Personal Opinions Regarding Adoption
What is your opinion of adoption today? Are you in favor of or against adoption, and how do various circumstances affect your opinion? Has your opinion changed over time? If so, what caused you to rethink your former opinion? What do you think is the biggest need for change in the adoption industry or is the current model for adoption fine the way it is?
To tell you why that is my opinion today, I need to backup a few steps.
Growing up, being adopted was just part of my story. As a child I didn't have a feeling towards it, good or bad. I mean, yes, I hated my life because of the abuse, but I didn't put two and two together and blame it on adoption itself. I internalized it and figured I was bad and that was why all the horrible things happened to me.
Once I grew up and matured, I began to internalize things even more and thought that the reason I was given up was because I was just unlovable. I mean, if my own biological mother didn't want me, how could I expect total strangers raising me to treat me well? I wished I wasn't adopted, but there wasn't anything I could do about it since my mother didn't want me so I had to just grin and bear it and daydream about a better life.
Now, as a reunited adoptee, I know that I wasn't a bad kid. My mother thought she was giving me a loving family to live with, one that she thought she couldn't give me. Instead I was placed with monsters. It took a long time to realize that being given up wasn't a statement against me as a baby or a person, it just was the situation I was put into.
I'm not sure if there was one specific moment where the lightbulb went off and I understood how intrinsically wrong adoption truly is. I think being found was part of the clarity though. In talking to my natural mother, having very deep discussions about it, I came to see that my life would have been different living with her. I would have grown up with a younger brother and sister and an extended family that is loyal to the nth degree. The love they have shown me since we were reunited is amazing and I often feel grief creep into my heart for the lost time. They make me feel like I am part of the family though...even more so than my adoptive relatives that I grew up with. The hugs come easily, the "I love you's" are frequent and sincere. I can't put myself behind a system that would take that familiarity away from children just because the supply and demand insists on it.
I am not heartless. I know there are circumstances in which children should not stay with their natural families. I was abused and would not wish what I went through on my worst enemy...but why adoption? Why take a legal document (the birth certificate) and tamper with it, changing a child's natural mother and father's names to be that of the adoptive parents? My adoptive mother didn't give birth to me, but why then is she listed on my birth certificate? To me, that's fraud at the simplest level. Why not guardianship instead? Why not give a child a home without taking away their heritage? That is what I want to see. That is what I fight for.