Sunday, March 11, 2012

Positive or Negative

There is something that has been gnawing at the back of my mind for quite some time. Since about the moment I took my first step into the perilous world of adoption reform. But I’ve never been able to make enough sense of it to actually put it to words . . . until now.

If you’ve been anywhere in the world of domestic infant adoption then you have most surely heard the claim that women need to be made aware of the positives of adoption. That to not tell them would be just as coercive as not telling them the negative side and could force them to parent.

Every time I hear this it bothers me. And, although on some level, I have always understood why, it’s always been a struggle to try to explain it – to myself most of all.

Because it does sound good, on the surface. Especially if you are one who is fighting to take coercion completely out of adoption. Any suggestion, any thought, that there is still a risk of it existing outside of the changes you believe in is something that can’t just be tossed aside as meaningless, no matter how it makes you feel.

Which is the reason why it has constantly existed in the back of mind. Why I have struggled with such statements for so long. Continued to go back through everything I have read, researched and learned to try and understand adoption as it exists today, in an attempt to make sense of whether or not my feelings towards such statements really make any sense at all.

Because, you know . . . I’m not perfect. I have plenty of flaws. PLENTY of them. And there have been times, in that imperfect mind of mine, where I have read something someone said and not liked it simply on the fact that it didn’t agree with my thoughts, my feelings.

Yep! I do that.

But, in the world of adoption, I have learned that you can’t just jump on this bandwagon or that. It does no good. It doesn’t make a difference.

I’ve done it before, I know . . . reacted without thought.

But I have learned and become more and more aware that I need to know why I feel the way I do. What facts I might have to back me up. And how strong my belief is to carry me through if I am challenged on what I have to say.

And I have . . . FINALLY . . . come to that point with the comments I mentioned. I have finally realized why they bother me, why I feel that sick feeling in the pit of my gut when I hear them. Why I know that my reaction is because of what I believe in, what I know, and has nothing to do with reactions based on not liking what I hear.

Domestic Infant Adoption is an industry created and supported by profit. Their merchandise is babies and their consumers are those shopping, and willing to pay, for the product they are able to produce.

And just like any business, their concern is how to find the best and cheapest ways to acquire their merchandise while convincing consumers that their money is best spent on the products they have to offer.

Of course, the adoption industry does face an extra challenge that other businesses do not face because those who supply the product their consumers seek are not other businesses doing so to earn their own profit. They are not assembly line producers. They see no profit from providing what the adoption industry needs to stay alive.

In fact, those who provide the products are restricted by laws that insure they are not “selling” their babies to anybody.

Which, in turn, means the adoption industry has been forced to not only market to their consumers but the suppliers as well. They must convince both parties that what they sell is a “good” thing. They are forced to use the same tactics for both if they have any hope of earning a profit.

So they must, in order to survive, spend millions in marketing to pregnant women just as they do to Desperate Adoptive Couples.

And just as other businesses target our children for this marketing, the adoption agency does the same . . .

- - “INFLUENCING CHILDREN must be the HIGHEST PRIORITY. First impressions of adoption tend to last a lifetime. To be effective, any public-relations effort must encompass programming and media that are CHILD-FRIENDLY.” - -

The “positive” message of adoption is used over and over again to condition the suppliers (pregnant mothers) into believing adoption is the best option for unplanned pregnancy. Millions have been spent to target our daughters, granddaughters, nieces to reinforce this message long before they even become of age to experience pregnancy.

And it is all in the effort to create more product for consumers. To guarantee more pregnant mothers will give up their babies so the adoption industry can continue to profit off of taking babies from mothers and selling them to the consumers willing to pay for them.

The positive is practically oozing from every pore of society. The adoption industry has paid good money to make sure of that and to put their message in the mouth of others so that there is constantly that push, that “lure” to get more pregnant women in crisis pregnancies to give up their babies.

But the reality, outside of the multi-billion dollars profited from taking a baby away from his or her mother and placing them in the arms of the couple paying the money to adopt them, is something that is based in the truth of loss and grief that adoption brings. Not in the profits that are earned by convincing a mother that giving up her baby is a good thing.

And that is where I finally make sense of it all.

Because women facing a crisis pregnancy have already been surrounded by all the positives that tell them giving away their baby is the best thing they could do. It is there everywhere they turn. There in every part of their life that money can buy to convince them that the loving option is adoption.

But money isn’t truth and it doesn’t change the reality of what adoption is.
And that is what bothers me. That is why I cringe and feel sick to my stomach when I hear someone suggest that a mother facing a crisis pregnancy should know about all the “positive” of adoption as well or face coercion into keeping and raising her own child.

Because money and profits . . . the desire of a billion dollar industry to create another sell between product and consumer, is NOT the truth of adoption.

It is what it is . . .a well paid for, researched sales pitch that is created and meant to bring more product to the consumers the adoption industry must keep happy and satisified. An illusion, created in the interest of profits, to get more suppliers to provide product so that a profit can be made.

We all know the “paid-for” reality of adoption just as well as we know the ending to the singing of, “Plop, plop, fizz, fizz” . . . or . . . “My bologna has a first name.”

It is the product of well paid for marketing.

But pregnant mothers and their unborn children deserve so much more than that. They deserve to have society know and understand that no dollar amount, no penny spent should ever change the reality of, or weaken the truth of, what it means to face a crisis pregnancy.

They deserve the protection of those who have not been influenced by the adoption industry’s marketing and instead recognize the tragedy of any mother lacking the resources, support and help to keep her baby. The terrible loss involved in separating mother and child.

Adoption is not a positive thing. Not for a mother or her child. It is loss and pain and grief. It is taking a baby away from the family he or she was born in to and forcing them to become a part of a family that begin as complete strangers to them. It is about a relationship so natural, so much a part of all of us, that is broken in the most unnatural of ways and can never be right again.

A woman facing a crisis pregnancy does not deserve to have the positive sales-pitch from the adoption industry constantly reinforced while she struggles with the desperation that is pushing her to believe she must give up her baby. She needs the truth about what adoption is. She needs to know the pain and loss involved. The risks of what her baby will face by being adopted and the rights they will be denied.

Pregnant women should not be encouraged to give up their babies or “sold” the idea that separating a child from his or her mother is a positive thing. Yes, adoption is a business that relies on suppliers and consumers to profit. But somewhere in there it seems to get lost that the product they are collecting and selling is a living, breathing human being who can be hurt, feel loss and suffer grief.

To encourage such pain on an innocent child under the belief that it is a positive thing is cruel and disgusting. It is a lack in who we are as a society and how our views and beliefs have been controlled by million-dollar marketing selling us the illusion of something good in something that is so wrong.

43 comments:

  1. Great post Cassi! It is indeed a disturbing trend and business.

    Your last two paragraphs especially nail where its at.

    Linking.

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  2. When you look at the NCFA's site and their birthparent counselling training scheme, they say this:

    "The Birthparent Counseling Training is an online program designed to give professionals basic knowledge and the tools they need to understand and share the option of adoption. This training aims to give pregnancy counselors the confidence to comfortably share the option of adoption, on an equal basis with all other options, so that clients facing an unintended pregnancy can make a fully informed decision".

    The problem is it is NOT being shared on an equal basis with the other options, it is being SOLD as the best option. I doubt that very few counsellors counselling women about abortion and parenting would not share both the positives and negatives of those options but when it comes to adoption, no negatives are ever shared.

    The following is from a NZ document about adoption in the 60s:
    "Creating this new nuclear family meant separating the child from its original mother, and characterizing her as both unable and unfit to rear it. Nevertheless, the rhetoric of concern for children's welfare did not normally permit a new-bom baby to be 'rescued' by being forcibly removed. The decision to give the child up had to appear to be made by the mother herself.
    There was no need for overt pressure on the single woman, although this was certainly used on occasion. It was enough to ask her a question no other kind of expectant mother was asked: was she going to keep her baby or not? She was told to compare what she could offer the child with what a married couple could offer, and to decide, not according to what she wanted, but according to what was best for the child. It took exceptional determination for a young woman, pregnant for the first time, to resist that argument and insist that what was best for the child was the child's mother.
    In addition, almost everything that happened to her, from the day she revealed her pregnancy, was based on the assumption that her baby was going to be adopted."

    http://www.nzjh.auckland.ac.nz/docs/1989/NZJH_23_1_06.pdf

    Plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose

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  3. Btw I meant to say at the beginning of my previous comment - excellent post!

    One of the things I like about reading your blog is that there are things about modern adoption that I knew were "not quite right" but had not always able to put my finger on as to why - and you always manage to go right to the core of the matter.

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  4. As an adoptive mom I agree with much of you say and this is one of many reasons that I do not like agencies. I constantly tell people that my son will not necessarily have a better life with me but a different one. I DO think it's important to share all sides of the situation though as no two people have the exact same experience with adoption. Only sharing the negatives does not give an accurate picture of how things can be any more than only sharing the happy side.

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  5. Anon: "I DO think it's important to share all sides of the situation though as no two people have the exact same experience with adoption. Only sharing the negatives does not give an accurate picture of how things can be any more than only sharing the happy side."
    Certainly, no two adoptive situations are the same but there are some negatives to adoption for adoptees that we all share whether we acknowledge it or not. The main negative is that we are all people who were born into one family, removed from that family, had our identity to that family removed, placed into another family, had our identity reassigned to that family - it is hardly a situation that any person would actually ask for. However, adoption counsellors, agencies, etc never consider that there might be some "trade off" in us being "traded up" and never bother to inform their "suppliers" that there could be anything negative at all - in fact, if we believe some counsellors/agencies, there is nothing more in life we adoptees want than to be

    Also, the counselling isn't always done at agencies - in fact, most of it is done by non-adoption related counsellors. So just because you didn't go through an agency, it doesn't mean your child's bmom didn't face the type of counselling that Cassi describes.


    Disclaimer: I have a lovely afamily and a lovely bfamily and my above views have absolutely nothing to do with my adoptive situation.

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  6. Sorry, I cut a bit out - I meant to say:
    "in fact, if we believe some counsellors/agencies, there is nothing more in life we adoptees want than to be removed from one family and placed with another family - they seem to think that we are just using the womb we have resided in for 9 months as a mere resting place before finding our "rightful home"".

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  7. I equate adoption to child abuse. No, actually adoption is a form of child abuse.
    And similar to almost all abuse children endure, in the end, children are resilient. That's wby we have the "happy adoptee". They make the most of their circumstance. They deep six the agony of not knowing from where they came. And often they come out of the fog and need to work through their adoption angst.
    What are the positives, Ms. Anon? That you built your family. But that was on the back of a mother and child. You ate much more forward thinking than many of your contemporaries, but still, what are the positives for ripping a child out of it's mothers arms just because yours are empty?

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  8. Barbara wrote : "What are the positives, Ms. Anon? That you built your family. But that was on the back of a mother and child. You ate much more forward thinking than many of your contemporaries, but still, what are the positives for ripping a child out of it's mothers arms just because yours are empty?"

    Amen. As an adoptee, I can say I totally agree. I can find no positives in losing my original identity, my family, culture, etc to gain a new one. There was nothing wrong with the old one, other than my first Mother was deemed unworthy due to lack of a ring on her left finger.

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  9. Domestic Infant Adoption is an industry created and supported by profit and lust. It is the lust of an adoptive family craving a child to call their own, at the expense of the child and the birth family.

    This lust of the adoptive family is such that they will pay a high dollar amount to get your child. They will use coercion, money, and the legal system to claim your child. And after they have acquired your child they will claim you dead or at least wish or pretend you the natural family is dead.

    It is an amoral system, supported by amoral people with money, and legal connections. But in the end the relationships forged by such amoral transactions are hollow and barren, as is the infertile couple who uses this system.

    I have a dream. That all adoptions that have violated human rights will come to fruition. That the adoptive parents will experience the loss of their adoptive children as these children learn the truth of their adoption and reach out and connect with their natural family. That the wrongs will be corrected and "adopting back" will become commonplace. And this will bear witness that anything done in the dark will be exposed to the light.

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  10. After having just experienced a failed attempt at a domestic adoption, I have to say that I really agree with your post. Obviously, there are babies that will need homes in certain situations, but I definitely learned the hard way that adoption is a business. I started a blog to share my story--plus, it's a lot cheaper than psychotherapy. Please visit me at www.abortedadoption.blogspot.com
    I am painfully honest about what happened, sharing some of the emotions I am ashamed to admit, but ultimately, I think people need to know that both birth mothers and prospective adoptive parents are being exploited. And birth father rights totally ignored. I'll be visiting your site again. Be well :)

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  11. Anon,

    Telling a pregnant woman about all the couples out there who can't have a baby of their own and would love the gift of a child is "selling" adoption.

    Telling her about all the happy adoptees and First Moms is "selling" her adoption.

    Encouraging her to think about all the things some other couple could offer her child is "selling" her adoption.

    As I said, the positives of adoption surround a woman everywhere she goes. But as others have pointed out, there is nothing positive about a mother and child being separated and it is wrong to "sell" a pregnant woman the idea that giving up her child is in any way a positive thing.

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  12. Cassi said this on a previous post:
    "FACT: Though adoption agencies claim otherwise, they do not and never have offered true crisis counseling. There is not now, or ever has been, any licensed psychologist in their employment who has specialized in helping pregnant women work through the crisis they are facing before ever encouraging them to make any kind of decision that will affect their life forever."

    This is where a major part of the problem lies as well - i.e. the women never seem to get counselling for their underlying crisis/negative situation etc.

    How often do today's first moms say "well what did you expect me to do, I was in a negative situation and I didn't feel it was right to bring my child up in that atmosphere". I feel like hugging them and saying "but did anyone help you at all with your negative situation" - this needs to be done before even discussing adoption as an option. I know quite a few first moms who have said later that no-one ever helped them to work through their crisis at the time - all they were told was that adoption was the right thing to do for those in said crisis.

    Jennifer, I hope the mother that you were talking about in your blog ended up receiving counselling with her husband to see if they could work anything out.

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  13. As you probly know the Australian Government Senate Inquiry into forced adoption has handed down it's report with recommendations. The Senators stated that adoption is cruel, callous and inhumane.The Report recognises the damage done to adoptees, the traumas and loss which all adoption entails whenever it occurs.Transnational adoption also involves loss of country, language and culture as well as identity and name.In any other area of life these abuses would be human rights issues. The trading of children for large sums of money is trafficking of human life. America is the most skilled country in the world in adoption trading, advertising and propoganda.

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  14. Adoption should come with a black box warning.

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  15. I agree that there needs to be more balance in place when even broaching the subject of a mother possibly considering adoption or at any point during her time of decision making.

    However as an adult adoptee I bristle at those who make sweeping generalities equating adoption to child abuse.

    I work with terribly abused children and while I would never "qualify" what types of abuse are worse, better, etc. (as any form is shameful and should never happen) adoption is not abusive in most instances to a child who is placed into a healthy home, despite the loss of another history. It simply isn't and you do a great disservice to those children recovering from such savagery.

    Others will disagree; this is my opinion pure and simple. I think it sets us all back when I see comments such as these and others that seem to be wringing their hands with great anticipation hoping pain rains down on adoptive parents.....turnabout fair play? You wish your own terribl pain on another and another loss for your adopted child?

    And then your justice will be served?

    Perhaps my perspective is different having been adopted overseas. My parents certainly didn't snatch me from another; I was 4 years old, orphanage, cleft palate, among other issues. No one had come for me; no visits, no notes, no life.

    Should my adoptive family first have tried to fix the world? I suspect they would still be at it!

    But they did find me and by golly that is something positive, whether some of you wish to see it or not. Positive for ME, the child/now adult. And yeah, I'm a great gal, so pretty darn positive for them too! :)

    Btw, they were not infertile either and I have several siblings both adopted and bio. related to them. Guess we broke all the stereotypes!

    Leanna

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  16. So my son should have born on the streets and living homeless with his bm because she should have only been told about the few bad experiences of others and nothing about all the good things about adoption. I will be sure to let him know the next time its snowing outside that there are people who believe he should be outside freezing instead of home safe and sound with his parents.

    His bm didn't have a place to live or any medical care when she was pregnant with him. If it wasn't for the adoption agency putting her in a place and making sure she got medical help my son probably wouldn't even be here today. But since you are so convinced that adoption agencies are terrible things I don't expect you to see the good things they do, like they did for my sons bm.

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  17. @ Adoptionvictimswithavoice:
    "It is an amoral system, supported by amoral people with money, and legal connections. But in the end the relationships forged by such amoral transactions are hollow and barren, as is the infertile couple who uses this system."

    Truer words were never spoken.

    @ Leanna:
    "I think it sets us all back when I see comments such as these and others that seem to be wringing their hands with great anticipation hoping pain rains down on adoptive parents.....turnabout fair play? You wish your own terribl pain on another and another loss for your adopted child?"

    There is no doubt in my mind that my son's adopters set out to inflict pain and suffering on me due to their supposed infertility (they went on to have their own child three years after they procured mine). To cruelly and with malice shut a mother out of her child's life when they promised they would not was torturous and inhumane. They never one time after I found my child apologized to me for allowing me to live for 11 long years not knowing if my child was dead or alive.

    I wouldn't wish that pain on my worst enemy, including my child's adopters. How they could have inflicted it on me with no remorse boggles the mind.

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  18. @ anonymous 9:57am

    "I will be sure to let him know the next time its snowing outside that there are people who believe he should be outside freezing instead of home safe and sound with his parents."

    Oh, the drama of it all... he would have been living homeless and freezing on the streets. Puhleeze. There are programs available to help mothers and their children, so please get over yourself and your savior, holier than thou complex.

    I too was in a home for unwed mothers, adopter, but that did not mean I had no other place to live. I did. I went there because I was convinced, by them, that would be the best place for me. It was not. I would have had medical care and DID have medical care before I contacted the baby brokers I had the misfortune of coming across.

    Your attempt at making yet another mother look like some waste case who would have killed her child due to starvation and hypothermia is a major fail. Try again... or better yet, don't because you are making yourself and so many like you look utterly pathetic in your attempt at being such "savior" to "your" (I mean someone else's!) son.

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  19. Anonymoust posted this:

    "Others will disagree; this is my opinion pure and simple. I think it sets us all back when I see comments such as these and others that seem to be wringing their hands with great anticipation hoping pain rains down on adoptive parents.....turnabout fair play? You wish your own terribl pain on another and another loss for your adopted child?

    And then your justice will be served?"

    My reply is:

    I don't care what pain the adoptive family suffers. That is not my concern. My concern is my daughter who loves me and wants as far away from her adoptive family as possible. And the loss my natural daughter feels will be a loss of a relationship based on lies and coercion. She will be better off losing that amoral relationship with her adoptive parents and gaining her natural family.

    And really- we don't know if you are really an adopted child or adopted parent since you post anonymously.

    And you are pissing me off by infering the natural parents should be held to a higher standard then the adoptive parents. This is a play used for generations to keep us under control and under wraps. We have been coerced, lied to and manipulated to believe we are putting our child's needs first. But in reality we are putting the needs of an infertile couple and those who will be paid to obtain our child first.

    Flash foward- There is a new age of adoption here. We are speaking the truth, educating people, blogging, posting and pissing people off. We aren't going away for the sake of the adoptive parents anymore. We are seeking out our children and claiming them as our own. You don't like that? Sorry. Still not going to stop loving my daughter calling me mom and preparing to adopt her back.

    If you are an adoptive person who loves and wishes only your adoptive family then good for you. Enjoy your life. But don't think for a minute that I or my family will concern ourselves about the adoptive family's pain. We just don't find it worthy of our concern.

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  20. ***The problem is it is NOT being shared on an equal basis with the other options, it is being SOLD as the best option.***

    Yes, exactly! And when they mention parenting, they are very good at presenting this "choice" as the one that would cause the most harm to the child.

    **Also, the counselling isn't always done at agencies - in fact, most of it is done by non-adoption related counsellors.**

    And from school nurses, doctors, friends, strangers on the street. As I said, there is good money going into marketing adoption as a loving option for women facing crisis pregnancy.

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  21. Jennifer,

    Your story definitely has me caught up in it. I'm interested to read the rest.

    C,

    ***This is where a major part of the problem lies as well - i.e. the women never seem to get counselling for their underlying crisis/negative situation etc. ***

    I believe it is also a very large part of why women are giving up their babies - because they are not receiving counseling for the crisis they are facing but are instead receiving counseling designed to encourage them that adoption is the best choice.

    When I hit absolute bottom and sought out help, one of the first things I asked my psychologist was how could I have ever believed giving away my son was a good thing.

    At that time she didn't know anything more about adoption than the average person. But as I shared my experience and she researched more into adoption, she told me it was because I did not receive the crisis counseling I should have had in my situation and was instead put through one of the worst kind of counseling (adoption counseling) that a person in a crisis should have.

    Those who are truly specialized in the field of crisis counseling and are not influenced by the marketing of the adoption industry, or claiming a paycheck from them, know the worst thing you can do is encourage someone to make a decision as life changing as giving away their own child while they are in the mind set they are. That what is important is helping them work through the obstacles they are facing that leave them to believe that giving away their child is actually a good thing. To find solutions and answers to those obstacles long before EVER suggesting they should even consider adoption.

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  22. ***The trading of children for large sums of money is trafficking of human life. America is the most skilled country in the world in adoption trading, advertising and propoganda.***

    Unfortunately, I don't see this reality changing any time soon.

    Leanna,

    There is no denying that their are good experiences. There are many adoptees who had wonderful parents. And there are those First Moms who lucked out and actually have good open adoptions years later, when the majority of them close. That doesn't change my belief that the good experiences should not be used to convince women to give up their babies.

    Adoption is supposed to be about children in need of a family. So why should there ever be a need to try and "sell" adoption as a good thing to unnecessarily separate those children that already have a family?

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  23. ***So my son should have born on the streets and living homeless with his bm because she should have only been told about the few bad experiences of others and nothing about all the good things about adoption.***

    Anon,

    Yes exactly! That is what this post is all about - telling women only about the "few" bad experiences because I desire to see children homeless on the streets. I am so glad you were able to figure that out without my having to explain it. It makes it much easier in being seen as the heartless soul that I am.

    Oh, and so you are not disappointed . . . you were right, I still don't see a single good thing about adoption agencies. Your agency housed your son's first mom and provided medical care because they wanted her baby. That's it. It wasn't out of the kindness of their heart. It was for their profits and nothing else. I will not praise anybody or any business who offers help to pregnant women with the condition that they must give up their baby in order to receive that help.

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  24. @Cassi,

    On the merit, I completely agree with you as I stated in my first comment. I too believe more should be done to balance the predominent weight of either a plus or negative side when a woman is faced with possibly needing to place their child for adoption or in need of support.

    I appreciate your perspective and though I have not been stopping by for long, I will be back to read your thoughtful blog over and again.
    *********************************
    not directed to Cassi but rambling thoughts....

    I am dismayed however that leaving a comment as allowed by Anonymous, and signing my name, would cause another commenter to question my words based solely on whether or not I am who I say to be. I always comment first and foremost in Anon. to see how the winds of any discussion are going; having been personally "attacked" over and again on other sites, this has proved prudent.

    And I do see attacks here. I'm glad I protected my identity, such as it is. I am not a blogger, just an adult adoptee making my own way. I don't believe and experience has shown me, that I am alone in my "good" experience. Both kinds exist and everything in between.

    In my case I was that child you speak of you really did need a family.

    I will respond to no one else who has made claims that I "pissed them off" or whatever. I stand by my words, my family and myself. Always.

    I will be back to read but probably not to post. I don't see this as true discourse and therefore don't believe I have anything much to contribute anyways. Revenge is not my thing and I most certainly was not implying AP's should be let off the hook for bad behavior, but rather that 2 wrongs don't make a right and that so often those that seem to wave the flag of "this poor child adopted out, abused, brainwashed, etc." are sometimes the first to wish further discord and pain for them. I can't reconcile with that.

    Wishing you all the best in however that might look for you.

    Leanna

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  25. Leanna,

    I'm not sure if it's a blogger glitch or just my computer but your last comment is not showing for me.

    I just want to let you know it hasn't been deleted for any reason and if you would like me to post it you can email me at CasLWard@aol.com and I will copy it from the email and make sure it gets added to the comments.

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  26. @ Leanna:

    How is justice served by wishing pain on anybody? I don't know why you felt the need to make such a sweeping statement yourself as no one has said anything like that.

    There is plenty out there in the land of la la (aka adoption) that speaks about the positives. In fact, that is all there is. The media, the celebs, society in general. ALL they bleat on about is the "positives" of adoption. There is no voice for the truth - the reality under all that sticky, revotling, sickly sweet crap most talk about in adoption.

    This post is therefore a rare voice. And as much as for you, your experience was "wonderful", that is not the experience of many ohers out there and where is our voice except on blogs?

    As for your adoptive parents "fixing the world" - no one can fix the world by themselves - it is a collective effort. I cannot understand why you would bristle at those making sweeping statements if you are only going to make them yourself? Alot of your comment is assumption and putting words into other's hands/mouths - and that is not helpful either.

    Perhaps if you read through Cassi's blog you might gain more insight as to where she is coming from rather than picking one post to comment on and make assumptions.

    All the best.

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  27. @ Anon (the adopter)

    Cue the violins! Get out the tragedies!

    Anon, please go back and read the posts... this time open your mind if you have the ability because your comment was simply silly with a lack of insight to what you were commenting about. Don't read what you imagine to be there, but read the ACTUAL words.

    And Cassi is right. Had anyone really cared about the mother whose son you have, they would have housed her, cared for her and made it possible to stay with her child. Adoption agencies don't see women and their babies as people therefore they don't care about the pain they cause. They DO care about the adopters though and will do anything to make you happy so you buy a child ($10-50,000 for fees is buying a child). Bottom lines and targets do not care about mothers and babies. These people are experts on how to brainwash and manipulate women who would otherwise do the normal thing and keep their babies and you are the reason so please, if you are going to get out the violins and be dramatic, make sure you are doing it for the right reasons and are telling the right story because "So my son should have born on the streets and living homeless with his bm because she should have only been told about the few bad experiences of others and nothing about all the good things about adoption" is not the reason because it is not the truth.

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  28. Oh Please. Really Linda. We all know your story so why keep continuing with the idea that your birthmother was any kind of a good person. Is it so you can keep on your argument about how terrible adoption was to you. At least you had parents that loved you and obviously still do. For most people that would be enough.

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  29. M - so what if you know her story and think whatever you think. How dare you belittle her and how she feels about HER situation! You are not Linda, have not lived her life and therefore do not really KNOW her story. Get over yourself.

    (apologies Cassi)

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  30. Myst,

    No apologies necessary. I'm just waiting at the moment before I respond!

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  31. "M", (lol) My first Mother is not a terrible person. She is a deeply wounded person who has never been able to get over giving me up for adoption. Despite her behavior towards me over the last few years, I can see through her actions, and yes, I even forgive her. My first Mother's behavior is just another dirty secret of the adoption industry and how it ruins people.

    "Is it so you can keep on your argument about how terrible adoption was to you. At least you had parents that loved you and obviously still do. For most people that would be enough."

    Adoption IS terrible. It fractures people, it fractures families.

    And again, "M", you have missed the point of adoption 101. Hating the industry of adoption, the lies, the coercion, the fraud and what it does to people has nothing to do with loving my ap's, my first parents, or their love for me. "Most adoptees" have the capacity to love ALL the people in their life...you know, because we were forced to live with strangers.

    "Enough"? Seriously? You think that people who live this shit and try to make a difference should just be ok with love, and sit back and watch the pain it inflicts on everyone? Im a better person than that, "M". Sorry you are so shallow.

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  32. M,

    Do you actually have something to add to the conversation or are you simply here to single out and attack Linda?

    I will let your comment remain at the moment but if you choose to comment further, please make sure you have something productive to offer or I will delete what you have to say without thinking twice about it.

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  33. M:"Oh Please. Really Linda. We all know your story so why keep continuing with the idea that your birthmother was any kind of a good person. Is it so you can keep on your argument about how terrible adoption was to you. At least you had parents that loved you and obviously still do. For most people that would be enough."

    What a nasty piece of work you are, M. I hope to God you haven't adopted a child or plan to adopt a child because your attitude is appalling.

    All I can say is that I know for a fact that my first mom is worth 1000 of you.

    I suggest you do a bit of research and see what it was like for mothers from our generation and still is for many of the later generations.

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  34. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  35. Sorry, I've seen that both Cassi and Linda have answered M eloquently and with grace so I apologise for getting overheated for seeing her words - it is obviously the reaction she wanted. Actually, I think M is probably suffering from fear herself. Fear that "nature" might mean something.

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  36. M is just a poster who wants Linda and everyone to believe that the reality of Linda's experiences are not valid, as they are not what "M" believes should be true.

    That is the problems with adoption. Reality is not the truth but what people say is the truth. Repeat it enough times and you can believe it yourself. You can even convince other people to believe it. That is how the lies become the "truth".

    And if Linda's truth does not fit the perceived adoption truth then she should be dismissed and scolded by people like "M" who believe the current adoption machine works. This serves to teach them a lesson that speaking their truth will have consequences. This is the oil used in the adoption machine to keep things running.

    But more and more people are talking about you they feel about their adoption and adoption experience so monkey wrenches are being thrown in the adoption machine. Maybe one day that machine will stop, and it may be recreated to something that works.

    Linda feels the way she chooses about her adoption. She has spoken.

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  37. By the way, that "M" is not me. In fact, I would not be surprised if Cassi checked her IP tracking stats, the IP address attached to those comments directed at Linda would show up as coming from somewhere in or around...oh, say Illinois?

    Linda, Cassi, and all - carry on. You are incredible women and I am honored to be on this journey with you.

    Melynda (AKA "M." but not the M who dissed Linda)

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  38. Mel,

    LOL! That was NEVER even a start of a thought. I know you have more compassion and care to ever do such a thing.

    I did check the IP address and it gave me absolutely nothing but, thanks to the work of another, I have learned it actually did not come from Illinois (I honestly don't think I am on that radar - thank goodness!)

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  39. Anon 9.57am "So my son should have born on the streets and living homeless with his bm because she should have only been told about the few bad experiences of others and nothing about all the good things about adoption. I will be sure to let him know the next time its snowing outside that there are people who believe he should be outside freezing instead of home safe and sound with his parents.

    His bm didn't have a place to live or any medical care when she was pregnant with him. If it wasn't for the adoption agency putting her in a place and making sure she got medical help my son probably wouldn't even be here today. But since you are so convinced that adoption agencies are terrible things I don't expect you to see the good things they do, like they did for my sons bm."

    All I wanted to say about this is: what sort of society is one living in if they feel that the answer to the above poor first mother's problems is adoption. Seriously?!

    Thankfully, I live in a country (not the US) where adoption isn't the answer - compassion and caring for BOTH mother and child is.

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  40. @Anon 9:57am,
    The adoption agency was not helping the expectant mother out of the goodness of their hearts. They wanted the baby for a paying customer. If the n-mother had changed her mind and decided to keep her baby, the agency would have shown her the door. No more medical care or housing.

    There really is no need to "sell" adoption. The reason for the hard sell is because it is not usually something that the e-mom wants to do and therefore has to be sold on the idea. Be wary of those who are selling adoption for they are the ones who have something to gain.

    @C,
    This is our culture. We have more of an independent, pull yourself up by your bootstraps type of mentality. So encouraging expectant moms with limited finances to give their child to a more financially secure, established couple fits right in.

    If memory serves me correctly, you are a New Zealander.

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  41. I really learned from the comments and your blog post Cassi. Thank you! In the case of American Indians, including me, we adoptees were purposefully placed with non-Indian parents to assimilate us and erase our culture. Closed adoption is/was a weapon of war. And the mothers who lost their children often didn't make an informed choice - children were taken (stolen) because of poverty. It still happens now. In the end, there are only survivors of the racist Indian Adoption Projects. It's a shameful dark period for American Indians and why I think many of the adoption files are still sealed.

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  42. Great blog post, Cassi. I agree with you that the problem lies with the industry and the continual perpetuation of lies and purely "positive" messages. The insistence that adoption is the "best" of choices, when it's, as you know, a permanent solution to a temporary problem. And even when, in rare cases, there need be a permanent solution, it should be made judiciously and not coated in sugary goodness.

    Adoption is a billion-dollar industry in the United States. Yes, there are good stories and unhappy stories. But the unhappy stories are whitewashed and those who tell them are belittled and mocked. It's brutal and rude. "We don't have to listen to *you* because your story is aberrant. You had 'bad' aparents, so you are an outlier." How the heck do they know? It's all assumptions.

    I don't deny those with happy endings their happy endings--after years of suffering, it would seem that I get the Cinderella ending, myself. I have great aparents and my natural family has recently accepted me, warts and all, and loves me with an intensity I never had the guts dream about. I am loved, and I am healing. And yet I was injured, my aparents were injured, my natural family was injured by the lies of the industry. The lies make me sick, and they continue. They are socially sanctioned lies. And people like Anons here and elsewhere continue to defend the status quo *and* the lies! It boggles my mind.

    I think it's because adoption is mired in the personal, and some people cannot see beyond themselves. People want to defend their family, their desire for a family, their desire for a child, or whatever, and they won't attack their means to get that family--i.e., the adoption industry.

    It's ridiculous to say that any of us want to leave a child in the gutter to die of exposure. Of course not. But the INDUSTRY creates a polemic to make its detractors seem as though we *must* think that. Either we are for adoption, or we are for child endangerment. NO. False dichotomy. We are for rethinking how adoption comes to be necessary in the first place.

    And then the happy stories: if a mother places, she places. She is told that her child will be with loving aparents who will give her child the moon. BUT, she loses all control over her child. She cannot be *certain* that her child will be fed, or clothed, or loved, or educated, or that the parents will be stable in their relationship if married, or that those parents aren't alcoholics, abusers, etc. It drives me nuts when single mothers write that they placed to give their children "two married parents who love each other." There is NO guarantee that within a year that the marriage will still be intact!!! Sigh. So many of my adoptee friends have parents who divorced when they were babies, or who drank or who beat them. That's "better"?

    The ONLY thing that adoption guarantees is that the child grows up with different parents. That's it. Oh, and that the child will have a fake birth certificate.

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  43. My son's bm was not competent to take care of him. Her first child was removed from her care after gross neglect. She could not do simple care for him in the hospital when he was born. Is it her fault that she has severe psychological issues? No. Would my son have been better left in her care? Absolutely not! As far as profit...I adopted through social services. In our state, that is FREE. The main goal was to see if his BM could first gain the skills to care for him. She could not. The goal after that was to find a good home for him, which they did. There was nothing corrupt about that. We were fortunate that he had wonderful foster parents (we are still friendly with them) and everyone who cared for him was caring and only had HIS best interests at heart. We went through intensive screenings before being chosen as his parents. Social Services does the best they can to do the best they can for the children who's BM or BF can't - or won't - care for them.

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