Art by Aaron Aldrich
Shane Bouel wrote a piece for Medium with different artwork – you can go to the LINK>Forbidden Love to read the whole thing and see his art. I know the point he is making is true. It not only applies to the original genetic parents and the obstacles adoptive parents might place in the way of adoptees making contact but in my own family’s experience, can also apply to an adoptee who falls in love and wants to marry someone who the adoptive mother disapproves of.
Shane writes that he asked Chat GPT to name the love that others who love you won’t allow you to have. Forbidden love is a term used to describe the love that is craved by your heart but disallowed by those who claim to love you. It encompasses the affection that is deemed unacceptable or disapproved of by society, family, or even by the very people who are supposed to support you. It could be hindered by various factors such as age, social status, religion, or cultural dissimilarities, making it a complex and nuanced experience. The unrelenting yearning to pursue this love can be excruciatingly painful and often difficult to overcome, as the heart’s desire stubbornly persists. When faced with this conundrum, it is imperative to weigh the possible benefits of pursuing the love against the potential repercussions that could befall.
I agree with him when he (or was it ChatGPT ?) writes – “No parent, adoptive or otherwise, has the right to dictate who their child loves. Love is a personal emotion that should not be regulated by external forces.” He goes on to note – “If an adoptee finds themselves smitten with someone, it is critical for their adoptive parents to display open-mindedness and support. Should the adoptee be an adult, they have the autonomy to make their own choices regarding their relationships.” In the case of the relative I am aware of, they did just that. It was sad to see the wedding marred by the dissension.
If adoptive parents are disregarding their adoptee’s feelings and experiences in favour of their own beliefs and desires, this could potentially be a sign of narcissistic behavior. (Nevertheless, it is important to keep in mind that making a diagnosis of narcissism necessitates a professional evaluation by a qualified mental health expert.) Regardless of whether the behavior is labelled as narcissistic or not, dictating and dominating who someone can love is not a healthy or appropriate way to conduct a relationship and can have detrimental effects on the adoptee’s emotional well-being. It is imperative for adoptive parents to not only listen to but also respect their adoptee’s feelings and experiences and support them in making their own decisions regarding relationships.
From an esoteric perspective based on karma, the idea of in the “best interest” of the child, it is generally accepted concept that adoption aims to offer a safe and stable home environment to a child who may not have access to one otherwise. I will admit that in the case of my relative, it is likely true that my sister could not offer him a “safe” home environment but we’ll never know, will we ? It was her decision from the beginning to surrender her child for adoption. I was closely involved with her during the months of her pregnancy. Now, that I also know the rest of the story, I understand why she made that decision (it was a combination of both of our parents having been adopted as babies as well as the inconvenient truth – for her – of who his father actually was).
Shane notes – “If the adoptee’s life path towards finding true love and transcendence doesn’t align with the adoptive parent’s expectations, it doesn’t necessarily mean that the adoption was unsuccessful or of little value.” I would have to agree in the case of my relative’s adoption. It is still sad that it all broke down at the time of his wedding. I agree with Shane on this point – adoptees deserve to be supported and nurtured in their pursuit of true love and fulfilment,
He says that adoptees may be lied to or misled about their biological family. This was certainly the case for my relative. I will give his adoptive mother credit for this much – she went above and beyond – to discover for him who his actual father was. I will always be grateful to that woman for that much.
He ends with this disclaimer about using ChatGPT for this piece – “The psychosocial damage caused by AI responses from a socially systemic viewpoint can be quite significant. When we interact with AI systems, we expect them to behave in a way that is human-like, or at least, rational and objective. However, AI systems are not human and do not have the same level of emotional intelligence or cultural context that humans possess.” Furthermore, “When AI systems are designed using biased or incomplete data, just like society, there is likely to be continued perpetuating biases and inequalities in their responses. This can further marginalize and discriminate against already vulnerable groups, including adoptees.” He adds – “I believe that an AI system that is trained by adoptees could provide valuable insights and support for adoptees and their families and society.”
He indicates – “I am seeking funding or support for the development and implementation of this system, including research, programming, and outreach efforts. I believe that this project has the potential to make a meaningful impact on the lives of adoptees and their families. If this sounds like you, or you can help please get in touch.”