' [Birth Mother] First Mother Forum: Today's Adoption Chat: List of great data sources; Drop Dead Diva debacle, blog notes

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Today's Adoption Chat: List of great data sources; Drop Dead Diva debacle, blog notes

Sometimes when are you writing letters in support of legislation and want more data than your personal story to make an impact, Joyce Bahr of New York's Unsealed Initiative has put together a beefy list of various sources. Here is the link to her blog today: National Adoption Month 2010

And for some exciting blog news: I added a link to a "Home" page so that people who find BirthMother, First Mother Forum because they are Googling, say, Ethiopian adoptions, or what first/birth mothers wear to weddings of their children (it happens), and come across those posts, but are not sure how to find the current post can do just that. They only need to hit "Home" at the top of the sidebar! Also listed there today as a separate page is an explanation of the New Jersey law, though the fancy formatting of NJCare leaves something to be desired as it does not compress for this blog. However, I think you can read enough to understand what the law does, and does not. You can also email them if you have questions.

Continuing this ramble: Sunday night I came across Lifetime's Drop Dead Diva, a normally cheerful and sometimes poignant show about a gorgeous thin and vapid aspiring model who died and came back in the body of a plump, thoughtful and savvy lawyer....and it's about 9:13 p.m. Sunday night (digital clocks make time retrieval amazingly precise) and what is the first thing I hear? Two lawyers with their clients arguing over whether the teenage first/birth mother (Client A) will return the child to fortyish single woman (Client B), who was promised the child. Surrender papers already signed.

F@#K I say, can we never escape adoption? How about an adoption-free Sunday?

Apparently not. The birth mother presented a pleasant demeanor and personality--clean hair, no drugs, good skin. The story line is that her boyfriend (father of the child) has returned, and they are going to be a family; the mother is contending she was pressured to sign the surrender papers under the influence of post-partum depression. (I did not see the first part of the show so do not know if how soon after birth she was signing away her baby.) But the adopter-in-waiting is already claiming, this is MY baby, as if the kid were a piece of furniture. No sympathy for the birth mother, nada, who does have the baby in her possession. (I missed the part where she took back her baby.) The nice new adopting mom does fess up she she did not try to have a child when her ovaries were in good working order. (At least the writers got that part right.)

But wait! Why is the new "family" driving a shiny new red truck as they leave the courthouse? Where did they get the money? They are supposed to be poor. Needy. Turns out the adopting mom-in-waiting paid the girl $20,000...hmm, sounds like a bribe for a baby, no?

Eventually it comes to light that the birth father collected several $20,000s from people wanting to adopt his white, squeaky-clean infant. Once the teenage real mother finds that out, she caves immediately and hands over the child. Case closed. Tidy ending.

Angelle, a reader, just reminded me that the week before--the week before!--the plot centered on a father who had amnesia for several years, regained his memory, and came back to reclaim what he could of his old life--including a relationship with a child who was born after he disappeared. However, his wife had him declared dead, married his former best friend, and the new "dad" was the only father the child knew...and so even though the real dad is suing for at least visitation, he ultimately is convinced to walk away and stay dead to his child. I mean, WTF is up with that? And the idiot writers on this show? Are they all adoptive parents or wannabe adoptive parents--like I suspect--and they are getting their "opinions" on adoption out there through the plot lines?

I admit I don't know what to do in cases like this. Writing to ever single show and legislator one is supposed to takes more time than I have. Of late, we've seen a couple of shows where the writers did get it right. We wrote In Plain Sight**** Gets Adoption Reunion Right just last week. I eagerly await Mother and Child to get out to the sticks where I live. See Jane's review: The Movie: Mother and Child packs a wallop.

But if what I've just written about Drop Dead Diva makes your blood boil, you can watch the whole episode or just leave a comment here: http://www.mylifetime.com/shows/drop-dead-diva

As I am going to right now.--lorraine
Granddaughter Lisa is writing her side of our reunion-so-far story. Look for it soon.


  1. "piece of furniture"

    Well of course that is all the child is! Not supporting women is bad enough in real life. I will not watch this show.

    That makes 2 weeks in a row they have a story line like this. Previous week, a father returns who spent years absent because of amnesia, and just walks out of his biological child's life, you know, because that is the right thing to do. Ugh!

  2. Yikes! I blanked that story line from my mind. I saw part of that too but when I saw how it was going I turned it off. The writers must be .... you fill in the blanks. I liked the first few episodes I saw when the show started a couple of years ago, but it seems to have been infected with adoption-is-best, birth-parents-go-away-or-preferably DIE worm.

  3. I don't like Drop Dead Diva either, especially since Rosie O' God put Adopted babies in the wrong tummy Donnell guest stars as a judge on this program all the time. Maybe her brother Daniel, the Adoption records should always be closed and I don't give a fat flying fig about "birthmothers" feelings and Adoptee civil rights O'Donnell writes the scripts Lorraine...

  4. Rosie is on this show?

    Nauseating. Another reason not to watch. I wouldn't be surprised if she has some input into the plot lines.

  5. Yup, and I cringed everytime I saw the battleax in her judge's costume in commercials for this show. I'm sure that she does have alot of input concerning the scripts on Drop Dead Diva, and I don't think it is any coeincidence either the type of part she was cast in. A 'birthmother" hating authoritive figure.

  6. Why push the stereotype that people adopt because they waited too long to try to have their own kids? For sure, that does happen, but there are also many medical reasons for infertility (hormonal, structural, male factor issues). It's my experience that people push the age issue (to the exclusion of other medical issues) when they're in blame-the-victim mode. No, what infertile women go through isn't an excuse to coerce anyone into giving up a baby, but it's still really hard. I've known several women who have dealt with both infertility and cancer and who will flat-out tell you that the cancer was easier and less painful.

    I am really learning a lot reading your blog (I am a woman with non-age related fertility issues who had kids with medical help), but you really detract from your ability to educate infertile women about your experience and perspective (and I do think voices like yours need to be heard) when you trot out the same tired, insulting stereotypes.

    (And even when women have waited too long, sometimes it has nothing to do with selfishness, as is oft suggested, but has to do with waiting to meet the right partner or it has to do with the fact that many, many women are uneducated about the effects of age on fertility before it's too late.)



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