Academic, Religious, and Other Specialized Terms

disruption (adoption): adoption professionals often use this term to refer to intended adoptions that fall through before they are finalized. (see also and my discussion in “Terminology: Politics and Practice” in Reproductive Losses)

intersectionality: a framework for understanding the interconnected nature of social categories such as race, class, and gender; attentive to how privilege and oppression (such as racism, homophobia, sexism, and classism) interlock or intersect, especially in the experiences of marginalized individuals or groups.

Mourner’s Kaddish: a Jewish prayer recited in memory of the deceased, typically in the presence of a minyan. (see also

shiva: a period of mourning following a death when family members stay at home and receive guests to offer them comfort and participate in religious services. (see also and

minyan: In Jewish tradition, a quorum of ten Jewish adults necessary to recite certain prayers. The term has traditionally been defined as a quorum of ten Jewish males over age thirteen, however, Jewish women challenged this custom and, in many congregations, women are now counted in the minyan. (see also and

non-biological parent: a parent who did not experience a physical pregnancy; see also “social” parent or non-gestational parent.

non-gestational parent: “non-gestational” refers to a parent who did not experience a physical pregnancy; see also “social” parent and non-biological parent.

rainbow babies: children conceived after miscarriage or stillbirth. Jennifer Kulp-Makarov, M.D., FACOG, explains the meaning of the term as “it is like a rainbow after a storm: something beautiful after something scary and dark.” (see also LGBTQ parents, this term often took on additional meaning, since the rainbow is a common symbol of LGBTQ+* Pride with the spectrum of colors reflecting the diversity of the queer community. (see also

“social” parent: the most common term participants used for a parent who did not experience a physical pregnancy; see also non-biological parent or non-gestational parent, and my discussion of the challenges of these labels in “Terminology: Politics & Practice.”

praxis: action of putting theory into practice; informed, committed action.

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Specialized Terms