Thursday, June 5, 2008

Infertility and Adoption

(Originally posted at Wordpress on 10/3/07)

So many times, a couple who is faced with infertility comes to the conclusion that when modern technology fails, they will ultimately turn to adoption as a means to bring a baby into their lives.

But as an adoptee, I'd like to as you to indulge me a moment, to listen to a side of the story on why adoption may not always be the next step in the "family building" plan.

In adoption, everything is advertised, televised, played and swayed to the angle of the joy and happiness that it brings the adopting parents. It makes their dreams come true; it fulfills their wishes, it makes their lives complete.

But where in all of this family building and life completing are the adoptees' rights and needs considered? Adoptees are basically treated as objects of desire; as things to be gotten; a means to an end to fulfill a desire.

We are force-fed this notion that we were a gift; that we were "chosen", that we were lucky and loved so much by our natural mothers that she gave us away and that our adoptive parents loved us even more because they chose to take us in. We made their lives so complete and happy and we are just these little gifts from god and on and on and on.

It's a huge pair of shoes to fill, being sent from god himself. Better not screw up.

But let me fill you in on a little secret:

Adoption is not a win-win-win situation. Not in the least.

Adoption is, first and foremost, LOSS.

Loss for the relinquishing mother.

Loss for the infant.

The one who really gains is the adoptive parent, but even so, the child will always have that biological connection to somebody else, will never be fully "theirs".

You wouldn't put a tiger in your garage and call it a dog, would you? Of course not, that would be silly.

So why do people expect to take another person's child and call it "theirs"? It just doesn't work that way; nature cannot be fooled.

And yet we continue on with this "adoption is wonderful" cycle, offering up babies to the adoption altar in the name of curing infertility.

But you know what?

Biology matters, and you know it's true.

Why do infertile couples spend so many years, so much money on fertility treatments? Because the WANT a CHILD of their OWN. Biology MATTERS.

And adopted kids know that, they know they are Plan B, the second choice. You can deny it all you want, but if it weren't the truth, why wasn't adoption the first choice?

And even after all that trying, all that money, all that extreme heartache and pain of not being able to conceive your own biological child, can you not now imagine that same pain and realize that this child you hope to adopt, also feels the same way about wanting to be with his or her natural family?

That the pain you feel in being unable to conceive, is only the tip of the iceberg of the pain a relinquishing mother feels when she hands over the child she brought into the world?

That the pain you feel in being unable to conceive, is only the extreme tip of the iceberg of the pain an newborn infant feels, when he cries for his mommy and SHE NEVER COMES?

Newborn babies are not born into the world, hoping and praying to be given away to some strangers, so that they can make their dreams come true. These little newborns that are growing in your heart, only want their mommy, the one and only person they know, they love, she is their world. This separation in the name of "family building" causes unspeakable trauma to the infant; and the really sad part is, this poor little child does not have the words or the capability to express his sadness.

You might call it colic; when he is really screaming, where is my mommy?

Or, he may seem like an extremely good baby; he has given up, has resolved himself to the sad fact that mommy is never coming back. That's a sad reality, folks, just try to imagine yourself as a tiny baby, not knowing where you are or who you are with, and the one and only person you want - your mother - has vanished.

That's got to be a terrifying feeling indeed.

Adoption. It is not win-win, it is not the natural answer to infertility.

I just hope some of you readers will think about this.

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