We do not have commercial TV or streaming service in my home, so I have not seen this series, though I know this is what happens. Today, I read a rational question about adoptions – I don’t know why after this, birth certificates don’t have a place for natural parents and adoptive parents on them? Doesn’t make sense why we haven’t evolved our legal system to preserve people’s identities.
At least that. Better yet – no false identities. No falsified birth certificates. No loss of genetic connection, which is what I think this person’s comment indicates. Can there not be a “new” kind of birth registration that acknowledges the reality ?
TLC shares this about their series – In 1997 a shocking story made headlines. Thomas Hicks, a small town Georgia doctor, illegally sold more than 200 babies from the back door of his clinic. Jane Blasio has been trying to uncover the mysteries of the Hicks clinic for over 30 years. She is joined by Lisa Joyner and Chris Jacobs as they try to bring closure to those stolen babies desperately searching for their true identities and birth families.
In fact, the ’90s were a time for shocking revelations about adoption as Georgia Tann’s scandal from the 1920s to 1950s re-emerged in the national consciousness. And by late in that decade, sealed adoption records became accessible in some cases such as in Tennessee for Tann’s victims. In 2017, that allowed me to obtain my mother’s adoption file, though it had been denied her in the early 1990s, she never learned that she could have gotten this file while she was yet alive. It is a sadness because she would have seen a photo of her mother and learned alot about the true circumstances of her adoption.
The comment I shared above had some more thoughts. “I was shocked at the empathy and benefit of the doubt given to the Adoptive Parents. I think I would consider them kidnappers if I was coming in from the outside to help track down the truth. It definitely showed me more of what Hopeful Adoptive Parents will do when they are desperate for a child. I also am just heartbroken for these families and the adoptees. Felt like in episode 2, you finally get to hear a testimony of just how devastating this is for them.”
The only good thing I can say about this increasing awareness is that it is a good thing. Reforms and changes are likely to be encouraged as more people learn the truth about the impacts of separating babies from their natural mothers.
But you will. You believe you won’t make all the mistakes the others have made. You believe you know a better way.
Don’t be one of THOSE adoptive parents or hopeful adoptive parents who think they know better and their kid won’t be like those angry adoptees, the thousands upon thousands that have struggled with adoption. You don’t even KNOW what to teach them as an adoptive parent.
You do not raise adopted children like you raise biological children and that has nothing to do with love.
An adoptee said to his adoptive mother, “It doesn’t matter how loving and good your parents are and it doesn’t matter that you have a wonderful home….at times it isn’t enough and I am still very unhappy!” When you hear this from your adopted child, it will break your heart. Adopted kids are going to have pain and there isn’t anything an adoptive parent can do to erase it. Understanding that this is the reality is very painful!
You can’t erase the sadness lurking where you can’t reach it.
It would be better if you didn’t adopt but if you already have, the path forward is complicated.
So, if you already did it, then create a home where your adopted children know they can feel however they need to feel and that they know you’ll be there to listen, love, and support them through it.
Whatever your adopted child feels is the reality, don’t dismiss it. Your feelings are yours to deal with.
The trauma of adoption doesn’t stop existing because you want it to. If you think you can love that trauma away, as an adoptive parent you still have a lot to learn.
Love is not enough, good intentions are not enough. No amount of love or honesty can resolve the deep challenges an adoptee faces from being isolated from their biological identity.
. . . unless you were adopted or raised by a secondary “mother”.
An adoptee has two mothers – the one who gestated and gave birth to us and the adoptive mother who raised us. For adoptees in reunion, there was the initial relationship that may have been almost immediately terminated post-birth. Then that child shows up decades later ? This is one facet of the adoptive experience.
Some adoptees are closer to their adoptive mother and feel a kind of strain in their attempted relationship with their original mother. There is a lifetime of working on getting along and growing a lasting relationship with the adoptive mother.
For many original mothers, their “relationship” to the child they lost to adoption is rooted in heartbreak and loss. For both the adoptee and the woman who gave birth to us, there may have been a lifetime of loving someone from afar, someone we don’t really “know” in the usual sense – it can be hard to bring those lifelong fantasies down to Earth.
The in touch, in person reality will never match that fantasy we have harbored. It can take years before the original mother and her child – once separated – can feel a closer relationship.
For an adoptee, their two mothers will never be quite alike, they are simply different, that is the reality and they occupy different spaces in the life of any adoptee.
However, love is love and that is always true, even when one has two mothers.