Archive for May, 2006

SILVERDOVE’S LETTER TO MY BIRTHMOTHERI

May 31, 2006

I am a birthmother. I am also very proud to be Amy’s “surrogate” or substitute birthmother until such time as she connects with her own. I hope that she will not be too self-conscious or modest to print this.I met Amy through an email list primarily for birthparents – Concerned United Birthparents. The depth of her compassion for others on the list never ceases to amaze me. What mother would not drool at finding such a wonderful daughter…and as a bonus, two adorable granddaughters!!! How I hope that someday Amy’s mother will be reign in these treasures. I have worked with reuniting adoptees and birthmothers for nearly 30 years and know well the pain reunification can cause, especially for a birthmother who has remained in denial and/or has not shared with a current spouse and/or other children. The fear, the shame, the guilt all coming crashing to the surface when our surrendered children make contact with us, seemingly our of the blue. It can be very overwhelming and put id very off kilter – make us feel very out of control, invaded and violated.That is why it so good that there are support groups like CUB to help birthmothers in that situation. Many have found the comfort of others who have been faced with the identical situation and learned how others have managed it. For many of us, finding CUB or a local support group, was the first realization that we were not the only person in the world who ever gave a child up for adoption! On top of dealing with a horrendous and often traumatic loss… It is complicated by never being recognized socially and therefore having no outlet for what is known as “healthy” grieving. Many of us do what we have told to do – go on “as if” nothing ever happened and build a “new life” and often do not even tell spouses. And we certainly fear telling any subsequent children…what would they think of us?Surprisingly, hundreds of us have gotten through these seemingly insurmountable obstacles and found love and support from family, children and friends all of whom were actually delighted for us to be reunited! Amy’s Mom…if you are out there… Know that Amy is worth every effort on your part..and know too that she is an intelligent, sensitive, caring person and would honor any limits you placed on her knowing you. If you would like to speak with me personally, you may do as at silverdove@comcast.net.Until then, I will continue to reap the joy and pleasure of my “surrogate” daughter Amy!

COOKIE SPEAKS – HER REUNION STORY

May 31, 2006

Here is another birthmother story. She was found by her son. I asked her to write about it and her emotions behind it. At the time that this was written, I had just been told that my birthmother refused contact with me. I was pretty devastated. I needed to hear that there was hope out there. I needed to believe that she just might change her mind later. I mean no disrespect at the term “birthmother” because they are now mothers just mothers.

It has now been over four months and still no change. I believe that she might just be lurking out there. Hopefully she reads these women’s courageous stories. Its funny when birthmothers come out of the closet. They come blasting out. I for one love them passionately for it. So enjoy and God willing heal. Here is Cookie’s story. Her blog is http://cookiespeaks.blogspot.com/ If you want to read more of her stuff. She is a great read.


As we age, many of the events which we experienced in years past, meld and blur and if we remember them at all, they may be hazy, indistinct memories. However, some life-altering events stay crisp and clear and can be recalled in a flash with such exquisite clarity that as we allow ourselves to recall them we almost transport ourselves back to that place and time. Each detail is etched into our brains and even to begin to go back to that time can fill us with powerful emotions. The days surrounding my son’s relinquishment, though quite distant in time, and most fairly fuzzy in my memory, evoke some very distinct memories. There is a also a great deal about that time, that perhaps mercifully is still buried, and may never surface. It was bar none the most painfully excruciating time in my life – nothing else comes close. For me, the night I heard that my son was searching for me was also one of those rare and powerful moments.One warm California evening, as I walked in the back door to our home, my husband shoved a phone into my hand announcing, “It’s for you”. From the second I took the phone, I had an unexplained, but uneasy feeling about the call. A soft, gentle matronly voice came on the phone and began with, “You don’t know me, but, I am calling from _____(the city where the adoption agency my son was relinguished to was located)”. I felt my chest constrict and I nearly gasped as I stiffened and fear began to pump through me. Next, she asked me if my maiden name was____. “Yes,” I slowly replied with a question in my voice. Then, she told me why she was calling. “I am a social worker and your son is searching for you.”Okay, I did say that I remembered the event with great clarity, but, I have to tell you I do not recall what I said after that. Actually, I don’t think I said anything. I was so stunned, I hadn’t a clue what to say. Sarah, the SW just kept talking I believe. “Write down my name and phone number” she instructed me. Then she told me that while he wanted to be in touch with me; it was my decision. She suggested that I take a few days to think about what I wanted to do and then call her back and let her know what I had decided. I finally found my voice and firmly said, “No, I will call you back tomorrow.”As our phone call progressed, I walked into our bedroom and sat on the end of the bed so that we could talk privately. After our call was completed, I hung up the phone and just sat on the bed for a few minutes almost frozen and numb. This may be hard for Amy to hear, but, I had spent a lifetime worrying about someone “finding out” that I had another son, a son that I had given away and not raised. “Given away” is no longer the politically correct term, but, that was how I experienced it, that’s how it felt to me. I was deeply ashamed that I had not kept my son and raised him. No one was ever supposed to know what I had done. In nearly 32 years, I had never told a solitary soul – children- husbands, no one. I toyed with the idea of telling a few people that I had become close to over the years, but, I couldn’t bear to take the risk. The fear of how they would see me – with certain loathing and disgust – was such a scary proposition. So, I kept all my feeling buried about my son and his adoption. Allowed myself to think of him as seldom as possible. To survive his loss, it was the only way that I knew how, not to think of him.Until the night I was found.Still mute and resting nearly frozen on the end of our bed I sat, then suddenly, I had a desperate need to move, to do something, anything. Needed to somehow try to normalize my current situation. I jumped up and slowly plodded across the grass and walked up the steps to my garden. On my way out of the house, my husband caught a glance at my ashen face and asked me if everything was okay. I lied and said that it was. Once I reached the garden, I grabbed the hose and began watering, it was a “normal” nightly activity for me and I thought it might help bring me back to reality. I couldn’t think, I was in shock and felt almost disoriented as in a trance. After about 2 minutes, my composure shattered and I knew this was not destined to be a “normal” summer evening for me. It was anything but “normal” or usual. And then, I knew that I couldn’t hold all those years of buried love and longing for my son in for an instant longer. As I threw down the hose and headed back across the lawn, the tears were by now streaming down my cheeks in a torrent.I walked into the house and found my husband and told him that I had something to tell him and that he’d probably hate me after I told him. By now, I was sobbing, choking and barely coherent as I began to explain what the phone call had been all about. I blurted out, “I had another son many years ago and I gave up him for adoption”. Still sobbing, my husband reached over and took me in his arms and told me that it was okay, that I was very young when it had happened and that we would get through this. Next, he asked me what I wanted to do and I said that I had to be in touch with my son. There was no question in my mind – I felt that I had failed him once so many years ago and now no matter what, if he wanted or needed to know me now, I could not refuse his request. And finally, I knew too that being in touch with him was also what I wanted and needed.After my husband had been told, I explained to him that I needed some time to think. Then, I began to allow all those feelings that had been so buried for so many years to surface. Actually, I didn’t really have much control, no control really, the emotions just all began to bubble up. Like a shaken champagne bottle suddenly uncorked – my buried feelings then spewed out. Comparing my emotions to an erupting volcano is also appropriate. On that night, my son suddenly became “real” to me – “my son” – I hadn’t even allowed myself to think of him in that way. He was someone else’s son – I thought he had been delivered to them as a blank slate – and would take on their traits and personality – and be theirs, exclusively, not mine in any way. I believed that – needed to. I knew nothing about his life from the time I left the hospital when he was days old. And now, nearly 32 years later, a stranger pronounced that he was “my son”. I began to go back in time and all the corresponding feelings came back too – the good and the bad. First, I recalled how deliriously happy I had been when I was pregnant with him and how much I loved my son as he grew inside my expanding stomach. I remembered how excited and eager I was to be a mother again and how much I was looking forward to my baby being born. All babies have always been dear to me, but, none more so than my own. I looked forward to cuddling and rocking and enjoying my new little one. It was not to be.Next, I remembered being in the hospital and being afraid to even see my son, worried that I wouldn’t be able to go through with giving him up. And last, I remembered being back at home after my son was born – without him. So, on the night I was found, all those feelings came rushing back – the love I had felt for my son – the eagerness to be his mother and care for him – the devastation of leaving the hospital without him – and all the dark days afterwards when I knew that I did not have my baby with me and would probably never see him again. My son is 36 years old now and the tears still flow when I remember that time. Tears are falling even now as I type and remember. That is just how significant losing a baby is – we don’t forget, get over it or ever completely heal – our loss is too profound – like none other. We can and do go on and some of us manage to lead full and happy lives – but there is always something that lingers to remind us from time to time – and it is dark, horrible and exceedingly painful beyond belief when it comes to us.Never in one night have I had a wider range of varying emotions to deal with – and in the days to follow, there was more of the same and other new emotions erupted as well. As that evening continued, I was taken aback by the love for my son that came flowing back into my consciousness. I thought I had snuffed it out – I wanted to, it hurt too much to acknowledge it or that he was really my son. One phone call undid all my efforts to sever our bond and pretend that it did not matter. And then, I “got it” – I finally understood what losing my son really meant – how significant it was – and I knew it mattered more than I had ever been able to admit to myself. The hardest part of the whole evening was when it finally hit me – he was my beloved son – I gave him away – and I loved him so much that I should have found a way to have kept him. I finally understood that the bond between a mother and child is so sacred, strong and everlasting – that it should never be broken unless it is an absolute necessity. That overwhelming revelation finally sank it and all that I have discovered from other mothers who have lost children to adoption only cements my opinion about the harm that severing that bond causes. That maternal bond matters and yet we dismiss it way too easily and allow it to be severed and disregarded. And for what? To fill the hole another woman has. Makes no sense to me any longer.As that solitary night wore on, with the stunning guilt and grief also came excitement and joy at the thought of finally getting to know my son. After I began to believe and accept that he was my son – and always had been, I became eager and joyous at the thought of being in touch with him. What did he look like? Where was he? Was he happy? Was he married? What would he think of me? What would be be like. Most of all, I hoped that he had his father’s heart.On that first night, when I was told that my son was searching, I felt bountiful joy, profound sadness, deep regret, self-loathing, high excitement, powerful fear, terror, numbness, confusion, love, longing – and I am certain that there are probably others I have missed. Enough conflicting feelings to dramatically affect even the strongest of people. That entire night was surreal to me. Everything else that had occurred in my life up to that point paled in comparision – that single night was nearly as dramatic as originally losing my son had been.It began my healing though – and as hard as that night was – and the first few years of my healing as we reconnected – finally getting to know my son has been one of the best experiences of my life. Ever since he found me, I wake up thankful that I can finally love and know him and let him know that I love him – always have and always will.I needed to be found and luckily my son was courageous enough and wise enough to find me and let me into his life and heart. Too many women do not understand how much peace reunion can add to their hearts and lives. They see only the disruption to their lives and the chore that building a relationship may be. Reunion is not for the weak; it is an enormous challenge. However, I feel grave sadness for women unable to take the risk. A life without the burden of all those lies and secrets is so much lighter. Releasing your demons is freeing. And above all else, living a life build on truth is a real life, not a facade of a life which masks pain, sadness and regret. Reunion is no magic panacea, but, it is a good beginning and I feel the best way for someone in a closed adoption to begin to heal and find some peace.
Thursday, January 26, 2006


JEANNIES STORY PART I

May 31, 2006

Here is Jeannie’s story of her reunion with her daughter. Her daughter appeared on her front porch one fateful Sunday afternoon. It is also her story of relinquishment. The story is about all of that and the road to reunion. It is usually bumpy road. I thought it was beautiful and very poignant. What I wouldn’t give to have something like this. I am hoping that my birthmother is lurking out there in the blogworld. I hope she reads this one and the many birthmother blogs out there as well.

My belief ws/is that I signed away my rights to my child. To me this meant that I did not have the right to know her or to ever search for her. I believed that I did not have the right to interfere in her life EVER, no matter how old she was. However, I never believed that she did not have the right to search for me, to know me, and to ask me any questions and get honest answers. I signed away my rights, my baby, my child, my daughter signed nothing! I did not believe that I had anonymity nor did I even care if I did. I always believed and still believe that the adoptive parents were the ones with anonymity… to protect them from me. Having said this I can tell you that the adoptive parents knew my name, first and last , from the day they adopted my baby. My name was boldly printed on this adoption decree which they gave to my daught at some point in her life. My baby went home with them the same day that I left the hosptial. This was a private adoption handled through my OB/GYN and some lawyer.

My daughter was born when I was 19. I became pregnant after having sex with a guy that I knew casually. I had sex with him once. I never told him that I was pregnant. I did not want to marry him and I thought if I told my parents who the guy was they would try to involve him and/or push for marriage. I never told my parents who the guy was. On a Sunday afternoon, my doorbell rang. First of all I am not home that often because I own a business and have another job too. My neighborhood has no sidewalks so it is not the kind of place where people walk up to your door. I don’t know my neighbors well, so they would not come over. Anyone that I know would call before they came. So it was unusual for my doorbell to ring and unusual for me to be at home on a Sunday afternoon. But I guess it was meant to be because I was home for this most fateful day.

I opened my door to an attractive young woman and a very pretty little girl. I remember thinking what? are they late trick or treaters?, selling magazines or what? so I opened the storm door and said “Can I help you?” The woman seemed to look at me, heistate just a second and the said “Can I talk to you?” I said sure go ahead. Again she hesitate and looked at me quizically And so I said, ” Do you mean inside?” and she said,”Yes.” So I said, “Well I don’t know you so I’ll come outside and talk to you.” I stepped out on the porch and said, “Okay what can I do for you?” She said,”Well, I don’t know how to say this., so I just will,. Di you have a baby on ***, at *** Hospital ? I think I immediately fell into a state of shock. I said, “yes”, but it probably came out like a squeek. And she said, ” Well, I think I am her.” I reached for her, wrapping my arms around her, with tears inmy eyes, and said “I’ve prayed for this day. ” And then I said, “Yes, come in, come in.” My daughter was 35-1/2 at this time, and my granddaughter was *. My daughter and granddaughter came into the front hall and I went running to hind my husband who had been working in the garage, he was just coming into the kitchen. I was crying now and in a state of disbelief. I said,”Oh, you won’t believe it, you just can’t believe, my child, my baby, she’s heare!” At that point, I realized that I left them in the hall and went back to get them and bring them into the family room. At this point, I still thought that I was the only one hurt by lsoing my baby. It did not occur to me that my baby had been hurt because everyone said ” everyone acted like a baby was just a blank state and all the baby needed was a nother and a father to love them. “

At the time of my daughter’s birth, I never saw her and did not know her sex. I played right into their hands as that’s just what they wanted, no problems. I thought (wrongly so) that if I didn’t know if I had a boy or a girl then I would never be able to attach a person to my loss and that it would be easier to forget. It wasn’t. Lossing my baby, literally, broke my heart. I have spent years being depressed, suicidal, and behaving in dangerous ways. I have suffered severe headaches, early hypertension, and irritable bowel syndrome among other things. But I can honestly say I have never been happier than I am today. , knowing my daughter and my granddaughter. It has not been easy. In four and half years we have had two to three years of silence on the part of my daughter. During her nonresponsive period, I kept in contadct through cards and letters via U.S. Mail. I also spent time finding support groups and attending conferences like CUB and AAC as well as online groups and local meetings with birthmothers. I read lots and lots, even B.J. Lifton’s “Memoirs of an Adopted Daughter on never ending quest to try to understand the adopted person. I think I succeeded to some degree. I went through all of the states of grief that were denied to me for thirty-five plus years. Knowing my daughter is a dream come true, a gift that I never envisioned having.

I guess I am doing the same thing through all my birthmother friends. Through them I find love and healing. Stay tuned for the next birthmother story.

JEANNIE’S STORY PART II LETTER TO MY DAUGHTER

May 31, 2006

Jeannie is a found mother for her daughter. I have removed the names to protect them. It is such a beautiful letter. Filled with so much love, caring, and deep respect for her child. I have to print it.

I feel that we have so many things to learn about each other, so many unsaid things, and so many unknown experiences. I have three things that I’ve been longing to say to you. I’ve wanted to say these things alone, sitting next to you, holding your hands, holding you in my arms, looking into your eyes, but this time never seems to come.

These things are, first, that I love you. I love you now, I loved you then when we were one, and I loved you all the time in between. I also want to tell that I’m sorry. Sorry, that I was given no choice, but to leave you at the hospital to go home with people you did not know. You knew my voice, you knew my smell, you knew my soul, and I knew yours. Yes, you had a “good” life, but you started out abandoned by everything that was known to you. I am sorry. I am sorry that my mother was closed to my needs and yours. I am even more sorry that thirty-five years later, she was still closed to both of our hearts. I cannot excuse her for this nor can I forgive her.

Finally, I want to say thank you. Thank you for finding me, but more importantly thank you for wanting to find me and having the strength and courage to ring my doorbell that fateful Sunday afternoon almost two years ago. Meeting you was a joy so wonderful that it’s difficult to express in words. I thought my heart would burst with love for you. I thank you for giving me the freedom to say,”Yes I have a child. I have a daughter. A beautiful, loving, smart, successful daughter, who is also a mother.” I thank you for giving me the freedom to comprehend that I am a mother, your mother. I gave birth to you, you are my daughter, this is your birthright, this is your heritage and no signing of papers, neither time nor distance can change this reality.

R***, meeting you and knowing you has helped me to like myself. I see so much of me in you. I like you. I like your personality. I like your drive. I like your courage and I like your sensitivity that you want to hide. I need you in my life and I want you in my life and I think you need me too. I love you and I hope that we can take one day at a time from this day foward and build a history together.

I keep you in my heart and mind everyday. It is a rare time when I do not think of you, hoping you are well and happy. My wish is that someday you will know the real me, come to know what’s in my heart and all it holds for you. Be safe, be happy, and keep me in your heart.

Wow pretty potent, beautiful and so very loving. What I wouldn’t give for one of these. Maybe this reaches her.

May 31, 2006


Well I have finally done it. Pictures of my family are finally on my blog. These pictures were taken at the Santa Rosa Roundup. The cowboys on the ranch usually wear the white shirts. The first picture is of my husband and my daughter. The second photo is of my daughter on Barlight. We found out that he is a little camara hogging. He made sure several times over that his handsome face was fully in the picture. I hope you like them.

I decided recently to do some birthmother stories especially the found birthmother stories. Just maybe if my birthmother is reading this blog she will realize that she is not alone out there. That is is no shame in knowing her daughter and her family. That is there is no reason for her to feel fear, shame or guilt. That the truth can really set you free and heal you in the process. Enjoy the pictures. This day was one that I was so very proud of my daughter. She rode in her first grand entry in the rodeo. The horse she is on is Barlight. I truly love that horse because he took such loving care of my baby. Hadley Barrett, the rodeo announcer, made a point of point her out in the arena not just once but twice.

FINALLY

May 26, 2006

I am still learning this picture thing. I think I finally got it though. I will be adding photos of me and my life to my blog. I hope you like. I have to thank Rhonda’s Ruminations because she helped me figure it out.

AN ADOPTEE’S LIFE

May 25, 2006

Yesterday, I got to go to east Texas. One of my jobs at the State Hospital is to take patients to a less restrictive environment. I went to this other hospital. It was so depressive. I can see why the patients intentionally start a fight to get moved back to our facility. Our hospital is light and airy. Its quiet and peaceful. It has a positive environment. The patients are given space to be themselves. I am actually quite proud of the hospital that I work at.

Whenever I get the chance, I do talk about adoption and its effects. I got the opportunity to ride with two older security officers. I knew without even asking that these two men who are in their late fifties and sixties that they would gladly accept a “love” child from their wives’ past. I sometimes think it is because they knew me but I think they actually would accept that child. Many older men would. I think not only has society changed but older people have as well. For the most part people accept that women have children and sometimes they do it out of wedlock. I have no doubt in my mind that my birthmother’s husband would accept me. I also have no doubt that my brothers would accept me as well. One of them is on his way to being a doctor. He will see cases of oddity, cruelty, and so forth. I think he would accept his mother having a child out of wedlock. To tell her that is another completely different story. How someone can be so paralyzed by their fear is beyond me. It seems that I will forever be plagued with facing people who hide from their own lies. It is usually lies that they have perpetrated against me. I will never understand the lies.

I am a typical adoptee. I am a control freak. I had people make decisions about me without my being able to do anything about them when I was born. People make those decisions now thinking that they are doing what is best for me. Even in my own search there are those that think that they know better especially when I have already been doing this for months. I have gotten clues and ideas from those who have searched and found. To me those are the people in the know. I am learning how to validate my own self without those who think they know better. I am learning to really think for myself. Of course I was already on this course. Have been for years. I see so much unfairness and cruelty in this world. Then I head back to my little life on the ranch and see tranquility and hope. That is where I get my joy from along with my children, my husband, and our pets. I get to bring joy to my family with pictures of my daughter taking great leaps into growing up. I was someone to be proud of before she rejectedme the second time. I am still that person. I am still the veteran, the mother, the daughter, the wife, the letter carrier, the security officer, the mental health worker, and many other things. So does her rejecting me change me? No not really. I am still those things and more. I am stronger than ever before. She is rejecting herself by rejecting me. In her rejecting me, she has just opened up my world to more wonderful possibilities. I really don’t need her because I have many other birthmothers who act in her place. I have a mother that rejoices in the fact that I am trying to change laws in adoption. She knows that current laws could affect her daughters and her granddaughters in a very detrimental way. Although I do have a sister that probably wants to know me, I act in her defense and any children that she might have. Although I have two brothers, I act in the defense of their potential children.

Today I stand in solidarity with my fellow adoptees and my birthmothers across this country. We are strong and we are growing in numbers. We will be heard. We will see to it that there is no shame in being women and children in this country. We will see to it that there is equal rights for all. For me, that means birthparents, adoptive parents, and adoptees will have access for their original birth certificate.

DEFORMERS

May 24, 2006

The last couple days I have been busy with work and kids. School will be out this week. So I have to make arrangements for day care. My sisters are already making plans for my children to spend time with them along with friends wanting time for them as well. I finally also get time with them and my husband. I do love going horseback with my husband. I will also be getting to the business of working on afghans. I am entering two of them in the Wichita Falls Ranch Roundup held around August 18th and 19th. One of which I will donate to the North Texas Rehab Center and one that is mine and refuse to sell.

Something that was recently brought to my attention. I said that I would write about it. We have groups that help us in our cause but they sometimes do it to the detriment. I am for access to original birth certificates. There is no settling for less. In doing so it creates separate tiers of adoptees. Usually the have’s and the have not’s. It is not right nor fair. For example, the new Massachusetts bill is one of those that sets it up just that way.

1.) Adoptees born before 1974 can receive their original birth certificates.
2.)Adoptees born after 1974 and 2008 can not receive their original birth certificates
3.) Adoptees born after 2008 can receive their original birth certificates.

I realize that some of these people feel that we must compromise. There can be no compromise on this. It is not right to give some adoptees their original birth certificate and others not. Adoptees feel for the most part that they/we are dirty little secrets that must be forever kept. I don’t think anyone realizes the negative effects this has on adoptees. It is a constant battle with negative feelings.

A blogging friend of mine puts it very eloquently in her three part series. For a birthparent to refuse contact, it means (in the mind’s eye of us as children) that we are rejects, unloved, unacceptable, unworthy, and meaningless. Emotionally and rationally we don’t feel that way. Another blogging friend said that it must hurt to be rejected again. Oh I am not denying it hurts. It hurts so bad that at times, the rage comes out full force. I want to prove to my birthmother that I am worthy, strong, intelligent, and important just as her sons, my brothers, are. Truth be known, I don’t need to do that. I am those and more. Just like my blogging friends are. All of us in the triad that I know are strong, healthy, and extremely intelligent. One thing that I have noticed with adoptees across this country and many others. We are strong, vibrant, and extremely crafty and intelligent. We have had to fight to be.

Groups like the NARAL, Planned Parenthood, NOW, and ACLU feel the need to protect the “privacy” of the birthparents. In the Doe vs. Sunquist case in Tennessee, a supreme court judge ruled that the right to privacy was meant to protect people from governmental intrusion. Whose lives are suffering from government intrusion? Its not birthparents and not adoptive parents. Its the adoptees. We deserve our original birth certificates. Its our birth that it records. It doesn’t belong to birthparents nor adoptive parents. I am quoting something from BASTARD NATION:

Identity Information is a civil right. It is a civil right of all citizens to be able to obtain the original government documents of their birth. A civil right by its very nature cannot be compromised. A civil right belongs equally to all members of a society.

Yet here we are. Adoptees are being kept from their original birth certificates because of secrets. Secrets perpetrated by our society. Shame instilled into the women of yesteryear. Adoptees are denied their rights based on what they “might” do if they were restored that right. It is unjust for the laws of this country to deprive one group of their rights in order to protect others from having to face the consequences of their past choices. I know that I have had to face the choices of the past. Why are birthparents allowed that freedom? A criminal is not even given that right. It is also wrong and unjust for a government to uphold a promise made between private citizens especially when a third party’s rights are taken away by such a promise. Too me that sounds like slavery.

We as adoptees cannot accept less. We are the only group that have done nothing yet we have to pay for the consequences of those that created us. I know that I want to be acknowledged as someone’s child. I deserve that right. If my brother-in-law’s birthmother can step up and own up to her choices, then by God so can many others.

NCFA – RIGHT WING EVIL INCARNATE

May 20, 2006

Last night was one of the best nights possible. My daughter was in the grand entry for the rodeo. This was her first time. The announcer pointed her out twice in the process. I was just squealing with delight especially that of a proud mama. Too bad my birthmother could not have seen her. She would have been so proud of her granddaughter. Last night her daddy was teaching her how to lope a horse. I have pictures of it and I sent it to all my friends and family.

I am also hoping that I have a new friend joining me on this blog. I hope she likes what I write. It was a bold step for me to take. Opening my life to one person on this ranch. Most people here don’t know what I am doing or what I am fighting for. If they knew the truth about the NCFA and its cronies. They would be totally shocked.

Ahhhh the National Council for Adoption put out the Adoption Factbook. I have just skimmed through it. I found so many lies that it was almost funny. It still angered me at the same time. The first thing that I looked at was the registries. They have their information about Indiana wrong. It initially stated that an adoptee could find their birthfather even if the birthmother didn’t want contact. That was false. My birthfather, my birthsister and I can not make contact because my birthmother refused contact from me. All of her information to include him and my sister is under her name and her name only. I tried using the law that allowed contact with pre-adoptive siblings. They are listed as just supposed. Birthfathers were not allowed much rights back at the time of my birth. My birthfather was a married man at the time of my birth. The state of Indiana has also been sued because of the naming of birthfathers who were not the father.

The next thing was the terminology used in the triad. They consider the word “sdoptee” a bad term. They say a person who was adopted is better. Well to them I say “I AM PROUD TO BE AN ADOPTEE OR EVEN BETTER BASTARD!!” They don’t like the term “natural parents” because it may make the adoptive parents seem unnatural. They don’t like the term “biological parents” because it refers to egg and sperm. First Parents is a term that they approved of. They also like birthgivers as a term for birthparents.

They also state “only a minority of individuals ever instigates the search for their birthparents or adopted children.” Gee Have they seen the registry at adoption.com? They have over 300,000 on their registry. I have heard that the ISRR registry has over 1,000,000. I know that my search specialist has done several hundred. This same person makes the wise crack about his own adopted daughter. “I wish she had done it before she went to college and law school and before she got married because if she had ben successful, I could have asked her birthparents to help financially with these expenses.”
This man and his family also had the birthparents information. Many members of the triad do not have this information. Because of people like this, many of us won’t. He further states “Recognizing the rights to confidentiality, most states have laws sealing adoption records. The essential purpose is to protect the anonymity of those who make up the adoption triad.” It was initially established to protect the adoption triad from public scrutiny, not from themselves. Its not the public’s right to know what happens inside a single family. The right to privacy is not about keeping secrets from family members. It is about the right to be free from government intrusion.

There is one story that is in this factbook that I know it has to be false.

“There are always exceptions of course. One extraordinary case I will always remember came about when I received a call from a clergyman requesting that I speak to a husband and wife regarding a personal dilemma relating to adoption. When we met, I learned that this couple who now had two children in their twenties, had a child while they were in their late teens, before they were married. Based upon their circumstances then, they had chosen to place that child up for adoption. They subsequently married and went on with their lives, having two additional, biological children with whom they were now living with. Now some thirty years later, a contact had been made with the client husband by a young woman who indicated that she had done a search and thought that he may be her birthfather. She was not aware that this individual was now actually married to the birthmother. The birthparents had never revealed their teenage episode to their two other children and they felt that it was an intrusion into their life. All I could do was to explain the legal ramifications, that they had no legal obligation to acknowledge the relationship. I advised them that ultimately each person must do personally what he feels is right and proper for himself. To the best of my knowledge, the couple negated any relationship and did avoid further contact with the woman.” This story came straight from the Adoption Factbook III. I find this very hard to believe. They would love their last two children and not love their first. Not wonder how that child was doing. To me that would have serious effects on their marriage and their relationship with their two other children. OH the lies that these people at NCFA perpetrate.

This is also the same group that recommends taking out their credit card with MBNA, taking loans out against the retirement accounts of prospective parents, mortgage their homes, and any other way to adopt a child. With The Gladney Center, Bethany Adoption Services and LDS adoption services, these people charge on the average of $50,000 per child.

These people have pushed very conservative laws into place. In South Carolina, there is a law that allows for drug testing women suspected of drug abuse. What is the criteria to test women for drugs? I think it just might be the financial status of the mother. If she is poor then she must be a drug user. That way they can get the child and put it up for adoption. They also discourage a single woman from raising her child. They give statistics like you will be 16 times more likely to abuse her child. If she eventually marries a man, it might be 20 times more likely that he will be abuse the child. They use the fact that she is poor against her. She can’t provide for her child properly. They think that we should dispose of the idea of family preservation. In other words, provide ways for a woman to keep her child. They also try to make a woman feel shame for just having sex. They do everything that they can to verbally criminalize a woman in order to get her child. Many of the anti-adoption crowd believe its prospective adoptive parents that push this supply and demand but it is the money behind all of this. Who gets the money? The adoption agencies get that money. A friend of mine told me to follow the money. That is exactly what I have done. Every one in the adoption triangle (a term that this group doesn’t want used because it would indicate sharp hurtful points in the system) gets hurt in many ways.

UNSAVORY TACTICS CONTINUED

May 18, 2006

Last night I went to a rodeo here in small town Texas. I was supposed to ride in the parade but my horse was acting up and I felt that I would not be able to handle him in it. Usually I don’t go to these events because of weird circumstances on the ranch. Its another story not really worth mentioning. I got to visit with one of my best friends on the ranch. I had gotten a book from another dear friend. She wrote the book and its very good so far. Its called the Dark Side of Adoption. If anyone has access to it, its a definite good read. It was written by one of the prominent movers and shakers in the Concerned United Birthparents Organization. Her name is Marsha Riben. I have really enjoyed reading this book. She is such an eloquent writer. She has been involved in this movement for open adoption records and adoption reform. I showed my buddy the book. I also told her the update or lack of one in my search. Later last evening we were discussing her pregnancy and what she wanted in her afghan. I make afghans for friends who are pregnant. She told me this story. I had hoped that this was false when I first heard about it in a research study done by the Alan Guttmacher Institute. Their website by the way is http://www.guttmacher.org . That should get you to the site and from there you can find the study. I reported on it back in January in my blog: http://amyadoptee.blogspot.com/2006_01_01/amyadoptee_archive.html. I had hoped that this kind of thing wasn’t true but again I was wrong. The ultra conservative think tanks in this country are now creating public policy at the detriment of families, women and children. Back to my story. She went in there to get a verification for her pregnancy for Medicaid. This is a pregnancy crisis center for women. She is married with one child. She was forced to watch a video on anti-abortion. She was asked three times if she wanted to give her child up for adoption. This was done in front of her husband and child. She was also asked her religion. When she told them that she was Mormon, they asked her if that was a Christian religion. This was done through volunteers. She wasn’t even told that she was pregnant until after all of this. She knew that she was already but that is besides the point. She even asked why the other options were not given equal representation. Parenting her child and abortion weren’t even mentioned. If this is happening in a small town in Texas, what is happening in big cities? Is it happening to rich women as well? Or is it just what is perceived as “poor?” If this could happen to her, what about other women? What if she wasn’t the strong women that she is? What if she had been intimidated? That is what is so scary about all of this.

One of those ultra conservative think tanks is the Heritage foundation. I presented one article from their website to read. I think you ought to read these as well. They are ten years old but they now reflect what is going on now. Http://www.heritage.org/Research/Family/BG1115.cfm.
Http://www.heritage.org/research/welfare/bg1032.cfm.
These people advocate orphanages. They also support drug testing for suspect drug abuse in pregnant women. Any woman who is poor would be suspect is something I can guarantee. In fact there is one state that has this policy already in place. That state is South Carolina. They also advocate the requirement for federally funded family planning services to provide clear and accurate information on the benefits of adoption to all out-of-wedlock teenage mothers. They also advocate for closed adoptions saying that it undermines the adoptive parents’ bond with the child and the creation of a permanent new family for the child. It makes the child confused. How do they know? Have they talked and researched at length open adoption? Its my opinion and many many others that all this “closed record” business serves is to cover the unscrupulous activities of the adoption agencies that are associated with the National Council for Adoption. I wonder if this family planning clinic associated with Gladney, Bethany or LDS.

Again I state history on the confidentiality issue. Birthparents wanted confidentiality from their communities not from their children. Closed adoption were created to protect the rights of adoptive parents to keep birthparents from interfering. Records were also closed to remove the stigma of “illegitimacy.”

Adoption is a necessary function in our society. It just needs to be reformed to allow truth and honesty. Adoption agencies should be held accountable for the costs that they incur and impose on prospective adoptive parents. Charging $50,000 for a child and then telling the adoptive parents that they can get a charge card to help finance the adoption, use tax cuts, mortgage their home and borrow against their 401K plan. Its wrong. It screws everyone involved in the adoption process.