|Where is my baby?|
The responses are all over the place, but a good number of them reveal the anger and ownership feelings of many adoptive parents, and even adoptees, to wit:
"I totally think that once one gives a child up for adoption, that is the last time one sees them! I have a brother whose birth mother came to warn my parents of the fact she was "dying" and the knowledge of my brother was in her will! Since then she's been in his life and he even calls her mother, I for one get heated and my temper starts going!"
"i think that depends on the way the adoption took place! As a child that was adopted i am glad i didn't have that to deal with. it was hard enough being adopted the pull between the two sets of parents would have been more than i could have handled......by saying that i would have love as an adult to have access to medical records so that i could know what i was geneticly exposed to" [sic to all the errors]
|Handmade card from my daughter|
ADOPTION: THE NEW NORMAL
And today, when society is not condemning of unmarried mothers, when choice to terminate a pregnancy is an option, I don't understand these young women, sometimes in college, who give up a child to another family. With all the literature available about the damage that adoption does to both mother and child, why? With the available--but little touted--statistics about the high percentage of women who relinquish a child and never have another, why? Because, I fear, the adoption industry and the liberals who want to adopt and the Christians who do so because "god" is urging them to do so have done a better job directing the dialogue than adoptees and natural mothers have. Thus, we read of "the adoption option" as if it were as simple a choice as between butter and margarine.
Even the American Adoption Congress, in their recent bulletin, published a piece by a young mother who relinquished a child--when it didn't seem necessary, and in doing so, encouraged other young women to give up their children. I find I can hardly read these stories; I skim them and want to throw the magazine across the room. Adoptions like this happens not because of drug and alcohol addiction, or incarceration, but because society has now made such adoption practically the new normal.
I'm getting off the track here--let's go back to the original question: If an adoption does happen, should the mother be able to visit the child?
TRULY OPEN ADOPTION LEAVES NO WHERE TO RUN
For one thing, if the adoption is fully open, and the mother visits, adoptive parents cannot change their minds and move away, change their phone numbers, disappear into the proverbial woodwork, and leave the mother bereft and scammed and the child unaware of that his natural/birth mother wanted to stay in contact. Which, as we unfortunately know, happens. We've heard from many such mothers here. A study by the Donaldson Institute found that mothers whose "open" adoptions closed are the most grief stricken of all. To prohibit the visitations should require a valid reason, and other than danger to the child, I can't think of a single one.
I can foresee problems. Say that nice college girl--the natural mum--comes to visit, and she has her life together, and gets along with the child extremely well--and the child wants to go live with her. Now what? I don't have the answer. I would bet that given the number of open adoptions today this dilemma has already occurred and been answered in any number of ways. I would even suspect that in some corner of America, some adoptive parent has terminated the adoption and the natural mother has adopted her own blood child at a still tender age. And you know what? The kid is almost certainly better off for it.
That is not to say that the adoptive parents were unloving or anything at all bad. But they came to understand what the child needed, and put her or his interests first. We already have heard from one mother--Jay Iyer--who did this before an adoption was formalized, even though it was difficult, and even though the child was going to an uncertain life.
Should open adoptions include visitations? No one needs even to ask. If adoption is about the best solution for the child, of course the only reasonable, ethical, moral and just answer is: yes. Absolutely, finally, yes.--lorraine
(Pro) Adoption Special: Dr. Drew encourages teen moms to give up their babies
Ten Thousand Sorrows
"In a transcendent account of one woman's refusal to yield to the oppressive dictates of religion and custom in two vastly different cultures, Kim traces her evolution from a traumatized childhood in postwar Korea to her emotional awakening as a young abused wife in America. Currently a journalist based in California, she re-creates her uncle and grandfather's gruesome "honor killing" of her rebellious mother, who returned to her village with the baby of an American GI--a grim event that launched Kim's painful life as a tainted "half-breed" in a society that reveres its ancestry and traditions. Eventually, Kim was left at a Christian orphanage where disinterested American missionaries provided a steady diet of hymns, biblical parables, small bowls of rice and little else.
"Desperate to be loved despite her forbidden mixed-race heritage, Kim hoped her fortune would change when she was adopted by a white, fundamentalist American couple. However, their pious tyranny was matched only by the harsh, racist abuse Kim endured at school from her classmates, described in simple heartrending prose. Seeking to escape, she married the young deacon at her parents' church, who turned out to be an abusive schizophrenic. Fortunately, Kim avoids melodrama in chronicling her flight with her daughter from her tormentor, instead rendering her arduous climb to emotional and spiritual renewal with unflinching honesty. While this skillful, understated narrative may not quite live up to its publisher's comparison to Angela's Ashes, it is a stirring account of one woman's hard-earned victory over prejudice and tragedy. --Publisher's Weekly
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