Thursday, September 18, 2008

Announcing a Book Chat with Kay Bratt

I have the most exciting news!!! Kay Bratt, the author of Silent Tears: A Journey of Hope in a Chinese Orphanage, will be dropping by my blog for a book chat. We'll talk about her, her book and whatever else comes to mind.

For those of you not familiar with Kay Bratt or her book, this will be a great opportunity to get to know her. Kay lived in China for 4 years when her husband's job transferred them there. She spent her time first working in a local orphanage and then spear heading the volunteer program there. Her book is a glimpse into the day to day workings of the orphanage and the changes that were implemented while she was there. While this book is not representative of every orphanage in China, I'm sure it represents a large number of them, particularly the non-International Adoption orphanages.

I would also venture to say that you could apply the same standards to many Vietnamese orphanages. The baby adopted by my friend Brooke, from my Vietnam Adoption series, was very healthy and in great developmental state at her adoption. It was made very clear by the nannies that Brooke's baby was considered very pretty and was a favorite of her nanny. My baby, adopted from the same orphanage, was not as fortunate. At 3 1/2 months she was very malnourished and couldn't even hold up her head.

Although the topic of the book is not something that most parents would not like to think about with their adopted children, I am the first to admit that I breaks my heart to think my adopted children might have been mistreated before the joined our family.However, I think that it something we MUST be aware of. My newly adopted 2 year old exhibits behaviors that I view in a different light since reading Silent Tears. I think it has helped our attachment process since I have come to realize that Ryan might not have been treated well.

I also think this book is not just limited to the circle of adoptive families. It's always good to be aware of the condition and plight of children whether they be in Africa, China, Vietnam or our own backyard.

Our chat, will post next Thursday, September 25 around noon CDT. If there are any questions that you would like for me to ask Kay on your behalf then please ask them in the comment section. While I probably won't be able to ask all of the questions, I will try to ask as many as I can. Our actual interview will occur early next week. I will need your questions by 5:00 pm CDT on Monday so that I have time to prepare them for the interview.

I am excited to get to know Kay and I'm sure many of you are too! Be sure to check back next Thursday for our chat!


Carrie S. said...

I have read Kay Bratt's book and loved it! I have emailed her a question or two and she has been very quick to get back to me.
I would like her opinion concerning the scars so many of our adopted children come to us with. Our daughter has many scars and it is obvious she was tied to something. Please have Kay elaborate on this.
I appreciate your blog. I need my daily dose of "Denise".
God bless,

Denise said...


You are so sweet!!! I love writing my blog, its so fun! At times I find it amazing that anyone wants to read what I write!

I'll add your question to my list-- its question #1!


Kristin said...

How cool! I just became aware of Kay recently when she ran across my blog. I haven't had a chance to fully read her blog like I wanted to. I will definitely work on that and check out her book too.

I can't think of any questions right now but wanted to tell carrie s. that some of our Xinyu girls came with scars of being tied to something. Anna Grace did not. But others did. The girls were all in foster care. We found out it was having the girls tied to their crib rails so they could not roll over and throw off their covers.

Or that is what we were told.

Tommi-Lynn said...

Dear Denise and Kay,
Throughout my reading I have wondered about a few things. If you wouldnt mind answering, I would love your opinion on these topics:

Why did the nannies seem so calous to death? Is it a cultural difference, did they feel the life was worthless anyway, cared but didnt show it?

Do you harbor any resentment to the Chinese people or to the orphanage system after witnessing what you did?

After traveling to Asia, but never getting to see China, I was wondering what your worst memory of China and what was your best?

Thanks for letting us pick your brain. Your book is amazing!
AP Vietnam

Anonymous said...

Question for Kay:
Hi Kay, I read your book with great interest and I have followed the story of Xiao Gou. In the book you speak in a negative way about her parents abandoning her and yet I have followed your blog and see that you now are trying to locate her parents and seem to have a different view about this situation.
Now that you are out of the orphanage environment, do you feel that your thoughts about international adoption have changed? How about your feelings on the ethics of the program?
Always in hindsight we see situations so much differently. I would love to hear what new insights you may have and what the future holds for you.