What to do when you’ve been called to
adopt and practical advice to make it work.

Mary Ostyn married her sweetheart at nineteen, and the pair had four kids by their eighth anniversary. When their youngest was three, God opened their eyes to the needs of orphans all over the world—and answered Mary’s longing for another baby. Over the next nine years the couple adopted two boys from Korea and four girls from Ethiopia.

Ostyn, a beloved adoption writer and blogger, shares—alongside stories from other adoptive families—the practical tools and resources she uses to thrive as an adoptive mom. In Forever Mom, she reveals how to:

  • - build heart connections
  • - prepare your other children for new siblings
  • - help babies, toddlers, and older children settle in
  • - implement attachment parenting
  • - address misbehavior while remaining connected
  • - nurture your marriage in the midst of it all

Whether you’re the parent of an adopted child or interested in pursuing adoption, Ostyn’s warm advice and fresh perspective will inspire, inform, and affirm. You’ll walk away confident you will be the perfect mom for whatever child God brings into your life.


Forever Mom

Mary Ostyn offers encouragement and practical help to mothers in her books, on her blog owlhaven.net, and at adoption and homeschooling conferences across the U.S. She lives with her high school sweetheart in Nampa, Idaho, where she homeschools the youngest six of their ten children, including four daughters born in Ethiopia and two sons born in South Korea.


This is by far the best resource I've encountered for equipping and encouraging Christian parents at every stage of the adoption journey—from considering adoption for the first time to parenting an adopted child into adulthood. With Forever Mom, Mary Ostyn dispenses practical help wrapped in personal story with unprecedented humility, honesty, and hope.

Shaun Groves, ambassador for Compassion International and recording artist

This is the book that we wish we had years ago. Having adopted twice and housed countless orphans in our home through complicated times in their lives, we can understand what Mary talks about when she speaks of the deep pain in the heart of an orphan and the struggles a parent faces while trying to wrap your arms around them.  But we could never dream that anyone would be able to speak to such complicated issues with words so clear and straight to the heart as what Mary has written here.

Levi and Jessie Benkert, cofounders of Bring Love In, a family creation project in Ethiopia

Mary Ostyn is the mom you wish would mentor you in your adoption journey, and she does through this encouraging and practical book. Forever Mom is packed with information you will inhale and then reach for again.

Lisa Qualls, blogger at OneThankfulMom.com

Finally a book that I can recommend to adoptive moms in different seasons—from moms considering adoption to moms home with their children for many years! Mary's authenticity and vulnerability to the realities of daily life as an adoptive mom is a breath of fresh air reminding me that each of my children is so different—based in not only how God created them but also how their pasts have shaped them.

Andrea Young, founder of the Created for Care retreats for foster and adoptive mothers

Forever Mom is full of deep encouragement from one mom to another. Mary shines light on the painful loss and gracious beauty that are intertwined together in adoption. . . . she reminds us who it is that walks with us and gives us hope.

Shelly Roberts, speaker and author of 31 Nuggets of Hope: For Moms Who Said Yes to the Fatherless

Finally! A cleansing breath of fresh air among a slew of how-to books on adoption. Mary so tenderly yet expertly offers real wisdom, tangible advice, and realistic and effective means to assist adoptive parents as we navigate the trenches of helping our adopted children heal and blossom. . . . Forever Mom should be placed in the hands of any person who feels the call to foster or adopt or those who simply walk alongside those who do.

Heidi Weimer, author and blogger at outofshemind.com

Mary Ostyn's Forever Mom shines with hope, and is the book I wish I'd had when I first began my own adoption journey. Her candor, warmth, realism, and practical wisdom will inspire and prepare the family just now considering adoption, and experienced adoptive families will know they've gained a friend in the trenches.

Brianna Heldt, blogger at briannaheldt.com

Forever Mom has joined my list of must reads for adoptive parents. Readers will enjoy the straight-forward but charming way Mary shares her first-hand knowledge. Even veteran adoptive parents can gain new wisdom and encouragement from Forever Mom.

Julie Gumm, author of You Can Adopt Without Debt: Creative Ways to Cover the Cost of Adoption

Forever Mom is the real deal. . . . God’s grace and redemptive love flood her story. Her commitment to connection with each of her children offers encouragement and practical strategies to the new mom, adoptee expectant mom, or to those of us who are more seasoned on this parenting journey. I’ll be recommending this book to all of my parent training clients.

Debra Delulio Jones, M Ed, director of Parenting Adoptees Can Trust (PACT) and author of God, Are You Nice or Mean: Trusting God ... After the Orphanage

Forever Mom will refresh your adoptive-mama soul. Mary is courageously honest about the struggles adoptive families may face. Fiercely committed to loving her children even when it meant changing her parenting paradigm, she is exceedingly empathetic and encouraging as she offers her compassionate words of wisdom for those of us who find ourselves in similar places. Truly an inspiring read for every “forever mom.”

Jen Summers, blogger at hisgracehisglory.blogspot.com

If you are thinking about adoption, I highly recommend this book—you will want to keep it on hand to read and reread for many years to come. If you have already adopted like me, you will find yourself greatly encouraged and re-inspired—and also wishing that Mary lived next door to you! Forever Mom is a wonderful God-given gift to the adoption community, a comprehensive and authentic must read.

Beth Templeton, blogger at hopeathome.org

I wish I would have read this book before we brought our children home and then read again during the first year. It’s a great book to prepare you as you set out on your adoption journey, and even better to read in the thick of your parenting. Mary makes you feel as though someone out there understands what you are experiencing—the hard times and the wonderful times. I highly recommend this book for all parents.

Jamie Ivey, blogger at jamieivey.com


media inquiries

For press inquiries regarding Forever Mom, please contact Tiffany Sawyer
at Tiffany.Sawyer@HarperCollins.com