I’m just curious. I think there are a few adoptive parents here who are willing to at least entertain some of the more serious aspects of adoption, and I’m interested in opinions.
This is the topic I’m questioning:
I’m not an adoptive parent of a US newborn, so I thought I would start a new topic here instead of offering my two cents there.
Is it appropriate for people who have zero adoption experience to think they are somehow educating the general public on adoption? Is it my imagination, or is this notion maybe slightly insensitive toward everyone who HAS experienced adoption?
Also, how far has adoption come in the last 50 years? In the vast majority of states, the basic framework of the law hasn’t changed. Yes, there are adoption subsidies that didn’t exist then. And there are state adoption quotas that didn’t exist 50 years ago, but I certainly don’t see that as an improvement. The fact is that the adoptees and original parents of today have no more rights than those of 50 years ago. The adoptive parents still maintain as much power as those of the past. The only thing that’s changed is the way in which some adoptions are arranged. That’s simply because the number of available infants was getting so small that the agencies had to change the way they promoted relinquishment. It certainly doesn’t mean the relinquishing parent has the full name and address of their child and his or her adoptive parents or an enforceable agreement for visitation rights. It’s just a difference in the way the adoption is arranged. Once the ink is dry, the adoptive parents are not even legally obligated to inform the adoptee that he or she is an adoptee let alone allow contact or provide identifying information. Don’t be fooled. Many adoptive parents of 50 years ago were provided the name of the original parent. They just oftentimes chose to conveniently forget it and misplace the paperwork. Precious little has changed in 50 years especially where it counts—the laws.
I just saw this video link on a first mother’s blog this evening, and it seems appropriate here. It does a fairly good job of outlining the yet unresolved problems of adoptions 50 years ago. I especially liked the honesty of the New Hampshire lawmaker who, in reference to current difficulties changing laws, placed the blame squarely on today’s adoption industry citing their view that it would be bad for business. You see, the problems with adoption 50 years ago are still alive and well in most states. Adoptees of 50 years ago are subsidizing today’s new adoptions with their identities.
I think it may be just slightly insensitive to see oneself as participating in something better than what took place 50 years ago and ‘educating’ others to that affect when, in fact, those horrible old laws are still in place for the purpose of promoting adoption today.