10 Movies About Adoption No. 2: Punky Brewster

Screen-Shot-2014-04-05-at-15.55.02No, this isn’t a movie, but you probably remember this show from the ’80s, about an orphaned girl with mismatched socks and her dog Brandon who were adopted by the old, grouchy, set-in-his-ways Henry Warnimont.

Punky Brewster’s mom ditched her in a grocery store. The eight-year-old was suddenly and unexpectadly abandoned with no one but her dog to comfort her. She and Brandon find themselves living in an empty apartment when the landlord, Henry, finds them occupying the space.

After a series of mishaps, Henry decides to make Punky his foster daughter. At the end of two seasons Henry then proceeds to adopt Punky Brewster to maker her his daughter forever.

True, it’s no Office or Big Bang Theory. Humor-wise it’s proabably closer to Full House than Home Improvement, but it does embody the themes that we are living out in our household with Baby A. being our foster daughter. And it’s a show I plan on using as a tool to help educate our little girl about the journey her mom and me are on in trying to secure her officially as our daughter.

I’m taking the time to point this show out because in an emotional 5-part strand of episodes, entitled “Changes,” in season 2, the show walks viewers through the process of moving from foster care to adoption.

If you haven’t lived out the process, it can be difficult separating foster care from adoption and foster-to-adopt from adoption and all the terms can get kind of jumbled and confusing. You can Youtube “Punky Brewster – Changes” and a list of the five episodes will come up.

If you have an adopted child, sometimes it can be comforting to know that they’re not alone and that there’s nothing wrong or weird about being adopted. Punky never shows resentment toward her foster dad or spends her time hashing out the what-could-have-beens in her life – not that there’s not an appropriate time to do that – but instead, she looks toward the future with hope and optimism with her new father and she recognizes that he loves her just as if she were his biological daughter.

After all, even though Baby A. wasn’t born to us, it’s impossible not to see her as one of our own. And hopefully she’ll always feel that way toward us.

Published by Andrew Toy

Writer when I'm not being a husband or dad. So mostly just a husband and dad.

8 thoughts on “10 Movies About Adoption No. 2: Punky Brewster

  1. Punky Brewster was one of my favourite shows and I just adored her as a little girl (I tried to dress like her I am told by mom). Although I never understoof the series as I was young myself, but I know some series brought tears to my mother’s eyes.

    The most beautiful thing you are doing is giving life, a chance to a baby by making her your own. And in future, I am confident, the love in your family will be a strong one and these phases are just doing that. Your daughter is indeed lucky to have you and your wife as parents.


  2. As an adoptive parent, I can tell all of you who are talking about adoptive parents being “noble” in making our child our own, and who say that my daughter is lucky that we appreciate the sentiment very much, but truly the process of making our daughter our own was absolutely natural and very much a God thing AND we are the lucky ones. I can’t imagine life without her now!

    The truly noble part of this process is occurring in your family right now; the risky part between having your daughter in your home and the point where parental rights are terminated and you know for certain that your daughter will be yours permanently. That is a phenomenal risk to take, and one that truly can only be taken by absolute faith in God. We certainly relied on Him while waiting for my daughter’s birth mother’s parental rights to be terminated.



  3. By the way, Punky Brewster does exist. Punky Brewster, born Peyton Brewster is a direct descendant of the Mayflower passenger, William Brewster. She was the cousin of the namesake of Brewster Color, Percy Douglas Brewster.


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