Sunday, December 31, 2006


It seems like I live breath and discuss adoption. I do feel that this the year for us in our "five legged stool" or at least for the three of the legs in this thing called adoption. I know of four states that have introduced adoptee right to access laws. They are all being debated right now. I also know of at least as many states introducing these types of bills. Our time is coming.

Since I began this road almost a year ago, I have seen startling changes within myself. I don't tolerate well people who feel entitled to other's children. I don't tolerate those that say I and all adoptees for that matter should be grateful. I don't tolerate those that say birth mothers should have no rights after they sign. I see so much ignorance in this subject. It just blows my mind. I see the rights of all us being violated.

When I look at my own family, it is one that is blended. We have one actual adoptee, three step parent adoptees, one full biological child, and an adoptive mom that lived through the family foster care system (so to speak). After her mother died, her father couldn't take care of her while he was on the road working. So my mom spent time with family members of her father. So because of her background and her own search and understanding of her roots she understands my search and my desire to understand who I am.

I started this week out following one story. Rashad and his family and their battle brings my own issue up front and very personal. Then I hear about a birth mom spending $400,000 to get her kids back. I found another story below with the same trend. I am now hearing that this could be damaging to the cause of open adoption. I don't understand that thinking at all. It is the adoption agencies and attorneys that are at fault here. They used illegal means, methods, and coercion to get these children from their parents. The sense of entitlement just pisses me off royally. Although I do support the rights of adoptive parents and I don't like adoptive parents being criticized, I absolutely hate with a passion that sense of entitlement. Why is it that is okay for adoptive parents but not okay for birth parents? Can Joe Public at least try to put themselves in her/his position? Joe Public finds it offensive when someone takes advantage of someone who is mentally ill or under the influence of drugs and alcohol. Yet a mother who is very young or has health issues or is also so drugged up by medication given to her by others without her consent - it is okay to take her child from her. Joe Public wants a pregnant teenager to get consent from her parents to get an abortion but then its okay to circumvent parental rights over the teenage mother.

In the story below - the young woman was so afraid to tell her parents. She is a minor making adult decisions without the benefit of real representation. A school counselor hands her over to an adoption agency. He also tells her to run away to circumvent any parental influence over the teenager. The school superintendent is also the owner of the adoption agency. Okay sorry he needs to give one of those jobs up. Does anyone realize that this is a conflict of interest here? He is using his power, authority, and inside knowledge to further his business interests. Yes adoption is a big business. When adoptions range from $30,000 up to $100, 000, it is big business. These are not animals we are dealing with. It is human lives. Do you as adoptive parents want your adopted children growing up and discovering that you kept your child and his/her natural parents away from each other? Don't you want to make sure that this is an informed decision for all the members of your family? Heck animals are treated better than humans are.

Sometimes I wonder if my screams are screams in a forest never to be heard. I wonder if anyone really gets this or if this is just about the individual and their own needs.

1 comment:

Lisa said...

"Although the world is full of suffering,it is also full of the overcoming of it." - Helen Keller

Amy, as someone who wants to improve the national foster care system, I have had days when I feel discouraged, as from your last sentence it sounds like you do today.

One thing that has helped me is a diagram with two circles, the smaller one inside the other.

Someone drew this for me once and said, "See, that small circle? That is your circle of influence."

Then, he pointed to the larger circle encompassing it and said, "See the larger circle? That is your circle of concern."

Because I, like you, have a circle of concern that is far larger than my circle of influence.

Then, he told me the secret,"If you are faithful within your circle of influence, you can create a ripple effect that can reach outward to touch your circle of concern."

Every day, I do something to help improve the foster system. Whether it's research or emails or letters of appreciation to journalist or letters to the editor about issues, etc.

I can't see the ripples now, and neither can you (probably).

But we are not working in a vacuum.

People involved in the civil rights movement and women's rights movement did not know at the time that their efforts would succeed.

They were just people, like us, fighting a battle for what they believed in,