Troy Dunn saw our post on his show The Locator, and had this to say about our blog and the comments:
Troy Dunn here. First let me thank you for having this blog as an outlet for others to share and communicate about this very important facet of life. Let me also take a moment (while I wait to fly to San Diego for my next case) to answer some of the questions posted here.
My goal whenever I enter somebody's life is to leave it better than I found it. I am not always successful in that effort but it is my goal. That includes everyone- first moms, adoptive mothers, adoptees, sibs, spouses, etc. It's a juggling act to say the lest but I do attempt it. There are certainly times when, as I am sitting and talking with people I am having internal conversations that include thoughts like, "I don't believe her" or "I don't think this is the whole story", or "I wonder why she is scared to tell me everything", etc...
BUT, I as I attempt to facilitate a reunion, I also try and determine what can I do to leave all relationships intact. And I also feel it is not always my place to be the "big news" guy to each person. Some things are better left for mother-daughter to discuss later naturally, as it comes up. It's never about the cameras for me, it's all about the healing, or the potential for healing.
Additionally, some of you mistake "permission for "respect". I do like to involve other family members in the process when possible so that the adoptee has a support system in tact when the dust settles. That's not always the case, but again, it's my goal. Triona mentioned my entry into the "search and reunion" space, as if it had happened recently, or perhaps for the show. The show only began in 2007. I have been trying to rebuild families and hunt for answers for adoptees since 1990 when I assisted my own mother in her search. I viewed the TV show as an opportunity to share the messages we all believe so important- one of which is that bio moms, (first moms in your vocab) are in most cases, heroes who made an extremely difficult and selfless decision and deserve their own brand of closure, answers and peace.
Let me repeat, I am not always able to deliver on that goal, but I will die trying.
Thank you all for your voices and I hope you will continue to let yours be heard. Not sure how long America will embrace our show, but I will still be here doing what I feel is right, long after the camera crew goes home.
God bless you all.
LORRAINE: Troy Dunn's explanation about why he doesn't castigate anyone involved (no matter what he finds) made sense to me. He isn't trying to be Dr. Phil, and that is a good thing. And although the adopted woman in the scenario above is certainly going to have questions of her adoptive mother, they are probably best left off camera. The story made it clear that her adoptive mother knew the facts about the birth mother's life turn-around. To those of us involved in adoption search-and-reunion and reform, of course the adoptive mother's sin of omission screamed out at us, but maybe not to us alone. I don't think you could have been watching and not had the same questions that I did
PS: For an interview with Dunn, read post at Mormon Mommy Blogs.
JANE: I like what Troy Dunn wrote for the most part but I believe that his characterization of firstmoms as "heroes who made an extremely difficult and selfless decision" perpetuates false images.
Firstmoms were not heroic Loretta Young types who as a tear rolled from the corner of their eye signed the paper assuring their child's happiness at the expense of their own. This makes a great movie scene but it's a myth. Firstmoms for the most part did not make any decision; they took the only option they were offered. Adoptive parents are not per se better parents than the mother nature designated. The trauma of being adopted outweighs the benefits of having married parents. And of course there is no guarantee that the adoptive parents will stay married; over fifty percent don't.