When my daughter first mentioned that adoption was being pushed on her during her “counseling” sessions at the Pregnancy Resource Center, I considered it carefully. My conclusion was that it was not a good idea to give her child away to strangers. “It would be better if your father and I adopted her ourselves,” I explained to her.
I thought carefully about what an adoption by my husband and I would look like. I came up with the following “rules”(for lack of a better word):
1. We would only take guardianship at first, and we would wait to see if adoption was the correct action.
2. Her mother would always be “Mom”, and I would always be “Grandma”. We were never going to “take her parents place.”
3. She would keep the name her mother gave her. (This was a given, not really a “rule”. I would never have changed her name)
4. If her mother wanted to, at some future date, she could adopt her daughter back.
5. I would never keep my granddaughter’s parents from her unless they became a danger to their daughter. (I could not imagine that EVER happening).
(Of course, I came up with these “rules” prior to anything being mentioned about my husbands brother and his wife being interested in adopting our granddaughter. I have no idea why we didn’t expect the same rules be followed by them.)
On reflection, I see these “rules” as being all about my daughter and me. They really had nothing to do with my granddaughter. They were selfish, in a sense. I’ve thought about this for quite a while, and I’ve come to the conclusion that I didn’t think my granddaughter would care if she were given away to strangers or stayed with her mother and original family.
I thought most Adoptees were grateful for their adoptions. I believed most Adoptees were like my Mother-In-Law. She didn’t appear to care about her own natural parents.
Imagine my surprise while exploring online after the adoption, and I found a veritable treasure trove of Adoptees who DO CARE! They care about their origins. They care about their first families. They even feel the loss when they are separated from their natural mothers at birth. They are angry that they are denied access to their original birth certificates. They are angry decisions were made years ago without their consent or agreement, and they are denied their rights because of those decisions.
I believed everything the adoption industry had put out there (and a fair number of adoptive parents, as well). They are speaking for Adoptees. They are telling all of us that Adoptee’s don’t care. They are even telling Adoptees that they shouldn’t care. In addition, they are telling first parents they shouldn’t care. They mislead to get what they want. They’ve done studies on how best to get a woman to give up her child as this study shows. We are all being brainwashed, in a sense. The propaganda machine the adoption industry utilizes is working very well.
So, instead of looking at how we were impacted by our granddaughter being adopted, we should have been looking at how SHE would be impacted. This never occurred to any of us because we thought she wouldn’t care. Looking back, it seems counter intuitive to believe this, and I hang my head in shame that I didn’t understand.
If you know the circumstances of our granddaughter’s adoption, you know she was adopted by a relative. You might be thinking, “but your granddaughter is not losing like other Adoptees.” In a sense, that is correct. She is being raised around a relative, but she is cut off from the majority of her natural family. She may see her adoptive father’s parents, sisters and their children (They would be her natural great-grandparents, great-aunts, and second-cousins) a few times a year, but I don’t truthfully know as we have no contact with them. To date, she has seen her natural mother two times. She has never seen her natural father or any of his family. My husband and I are not allowed to see her. Our other children have not asked to see her (I would imagine it would be awkward for them, to say the least). Her adoptive parents do not live around her genetic relatives. She spends the majority of time with genetic strangers. She has lost, and she continues to lose, because of her adoption.
THAT is what we should have considered when helping our daughter come to a decision about adoption. The relative adoption satisfied our wants and needs, it did nothing to satisfy what our granddaughter might have wanted or needed.
“He who learns must suffer, and, even in our sleep, pain that cannot forget falls drop by drop upon the heart, and in our own despair, against our will, comes wisdom to us by the awful Grace of God.”
Greek tragic dramatist (525 BC – 456 BC)