Meet Zoe!

A Little About Me!

Hey! I'm Zoe (she/her) and I am a 23-year-old transracial adoptee from China! I have a single mom and a younger sister who is also adopted.  I graduated from college with a BA in Psychology and minors in Math and Chinese. As part of my graduation requirements, I completed a year-long independent research project regarding adoption, and hope to do adoption-related work post-college. You can find my work at I will be attending the University of Michigan in Fall 2024 to get my Master's in Social Work. 

Currently, I am in Taiwan as part of the Fulbright program working as an English Teaching Assistant. You can find all of my adventures on my travel Instagram @zippingzoe2018. 

Some fun facts about me are that I have been a dancer since I was three, and continue to dance in college; I love purple, pandas and pasta; and I love to watch shows and hang out with my friends! I am the most extroverted person in my small family of three and I love meeting new people and making new connections! I am so grateful for all of the people I have met through navigating adoption and I cannot wait to meet more!

One of my favorite dances and costumes!

Some members of the Wooster Adoptee Student Union, an organization I co-founded on my college campus

My sister and I at her prom (yes, she's wearing five-inch heels)

I was able to Study Abroad in Shanghai in 2018! It was such an incredible experience and I can't wait to go back to China!

Me with my family in Port Aransas, TX in 2019!

Me in Colcord, WV on a Service Trip!

Read About My Adoption Story

I was adopted from Guiping Social Welfare Institute in Guiping, Guangxi Province, China at 11 months old in October of 2001. My mom and grandma flew to China to get me and then brought me back to Texas, where I lived since I came home. I have always been curious about my background, including my birth family, as well as my adoptee identity. Throughout my years, I have educated myself on my Chinese heritage and culture, including history, and my adoptee identity. Connecting with other adoptee groups such as Adopteen, FCC and Subtle Asian Adoptee Traits, has helped me work through my adoption-related issues by providing me a sense of community. 

A few days after my 17th birthday, I found out that I could have a potential twin! She was raised in the same orphanage as me by the same nanny and was found at the same place as me. Sadly, to this day, we still do not know if we are related as two DNA tests say two different things. 23andme says we have no relation, but another one says there's an 87% chance we are siblings. This experience sparked much of my interest in China's adoption system and birth families. In 2020 and 2021, I started a larger, more in-depth search for my birth family through the use of MyTaproot and Tiffanie, who travels around China and helps hundreds of families try to reconnect. 

I still have not found any genetic relations to me, but that has not stopped me from exploring my adoptee identity. I love being adopted and sharing that experience with others, while also recognizing that there are some hardships that come with being adopted. Being able to open up and share what it is like being a woman, Asian American and adoptee has been one of the most comforting things I have done with my life. Not only have I been able to work through my own issues, but I have been able to help others who are going through similar experiences.

Why I Wanted to Co-Create Navigating Adoption

I wanted to co-create Navigating Adoption because of the importance of creating awareness about adoption-related issues. Adoptee voices are often silenced in the adoptee community when they shouldn't. Navigating Adoption serves as a platform to normalize uplifting adoptee voices and experiences. It is important that people are aware of all parts of adoption, the happy parts and the sad parts. Not only is it important for non-adoptees to listen to the experiences of adoptees, but also, it is important to educate all about adoption-related topics and issues such as the foster care system, imposter syndrome and adoption trauma. This platform means so much to me and I am so grateful that I am able to provide a safe space for adoptees to share their stories, while also educating those who may not know much about adoption.

Read About My Adoption YouTube Channel

In 2019, I decided to start a YouTube channel! I had always played with the idea and then risked it. Now, I have been able to create fun videos documenting my life, my friends and my adoption story. Speaking about my adoption story on my YouTube channel has not only helped me work through what I am struggling with, but also allows me to show others that they are not alone. One of my most well-known works, and one that I am extremely proud of, is a mini-documentary that I directed and edited called "Adoptees Speak Out". This 30-minute video describes the unique stories and experiences of Chinese adoptees in the United States and was a project for National Adoption Awareness Month. You can find the video down below and the other adoption-related videos on my channel through clicking the button at the bottom of the page.

Check out this video I did for Pride Month 2022!