SOMEWHERE BETWEEN: Film Documents Life After Adoption

On National Adoption Day, thousands of kids in foster care found permanent homes. Des Moines hosted their own special day on Saturday, where 40 children officially became members of their new families. That wasn’t the only event held over weekend to mark national adoption month.

An award winning documentary premiered in Des Moines Sunday.

The new documentary, Somewhere Between is a true story of four girls adopted from China, who are now living in the U.S., it chronicles the trial and tribulations of navigating their way between their homeland and their American homes.

The movie hits close to home for some Iowa families.

Christin Grant is a mother of four. She went half-way around the world to find her two youngest daughters11-year old Peiton and 8-year old Meilin.

The girl’s father, Jim Grant said, “After we adopted Peiton we just knew that we had to do it again. If we had the resources to do it, we would continue to adopt.”

American families have adopted 80,000 girls from China over the last two decades.

In the film the girls talk about their struggles of growing up in the U.S., “I don`t think that I could consider myself fully Chinese or fully American, no matter where I am in my life, I`m always going to be somewhere sort of in between.” 

The Grant’s say they are prepared to help their daughters deal with those feelings.  

“I think there’s that issue anyway when you’re a teenager, trying to find your identity.  I think for us it’s going to be added situations, where they’re going to question their adoption, possibly question their abandonment,” Christin said.

They say they’re also trying to teach the girls as much as they can about their Chinese culture. In 2009, father and daughter traveled to China to give Peiton a glimpse of where she came from. She was able to spend time in the orphanage she lived in, and time with the foster mother who took care of her.

It’s a similar experience for some of the girls in the film.

The Grants hope seeing the movie will prepare them for some of the struggles their daughters might have.

“No matter how much love and support we give them, they’re still going to have to go through this issue and answer that question themselves.”

Until then, they’re ready to answer any questions, from the girls and even from strangers. They say by sharing their family story of adoption, it encourages others to do the same.

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