Parents Talk About RAD and Dissolution in Documentary, “Forfeiting Sanity”

For people who have a natural sense of nurturing, and a great degree of responsibility, choosing dissolution can be excruciating.

Denalee Chapman August 30, 2016

“All adoptions start out with trauma,” says Carrie, an adoptive mother with an MA in Human Services who experienced adoption dissolution. After all, in order for a child to be adoptable, there first has to be separation to some degree. That means trauma. “We pray that your experience will be much better than ours,” said another parent in Forfeiting Sanity, a film made to educate and support adoptive families who are seeking the best for their children under extremely difficult circumstances.

Carrie’s personal experience brought her to create the Carrie O’Toole Ministries, an organization that offers help for parents of children with Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD).  Carrie has drawn on her personal experience and uses her formal education as she assists others through coaching, public speaking, and sharing her film and her book, Relinquished – When Love Means Letting Go

In the film we hear from three couples. Each couple adopted a child from an orphanage in Vietnam. Although their experiences are unique to their own families, each of these children exhibited extreme behavior and did not thrive in their adoptive homes. Three children, three families, one orphanage.

In each of these circumstances, the severity of the children’s trauma was so great that it not only wreaked havoc on the children, but nearly destroyed the families as well. This is a film about desire, love, and learning how to let go. For people who have a natural sense of nurturing, and a great degree of responsibility, choosing dissolution was painful, heartbreaking, and almost too hard. Yet this is what they did. The messages each couple hopes to relate include:

  • Sometimes love isn’t enough.
  • Becoming a trauma specialist and a certified therapeutic foster parent before adopting will go a long way into propelling your situation toward success.
  • There is very specific help available for you and for your children. Become educated and don’t be afraid to seek help.

Whether you’ve already adopted or are preparing for adoption, spending a little over an hour of your time to watch Forfeiting Sanity is something that may just be the information you need to move forward with strength. Get it here.

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Denalee Chapman

Denalee is an adoptive mother, a motivational speaker, a writer, and a lover of life. She and her husband have adventured through the hills and valleys of life to find that the highest highs and the lowest lows are equally fulfilling. Book Denalee to speak to your group, or find Denalee's writings, including her books on her website at

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