' [Birth Mother] First Mother Forum: 'Pro-Life' equals 'pro-adoption' in Pence's punishing choice

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

'Pro-Life' equals 'pro-adoption' in Pence's punishing choice

"I think if you are pro-life you should be pro-adoption," was one of the nuggets Mike Pence said during last night's debate. He went on: 

"The state of Indiana has also made sure that we expand health-care counseling for women, non-abortion alternatives. I'm very pleased that in Indiana that we are well on our way to becoming the most pro-adoption state in America." 

Therefore his answer to women who get pregnant when they can't find a way to keep their babies is just put the child up for adoption. Not one mention of giving those women the kind of aid that would allow keeping their babies as the humane alternative to abortion. No, instead, it's always: adoption.
Reunion, 16  years later, Lorraine and
her daughter, Jane 

Pence--and most of the country--chooses to ignore that such a solution leaves a whole population of devastated women in the wake of that decision, to say nothing of the fact of the dangerous back-alley abortions that desperate women will resort to--instead of carrying a child to term and giving it up for adoption.

His glib response to the agony of adoption for the natural mother purposefully denies that the long-term effects of relinquishing a child for adoption are nothing short of calamitous for the woman. The immediate grief of the loss—when a woman’s hormones are screaming for her to love and protect her offspring—do subside, but for many the grief morphs into a sorrow that infuses the rest of her life down to decisions as basic as whether she will ever have another child.

Studies and memoirs from Australia, the United Kingdom and here at home all find the same result: a high proportion of the women show poor adjustment to having relinquished a child, even decades later. They are prone to low self-esteem, high anxiety, self-punishment, traumatic stress symptoms, sexual dysfunction. They have trouble giving or receiving love, and thus relationship problems are likely to follow, especially in the first few years after relinquishment. If the whereabouts of the child are unknown, they have unresolved grief issues as they continue to worry about the child’s welfare. A lack of social support, as well as family pressure to squelch their grief, exacerbates the anguish.

Such women are more likely than others to be diagnosed with chronic depression, and require more doctor visits than the norm. When questioned many attribute their physical and mental problems over the years to placing a child for adoption—especially if their parents insisted on the adoption. One study found they have a higher rate of hysterectomies than other women. Nearly a third will never have another child, often citing the trauma of relinquishing their first as the reason.

And that's not even talking about the sense of loss and abandonment that adoptees carry throughout their lives. Researchers at the University of Minnesota reported that adopted teens were almost four times more likely to attempt suicide than those who lived with their natural parents, even after adjustment for factors associated with suicidal behavior, such as psychiatric disorder symptoms, personality traits, family environment, and academic disengagement. Girls were more likely than boys to attempt suicide.

Reliable data on how many adoptees actually commit suicide will be impossible to come by in our current climate of ignoring adoption as an issue in an individual's life. When the question was posed on our last census of whether the children in the home were biological or adopted, adoptive parents put up such a commotion that the question was dropped. No one is collecting the information, "adopted or not" when an individual commits suicide, but from anecdotal information, we know it is high. We see the reports of it frequently on Facebook, particularly if the individual is the adopted son or daughter of famous parents or famous herself--Lil' Wren, the children of Marie Osmond, Mia Farrow, Shana Alexander, and more. Readers of the blog or Hole In My Heart know that my daughter, shown above in happier days, committed suicide in 2007. 

Hillary Clinton's support for abortion comes without qualifiers, and she's also pushed for ending the Hyde Amendment, a ban on federal funding for abortions, so that women without resources can have the same access to choice that wealthier women have. Adoption is always the default position of anti-abortion crusaders. One hardly ever hears someone suggesting we offer support to women so that they can keep their babies. The mood of the country as a whole is so down on financial aid for troubled families--or single mothers--that this option never comes up here, but it is a matter of course in many--if not most--other developed nations. As a mother who relinquished a child, I wish those who push adoption as the only solution could walk in my shoes for a day. They would never be so glib again.--lorraine
Data and sources of the effect of giving up a child to adoption can be found in my memoir.
Hole In My Heart: memoir and report from the fault lines of adoption
by Lorraine Dusky
The Other Mother
by Carol Schaefer
Second-Chance Mother: A Memoir of Adoption, Loss and Reunion
by Denise Roessle

Three women, three stories. All with pain and sorrow.

Previous FMF posts on the folly, cruelty of trying to reduce abortions through increasing adoptions. .
"Adoption, not Abortion" The Mantra of the GOP
Adoption is not a 'cure' for abortion
Pres. Obama Adoption is not only available, it's being crammed down our throats


  1. It's always those who have nothing to lose telling you how it should be. It has been my experience that adoption often causes more problems than it solves. Someone said it well when they said that women who surrender are not choosing an option to abortion...they are giving up their right to parent. There is a BIG difference.

    1. Yep. I'm a birth mom. If I could go back I'll abort or keep my baby with me.

    2. Heartbroken--Many women feel that way but it is not easy to admit it. I get a number of messages from women who say the same thing. As for me, I wonder what kind of child I might have had if I had not first given one away. It's an unanswerable question, but one that creeps into my consciousness now and then.

  2. Pence and other advocates of "adoption, not abortion" blissfully ignore the fact that more aggressive adoption polices (if they could become more aggressive) would make only a slight dent in the number of abortions, about 800,000 each year. Voluntary infant adoptions number about 15,000 per year. I doubt that there is anything close to 785,000 couples willing to take other women's children.

    Meanwhile, Pence's Republican supporters block actions that would help reduce abortions -- increased help to vulnerable expectant mothers and increased access to birth control. Their most recent egregious action is to insist that money to fight the Zika virus not include Planned Parenthood family planning funds. Republicans would prefer that children be born with mental impairment. I challenge Pence to find adoptive homes for these children whose poor families will be unable to care for them.

    1. it seems to me that Pence and those like him want a world opposite what is truly natural - a world where men dictate when it is time to have a family and when it is not, (and what is a valid family and what is not) - negating any power instilled in women by biology. As those who claim to be doing God's will, who do they think they are to argue with the system that God has created, taking any of the power from women? Their vision that God gives men absolute dominion over all is incredibly destructive in so many ways.

      I suppose those born with Zika impairments are to be cared for in orphanages by ugly unmarried women, in a perfect world.

  3. Wonderful blog post Lorraine.

  4. Great post, Lorraine.

    Pence also talked about all the infertile couples that would love to adopt. Like it is the job of pregnant women to make their dreams come true. As far as I am concerned, the feelings of the prospective adoptive parents should never be taken in to account when a woman is contemplating adoption. I think it is especially immoral when teenage girls are made to feel like they are less worthy of parenting their own children then an older married couple.

    Mike Pence is part of group of politicians that is not just anti-adoption--they are also anti-parenting. These law makers believe that there should be no sex outside of heterosexual marriage and that EVERY SINGLE CHILD born out of wedlock should be given up for adoption.

    1. name changed to protect the others mentioned hereOctober 6, 2016 at 2:01 AM

      When I hear that religious based, 'give the child away, you're not married' attitude' I have to wonder how they think this the "right" thing. Where is their proof condoning this practice? If they consider the two harlots in Solomon's time, where there was obviously no husband and no marriage, Solomon did not take the infant away from the mother and give it to a "nice married couple" in the city that day.

      Maybe they forgo the part about that decision being used to show that Solomon had "the wisdom of God in him to do judgement". That wisdom is God's wisdom, it wasn't Solomon's or a mans wisdom. If God truly felt that a child should be removed from an unmarried mother, wouldn't it have been done on that occasion? That wisdom determined the true mother of the infant, and the infant was given back to her.

      I do agree with them that sex should only be in marriage. Did I do that? No. I foolishly thought, I was as good as married. Living with my boyfriend in his parents house, with his parents and my parents knowledge and consent, so I thought. I was sure we were together for the rest of our days. I had thought that the first day I met him. I was ever so wrong. Waiting till married would have been the right and wise thing to do. At 5 months I lost my job. Boss said, "it was because we have too many on the payroll". Three days later they hired 2 people. It was because I was an unmarried expectant mother. Not long after that I was no longer approved material for his family (mainly his mother). If I regret anything about that time, it is having not been married. Even if it had ended later. I had waited till I had met the man I wanted to be with forever. I was almost 18, a year or two, or 5 more wouldn't have killed me. In so many ways, losing my child did.

      One positive thing, my cousin became pregnant sometime later and was unmarried. She received great support from my grandmother who had refused me a home and help if my baby came back with me. I'm "thankful" that perhaps my grandmother had seen what losing my child had done to me and decided that a great grand baby born under those circumstances wasn't the end of the world after all. It was too late for my child and I, but I was grateful for her changed heart, no matter how much it ripped my apart seeing it.

    2. Too bad they don't advocate for the kids in foster care waiting for families. There are already born children needing homes. Let the infertile adopt these kids. I lost my baby to adoption. It hurts. Her adoptive parents lied to me as well as the agency. Family preservation is the best choice. Keep mom and child together. Sick Pence is promoting corruption. Sick they think banning abortion will allow all these newborns be born and get adopted. 500k kids in foster care. Remember that.

    3. name changed: You are a bigger heart than many, by being glad that your pain may have altered your grandmother's attitude. I don't know if I could have been that generous.

  5. I got pregnant before abortion was legal. I had friends who had backroom abortions. I don't know if I could have gone through with it, even if it had been legal. If I'd told my parents that I was pregnant before i was nearly four months along, they would have sent me to Japan (from Hawaii) for one, an instant fix for the problem. Hence, they decided on adoption, the second best fix for the problem. And trust me, my parents were very conservative. They were thinking of the most immediate solution to prevent family shame: 1) make the baby disappear completely, 2) make the baby disappear from our family. I don't think that stigma holds true today. I think the adoption industry is preying even harder on unwed mothers to fill the needs of infertile couples. Pence or not Pence, this will continue until we put a stop to the idealization of adoption and the shaming of young, single mothers. Give them the same financial support that adoptive parents receive and it would be a whole other game. But first, change the public's attitude. Gays have done it! Why can't we, the post-adoption community?

    1. Excellent question, Denise. If someone wants to form an organization to work on adoption reform, count me in!

    2. There is Saving Our Sisters, which works with people one on one. Check out Lynn Johansenn on Facebook.

    3. SOS is valuable but it's focus is in helping specific women keep their babies through providing resources. In addition, there needs to be a broad-based campaign to educate the public as well as expectant mothers about the problems in adoption. For this to happen, a dedicated group of mothers who have time and some resources need to develop a message and map out a PR plan and a legislative reform plan. They need to work together and not get sucked into the in-fighting which has damaged other efforts. Then they need to broaden their base to include enlightened adoptive parents and members of the adoption industry.

  6. I am often stumped and mystified as to why adoption still has such a great reputation. Surely, there are enough of us out there speaking the truth about what adoption really does? Yet very few people outside of the choir seem to be having an epiphany about adoption. Even people who know me IRL and know my whole story, and these are mostly liberal leaning people who support abortion rights, still think adoption is a great option. I don't know how anyone could know my adoptive family in person and still believe that every adopted child gets a stable and loving home.

    So many other issues (women's rights, gay rights, disability rights, etc.) have seen a change in consciousness. But adoption remains stuck, or perhaps even going backwards. Along the lines of what Steve wrote about lawmakers, I read a book called "Guilty" by conservative author Ann Coulter who devoted an entire chapter to the idea that every single child born out of wedlock should be given up for adoption to a married heterosexual couple.

    Maybe what we need is a budget like the National Council for Adoption (NCFA) so we can launch our own PR campaign.

    1. i am interested in finding out if there is going to be any support from Hillary Clinton in supporting / recognizing that infant adoption is 'related' to baby traficking, especially internationally. if there will be any recognition of international standards. i don't know how seriously she takes her Methodist progressive thinking, and if she feels it is appropriate to express that in secular office, but the official Methodist stance on infant adoption is family preservation first. the fact that there are internationally recognized rights of a child to know their heritage and blood relatives, may have some play, especially since the Clinton foundation has done so much international work in helping women and children and preserving families in other ways. i'd be interested in appealing to her directly, perhaps naively, but nonetheless.

    2. Holy Fuck! Thanks for the heads up on Ann. From her book http://www.anncoulter.com/columns/2011-07-06.html

      "One way or another, Casey Anthony's refusal to give up Caylee for adoption was going to cost society -- and cost Caylee. The statistics are so jaw-dropping that not giving up an illegitimate child for adoption ought to be considered child abuse".

      "Meanwhile, adopted kids, on average, turn out better than even biological kids raised in two-parent families. Of course, there aren't a lot of studies of adopted children because they aren't constantly mugging us. They're too busy running Oracle (Larry Ellison), the District of Columbia (Anthony Williams), or fantastic political websites, like "Big Government" (Andrew Breitbart)."

      This bitch (Ann) needs some serious help.

    3. Yose Mite: Coulter is beyond saving. She is a blight on the earth but her voice is heard less than it used to be.

  7. I also wonder how many of these unfeeling Republicans so intent on adoption have nothing whatever to say about the men who contributed to those children. Are they the same ones who made sure that Viagra and similar drugs were covered by insurance but birth control pills were not?

    1. I believe they place the blame entirely on the woman for having sex with a man whom she wouldn't or couldn't marry.

    2. i have noticed a strange pattern emerging where men, suddenly white men, are in favor of insurance coverage for transgender mens transitional medications, which largely consist of male hormone blockers, and female hormones such as estradiol.. they arent particularly religious but some are. this is a growing trend in california. but there is no interest in supporting a woman's right to the same medications, which we all know are not just used for birth control. strange times !

  8. Not only are the politicians silent when it comes to the missing fathers of out of wedlock children, but the fathers themselves have no particular interest, for the most part.
    I have worked for decades in family preservation legislation, including fathers' rights. Trying to get fathers involved in preserving their own rights is useless. They only seem to care about not being "caught."
    They don't seem to have much passion or concern for the child that IS theirs, just as much as the child belongs to the mother.
    There are groups of "mens rights advocates" now, and they are pushing adoption as one of "their" rights. They assert that since the woman chose to carry the child, and birth it, the "responsibility is all hers." They don't want to pay child support either.
    These "men" actually have a fair amount of support from certain women who think like they do.
    Apparently, they do not want to understand that child support is for the child, and that it takes 2 people to create a child....and when people engage in sex there is a possibility of pregnancy.

    1. I always wonder how those people would talk and act if there was mental health care available for them.
      When there is no health care, and especially no mental health care, it does have grave consequences for a nation. I would never say that there are no such mothers and fathers in my country, but it seems like the US has them in the millions.

      And I wonder how much better it would be if all those lunatics who think they should adopt to get the number of children that they want, or the child of a certain sex that they want, were in treatment for those ridiculous notions.
      But I'm afraid that will continue to exist as long as helicopter parenting is not treated as what it is: Abuse.

    2. it seems then that they are also not respecting the fact that the child that they create has a right to know their relatives and heritage on their father's side..

      have you noticed any difference with fathers who themselves grew up without a father?

    3. @Walburga,
      agree with you. I do think the US has a serious problem with family/parent/children issues in general. We as a nation have not come to any consensus as to what family even is. Perhaps that is why family is "for sale" in the USA.

      I realize that children can be adopted in other countries but the adoption industry does not seem to be the open market elsewhere that it is here...and glorified the way it is in the US.

    4. @kaisa,
      no, I have not noticed any commonalities in the fathers. The ones who I have known who were 'involved" in some way were from all sorts of backgrounds: father in the home, no father in the home, traditional religious upbringing, untraditional religious upbringing, judeo-christian, mormon, middle-class, poor,etc, you name it...
      I would say that how they relate to the child they are having, or have had, is/was very individual. But, they do not show up anywhere the way that mothers/women do...not in person...not on the internet...nowhere.

      OTOH, if the issue is property rights to land, real estate, housing,and the government or some developer is planning to put a highway /development/etc. near a man's home that he and his neighbors don't want I can tell you that he will react to that! The men will show up at the state capitol to get that defeated.

      But, try to help men preserve their parental rights? nah...

    5. Re: fathers' rights. There is one exception where men are active and that is on the divorce front.They will show up for rights in divorce legislation, most likely due to the fact that money/payments/property rights are also involved, not just parental rights and child support.
      I used to be really idealistic about getting fathers' help in family preservation, and supporting them in their rights. Many adoptees are seeking reunion with fathers, and some fathers are seeking adult children.
      And I have sometimes heard from fathers who were/are trying to keep from losing their kids...terribly sad stories. And I have tried to help them and once in awhile, it actually worked, mostly because the dad was dedicated to the kid, and of course he was old enough to have some resources.
      And because, he had a sympathetic judge/counselor/etc on his side. Or, he had supportive family helping him out.

      But, in general, it still seems like many men do not want to recognize children born out of wedlock, even when DNA says it is their child. So, I guess the difference in some people's thinking has to do with how much importance they place on "marriage" and "weddings" and "wedlock" and "legitimate birth" etc.
      Then there are those who just are too lazy to make the effort to respond to their own child, take responsibility for the child's conception, and admit that they are the "father."

    6. Here is my thing on mens rights. As an adoptee, I do not know if my father knew. He was married and my mother was married, but not to each other. I want men to know that they have a child and that they have a right to that child and that the child has a right to them. They have a right to refuse to raise their child and let that child go "into the system". I also want men to know that once the child they "let go into the system" is 18, that child can sue them for abandonment. That is what I want men's rights to be.

    7. very interesting, kitta, thanks for sharing your experiences, it's fascinating.

    8. @kitta: "I realize that children can be adopted in other countries but the adoption industry does not seem to be the open market elsewhere that it is here...and glorified the way it is in the US."

      There is no adoption industry in my country. Domestic adoptions do not even cost money - some money will have to be spent on certain certificates and all of that stuff, but the adoption process does not cost anything.
      International adoption costs a bit, but not much. I think less than or approximately 1000 US dollars.

      Additionally, the law states that no child may be given up for adoption before it is eight weeks old at the very least. The child can be given into a form of pre-adoptive care if necessary or wished, but nothing paperwork-wise can happen before the eight-week limit.

      Adoptions do, I'm afraid, get glorified here sometimes - possibly because US TV shows and movies that treat the subject without any consideration or respect can be seen here too.
      Mostly, I think, people are naive about international adoption and the corruption that can happen there.

      As a matter of fact, my great-aunt was adopted to a baker couple who couldn't have their own child and therefore didn't have anyone who could inherit. Legally, my aunt was their child, but she remained in her own family.

      I wouldn't say that we have it perfect here, but it's obviously better than the US situation. Adoption agencies here are not allowed to advertise.
      I have not yet dared to delve into possible negative sides of my country's situation. I am currently not in the position to handle it. I have heard of at least one international adoption story into my country that was a result of kidnapping and human trafficking, though.

      But maybe things are different because the protection of the family is in our constitution. I just wish the law would reflect the adoptee's right to know - their original records are accessible after the age of 18, but I haven't seen any law or rule that would require the adoptee to be notified of their adoptee status at any point. And I am not sure about laws ensuring first parents' right to contact either. Haven't seen anything like it, at least.

      "agree with you. I do think the US has a serious problem with family/parent/children issues in general. We as a nation have not come to any consensus as to what family even is. Perhaps that is why family is "for sale" in the USA."

      Oh, but I think you have. Family, just like life, is interchangeable - what other mindset can one expect from a nation founded on the wish to change who and what you are?

      I would have to do more research on whether this is a common factor in the Americas and Australia. But it's quite possible.

      Besides, if you found your country by ripping apart families (slave families and Indian families alike), why would it seem unnatural to those that do the ripping? It's not like they, the rich and powerful ones, are in any risk of having this happen to them, so why would they change it?

      I don't think there can be healing without recognizing where the illness comes from.

    9. Walburga, what country is your country?

    10. Jane, it is Germany. (Sorry, my laptop was broken down and I am trying to catch up with messages all over the place)

  9. i will never understand how these religious folks can justify Jesus's birth which was according to Jewish practice, out of wedlock. It is my understanding that in Mary and Joseph's time, a couple was together for a year before they officially married, and sometimes that year was more than a year, but generally less than 2 years. The thinking was, if the couple did not get along, then no marriage would take place, but in theory all hoped for a happy situation. One of the sticking points was fertility. If a woman couldn't become pregnant within the trial period, a man especially of older years such as Joseph, may take a different (or additional) wife, depending on the tribe.

    It is for this reason that the people of the book changed the story of Mary's pregnancy to that of immaculate conception, for after all, she was not yet married to Joseph. If she has become pregnant by him i suppose it would have been a sin. i guess i just answered my own question. i suppose some Christians seek solace in strict, literal interpretations of the Bible and still believe that God made Mary pregnant through the Holy Spirit alone, without Joseph's (or another man's) sperm, sacred as it might have been. I suppose it is one of the earliest recorded example of Christians denying responsibility for paternity, so its no wonder really that it continues to this day, as if it is a virtue. I'm just not one of those types of Christians.

    1. Myths of virgin births are part of many religions and mythologies, so Christianity is not exceptional in this regard. Betrothal was was a legally binding arrangement in the Jewish culture and Mary was betrothed to Joseph. She would not have been stigmatized for becoming pregnant before the marriage ceremony because the child's paternity was already secured. The problem was that she "knew not a man." However, it could well be argued that the Immaculate Conception was a convenient way of escaping accusations of adultery.

    2. Right, that is my understanding, too. But I did not know that Mary was, according to the Jews, a virgin or that she "knew not a man." I thought that was only a Christian interpretation. But my knowledge is and will be forever limited because i have no real intention of studying it, and i don't know the original languages that the stories were written in. I do find it interesting when i come across traditions that speak to the truth, or someone who has studied these things and knows more about it and can say (without an agenda!) My understanding is always flawed, i'm sure.. but it does force me to keep an open mind.

    3. Reading over my previous comment, I realize it sounds a bit snippy and I apologize for that. The thing is, while not being religious myself, I was raised in a religious environment where the facts, insofar as as they can be known, were considered important. I am not deeply into this stuff but I do get a bit crabby when Mary's situation is compared to those of "unwed mothers" of modern times. The idea that she was such an "unwed mother" is a fallacy. She wouldn't have been cast out as a "sinner" for giving birth before the marriage was finalized because 1) she was already legally betrothed and 2) Joseph, by assuming the mantle of social fatherhood, was able to shield her from the social censure and punishment that would otherwise have been her lot.

      The matter of her virginity derives from the prophesy of Isaiah*, that a virgin (alternately, according to the translation, the more general term of maiden) will conceive and bear a child. However, the virgin birth is only mentioned in the gospels of Matthew and Luke, both written some 5 - 6 decades after the crucifixion, so it seems that the virgin story evolved over that period in order to fulfil the prophesy.

      *The OT and the Torah contain all the same books, but they are arranged in a different order, so the story emerges differently.

    4. Lisa you don't sound snippy to me. my point is that according to modern Christians, and some in the past, she was an unwed mother and they (men) have overcompensated for that over time by creating the virgin myth.

      it was a problem for the early church, reconciling Jewish traditions (which Christians did not wholeheartedly respect) with their new thinking and beliefs going forward.

      my comments are not meant to disrespect the customs of Jews then or now, but i find the rewriting of history interesting, in that many Christians that seem overly concerned about whether a pregnant woman is legally married, married in the eyes of God, betrothed or what have you, don't seem to realize that the lines that they see as so black and white today, were not black and white in the past.

      Its my understanding that Christianity in its infancy sought to rewrite some of the family traditions of Rome and they had to do it in some twisted way that somehow didn't overly offend the Romans in order for the religion to survive. One way they did it was to stay ambiguous as to whether they were simply another Jewish sect as opposed to a new religion. In sharp contrast to the Romans and the Jews, however, they made marriage a Sacrament. Modern Protestants do not count marriage as a Sacrament but they still want to claim that it is a major sin to commit adultery or bear children out of wedlock (proof of adultery.) And they want to punish women for those transgresses - they are more like the ancient Romans than they want to admit. And more like the Romans than even the ancient Jews from the same time period - the Jews had a much more liberal practice in place - betrothal.

      I agree that the virgin story evolved after the crucifixion. I don't think the Jews thought then or eevn think now that she was a virgin. Neither do Muslims, to my knowledge. Only some Christians maintain that.

  10. I have also been shocked and puzzled by how beloved and popular the idea of infant adoption is in US culture.
    My ideas
    * it's seen as sort of a market based solution to a social problem...someone has an extra baby, these people lack a baby, perfect solution.
    * americans generally endorse the idea of 'dropping' undesirable relatives, that you choose the people in your life etc that friends can be a new family, that a bad father is just a sperm donar not a real father...so choosing to seperate family members is acceptable in this case too
    * for conservatives the male headed married family is the foundation of society so it's wrong to socially support single or poor mothers...for liberals it celebrates individualism bc mothers can choose to relinquish and gay or older or wealthy single people can make families when they choose
    *it let's americans not care about poverty or desperate circumstances for mothers bc they could 'choose' adoption

    I don't know but it goes deep that's for sure

    1. If I may add, it is not an American thing to choose the people in your life and that friends can be a new family.
      It is a human thing. But more than that, it's an _adult_ thing. A child can't do it, because they lack the maturity and the reflective process to do it.

      I, myself, can choose my friends to be my family before my family, because I am old enough that I had enough time to think about it and about my reasons for doing it and my feelings through it.
      And I am not denying my family by doing it, I am adding a family and expanding my family circle.

      As far as US adoption culture goes, I am pretty sure it's a result of the way the nation was founded. Leaving the genocide aside for a moment, ripping families apart to create a new country for people who didn't need one can very easily lead to a mindset that family (and culture) is interchangeable, especially since those who do the ripping don't have to fear the same thing happening to them.

      And concerning supporting single parent families, I think a big problem is that the US did not have a working class movement like some other countries had. That can make certain things and realities hard to relate to.
      And in addition to that, the rich and powerful who did and do the ripping apart of families have successfully convinced a lot of people that it's their own fault if they can't support themselves and that a democracy has no responsibility towards the people that make it exist in the first place.

      It's a very interesting and very depressing process to consider the many possible reasons for why things are as bad as they are in the US.
      But to put a tl;dr on it: 'murica.

  11. So, being a birthmother affects everything, as is often mentioned here, even politics and how we vote. For example, during the nineties when I didn't know where my son was and he was about to turn 18, I voted for Bill Clinton mainly because I could see that he was a peacemaker and I didn't want my son to die in some foreign war. Make love not war- that's Bubba and he did help with the Bosnian war. The family leave act also helped me a lot I wish he hadn't signed Nafta and the Glass-Steagall repeal I remember my Dad watching the news and saying"Thank God I won't be here to see what happens" and he wasn't-he died in 2008. Anyway, if Hillary would put Bill as secretary of state maybe I could vote for her-but she's not averse to conflicts. So,I'm still a Democrat/Independent undecided voter leaning to Trump. That tape that was just released made me laugh-especially the part about needing to take tic tacs around beautiful women because they're kissing magnets.

    1. Anony: Not every mother who lost a child to adoption is pro-choice, or will vote for Hillary. But we at FMF are decidedly Democrats and pro-choice and for Hillary.

      And I hope you understand that a vote for Trump is really a vote for Pence, who I think will be mostly running the country if that tax-dodger, sexist pig, medium IQ smirker and Oh so sensitive about the size of his hands Trumprump somehow manages to be elected. Choice for women regarding their bodies will be but a sweet memory when the Supremes tilt to the Hard Right.

    2. Like I said before, look at Hillary's adoption stance and how she and her husband contributed to children being legally kidnapped by CPS departments all over this country now. She is no better. Give me a break.

    3. @S, who wrote "She is no better".
      I suppose the fact that she is pro-choice means nothing to you.

  12. Trump doesn't even think women should have a choice about whose hands touch their bodies and where the hands go. We're all fodder for men.

    1. Cheer up, Jane. Pussy fights back:

  13. I know that this is totally off topic for this blog entry, but thought it would be interesting information.

    I commented a couple entries back about being 7 months pregnant, and having an ex who is begging me to give my daughter up. I had visited an agency here in central Florida, and it was just full of propaganda, trying to paint adoption as this happy shiny thing for all involved.

    Let me tell you what happened last Thursday that absolutely enraged me.

    I received a phone call from a TV producer in California named Cindy. She is creating a TV show called Make My Family, which the ABC Freeform channel has already bought the rights to. She got my info from this agency (apparently she had to go through about 60 agencies before she found one to cooperate with her) and asked if I wanted to be a part of it. She was looking for three pregnant young women due between November of this year and February of next year, and would film them meeting three families and then her giving her baby to them. She said that the show would have "a really positive message for everyone."

    I can't believe this is even going to be a thing. It's like House Hunters but for ACTUAL PREGNANT WOMEN AND THEIR CHILDREN.

    I have never turned something down so fast in my life. I'm also NOT placing my daughter for adoption, and I'm absolutely enraged that this has happened. I've already contacted the TV station to tell them not to ever air this abomination, but they HAVE already bought the show.

    To think that our lives, our choices, our pain, could be wrapped up into some crappy fake "reality show" and packaged as some wonderful thing.

    I don't know how to get the word out about this, but I want as many people as possible to contact ABC Freeform and tell them to 86 this show.

    1. Dear Beth--I found this appalling to read. So that more people are aware of the show and the underhanded tactics, we may do a post on this. if there is anything more you wish to share--like the name of the agency--please email me through forumfirstmother@gmail.com

      Yow! is my first reaction. Let one of the producers give away her baby...


    2. I am due Dec 4 and would rather wait til then to reveal the name of the agency. My ex is still tangled up with them. I just want my daughter home in my arms first because I feel like there's no telling what they or he would do. The show will still be in production/preproduction at that point, as this producer hasn't found anyone willing yet. (Gee, maybe because it's a terrible idea???) I'm also 30, I'm not a naïve teenager, I can just imagine them preying on and exploiting a poor young teen. It's horrible.

    3. Wow, holy shit. That agency should be put out of business immediately.

      If you are at any point scared or unsure about what to do to keep your daughter safe from those people and your ex, please consider contacting Saving Our Sisters, @adoptionSOS, on facebook. They may be able to help you with any questions you might have. :)



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