding.net/spring
We are here to make your journey easier.
Lisa and the Center for Family Building team