Adoption Survivor

dealing with it

Adoption, pros and cons?

with 6 comments

what are the pros and cons of international/local adoption and close/open pros and cons adoption?

Best Answer – Chosen by Voters

i can only give you the cons of international adoption, since i haven’t really felt any of its pros.

international adoption MAKES YOU FEEL LIKE AN ALIEN from another planet
– you’re almost always in the spotlight: either total strangers will be squealing in delight about how cute you are gushing about adoption or asking probing questions they would never ask if you were white.
– people will have ignorant expectations based on stereotypes about you, and you will always have to explain your background, your lack of history,and your lack of culture to people.
– you will be hounded by people with a fetish for the exotic.
– you will learn about your culture but it will be ACADEMIC and you will be torn between its added imposition and a yearning to fully know it, which is impossible unless you repatriate.
– you will be surrounded by a sea of white faces so your whole world is white faces. you will stop and pause when people approach you differently or respond to you differently. you will dismiss this. and then when you catch a glimpse of yourself in the mirror you will be horrified to want to treat that image differently as well. you will be horrified that the image staring back at you is not the image you are used to seeing. you will despair. you will be always the odd man out. you will want to seek out more like yourself, but you will be embarrassed to be seen with them. because there are no images of your kind in popular culture. because you see how that kind gets treated and you think you are somehow not like them. this is called internalized racism.

international adoption MAKES YOU FEEL ISOLATED
– you will meet other adoptees as children and be thrown in together, but actually you’ve nothing in common.
– you will meet other people of your culture, but there’s no way to connect to them. they will speak to you in their tongue. you will awkwardly explain you can’t speak in their tongue/your should-be tongue. they will walk away, disappointed in you and sad for you.
– you can not entertain searching for your birth mother, because she is buried deep within another country, a country where you can’t communicate, a place teeming with those people.
– your parents will be proud of themselves and what they did by getting you. because you are different looking, you will have to suffer that pride by your very presence every time anyone sees you together.
– your parents will want to talk about adoption, but you know they can’t handle anything negative you might feel about it. and you’re too young to verbalize it. you suck it up because you have to. you have to deny the reality of your difference and thereby negate any of the problems associated with being different. you have to fabricate a false front that can handle everything with cheery optimism. you become the good will ambassador for adoption, but it’s a lie. that’s a lonely place to be.

international adoption eventually MAKES YOU ASK QUESTIONS
– why did my parents have to rip a child from its culture?
– what kind of rescue fantasies did they have, and are they valid?
– what does charity mean? how charitable is adoption, anyway?
– what is my birthmother’s story? was my adoption ethical? did my parents check into this?
– what were they trying to gain/proove by choosing this radical route?
– who did they think they were?
– was i just a toy for purchase?

adoption hurts – we walk around with no beginning to our stories, no connection to anything, devoid of roots, dropped here as if we truly were aliens.

international adoption hurts even more
– there’s so much more lost, and it’s irretrievable.
– we’d rather our countries had helped our mothers
– we’d rather our extended families had had access to take care of us
– we’re outraged to learn very few children are real orphans
– we’re outraged that so many relinquishments are based on temporary economic hard times.
– we’re outraged that the people who run non-profit adoption agencies board members make six figure incomes
– we’re outraged at the hidden costs of adoption and that people are profiteering by our sale
– we don’t appreciate how adoption siphons off the problem of out of wedlock childbirth, when the countries could address these problems with adequate birth control and social programs but adoption allows them to shirk their responsibility to their own people.
– we’re outraged that there is a market to exploit all these
– we’re outraged that the so-called potential adoptive parents who claim charity as their purpose would not bother to sponsor families to avoid relinquishment.
– we’re outraged that the cost of one adoption could save multiple entire families in the country the child comes from.
– we’re outraged that the civil rights of adoptees get violated daily, that their histories are fabricated, that their names are changed, that their birth records are tampered with, and that they are denied access to their records.
– we’re outraged adoptive parents do not do their home-work, or choose to ignore unethical practices.

please adopt ethically.
please adopt domestically.
please adopt one of the children passed over here because they are no longer babies.

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Written by girl4708

October 14, 2008 at 2:01 am

Posted in Q&A

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6 Responses

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  1. This is a lovely piece. Thanks for sharing your voice.

    One note, just a picky little thing: Nonprofit board members are not legally allowed to earn a salary from being on a board. In fact, if they do not make large donations regularly, or connect the organization with major donors, they are fired. Most nonprofit board members DONATE in excess of $100,000 PER YEAR. Obviously, nonprofit board members generally make a very good income in order to do this, but they earn it somewhere else. It is very different from for-profit boards.

    Some CEOs and Directors may earn six figures working for a nonprofit adoption agency, but it is still much less than similarly qualified people make in for-profit jobs with similar responsibility. (Or less responsiblility – manufacturing widgets isn’t nearly as important as deciding where children live.) All nonprofit employees are expected to donate some back to the organization.

    NGO

    October 14, 2008 at 1:30 pm

  2. Thank you for this heartfelt sharing!

    I too take one exception – but its’ a fairly big one. Please do not encourage the separation of mother and their children whether internationally, inter-racially – or domestic and of the same skin color. While those adopted domestically do not feel ALL of the issues you do, and many “blend in” better” – they too have the exact same questions about why they were not raised by their mothers and exactly who their fmaily is. They too wonder why their mothers were given the support they needed to raise them.

    They too feel rejected and abandoned!

    And their mothers suffer the very same loss, as well. An irrevocable grief.

    Bottom line: Adoption hurts. Adoption separates fmailies and adoption should always be a last resort! it should not be promoted and romanticized.

    Children all over thr world deserve the right to be raised by their families. When there is absolutely no extended family member who can do that – then an alteraive, substite safe, sable situation needs to be found. This needs to be done, howver, without severing the child’s connection to his family of origins – or theirs to him!

    Mirah Riben VP Communications, Origins-USA.org
    author, “The Stork Market: America’s Multi Billion Dollar Unregulated Adoption Industry”

    Mirah Riben

    October 14, 2008 at 2:45 pm

  3. I really don’t see how comparing non-profit or for-profit board members is relevant – they all make too much money.

    I may have been mistaken by referring to boards at all. I meant to refer to the salaries of people running these non-profit adoption agencies.

    see http://poundpuplegacy.org/node/14774

    girl4708

    October 14, 2008 at 7:34 pm

  4. i will disagree that all adoption should be outlawed at this moment in time.

    i would prefer if adoption did not need to exist at all. but until we fix society and provide support and education for natural parents in distress, then abused children need to find good homes. i would prefer guardianship. however, i am a pragmatist, and until there is an exit strategy created for the elimination of adoption, then i will support the adoption of abused children and special needs children from foster homes.

    this position i have is only until a viable alternatives are presented and implemented, and i am happy to support anything that should something viable be proposed. i would love nothing more than for adoption to become an old and forgotten archaic term from an earlier barbaric time.

    girl4708

    October 14, 2008 at 7:42 pm

  5. Adoption? I wish that the IMF would set up monies for the single mothers in the countries from which adoptees arrive, and I will be doing something about it. It’s often a matter of tact and timing with officials. In the meantme, I have an on-line campaign, so if anyone reading this would like to send the link below to their local politician/s, well every little helps…

    http://about-orphans.blogspot.com

    Stella

    October 15, 2008 at 1:39 pm

  6. Oh my god. I agree with so much in this post that it’s not even funny.

    “people will have ignorant expectations based on stereotypes about you, and you will always have to explain your background, your lack of history,and your lack of culture to people.”

    God yes… at the doctor’s, every time I’m asked about my family history, I have no clue. None. And then I have to explain why. *sigh*

    Let’s not even go in that direction when I’m faced with immigrants.

    “you will learn about your culture but it will be ACADEMIC and you will be torn between its added imposition and a yearning to fully know it, which is impossible unless you repatriate.”

    I used to think going to the Mandarin was authentic Chinese food. Ha. Ha. Ha. NO. No way in hell is it the real authentic stuff. It’s good; I enjoy it, but it’s SO Americanized that I want to laugh out loud when I hear that someone else thinks it’s ‘real’ Chinese food. No, buddy, real Chinese food is that weird, unrecognizable food (it’s weird, but GOOD!) served in dimsum places and you eat with CHOPSTICKS and have ‘real’ Chinese tea! And they serve the food in wooden bowls and give you a bowl specially designed for sauce and another bowl specially designed for sticky rice, etc.

    “you will meet other people of your culture, but there’s no way to connect to them. they will speak to you in their tongue. you will awkwardly explain you can’t speak in their tongue/your should-be tongue. they will walk away, disappointed in you and sad for you.”

    TOO DAMNED TRUE.

    I’ve met immigrants and tried to converse with them, but it’s like there’s a wide gulf of an ocean between us. They know variations of the culture they left behind; we have NOTHING of that culture whatsoever. And of course, it’s not trying to speak the language will help you – you still can’t understand THEIR conversations.

    Immigrant: Hey… can you understand what we’re saying?
    Me: Um.. no. Not really.
    Immigrant: Really? How come? *head tilt*
    ME: Er… I was adopted.
    Immigrant: Really?!? So do you know ANY Mandarin at all?
    Me: A little.
    Immigrant: Oh *disappointed tone* I see.

    Yeah, I get that you pity me, Immigrant-who-came-to-Canada-3-years-ago. I don’t need to see that expression on your face to remind me that I’m “just” a foreigner. I have enough reminders in my face all the time when I try to find out more about my birth country, thanks.

    “your parents will want to talk about adoption, but you know they can’t handle anything negative you might feel about it.”

    Ah, yes, The Fog. My parents believe in the whole “God led you to us” component. I smile and act like I believe them.

    Because if it weren’t for that belief, I think a lot of adoptive parents would sort of “crash and burn” at what their actions have implied – the fact that no higher deity *really* whispered to them that Katie Leung-Hua Cheng was born on June 8th, 1993 – JUST FOR THEM. If it weren’t for that belief, a lot of adoptive parents would also be psychologically destroyed because they’d have to really realize that their actions did have a consequence beyond “Child would have grown up in an orphanage” – that there *should* have been a third option.

    Because I’m pretty sure if that the One-Child Policy did not exist, people would still wish it DID just so they could have a baby.

    But they will never admit that, because otherwise where would they turn to get an infant? Korea? Vietnam?

    Sorry for the rant.

    Mei-Ling

    October 25, 2008 at 9:44 pm


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