31 October 2010

"Love" in adoption

Cassi at Adoption Truth recently blogged this post "You said what??" about the fallacy of loving your child so much you would abandon them.

This topic is much like a red rag is to a bull for me (see also previous post "Love and abandonment") given it is the one tactic that tipped me over the edge and so I am going to expand on it further.

I basically wanted to centre this post around the quote Cassi found which said:

“Birth parents can be wonderful loving people, in fact the most loving people when they do a very loving thing by giving their child to a family.”

WTF?? Are you freaking serious?

Okay, so if I walked up to the next stranger on the street I saw with a baby and asked them to hand it over to me because I would be a better parent for some irrelevant reason like money or whatever, I shouldn't expect to be "cussed out" or slapped. Rather, I SHOULD expect them, because they apparently love their child so much, to just hand THEIR child, their precious family member, over to me, a complete stranger, just to PROVE they love their child. Sound ridiculous to you? It does to me!! And I know the rest of the world would just think this was some sick joke yet in adoption, this is what mothers and fathers are not only EXPECTED to do but somehow, if they DON'T do it, i.e. if they do what everyone else does in this world and keeps their child, they are abused for it and told they are going to ruin their child's life.

This concept of proving love by abandoning your child is a one way street. Again, only in the sordid world of adoption, is this lie seen as truth and rammed down the throats of vulnerable and confused pregnant women who only want what is best for their child. The adopters on the other hand are EXPECTED to keep this child and should the real parents DARE to do what was naturally expected of them and ask for their child back well, the adopters are given all of the support whilst the family of the child is kicked to the curb and quite literally shat on in the media.

I have even seen adopters say things like, "I could never give X back, I love him/her to much" and yet the mother would most likely have been told if they truly loved their child they would place them for adoption.

This says two things. One, that love can only be proven by abandoning someone and two, that adopters don't love the children they adopt (which happens to be true in many cases; (note I didn't say all!) they love what the children can do FOR them as opposed to the child themselves). Now, I am sure those saying "give up your child to show you really love them" didn't mean to imply the second point. But they obviously didn't follow the natural conclusion of this distorted logic.

So if you do take the time to follow this logic through to its conclusion, you see not only how contradictory it is but that it aims to make a lie out of EVERYTHING we know of love and how we feel when we are in love. Since when has abandonment EVER said Love?? In fact, I would say it says quite the opposite... like "what was so wrong with me that he/she didn't stay/left/gave me away etc?" And, applying it to adoption as in this instance, it also says adoption isn't really about love because adopters wouldn't prove the love for the child they adopt by giving him/her up so the whole theory of adoption being this loving option then goes out the window too.

It truly is a ridiculous lie, and a very, very dangerous one.

I wish I had realised this earlier in my brainwashing. I wish I had known this was just a ruse they used to get me to do something I had already said I would NOT do. But sadly, THIS, THIS LIE amongst the threat of her being taken and another lie of a three day trial, tipped the balance for me. Because had I NOT had this lie, I wouldn't have cared about the three day promise and the threat that if I didn't sign someone else would. I cannot describe how much I loved and still love my first born. It was unlike anything I had ever experienced and I was told over and over and over etc if I really loved her, really cared for her well being, I would hand her over to a stranger. For me it was the final nail in our coffin. And so I signed. Within hours of her being taken out of my arms, I realised the lie. And thus started my battle to get my daughter back.

I wish I had been a lioness. In the animal kingdom, barring murder or a tranquiliser, if you dared to try and remove a cub from his/her mother, you could safely expect to be torn to shreds. And she would be well within her rights to do so. In fact if she didn't, it wouldn't be seen as normal. Yet in the human realm, we treat mothers with so little respect or reverence. They are seen as interchangeable where the desire suits. Replaceable. And this is in direct contrast to how a newborn sees his/her mother. To them they are their world. They KNOW when their mothers, the ones they grew inside are gone. They KNOW. And this hurts them more than we could ever imagine. Yet we still do it in the name of "Love".

Love. Have we lost the meaning of what love is? Is that what is happening, or has happened? Love is not abandoning one's child to fulfill the lust of another stranger. Love is not keeping a child from his/her family. Love is not denying a person their name, heritage, family roots. Love is not meant to be conditional. And yet adoption is all these things and more. Follow this through and you see what I see. Love and adoption are worlds apart.

10 comments:

  1. Brilliant post Myst.

    It sounds so ridiculous when it is said in this way, AFTER the fact. I can’t help but wonder about women who are currently pregnant, and perhaps in a similar situation to what I was, and whether they are imprisoned by the brainwashing.
    I was wrapped up in cotton wool, brainwashed so deeply that it didn’t even occur to me to go on the internet and research my options: I believed them when they said I had no options, and even if I did that I would be selfish to take them – a ‘bad’ mother. And yet it wasn’t until too late that I realised that I am also considered to be a ‘bad’ mother for ‘abandoning’ my child and have no legal rights. Its systematic violence and we are its victims (or survivors depending on how you look at it).

    I am thinking about starting an NZ website with a simple URL/one similar to an adoption info website that says something like 'Pregnant? Thinking about adoption? DON'T DO IT!'

    Thanks for wording it so well. Take care Xx

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  2. I'm seeing more and more of this in the blogosphere, and frankly, it makes me wonder a lot of things.

    Like, even in the case of an abusive household - how can one say it is out of love? No, it is not, it is out of fear that the child will be harmed.

    Because in the end, it doesn't matter what the original circumstances were. They were bad enough, horrible enough that a mother had to relinquish, and we call that love.

    I just don't get it.

    Why is this still being perpetuated?

    I guess because if we had to face the reality of "love" as it is presented in adoption, most of us would lose our minds. Who wants to look back on such a situation and go "That wasn't love and that wasn't a real choice, but now it's screwed me over"?

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  3. Hi SH :)

    I agee.

    People like to use love where it suits them. I am convinced most people KNOW at the bottom of it, none of these things are about love. But there seems to be this need to dress up and make the situation out to be something positive when it isn't. Like the abusive household situation. And all the other desperate circumstances where people try to turn something ugly into something beautiful... like adoption.

    The thing is, Love, real Love, doesn't hurt and maim. I feel pure love is becoming less and less real in our world, less attainable, unreachable because humanity has turned its back on it. Like altrusim. And it is sad. No, worse than sad. It is a freaking TRAGEDY.

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  4. Hey KiwiRose,

    I sooo relate. Utterly and completely relate. I'm so sorry you were not able to know the full truth before you lost your daughter.

    "I am thinking about starting an NZ website with a simple URL/one similar to an adoption info website that says something like 'Pregnant? Thinking about adoption? DON'T DO IT!'"

    - LOVE this idea!! I have thought about this many a time but had no idea where to start one without paying a heap of $$ to get one done. Let me know if you do and want some info help. I am sure we could come up with alot of stuff between us. The NZ Adoption Act is my speciality!!! And I know some great people who could put in some fab input. Oh yeah, speaking of websites, have you seen this travesty??

    http://adoptionoption.org.nz/

    It is revolting!!!

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  5. Great post, Myst. I confess that today - not every day, but yes, today - the love you clearly feel for your first daughter is making me cry. I'm being selfish, I know. But I am emotionally very close to a child who was adopted, whose first mother... well, seems not to feel as you do. SEEMS. I know how pain can masquerade as indifference, etc., and I'm not going to go into detail, but I'm really sad for this little child who will someday understand that first mom was fairly casual about adoption. That she was a rare first mom who really didn't experience the grief and loss that most do. (I know it may seem implausible, and I'm not offering any detail to support my observation, but I can say that I know first mom very well, and I'm basing my impression on what she has said and done.) Of all the adoption baggage one may have to haul around, I imagine this to be among the worst. What can be more terrible than finding out that first mom DID NOT fight for you, DID NOT wish you back, DID NOT rail against coercion, DID NOT weep and moan and grieve the loss of you. But instead, simply "moved on."

    I'm sorry, Myst, for going off in this direction. Yours was truly a great post. I carry a crushing sadness about this child, and I think of you as a safe place.

    Peace,

    Sally

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  6. ***Love. Have we lost the meaning of what love is? Is that what is happening, or has happened? Love is not abandoning one's child to fulfil the lust of another stranger. Love is not keeping a child from his/her family. Love is not denying a person their name, heritage, family roots. Love is not meant to be conditional. And yet adoption is all these things and more. Follow this through and you see what I see. Love and adoption are worlds apart.***

    I couldn't agree more. Love and adoption are worlds apart in the way it is presented to us.

    And I truly believe, like you said, if people actually took the time to step back and examine what they are so quickly believing in, they would see how completely wrong such beliefs are.

    It just can't, and never will make sense that a mother "loves" her child so much she gives him or her away. It goes against everything we are, everything we were created to be.

    To believe otherwise, I believe, is taking the easy way out and accepting without asking simply because you are unwilling or unable to face the truth.

    Great post Myst!

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  7. Hi Sally :)

    I do know what you mean, that not all mothers seem to feel the same way. And I know women who were not even sure they wanted kids...

    There are some people out there who I truly believe shouldn't have children. Actually my mother-in-law is one of those people. My husband was neglected terribly at her hands and had the system known about his neglect, he would have been yanked out of that house for sure. And I wish he had been (yes I just said that lol!) Even if not permanently, maybe it would have given her the wake up call she needed but no, it didn't happen and she is a person I don't allow near our kids unless there absolutely no way to avoid it.

    I am so sorry for this child you spoke of (still a child?) if his/her mother really doesn't care. Again, like you said, she may just be trying to disocciate (well not exactly what you sai) in order not to feel that pain so directly and it is common for mothers in trauma to be seen as casual and aloof when inside they are the ooposite. Apparently, according to some, I was cool, calm and composed oh and aloof on the day I signed. But that was outward appearance only. No one could see the hole inside me trying to keep myself together. And for an hour after I signed, I couldn't bear to even look at Amber, the pain was just too much. But that didn't mean my love for her had dwindled, it was just that I was in agony.

    This may not be the case with this other child and yes, it would hurt unimaginably to be a child and to feel your mother doesn't care all that much. I can only imagine. And I also know adoptees who have been rejected by their mothers in reunion and it angers me to see their pain and I want to get in their mothers faces and give them what for.

    Thank you for stopping by to comment :)

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  8. Thnaks Cassi! Thank you for the inspiration too lol!! When I saw that quote, I was absolutely livid. Great find!! Sad to see this misconception is still being peddled around like some beacon for pregnant women.

    Again, thanks for the inspiration :) xxx

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