Lately, I've been reading a lot about anti-adoption and some of the stuff that goes around is a bit crazy (and that's mild).

To lump all adoptions into one category is like lumping all criminals in one category - loose analogy there but still- sometimes it's like comparing apples to oranges. There is a difference in domestic infant adoptions and foster to adopt or special needs adoption or adoption from orphanages internationally - there are tons of different kinds of adoption. All CAN be beautiful. ALL. In the wrong hands, though, all CAN be a train wreck.

I've had the misfortune of reading one ignorant (and yes, she's ignorant - look up the word if you need help grasping why I used it)... woman who's infertile spew that she'd choose adoption as a last resort.

I've read desperate pleas to young, expectant mothers to PLEASE give me your baby. Why not reach out to these women in love and try to help them realize there are options here other than just adoption. It's amazing to see some of these same young women that the supposed "friends" they had leave them after they choose to parent their babies or select another family to be the parents of their child... man, where's the support once the prospective adoptive parents don't stand to GET something?

These same people who so desperately want to be parents - what's so wrong with adopting a child who already is in pain and longs for a family to call their own every moment of their life? There are plenty out there. I DO understand the desire to have a baby be placed in your arms but babies aren't the only ones who need a family.

I've read angry outbursts against adoption from mothers who've placed their children or were pressured into making an adoption plan.... and I feel their pain - but I don't think the problem is the act of adoption.

Why not focus anger where it belongs? If the first mother needed support - why not focus the anger on the lack of support or resources that needed to be in place to help her before making such a drastic step?

Likely a quiet unpopular opinion but... I feel there is a responsibility on the part of a prospective birthmother to do research to find out the reality of AFTER... it's not someone else's job to make sure you understand - understand yourself - be proactive in making sure you know what choices you're making and don't blame adoptive parents when you didn't know. It's likely that they didn't know, either.

There seems to be a lot of "territory marking" between adoptive mothers and first/birth/biological mothers. Can't anyone understand that without one there isn't the other? And the focus shouldn't be about the adults anyhow - it needs to be on the kids in the middle.

 

I posted this in one of my few adoption groups today - just in reply to why there is the anger...

 

I think the woman spewing the anti-adoption stuff from the view of she's infertile and adoption would clearly be a last resort needs some serious counseling before the word adoption enters her mind. It's cases like THESE that cause adoptions to go bad on the side the child grows on.

As for adult adoptees being for or against, well-rounded or not, I think this is largely in the way that the adoptive parents present and nurture the adopted child. I know some who are anti-adoption because they were either never told and found out by horrible accident, thus the message was sent that there was something wrong with them OR the adoptive parents always held it over their heads. BOTH of these things are abominable and are heinous. Just as abusive as beating/torture/rape, etc - IMHO. The adult adoptees who I know who are well-rounded and accepting of their adoptions were told what their origins were. They weren't told they were picked in the produce section, etc.

I'm really not in favor of the infant adoption movement or whatever you wish to call it in our society. For this reason, we tried diligently to teach our oldest (and also adopted as an adult and had huge safety issues/foster care/out of home placements during her childhood.... but that has little to do with it) daughter to parent our 2 yr old son before she opted to relinquish. She had a lot of reasons for making the choices that she did for our son (and our refers to my husband, myself AND her - he's ALL our son) - and I'll never have to look at either of them and say I didn't try for her to parent. I don't really "get" the newspaper advertisements and all that looking for a child... I never have. This is different than creating a profile or letter with your agency - I just mean looking at every pregnant woman you see and seeing a chance for that baby to be yours. Doesn't the 10 commandments address coveting? Talk about coveting in it's truest form. Ghastly. I guess with anything else - there are going to be crooked people on both sides of the fence. Someone to exploit parties involved for their own personal gain.

I think to be a successful adoptive unit (and by this I'm referring to first/birth/bio parents though in our case just the mothers because the fathers are unknown or absent by choice.... adoptive parents and child) you have to learn to give, give, give. Women, especially, are territorial - in my experience. Sometimes my instincts scream HOLD ON AND FIGHT FOR YOUR CHILD... because that's how we're "wired" and my heart has to say, "Calm down honey - she needs him/her, too". My 21 yr old's mom "S" - I've been working with her for YEARS - over 12 now and I still have to say - I know sometimes you're jealous of the role I play BUT I'm not here to replace you or take her away. I'm her mom but I'm not YOU. She needs both of us to be successful. For my 2 yr old, it's different right now because of his age... I share photos with gma "S" (my 21 yr old's mom) - and with my DD, we look for the balance that sends a healthy image to our son - and still meets the needs of the adults... Of course, the needs of the adults are not first - the child who has no voice right now - his needs come first and if that means I put my wants or needs aside OR my DD has to - then so be it. Time will come later to focus on us.

I think my adoption views aren't like most because being mom to both birthmom and my son is so hard sometimes. I need to understand her. I need to understand where she's at. Just because I'm mom to her son, doesn't mean I'm not her mom any more... it means my job is more complex but that's what a mother is supposed to do, right? You know your children's needs and you meet them where they are.

In all this, we have a bio-daughter, too. Sometimes our oldest DD struggles with does our 11 y/o biodaughter have more "right" to us than she does - we work hard to help her understand they're both ours --- period. They both have the "rights" to us. Something I tell her (and others who need it explained to them) is that my children are all mine - the method of delivery is irrelevant.... If I mail you a package from USPS, UPS, DHL or FedEx, it's' still a package - the contents are still same and when you get it - you still own it.... WHO or HOW it was brought doesn't matter.... just like our children. WHO or HOW they were delivered to our family is just a part of the story but doesn't define who they are. Who they are is our children.

I'm very PRO-adoption but I think we need change in how it's done in some cases.

In the future, DH and I plan to start a ministry to help young mothers learn to parent rather than relinquish their children or to help keep their children safely in their care rather than face removal by DHS. And yes, we're foster parents too... we realize that not every child needs a forever family - some just need a "right now" family while their own family heals. Sadly, too many adults aren't willing to risk the hurt they'll feel when a child goes back home. Thank God He made us (DH and I) feel differently about this - we do hurt when they go back BUT what a celebration to see a family put back together and be whole and safe? THAT is how it should be, again, IMHO.

This call came from seeing our oldest be exposed to who knows what all - she never learned what a family CAN or SHOULD be until she came to us and it's hard to change a lifetime of lessons. She was at a complete loss even with our support when it came time to do it herself. Someone needs to teach the generation of children who don't know what FAMILY means how to be one - to grow one - to build one, etc. Just like so many other things in life - it doesn't just come naturally and it's HARD work.

If you took the time to read this novel, thanks and if it doesn't make complete sense in all of it - I'm sorry - I'm battling a migraine today... which was made worse when my son "tackled" me and banged my head - lol.

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Comments:

joy2b...
Jun. 3, 2008 at 1:23 PM What a balanced and very well put post. 

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Julia...
Jun. 3, 2008 at 1:46 PM Very Well Written and Intelligent!  Thank you for this example of coexistence and compassion.  It really would be nice if the boundaries between mothers could soften and actually work together.  Also, I truly believe more people Should show compassion for mothers who are coping with an unplanned pregnancy and actually Help her.  If some of these angry mothers had felt only a touch of Kindness and Understanding when they really needed it, shown God's love, then I also believe this anger or hatred would not exist within their hearts.

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lhs_s...
Jun. 3, 2008 at 1:49 PM You know I agree with you sister and thank you for posting this for all to see Love you:)

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tiffa...
Jun. 4, 2008 at 2:30 PM I love you, you rock!!!! What a wonderful post!

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roses...
Jun. 4, 2008 at 4:29 PM I did not realize about how many out there are so against it. I was adopted and get upset when I hear about some Mothers who are willing to put 20,000 or more ( not sure of the cost ) to get a donner egg or other methods and then get an interview on shows like "Today" and get admired for it. I think of all the children who did not chose to not have a mother or father or both. Their "only crime" is being born.

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oneth...
Jun. 4, 2008 at 8:04 PM

I agree with most of what you said. I agree it is up to expectant mothers to find out the truth before giving a child up for adoption. Unfortunately there are those out there that have a vested interest in infant adoption who are willing to lie to them in order to get them to relinquish. They tell them the they will get over it and the pain will lesson. They tell them that their children will be raised just as if they were born into the family, never told about common adoptee issues that exists regardless of how wonderful the adoptive parents are. There are even those that will tell them they will forget all about their children, that they will get on with their lives and have other children that will replace the one they lost. They are never told that 40% of birth mothers go on to experience secondary infertilization, and even if they do have other children they cannot replace the one given up. Considering the age of the many of these expectant moms it's no surprise they trust the people telling them these lies and no wonder they are angry when they learn the truth.

So then if they can't believe the people in the adoption industry where do they get the truth? Who's going to tell them 80% of open adoptions close. Birth mothers who've been there and experienced the truth? Maybe, but if a birth mother recommends an expectant mom not choose adoption for these reasons and points these truths out, she's accused of having a bad experience. Southernroots and I get this all the time and yet we both had some of the best adoption and reunion experiences I know.

As for your point that adoptees who are anti-adoption were ones who found out late or by accident, that's a little simplistic. Firstly, even if that were the case, I still hear/read posts where the adoptee deosn't know for some reason or other, so It's still happening. There are many adoptees who've always know they were adopted and are still anti adoption.

I totally agree with you that birthmoms and adoptive moms should have the adoptees needs as their top most priority. I have heard bad feelings about amoms in birthmom groups, I don't understand it, and I promptly leave that group. These are the women who are raising our children, our children love them, why would you have bad feeling toward someone your child loves?

I'm glad that there is so much talk about what's wrong with adoption. Some of it is crazy, as you say, but the more we, and society at large, talk about it the more things with change for the better.

 

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Mommy...
Jun. 5, 2008 at 3:21 AM Thank you for writing this great post.  Your words have blessed me today!

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South...
Jun. 9, 2008 at 1:57 AM

"Likely a quiet unpopular opinion but... I feel there is a responsibility on the part of a prospective birthmother to do research to find out the reality of AFTER... it's not someone else's job to make sure you understand - understand yourself - be proactive in making sure you know what choices you're making and don't blame adoptive parents when you didn't know. It's likely that they didn't know, either. "

I agree that a pregnant women considering adoption needs to carefully consider her options and do as much research as possible. However, I will also say that finding fair and unbiased opinions of adoption is extremely difficult for a pregnant woman OR potential adoptive parents. There is so much misinformation about adoption, but not nearly enough honest and realistic information about the subject. And yet, when anyone has a negative word to say about adoption, often from their own personal experiences, they are kicked out of adoption groups and told that they are too negative.

As for anti-adoption talk lately, I see a lot of mothers who are against unnecessary infant adoptions, but very few, if any, mothers who are against ALL adoption. Yet, often to say anything negative about adoption can get you branded as anti-adoption.

Thanks for this post, I too agree with most of what you said. I hope that your ministry helping your women to parent comes to fruition. I think it is a great idea.

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bagaces
Jun. 11, 2008 at 4:28 PM

There is no black and white when it comes to being human, wanting love, wanting a family, getting pregnant, being fearful, not having resources.  There is no black and white for a woman who desperately wants a child and cannot.  It would be best for both prospective adoptive parents and the biological mom to be well versed, read, educated about plausible scenarios.  Despite the wealth of knowledge, well intented and not so well intended folks still get feelings hurt and aspirations and life dreams crushed.  The bio mom that wants the baby back because her life turned out better than she expected.  The adoptive parent who ends up having a super difficult child with mental health issues that seem insurmountalbe.  The perfect adoptive family that divorces.  The perfect family that has the stable income and adoptes 5 kids and dad loses his job.  Life happens and so do feelings.  The hindsight to say how important foresight is, well..... I don't know really what to say about that.    I do advocate a totally different societal focus for the USA, the inner and outer well being of all of our members,  when we truly work with and for each other and look out and care for each other the way that many of us feel inside and envision, then we would be helping that birth mom to be the mom and have that child and support them in their lives through a cooperative and community spirit because THAT IS WHAT IS IN THE BEST INTEREST OF OUR SOCIETY AS A WHOLE.

 breastfeeding

 

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Criss...
Jun. 12, 2008 at 4:57 PM Great Post!!

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