Wednesday, July 30, 2008


I found this article today. Doesn't the author realize that her child is an adoptee too? Geez my adoptive mother doesn't even remember the date that she brought me home. She celebrates my birthdate, not the date that she got me. Disgruntled adoptees is not a good term to put into an article. She came off as entitled to me. That term is most definitely not a unifying one. I wonder what will happen if her adoptee becomes a disgruntled adoptee. Many adoptees can have a good adoption but we are disgruntled over the way adoption is practiced in the United States. Its just another example of "gotcha day."

Here is the story.

Happy Adoption Day or not?
POSTED July 28, 10:37 PM
Friday was our son's third adoption day so we behaved as many adoptive families do, we celebrated. We have long believed that the day our family finally became a family was a day to celebrate, much like AJ's birthday is a day of celebration.

AJ's birthday is the day of his birth, the day he was born to his birth mother. His adoption day is the day a Russian judge signed papers to proclaim that we could be a family and we are proud of that.

Unfortunately, many people don't believe that we should be allowed this family celebration because they believe we, as adoptive parents, are celebrating the day he was "ripped" from his biological family.

What many people don't understand (and I am talking about some disgruntled adoptees) is that every adoption is different. When we went to Russia we unknowingly adopted a special needs child. We adopted a little guy who may never cognitively understand the concept of a birth mother even though he may somewhat grasp that he was adopted from an orphanage and that he lived there before we came to him.

He answers questions about his adoption day, about his orphanage or about Russia. But to him they are just scripts. At the age of five he tells us he lived in Russia but he does not understand it.

So, when we celebrate his adoption and being a family it is to remind him of who he is, where he came from, and just how much we love him. He had a difficult time attaching to us so it is so wonderful to see him smile at us and tell us how much he loves us.

So, what did we do to celebrate? We did what he has been wanting to do for months (and what every little boy wants to do). We took the train downtown to the city. We ran an errand to the Guatemalan Consulate and then walked down Michigan Avenue. AJ loves to window shop.

The one store he wanted to go into? The Disney Store...

After one surprise purchase at the store our hunger pains drew us to Ed Debevic's, a classic Chicago stop. Unfortunately, AJ's sensory issues got the best of him and he ended up eating his french fries on the train. He did, however, love the orange pop and the dancing servers.

On the tran ride home he boasted to every passerby that he got a new firetruck for his adoption day and he was as proud as he could be. For him it was about the special day and spending time with us not about being "ripped from his birth mother". As he gets older and asks more questions the day may be filled with more grief and the celebration may be more of just a dinner or a card but it is the day we remember becoming a family...becoming three.


Eve said...

While I didn't find the article itself as odious as you, I've always thought that adoption day celebrations are stupid. That's shorthand for "ill advised and not well thought through." I particularly detest the term "gotcha day." Geez! Enough already with that stuff.

If you're going to be an adoptive family and be real about celebrating the "day we became a family," then break it down and be logical. Was that the day you agreed to the referral and first fell in love with your kid's photo? Or was that the day you first met your child? Or was it the day you first began to live together as a family? Or was it the day you went to court and actually finalized the adoption? That's already so many days. Whew, I'm worn out.

Enough with this stupidity. Let's have birthdays with ponies, clowns, and balloons. And circus bears riding unicycles. But "gotcha day"? Please.

Signed, A Disgruntled Adoptive Mother

Anonymous said...

the first thing that caught my attention, was that she said she wasn't a family until she adopted. What was she and her husband, parents, siblings, so on before? So... she adopted for the purpose not even of "completing" a family, but of Making a family. Sounds like she has some serious problems within her family unit. I feel bad for the kid.

AdoptAuthor said...

Only one thing worse than this...those who "celebrate' "GOTCHA DAY!"

I solicited - and received from very telling and interesting comments from adoptees on this subject at: