Demons in Adoption

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Friday, September 28, 2012

Singer hopes to find birth mother through The X Factor

David Correy
Singer David Correy is hoping to find his birth mother by appearing on the The X Factor competition. Sounds bizarre, right? But what else is the 26-year-old from Brazil going to do when he feels he has no other way? Adopted from Recife when he was a toddler, Correy says: "...it's the curiosity of wanting to know where I came from, if she sings and what she looks like. I feel like the not knowing is why I sing with so much soul [and] every time I'm on stage I go on there knowing that I have the opportunity to reconnect with her though what God gave me and that's the voice.'"*

Of course winning the competition's $5 million recording contract prize wouldn't be bad either.

DREAMING THE IMPOSSIBLE DREAM
Although it seems like a one in a million shot, stranger coincidences have happened. It's certainly possible that if he wins the The X Factor, the ensuing publicity--or the money he receives from a recording contract--might allow him to find his first mother. A close friend of mine adopted two boys from Recife in 1986, aged one and two. The adoption agency, since closed, gave her little information about them telling her that their lives would begin when she took them to the United States. When the boys were teenagers, she took them to Recife. Although the media did a story about their search and they appeared on a local television news program, the boys never connected with their mothers.

Democratic Convention 1996
I can relate to Correy's one-in-a-million shot that his television appearance might, just might, enable him to find his mother. In 1996 I was a delegate from Oregon to the Democratic National Convention in Chicago. I had not yet reunited with my relinquished daughter, Rebecca. I assumed that she would be watching the convention and entertained a fantasy that she might spot me as the TV cameras panned the delegates, and immediately recognize our resemblance. I thought that if it were to happen, it would be most likely during the roll call of the states when the cameras closed in on the delegates as their state chair announced the state's votes. I waited patiently, Alabama, Alaska, Arizona ... New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, they were getting close, only two states to go, Ohio, Oklahoma, then Oregon.  I straightened up, leaned forward, nudging close to the state chair. My TV close up never materialized. Ohio's voted put President Clinton over the top and the convention erupted in cheers and the networks did not bother to capture the votes of the remaining states. Over a year later, Rebecca and I did connect through her persistence in searching for me. As it turned out, Rebecca did not watch the Democratic convention.

Since our reunion, I've heard other stories about far-fetched attempts to effect a reunion.  One adoptee moved into a city where her mother had lived. She knew her mother's maiden name, which was not a common name, and thought that perhaps her mother still had relatives in the area. She scanned the obituaries every day, looking for someone with the same name as her mother's maiden name. She did not find her mother--though she came close. Her mother's sister had passed away couple of months before the adoptee moved to that city. The death notice identified the decedent as having the same last name as the adoptee's mother, and having a sister with the same first name as the adoptee's mother.

Michael Johnson
David Correy may yet succeed. Celebrity status can help bring parents and children lost to adoption together. In 2009 songwriter/guitarist Michael Johnson reunited with his 40-year-old daughter, Truly Carmichael, who had been given up by her single mother, Mary, when she was four days old. After Carmichael found her mother, she asked about her Dad. Mary showed her Johnson's website.

Truly Carmichael
Over the years, Johnson had searched for both his daughter and Mary. "He was 'haunted' by the knowledge that his child was out there, somewhere, in the world. 'It was like having a ghost around, like living with a ghost. In my dreams she'd appear at my door....I didn't know if she was alive or covered with tattoos or in an abusive situation or...all the things a dad would worry about.'"**

Carmichael shares her father's musical talents; she sings and plays the Celtic harp. Johnson recently recorded a CD to be released October 6 and his daughter joins in on one tune. Other musicians have passed on musical talent: Nora Jones, though never adopted, is the biological daughter of the Indian musician Ravi Shankar. Sean Lennon and John Lennon. Et cetera.

While Johnson's connection with his daughter is a happy story, it's sad that so many obstacles to reunion exist. Agencies which deal in international adoptions should obtain and maintain complete identifying information on all the children they place. We understand that they are doing a much better job than they did in the past when the prevailing though was that, save major health problems, the child's natural family was irrelevant. Adoption records--original birth certificates and court pleadings--should be open in every state and made available to all adoptees and their parents.--Jane

_________________________________
*David Correy hopes to find birth mother on "The X Factor" audition by singing Bruno Mars song
Songwriter/guitarist Michael Johnson reunites--and records--with his long lost daughter

From FMF:
A First Father's Story: Search and Reunion 





7 comments :

  1. Good luck, David! It may be a long shot, but I'm pulling for you.

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  2. I hope the show helps David find his roots!!

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  3. The first story I ever wrote about adoption was for Cosmo, about a young woman who went so far as to not only become a nurse, but then get a job in the home where she had been adopted from! Talk about persistence. She made friends with the nuns there, but they did not have the keys to the kingdom in the basement where the files were kept. Eventually, she was engaged to a man whose brother was a priest, and with him, she went to the Mother Superior of the agency, who agreed to get the records...because the priest asked her to. Talk about a male-dominated society!

    And fortunately, the story had a happy ending; her natural /birth mother was waiting for her to call, and in time, her adoptive mother got over herself (she didn't talk to the daughter for quite a long time) and the adoptee was able to have a relationship with BOTH OF HER MOTHERS. Natural and adoptive. (Sorry, I couldn't help myself there.)

    And yes, while I would like to expunge the use of the phrase "birth mother," it is necessary to keep it at this time because of SEO. Search Engine Optimization.

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  4. Wow, Lorraine and Jane, you "guys" sure did some interesting stuff: Democratic National Convention, Cosmo, the Hamptons... I'm impressed!

    I LOVE the story in Lorraine's comment above about - aaawwww - the nurse and the priest, and the nurse's relationship with her natural and adoptive moms! It's a good example of how, with a little patience, all turned out well in the end for the adopted woman and both her mothers.

    Why do we make our children feel guilty for having 2 mothers? Why do the children have to, emotionally, take care of the 2 sets of parents? Shouldn't it be the other way around? Shouldn't parents be taking care of the children?

    The XFactor story is super-duper, too! I'm on tenterhooks about the outcome, Jane!

    In a previous post you mentioned Ben Gazzara pounding on the table about your book, I believe. I looked up that idiot and he's too much of an old fogey to have much written about him in Wikipedia. I wanted to see if he was an adopter. I mean, what's with all the rage.

    I know what you mean about SEO. Thanks for mentioning that. I love to reinforce computer jargon!

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  5. Caleigh, someone who found the blog wrote a comment saying that in 1967 Ben Gazarra adopted his wife's child or children. Someone who knew that much about him had to have been close to him and was goggling his name and here we were! However, stepparent adoption is not the same at all as the kind of adoption we were talking about. I never knew why he was "pounding the table" about what I wrote, excepted that he was opposed to opening the records, respecting birth mother's pain etc, and YES when he died, I thought, well, one more enemy of opening records down. RIP.

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  6. Jane, in your post is yet another awesome and touching reunion story: Michael Johnson and his lost daughter, Truly Carmichael.

    I was so touched! My heart bleeds for these dads. The calculated, and coldhearted, manner in which natural fathers were discounted and cast aside, heretofore, is unconscionable! Single fathers are fathers, too. They worry and churn about their (lost) children as much as married fathers.

    Thanks for reminding us of the forgotten fathers once again. I think that we don't hear much from dads whose children were adopted because of the macho thing - men aren't supposed to be cry-babies. Remember only a few decades ago, "real men" didn't take medicine.

    There's an example that a natural mom could give to her kept children when attempting to explicate the societal mores that made her give her child for adoption. Men weren't even allowed to take medicine for fear of looking weak! Man, in hindsight, that's pretty freakin' sick!

    I think the more we, natural moms, heal and come out of the closet and into society's mainstream - the more natural dads will follow!

    Yes, we're takin' our power back!

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  7. Lorraine, thanks for explaining that about Ben Gazarra. Very interesting. I learn so much here I just can't tell you.

    I always wondered why Newt Gingrich was such a freakin' poster boy for adoption. Now, oh, wow, we have a Speaker of the House who was adopted. Yahoo! Adoption must now be revered!!!

    Then I learned that his stepfather adopted him. Come on! Give me (us) a break! Of course, stepparent adoption is nothing like regular adoption!!!

    ReplyDelete

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