' [Birth Mother] First Mother Forum: Facebook allows me to connect with my adoption tribe--mothers and adoptees, and some adoptive parents too

Sunday, April 15, 2018

Facebook allows me to connect with my adoption tribe--mothers and adoptees, and some adoptive parents too

Corrected image--thanks to Facebook
Should I stay or go on Facebook has been on my mind recently as the revelations about the lack of privacy and the shared information about me that is whirling about the world. I run ads here and I see immediately ads for products that I looked up mere seconds earlier.

But to leave Facebook? Never. For people like us, with a particular tragedy in our lives that likely does not resonate with our neighbor, the connections Facebook provides have been an emotional lifeline. First mother or adoptee--and some adoptive mothers--we share an involvement in a life-changing experience, one that set us apart from the rest of humanity. We need each other. We gain from this ease of communication.

This morning I connected with a woman who found her biological father's family (he is deceased) and they all share a love of animals, in particular, dogs. As I do.  She happens not to live far from me, we met at a reading I gave at the local library, and she came back to my house for tea; but our connection this morning almost certainly would not have happened if not via Facebook.

A first mother this morning pointed out that a quote of mine being used as a promo for the Indiana Adoptee Network conference this weekend I will be keynoting had a misuse of a word. I had written tenant (as in someone who rents) for tenet (principle). Merde! Jennifer Fahlsing, the conference's tech specialist, responded and she made the correctly within the hour. Again, this probably would not have happened without a ease of Facebook communication.
Lorraine--it's back to cold and
windy today. 

Through Facebook, I feel a weirdly close connection to an adoptee in West Virginia, Lisa, whom I do hope to meet someday. Besides adoption, we have found other common interests: backyard birds and cool shoes! (Mostly which I cannot wear anymore--eventually flat feet lead to all sorts of problems.)

I met Barbara from Chicago when she was in New York on business and, never having met before, we shared her hotel room for a couple of great days.

Without Facebook, I would not have a relationship with many birthfirst natural mothers--as well as adoptees--and others in our circle I have never met: Debbie from California, Sandy in Texas, Carolynn in Missouri, Carol in Arizona, Dawn, Amanda, Martha, Janet, Karen, Elizabeth, MarySue, Jenny, Francis, Delores, Marilyn, Kathleen, Maria, Robin and Robina, Celeste, Megan, Paula and Priscilla Stone Sharpe, a searcher, and I could keep going on and on, but you get the idea. Others I have met, and Facebook has kept me in closer touch with them: Lori, Cathy, Barbara, Bonnie, Pamela, Carol, Joyce, Linda, Claudia, Lynn, etcetera. Even before I connected with Jennifer, the daughter of the guy I didn't marry back in Michigan, her husband and I--he's an adoptee who has worked to further open Michigan's sealed records--had already connected via Facebook. Jennifer and I, by the way, remain tight to this day: she needed a mother and I needed a daughter, and though our connection is strange, it is most certainly wonderful. (I've told this story at the blog and it's told in full in hole in my heart.) Incidentally, Jennifer's husband runs the Facebook page, Michigan Searching Adoption Support. 

I've also built friendships and stayed in touch with people in my neighborhood and nearby who are not connected to adoption. I decided not to have two separate pages since adoption is a part of who I am. However, I do have a separate First Mother Forum page where I strictly keep to adoption, and post items there that I do not on my name page.

Since 2008, I've heard heart-wrenching stories, and stories with good endings too; gotten ideas for blogs, and been validated in the work I do, but throughout it all, the most important part has been the fellowship and understanding that we are able to impart to others so that we do not feel so wretchedly alone. And while I hope Mr. Zuckerberg will fix the privacy issues, the information already harvested cannot be undone, but despite the problems, I stay on Facebook.--lorraine
Hey--I should be working on my talk that I'll be giving Friday morning in Indianapolis at the conference planned by Pam Kroskie and Marcie Keithley! If you can come, do so! For more information, and how to get a room at the Crowne Plaza at the special rate arranged for attendees, click on
Indianapolis  Adoptee Network, 2nd Annual Conference. Or you can check their Facebook page. Of course. If you are attending, please come up and introduce yourself. I'll be there all weekend. Let's have lunch together! I'll try to figure this out once I get there.

From FMF

Letters Lead to an Alternative Universe Daughter


  1. I agree that FB has allowed me to keep friendships going with people who no longer live near me, to make new friends with common interests, to be a member of support groups, to help others search, or give them some insight as to what life was like in the particular unwed mothers' home I lived in, even reconnect with some of the birthmothers I met there. I worked in a regional theatre for 11 years, and can keep in touch with friends I made there while they're out on the road. My family is spread around the country and the world, and I can keep in touch with them, watch their kids grow up, get to know each other. Some FB friends I have met in person, some not, but I treasure them all!! Is FB perfect? No. But with some care and caution, I'll stick with it.

  2. It’s a matter, for me, of protecting myself as best I can, deleting platform apps and avoiding click bait. It doesn’t get rid of all the data snatchers, but it helps. My children and other family and friends, especially my natural mom, like you, Lorraine, and adopted friends, are far away. This is our meeting place. So I take the con with the pros. It’s part of life as we know it in this strange, new world.

  3. Facebook adoption community got super nova state during the Veronica Brown case then faded

  4. My son and I found each other via FB. I had put myself on an Adoption Contact Register years earlier but he, like many adoptees, didn't know the Register existed. I adoptees should be told automatically about such Registers, along with getting their original birth certificates.

    1. Cherry, definitely one of the problems with registries if that few know about them. if you state allows adoptees to get their original birth certificate, you might talk to the department that handles birth certificates about putting together a packet of information about the state's registry, ISRR, perhaps more.

      When Oregon allowed access to birth certificates 19 years ago, it gave adoptees some information along with the certificate. I don't know whether they it does.



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