Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Journey of the Adopted Self: A Quest for Wholeness” as Want to Read:
Journey of the Adopted Self: A Quest for Wholeness
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Journey of the Adopted Self: A Quest for Wholeness

4.15  ·  Rating details ·  221 ratings  ·  12 reviews
Betty Jean Lifton, whose Lost and Found has become a bible to adoptees and to those who would understand the adoption experience, explores further the inner world of the adopted person. She breaks new ground as she traces the adopted child's lifelong struggle to form an authentic sense of self. And she shows how both the symbolic and the literal search for roots becomes a ...more
Paperback, 328 pages
Published May 6th 1995 by Basic Books (first published May 17th 1994)
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Journey of the Adopted Self, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Journey of the Adopted Self

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.15  · 
Rating details
 ·  221 ratings  ·  12 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Journey of the Adopted Self: A Quest for Wholeness
Oct 26, 2018 rated it really liked it
I haven't read an adoption book in many years, but decided I should increase my awareness and familiarity with the issues, as I'm currently writing down the story of, as Joseph Campbell would put it, my 'hero's journey' to find out who I was 'born to', which I believe is necessary if we as individuals wish to also learn more about who we were 'born to be', something which is neither about the family we are raised by nor the one we are biologically related to, but that in-between place, where we ...more
Susan Poling
Jun 09, 2009 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction
I was advised to read this (because it was by a professor at Yale???) after being reunited with my son who I had had to give up for adoption when I was 20. (What a glorious day it was to hear his voice and meet him!) The year that followed was an emotional rollercoaster: It was so very painful (I cried for months) yet simultaneously glorious (I couldn't wipe the grin off my face.).

That being said, I found this book to be totally presumptive. I don't think anyone can take an emotional process an
Michelle Alley
Mar 27, 2008 rated it it was amazing
This book was so helpful to me that I would gladly swap or recommend this book to anyone who is in the adoption circle. I read this book as an adoptee, and plan to reread it again, as a mother who has adopted.
Rhonda Rae Baker
Dec 10, 2007 rated it really liked it
This helped me work through some adoption issues that related to self acceptance and what I was created for.
Jun 05, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

I highly recommend this book to better understand adoptees(what they go through and how best we as adoptive families can play our role in their healing & our healing as well). What an eye- opening experience for me as an adoptive parent.
D. J.
Aug 21, 2012 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Adoptees, Adoptive Parents, Adoption Searchers, Memoir Writers
Recommended to D. J. by: Myself :)
(Actually, I need a shelf called "To Re-Read" as I'm pretty sure I started this but never finished. Mentally, I've been writing a memoir about my adoption experience, and 20+ year search for my Original Family. At the beginning, in my 20's and alone in my first "real" apartment on Staten Island, with no phone nor television, I could not get my hands on enough adoption writing. I'm pretty sure this book is on a shelf somewhere, waiting.) ...more
May 23, 2011 added it
As an adoptee myself and also and adoptive parent I can say that it has been one of my favorite. It is easy to read and understand. As because the author was adopted herself she know the feeling and thing that an adoptee gose though. If a person is stuggleing with thier own adoption; thinking about adopting; or have adopted children with quetions I recomed Jorney of the Adopted Self A Quest for Wholeness. Very well writen and a great book for anyone interested in adoption.
Apr 14, 2009 rated it did not like it
I realize that this book has helped many people, but it just did not speak to or for me as an adoptee.
Sep 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I am so thankful for this book; it should be required reading for any adopted person.
Doris Raines
Mar 30, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I. Love. This. Book. Yes. It. Is. Allways. About. The. Journey. Betty.
Bradley Matthews
Sep 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Every adoptee should read this. Everyone close to adoption in any way should read this. Read this.
rated it liked it
Jun 21, 2019
rated it really liked it
Jun 20, 2010
Jeff Hancock
rated it it was amazing
Jun 16, 2011
rated it it was amazing
Apr 09, 2012
Hye mee
rated it really liked it
Sep 23, 2015
David Stymiest
rated it did not like it
May 28, 2014
Debra Gahm
rated it it was amazing
Jan 25, 2015
Jill Benson
rated it liked it
Jan 22, 2017
rated it really liked it
May 30, 2015
Geoff Wyss
rated it it was amazing
Feb 06, 2018
katherine H. Murdock
rated it really liked it
May 24, 2019
Katie Fitzgerald
rated it really liked it
Jun 17, 2020
rated it really liked it
Sep 25, 2012
Jody Tompros
rated it really liked it
Jun 22, 2009
Denise Litt
rated it it was amazing
Apr 16, 2020
Marilyn Jenkins
rated it it was amazing
Dec 31, 2018
rated it it was amazing
Jun 01, 2008
rated it it was ok
Mar 07, 2018
rated it it was amazing
Feb 15, 2016
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Readers also enjoyed

  • The Girls Who Went Away: The Hidden History of Women Who Surrendered Children for Adoption in the Decades Before Roe V. Wade
  • The Primal Wound: Understanding The Adopted Child
  • Color Me In
  • Life of the Beloved: Spiritual Living in a Secular World
  • Identical Strangers: A Memoir of Twins Separated and Reunited
  • Evangelii Gaudium: The Joy of the Gospel
  • Totus Tuus: A Consecration to Jesus Through Mary with Blessed John Paul II
  • The Reckless Way of Love: Notes on Following Jesus
  • Grace, Not Perfection: Embracing Simplicity, Celebrating Joy
  • Gaudete et Exsultate--Rejoice and be glad: On the call to holiness in the contemporary world
  • Consecration to Jesus through St. Joseph: An Integrated Look At the Holy Family
  • The Return of the Prodigal Son: A Story of Homecoming
  • Be Healed
  • Chasing Slow: Courage to Journey Off the Beaten Path
  • The Esther Anointing: Becoming a Woman of Prayer, Courage, and Influence
  • Lovely Seeds: A Walk Through the Garden of Our Becoming
  • Awakening Love
  • Wild and Free: A Hope-Filled Anthem for the Woman Who Feels She Is Both Too Much and Never Enough
See similar books…
Betty Jean (BJ) Lifton, PhD, was a writer and adoption counselor, who was one of the leading advocates of adoption reform. She is an authority on the psychology of the adopted child, birth parents, and adoptive parents, as well as the complexity of search and reunion.

Related Articles

New year! New books! New this month: Scandal rocks an elite British boarding school in The Divines. A dark secret spans several...
92 likes · 38 comments