Priscilla Cheever, an analyst were full of emotional strife be-
for the State Court Administra- cause of Nicole and because it re-
tive Office of the Michigan ally looked bleak for the
Supreme Court, said Michigan pregnancy. I still remember sit-
adoptions have been regulated by ting with Rabbi Nelson and hear-
very strict laws to avoid these ing him say, 'We'll pray for a
kinds of problems.
"In Michigan, the natural par-
Mr. Meisner was not very re-
ents must release their parental ligious as he grew up, yet he felt
rights in front of a judge," Ms. compelled to turn to the teach-
Cheever said, adding that there ings of Judaism for psychological
are legal provisions when the fa- support.
ther is out of state or can't be lo-
"I think the older you get the
more you see it's important to
There is a 21-day waiting pe- have some kind of spiritual and
riod when they can request an- religious conviction," he said.
other hearing, but it can't be "I really learned the meaning
based on a change of heart."
of prayer and replacing fear
Ms. Cheever said judges go with faith. I used to pray in
through a long list of questions the morning on the way to work
at a hearing to prevent a legal ba- that I would get some positive
sis for reversal.
Joe Kroll, executive director of
Mrs. Meisner, a Methodist who
the North American Council on is beginning to study Judaism as
Adoptable Children, said prob- she decides whether to convert,
lems often can be avoided by can get teary-eyed when she
making sure the birth mother re- thinks about the session with
ceives adequate counseling and Rabbi Nelson. Said Mr. Meisner,
signs away her rights free of "It was like nothing was coming
duress. He urges that the birth easy."
father be identified and given ad-
Mrs. Meisner has tried to be
equate counseling free from pres- optimistic through the roller-
sure before signing away his
Legal measures must be
explored when the father has
not been identified.
"In any year, we see five to
10 highly publicized, contest-
ed adoptions in a context of
50,000 adoptions," said Mr.
Kroll. This total does not in-
clude stepparent adoptions.
'The likelihood of an adoption
being contested is so small
that people should not have
Mr. Greenwald emphasizes
taking special care when at
least one of the parents is a
It is important, he main-
tains, to see that the minor
has his or her own attorney.
While the Meisners were
facing the difficulties associ-
ated with becoming Nicole's Nicole Meisner
parents, they also were con-
fronting difficulties in be-
coming natural parents of Mark, coaster experiences faced with
who was born nine months after both children, especially through-
out the adoption.
Although Mrs. Meisner was
"Except for one time, I really
going through a series of proce- believed that this was the right
dures at Hutzel Hospital in an ef- thing for everybody involved, and
fort to become pregnant, there it was going to happen," she said.
were no positive results until sev- "I had faith. We had waited so
eral weeks after Nicole was long to have a family, and we
both wanted Nicole so much. She
"The percentage of success was our family the second she
with frozen embryo transfers is came home, and nobody was go-
six percent, and I didn't think in ing to hurt that."
my wildest dreams that it would
The Meisners decided to raise
work, although we were still try- Nicole as a Jew, and they asked
ing to have children of our own," Rabbi Nelson to supervise her
conversion. At five months old,
The pregnancy was difficult, she was immersed at the mikvah.
and at one point there were
Nicole's biracial background,
thoughts that it might have to be which derives from a Caucasian
birth mother and a black birth fa-
"We went to see Rabbi David ther, has never been an issue for
Nelson of Congregation Beth the couple.
Shalom," Mr. Meisner said. "We ADOPTION page 20
ALL NEW 1995
•••.1. 1 .
31 AVAILABLE AT THIS PRICE
RESERVATIONS MUST BE RECEIVED BY APRIL 1 1995
Experience the power of a V-8 Engine, the safety of.Dual Airbags and stan-
dard features that you might find in an expensive luxury import. Even the
high quality Compact Disc Player comes standard with every Aurora.
We are so sure that you will choose the Aurora over Infiniti, Lexus,
Mercedes, BMW or Acura that Glassman is making an unprecedented offer.
If you decide to buy or lease the new Aurora before April I, 1995 Glassman
will provide: •FREE OIL CHANGES FOR ONE YEAR • GUARANTEED
SATISFACTION • COURTESY TRANSPORTATION • PRICE PROTEC-
$14 ,7 78 . 96
CHOOSE FROM A
RAINBOW OF COLORS:
One Time Payment
• Dark Cherry Red Metallic
• Champagne Metallic
• Medium Garnet Red Metallic
• Silver Teal Metallic
• Light Gray Metallic
• Light Adriatic Blue Metallic
• Dark Green Metallic
• Dark Green/Gray Metallic
• Black • White
24 month closed end lease. One time payment of 514,778.96 due at delivery. S625 ref. sec. dep. Lessee has option to purchase at lease
end for price to be determined at inception. 12,000 miles per year allowance, 15c per mile overage. Lessee responsible for excess wear
and tear. Plus tax & plates, with approved credit.
Telegraph • At The Tel-12 Mall • Southfield
PERFECT FOR MOTHERS AND
Keep Them Close To Your Heart...Always!
14Kt. Pin with Diamonds retail $318
14Kt. Girl Charm(2 diamonds & bow) retail $204
14Kt. Boy Charm(2 diamonds & hat) retail $204
14Kt. MOM Bracelet retail $610
14Kt. Name Bracelet with Diamonds
26400 West 12 Mile Road • Southfield, MI 48034
(810) 357-5578 • (800) 337-GIFT
and Fine Jewelry