Adoptees wanting to control the adoptee narrative

"*Sorry Campbell, I won’t be reading or responding to your comments on this issue. I see your name and hit trash button."

It's so common to read about adoptive parents wanting to control the adoptee narrative and sometimes the accusation is justified. Other times, it's so not. In fact, something happens the other times that is far worse. Adoptees wanting to control other adoptees' narrative.

It's an adoptee that said what I've quoted above, an adoptee who said my thoughts aren't worth reading or responding to, that just seeing my name is reason enough to consider my opinion trash.

I wasn't entirely surprised, or rather shouldn't have been. I was told what I had to say in defense of yet another person being very publicly and maliciously maligned by this particular blogger would be removed and that's fine, it's her blog. She is entitled to censor as she sees fit, just as I'm entitled to address the hypocrisy in her doing so.

Over the past while I've watched someone I respect and admire be raked over the coals and have said nothing. It didn't sit well with me and even though I know Mary Anne is more than capable of speaking up for herself, she didn't. The juicy little morsel that set off the missiles of hate directed toward her this time was her comparing Primal Wound THEORY to alien abduction and Big Foot sightings while she was involved in a discussion on counseling approaches. Personally, I understand the comparison. It is the same thing. You would think that people who believe in something that isn't common place would be supportive of others who also truly believe in something that not everyone experiences but no, again the dismissed dismiss the dismissed. They're crazy, but I'm not. What I believe is real, don't compare me to those nutters.

Anyway, time goes on and I stay away from the fray. Others pick up on it all, run over Mary Anne, put it in reverse, back up and run over her again. I stay silent along with the others who are silently cheering her while cringing each time the force runs over her again, making horrible, personal assessments of her, all the while repeatedly putting her full name in print, just to make sure the tread marks leave a permanent scar.

Most recently, a discussion on rights and needs takes place on a blog where one of the authors made claims that adoptees who aren't curious have lower IQs, a claim she never takes responsibility for or backed down from. She isn't taken to task by her adoptee supporters, something that I for one can't comprehend but the venom is instead focused on another woman. A mother whose daughter is adopted who at one time had adoptees proclaiming their love for her, "I love you O Solo Mama". Of course, adoptees' love is ever fleeting. It's all dependent on how tenderly you kiss our adopted asses. The minute you look away and have a thought that is contrary, some of them slap your face, put your name up in lights, and publicly declare war. Nothing is off limits. In the instance I refer to in this post, the blogger goes so far as to say that she herself is more protective of Jessica's daughter than Jessica is. As I said in my trashed comment quoting the blogger, THAT is "some serious fucked-upness". Protective is beating the hell out of someone's mother? Protective is making false derogatory comment after false derogatory comment about a child's mother publicly online? Just because she defended Bastard Nation's position that knowing your origins should be an entitlement guaranteed by law but may not be a universal psychological need?

I've gotten to know Jess and Mary Anne quite well and can assure you they are fine parents. They are intelligent, reasonable women who have contributed greatly to my and others' awareness of the need for adoption reform.

We don't always see issues in exactly the same way but here's a newsflash, that's normal. What's not normal is throwing a tantrum and very publicly attacking good, decent people just because they happen to have balls enough to put their true identities out there.

There's still time to grab some balls of your own and show some support for these fine women who you may not agree with all the time but you know are good caring people who not only support all adoptees' rights but also support and take great care in loving and supporting the adopted persons that are in their personal lives.

Anonymous comments are necessary recommended welcome and your identities protected, as always. I will not however publish anything negative as I will be controlling the narrative on this one.


Lady luck

Spent time yesterday visiting with a special aunt, one to whom I'm very close. She and my uncle were very influential in my teen years and continue to be to this day.

Our conversation wound it's way to parenting, specifically mothering, and we talked about two women we know well who've demonstrated repeatedly that they are far more interested in themselves than in their children. We talked about a couple of other women we know who made the decision to not have kids, something I in particular admire.

Eventually we found ourselves talking about my mothers, and how my mom had again recently asked my aunt if I'd said anything about my relationship with my biological mother. We had a chuckle about that, I of course rolling my eyes as I explained again to my aunt that there's really nothing new, just regular contact via email about everyday things going on in our lives. Nothing I was keeping from my mom, except of course my bio mom's name, something my mom doesn't like and to which my aunt agreed was important to keep to myself if I wanted to continue to keep bio mom's confidence. My aunt had either forgotten or not realized that my bio mom's family knew/knows nothing of me and I went over the story of her pregnancy and relinquishment of me, as she'd relayed to me when we met in October.

So she could have kept you, my aunt asked. Yup, I replied, she sure could have but she didn't want me. How old was she again, aunt asks. Quickly doing the math I answer, 24 I guess.

As we sat there processing all we'd been talking about, mothers who can't or won't put their kid's needs first and my mothers, one who had me and one who raised me, it occurred to me that I was a lucky lady. That given the circumstances of my conception and birth, and the fact my bio mom left me in the hands of people she didn't know, I was fortunate indeed to have as good a family as I did. Things could have been much, much worse.

Of course I still, and always will, roll my eyes at my mother.

Who killed the cat?! Curiosity, stupid.

Are adoptees who don't feel especially curious about their biological heritage suffering from low IQ's? Are they unnatural, brainwashed, shut down, or paralyzed by feelings of abandonment?

No. They're not.

They say curiosity is a sign of intelligence. That may be so. I know something else that is a sign of intelligence, the ability to look outside your own experience. The ability to learn new tricks.

There are many, many people who just aren't that curious about their heritage. Some of them need only talk with their parents or visit an aunt or uncle to learn about it. Some can easily hit or a local library and find all sorts of family background and info. But, they just aren't all that interested, not that curious. Does this make them stupid? Of course not.

I know some will say, well, that's because they can, they know who their real parents are. To that I say, so what? Some adoptees feel like their adopted parents are their real parents, end of story. They feel and see themselves no differently than other people. Why should they be held to a higher standard than everyone else?

Curiosity about circumstances of birth and relinquishment is not surprising, but it isn't a reflection of intelligence. A person uninterested in "what happened" or who their immediate or distant biological relatives are could very well be curious about many other things, things that are far more important to them personally.

It seems to me that when it comes to curiosity about one's own circumstance of adoption and/or heritage, it can vary in degree. It can be nonexistent. It can be mild. It can be all-consuming. It can be both mild and all-consuming from one day to the next, from one hour to the next. It can be stifled due to outside influences. Lack of curiosity can remain in spite of outside encouragement to be curious. It can be there when we're young and vanish when we're older. It can be nonexistent in our youth and then overcome us when we have children.

I've read harsh judgements on adoptees searching for such a frivolous reason as "just being curious". I have had to question myself about this, if simple curiosity was a good enough reason to potentially disrupt the lives of others. It's a big fat no-no in some circles to search out of curiosity as opposed to searching to find and embrace our real parents and/or a new or different family.

For some adoptees just seeing a picture of their parents would suffice. For others, an explanation for having been adopted and a picture, never really feeling the need to actually meet anyone. There are adoptees who want full blown familial relationships with their biological relatives. None of it is wrong or an indication of intelligence or necessarily a reflection on anyone else. To say so, at best, is not very nice. At worst, it's not very smart.


It never has and never will

Been a little laid up lately and found myself caught up in the murder trial of Casey Anthony.

Wow. Just wow.

Between the media coverage, media of all kinds, it's quite a spectacle. There is live coverage of the trial itself, nonstop coverage and discussion on television, Facebook, and Twitter etc. I haven't noticed really anything about it in adoption blogland but then why would there be, far as I can tell adoption isn't part of the whole sad, sordid story.

The jury was sent to deliberate yesterday and it's my feeling they won't take too terribly long to come to a verdict. What a horrible responsibility they have. Necessary obviously, but still horrible. The prosecution has gone for the death penalty and the pressure alone that that puts on everyday people who make up a jury is part of the reason I am against capital punishment.

Fortunately the jury has options other than the death penalty because Casey Anthony is clearly guilty of plenty and is no doubt involved somehow in the death of her little girl. One can only hope all the people Ms Anthony has taken down with her deserve it, but that's unlikely.

So many innocent people are affected by people like Casey Anthony every day, all the time. Not everyone who has a personality disorder like hers end up involved in the murder of their children but they do wreak havoc on the rest of us in some shape or form.

People who only think of themselves and build themselves up by bringing others down are all around us, and yes, they become parents all the time. Wouldn't it be nice if conception and giving birth could magically transform everyone into caring, responsible, selfless human beings who put their children's needs before their own?

Sadly, it never has, and even more sadly, never will.


Womb fresh infants and foster kids

Adoption is such a strange (impossible) thing to discuss, online anyway.

I quite often see adoption reformers talk about leaving the womb fresh babies alone, that people should be adopting from foster care instead. Every time I see those words, or some version of them, I can't help but think about the reasons why there are kids in foster care in the first place. If one is to end up being adopted anyway, why would it not be better to be adopted as a womb fresh infant?

I know some will say that kids in foster care are only there because of social wreckers (is that the proper derogatory term?) yanking them from families whose only crime is a dirty home and while I'm sure it's the case sometimes, it's less often than not. At least here in Canada.

Where I am familiar, it's the opposite. Kids are kept in families too long in name of family preservation. Sometimes so long it results in the deaths of children.

Another thing that occurs to me is that, because I do believe that some women who place babies for adoption DO care about or love their babies, either as human beings or as their children, women who consciously and intentionally seek out good families for their baby are the ones who are more likely to become good parents themselves given time and adequate resources.

Mothers who do not consider adoption or abortion (or birth control) and just keep having and keeping kids they have no genuine interest in parenting, have no means to properly support financially, continue to abuse drugs or alcohol and make repeated bad choices when it comes to paternity putting their lovers before their kids, are crap mothers, if one can even call them mothers, whose kids are some (most?) of those that end up in foster care.

Are we as mothers society's responsibility? If so, after how many kids? Is there a limit? If we're relying on society to support us financially, does it not then give them the right to butt into our business? And finally, why must womb fresh infants have to wait until they're damaged and in foster care to be adopted?

Oh yeah, I watched 20/20 last night and it was about Diane Downs and the baby (her fourth) that was taken from her at birth, now an adult, was interviewed.