This on-line magazine never fails to irritate, annoy or in some way give the impression that adoptees are, in some way or another, some kind of strange alien life form, a bit like Alf! Remember Alf? He was smart, intelligent, a fast learner, had a heart of gold, compassion and came from another planet, where he had had a life before he was adopted by Willie and his family.
I truly welcome the day when we see useful and informative articles written about adoptive parents. You can imagine the titles can’t you, if they were written in a similar way to those on adoptees? – “Do adopters have more problems than real parents?”, “Message in a Bottle” – a place for all those unexpressed deep feelings you haven’t been able to share, “Adopters and suicide”, “Depression in adopters – is it real or just an attachment issue?”, “Attachment disorders- what are we doing wrong?”, “Re-homing – should we feel guilty?”, “Adoption – how much will it really cost us?”, “What to do when post-adoption depression hits”, “Each family got one twin – should we reunite them?” I could go on, but I’m sure you get the picture – it is so often that adults are right and children are wrong, the guilty ones, the aliens, the wrong-doers, the spanners in the works.
Adults it seems cannot comprehend that attachment disorders are about adults, that all the wrongs of adoption are caused by adults, often by thinking, usually responsible people, who seem to get fuzzy headed when it comes to the ethics of parting children from their families, from pronouncing on the numbers of orphans it takes to make an orphan crisis, on the compassion of interfering in the intimacy of the birth process, on the legalities of many adoptions, let alone the ethics and on the humane management of severely damaged children who should not be subjected to the pressures of family life. I’m all for removing babies and small children as early and quickly as possible from abusive or incapable parents; I know that incapable parents can occasionally become capable, but that there is a heavy price children pay for giving them that opportunity. I am pleased to see increasing opinion being expressed on the way in which prospective adopters are ill-prepared and on how they can be better prepared. I am relieved to see there is beginning to be attention drawn to the agencies who do adoption and also home studies and never turn anyone down. Lack of ethics, lack of attention to the rights and needs of children? What do you think?
Adoption currently is a minefield and is perpetrated on innocent, vulnerable children who have no rights, rarely anyone to properly advocate for them and who are stuck with it for at least 18 years, particularly if they have had their motherland taken from them as well as their family, culture and language. To place them with the ill prepared, the ill equipped or the inadequate, the abusive and those who have plans for their salvation, really adds abuse to trauma, loss to more loss and bewilderment to the unimaginable. There are good, well-intentioned people out there wanting to adopt, let them think carefully about the source of those they wish to make adoptees, the ethics of what they plan and the rights of children, not just about what they want or have been instructed to undertake.
Do adoptees have more problems? Adoptees exhibit a very normal response to the pathology of adoption. Do adopters have more problems? To have that answered truthfully and honestly would be refreshing, enlightening and a new place for adoption to be heading.