Archive for July, 2006


July 29, 2006

Interesting title for a post but today and tomorrow that is what I feel. Tomorrow is my 41st birthday. My birthday is something that is sort of an oddity for me or at least in the past it was. Last year my mom sent me a dozen white roses. It brought me to tears. Yes I want my family to celebrate it but this year I hate it. Just plain hate it. I spent yesterday being weepy. I will probably be weepy today and tomorrow.

Right now I want to punch a wall. Scream at the top of my lungs. Throw all kinds of crap. Scream some more. I want to destroy something but I can’t. I have to watch what I say and do around my children. I can’t throw a major hissy fit like I want. I have to be an adult.

I don’t know how many times I have read those transcripts. The very first time I read it. I was hurt by the way she placed her sons over me. I got the impression that she felt women were not important or useful. As I read it again, I saw the fear. I asked myself, “how can I have such a coward for a mother?” Here I have fought in a war time situation. I have taken on the good old boy system here in Texas for years. I was a city carrier for the Postal Service. That job is tough on men yet I did the job. My parents never allowed me to hide or keep secrets. It just wasn’t acceptable in my family. Whatever action I caused, I had to face the reaction for it. I too have faced abuse by a father. Only difference with my father is that alcohol made that happen. He realized his mistakes before he died. He made amends to all of us in his own way. His mission on earth was through. He and I were friends because he worked for Fed Ex and UPS and I worked for the Postal Service. He understood the problems that I faced with the cruelty of the Postal Service management. I faced some tough ones. I came out ahead. I thank those people because they made me stronger. They didn’t defeat me. Yet she is a defeatist.

What really ticks me off even more as I began to search I talked to many many birthmothers. I made sure that I understood. I made sure that I would not back away from her. That I would stand strong and care for her if all the memories came rushing. I made sure that I could help her. Even though I had friends to back me, I never bothered to take care of me. I never bothered to acknowledge my feelings or emotions in this. How can I really take care of myself when all that I did was prepare for her? I can’t even begin to imagine not acknowledging my daughters. Neither can any member of my family, my birthparent friends, or my adoptee friends. I have said before she is rejecting herself by rejecting me.

She worries about the rejection of her husband and her sons. She never worries about my rejection after all that she has said. She never seems to worry truly about my hurt, the chaos created by her rejection. All she says is that she is sorry. Yep she is sorry. She never thinks about the possibility about her sons rejecting her because she failed to tell them about me. That they have a brother in law and two nieces along with an older sister.

I can’t do anything about all of this because I have done all my searching possible at this point. I can help others search. I can help others with the pain of adoption. In that I find solace. So here’s to Happy Screw You Day.



July 25, 2006

Well I went to the OB/GYN doctor that I was referred to. First off his waiting room was filled with lots of pregnant women. I noticed the chairs all had stains on them. It was a superficially clean area but dirty below the surface. That should have been the first clue.

The nursing staff gets me in pretty quick. They check my blood pressure, for some unknown reason they check my urine, and they get my weight. I won’t even begin to mention what that was. They sent me back to the waiting area. I sat there for about 45 minutes. I finally get back to a small room. They ask me to remove my cloths waist down. I sit there for another thirty minutes. Second clue, never keep an partially dressed female waiting. As I wait, I notice the equipment. There is a microscope on a stand and of course the lamp. On the counter, is a triangular shaped something that sure as heck isn’t a speculum. At least not one that I have ever seen There are two small lab containers, three cotton swabs, and three other containers. Container one is a clear jar with a blue lid. The other two containers are small glass containers. Remember the specimen jars from your old high school science labs? Yea those. In one of them is a clear yellow liquid. Its label is old and faded. The other container had a black and light tan separated liquid something. Again a faded and old label. Both of these solutions were not sanitary. I picked up the black/tan separated liquid jar. It was crusty around the bottom of the lid. I realize that they are going to use these things on my body. This was the third clue.

The doctor walks in and wants to immediately get to this procedure. I told him hold on. I wasn’t going to go through this procedure again. I have done it several times in the past. Its funny doctors like this quack always tell that it won’t hurt. I wanted so badly tell him off. How would you like it if someone stuck something up your dick and then using the solution that you planned for me to be used on you? I have a funny feeling that jerk would be backpeddling with the quickness. I told him that I wanted a radical hysterectomy. I had read on the Mayo Clinic web site that this is the treatment of cervical cancer if it returns. He proceeds to patronize me with how I didn’t know what I was talking about. That we had to approach this in steps. I said no because I had already been through this. He then threatens to write in my record that I refused treatment. HaHaHa like that is really going to stop me or change my mind. He asks me to go into his office to speak with me. I get dressed and go in there. After waiting another five minutes on this jerk, I left. I didn’t want to go about this in a long drawn out manner. I went and got gas for my truck. I spoke with two women. I got another name. I was also told that this same doctor let a woman miscarry nine times because he refused or didn’t want to acknowledge a simple medication would have solved the problem. I have heard that he is the worst OB/GYN in Wichita Falls. I can’t even begin to imagine the damage he would have done to me. I could see my family doctor taking six months to get me back to where I was when I started this procedure. What is really bad is that my family doctor referred me to him. I can’t even begin to fathom why my doctor didn’t refer me to the Women’s Clinic. My new doctor is right next door to that clinic. Go Figure. Onto the states.



The adoptee, the birth parents, and adult birth siblings.


All medical and genetic information is provided to the adoptive parents at the time of the adoption.


The state registrar of vital statistics shall establish and maintain a confidential list of QUALIFIED adoptees, birth parents or adult siblings who have consented to release of their identifying information. Any consent shall indicate the person’s desired method of notification in the event a match occurs.

A birth parent shall not be matched with an adoptee without the consent of the other parent unless there is only one birth parent listed on the birth certificate
The other birth parent is deceased. The other birth parent is unable to be located by the department of health and welfare or by a licensed adoption agency after a search. (Oh what a crock of baby poop).


Only by court order and when all parties have consented through the State adoption registry.




Either birth parent, adoptee, adoptive parents, adult birth siblings (only if the birthparent is deceased)


The adoptive parents shall receive this information upon the finalization of the adoption. The adoptee shall receive the information upon request.


All parties must consent to release of indentifying information. All parties must be on the registry. For adoptions finalized after 1-1-2000 a copy of the birth certificate is provided through the adoption registry. All adoptions finalized prior to this must petition the court with proof of registration on the registry for the appointment of a confidential intermediary.


For adoption finalized before 1-1-2000 a copy of the original birth certificate is available only upon a court order.

For adoptions finalized after 1-1-2000 a copy of the original birth certificate is provided through the adoption registry.


Illinois Adoption Registry, Illinois Department of Public Health.

FINAL NOTE: Who decides which adoptee is more deserving of their original birth certificate? Here the older ones are discriminated against. What I don’t understand is older adoptees have maturity backing them up while the younger adoptees get the information. Explain that one to me because I don’t understand it. I guess its because we are the nasty little secrets of yesteryear. All adoptees age 18 and over deserve their original birth certificates. It is not up to the states to decide who is worthy or who is not.


July 22, 2006

Sorry folks have been a bit busy with work this week and health issues. I had a bad pap smear. So I have to go to a specialist on Monday. I am looking at another battle with cancer. So I will probably asking for a hysterectomy. Since I have two children and I have experienced this in the past, I hope the doctor will go along with it.

I am also including the U. S. Territories in my access to adoption records information series.



Adoption records are accessible only to persons or agencies that have a legitimate interest in adoption. (I wonder if adoptees are considered to have an legitimate interest in adoption>)


Social records may be furnished to persons and agencies having a legitimate interest in the protections, welfare, and treatment of the child or in RESEARCH STUDIES, in such a manner as the court determines.


Only available via a court order.


Only available via a court order


It is with the court that approved the adoption.



Health information may be provided to: The adoptee, the adoptive parent, and the adoptive minor’s guardian or custodian.

Adoption records may be accessed by: The adoptee, the adoptive parents, and the birth parents.

ACCESS TO NONIDENTIFYING INFORMATION: Basically health information is released. Adoption agencies are now required to get as much health information as possible. The agency may also get a confidential waiver signed by the birthmother in order to release her medical records.


Only available via a court order.


The adoptee can only get it via a court order but the birth parent can get a copy of it.


Family court central registry.


July 17, 2006



The adoptee and all other parties to the adoption.


The department or agency MAY release the information in its records to the parties of the adoption. (Keep in mind some states do not consider the adoptee a member of the party to the adoption).


Only available via a court order or if all parties consent when its deemed by the agency to be in the best interest of the adoptee. The only portion in case of a medical emergency that an adoptee can see is the medical portion relating to the illness.

During the adoption planning process, much of this information is exchanged. The adoptee can ask the adoption agency to assist them in locating the birthfamily. If the birthparent refuses no contact, the information is not released. If no declaration is made, the agency MAY release the birth parent or siblings current name, address, and telephone number to the adoptee.


The adoptee who is 21 and over may request a copy of the original birth certificate unless the birth parent has filed an affidavit denying release of identifying information.


Delaware Adoption Registry
The agency involved in the adoption.

District of Columbia:


This is not acknowledged in the laws reviewed


Again this is not acknowledged in the statues and laws reviewed.


No one is allowed access except under a court order.


The original birth certificate is a sealed record that can’t be open up without of a court order.


The adoption agency and the Child and Family Services Agency



The adoptee, the birthparents, the adoptive parents, birth siblings, and birth grandparents.


This is supposed to be given to the adoptive parents before the adoption becomes final. It will also be given to the adoptee upon his/her majority.


Both parties must authorize the release of information before it can be released. There is also a mutual passive registry. No one is required to sign up on the registry.


Only by court order.


Florida adoption reunion registry.



The adoptee, the birthparents, adult birth siblings, the children of the adopted person and the adoptive parents.


It must be done by written request via the adoptee or the adoptive parents. In this situation adoptee must be 18 or older to request information.


In this situation the adoptee must be 21 or older. The information can be released to the adoptee if the birth parent has submitted an unrevoked written consent. If there is none, the department shall within six months make a diligent effort to notify each birth parent, by personal and confidential contact, that a request for information has been made. The birthparent may then file a affidavit consenting or objecting to disclosure.

There is also an adoption registry within the state.


Only available by court order.


Georgia Adoption Reunion Registry.

More states later. Again it never ceases to amaze me how these state governments so own us. They must govern our every movement with our adoption records.


July 16, 2006


Who May Access the Information:
The adoptive parents of the adoptee
The adopted person
The adoptee’s children
The birthparent of the Adopted Person
Any welfare agency having custody of the adopted person

Non identifying information is available to the above listed persons. This information includes health, genetic, and social history of the child.

Indentifying information can be accessed by filing an affidavit with the adoption registry. After filing this affadavit, the administrator will process each to see if there is a match between the adoptee and the birthparents or other relatives. Both parties must receive counseling before they are matched.

Access to the original birth certificte is only available via a court order.

The information is located with the Arkansas mutual consent voluntary adoption registry and the licensed agency involved in the adoption.


Who has Access to the information:

The adoptee, the birthparent and the adoptive parent of a child who is under age 21

Non identifying information about the birthparent and adopted person is provided to the adoptive parents.

Mutual Access to Identifying Information

Both the adoptee and the birthparents must have signed consent on file. Then they can make contact. This also can be done through the adoption agency.

Access to the Original Birth Certificate:

Only available via court order.


Who has Access:
The adoptee, The birth parents, the adoptive parents, the adult child of the adoptee or the spouse, and The birthgrandparent with the consent of the birthparents

Access to non identifying information:

Prior to 9-1-99 access to the adoption record is available through a confidential intermediary.

Adoptions finalized after 9-1-99 all records shall be open to inspection by persons listed above.

Where is the information located:

Colorado Voluntary Adoption Registry
Colorado Confidential Intermediary Services
Child placement agency involved in the adoption.


Who has access to non Identifying information:

The adoptee, the adoptive parents, adult descendants

Who has access to identifying information:

The adoptee
Any birth parent
Any adult birth sibling
adult descendants

The non identifying information shall be provided to the adoptive parents prior to the finalization of the adoption
The birtparents may access the information at any time for the purposes of verifying, correcting or adding.

Mutual Access to Indentifying Information: Adoptees and birth parents must apply in writing or in person to the child placing agency the request of identifying information. Both parties have to give consent.

Access to Original Birth Certificate: Court ordered.

Who has the information: The department and each child placing agency involved in the adoption shall maintain the registries along with the Connecticut Department of Children and Families, Office of Foster and Adoption Services.

Between the have and have nots, those that know better, and mutual registries, when will we adoptees every be considered adults.


July 13, 2006

Sorry gang I just felt really crappy this last week. Not only did a friend die but I was having many of the same health issues. I now am on cholesterol, high blood pressure, and diuretic meds. If that isn’t a downer then I don’t know what is. I have been thinking about what to write these days. I have wanted to write about state laws concerning adoptees, birthparents, and adoptive parents. I also wanted to write about adoption agencies. I think I need to do some massive research on that one.

The states that have open laws: Oregon, New Hampshire, Alabama, Kansas, and Alaska. Alaska’s open records laws is for adoptees only. Birthparents cannot access the original birth certificate. One blogging buddy wrote recently that Oregon and New Hampshire have only 1% no contact vetos in their statistics. 99% of birthparents in those states want contact with their child. These states are also considering getting rid of these no contact veto portions of their open birth certificate laws.



The adoptive parents or guardian of the adoptee
The adoptee who is 18 or older
If the adoptee has died, the spouse who has custody of the adoptee’s children
The adoptee’s children who are 18 or older
The birthparents or other birth children of the birthparents




Tomorrow I will continue with the rest of the states information.


July 12, 2006

Okay today I am ticked off beyond my normal stuff. If you don’t want to be offended go somewhere else. I don’t know how long I will even have this up. All I know is that I pissed off and hurt.

I went in for my annual physical. I turn 41 in a couple of weeks. I guess this is my whining moment. I deserve it. So I am going to do it. My bladder is falling and the doctor wants to pin it back up soon. My shoulder has a torn rotator cuff. I have a polyp on my cervix. My cholesterol is through the roof ( thanks mom I really appreciate that one). I had a huge cyst removed from above my eye today. That process scared the crap out of me. I was not expecting to do it today. The lidocaine shots hurt like hell. My feet and hands are swelling badly. My doctor put me on a high blood pressure/diuretic combination today. I have been told by my Mom (the woman who raised me) that its either my heart or kidneys. My body is doing things that should be happen at age 65 not 41. I had a friend just die of a massive heart attack. Seems it is the season of it. A family doctor in the same building as my doctor had one and he died as well. My doctor took on his patients.

As I am now freaking out completely over my hands and feet, I think about it. Its a cold harsh realization. If I needed a blood transfusion or anything else, I honestly believe that my birthmother would just as soon as let me die than to help me. It would be one way of getting rid permanently rid of her dirty little secret. We all know how sympathetic the court system are to adoptees. WE are just a bunch of ingrates. They would let me die than to open my records to at least let my birthfather even help me. She wants to punish him as well as me. Heck I honestly believe she thinks girls are worthless compared to her sons. I don’t think its right for the government to control my birth certificate. My adoptive mom has even tried to get them opened up. You would think that too would weigh in. But it doesn’t. I am just shit out of luck. Well my mother and my husband will find her if I die. Like I said, I am very angry and hurt. It breaks my heart that she could just cast me aside like I am nothing.


July 10, 2006

I found this googling adoption. I think it is a good one. It was written in 2002. Enjoy!!

America’s Secret Crime Against the Family

by Jess DelBalzo

It is child abuse, slavery, and rape all rolled into one pretty package, marketed to wealthy infertile couples as the answer to all their prayers and forced upon unsuspecting members of the lower classes. It is an industry that earns $1.4 billion each year shamelessly promoting its product with no regard for the damage it is doing to children and their parents. Surprise! It is not the tobacco industry, nor is it a chemical company polluting our air and water. It is adoption, and it is toxic to America’s families.
Deemed a “loving option” by social workers, agencies, and anti-abortion crusaders, adoption puts children at risk for a myriad of psychological problems that range in severity. That may sound like love to the people who receive a portion of the $1.4 billion, but it should scream child abuse to anyone else. After all, parents can be prosecuted for child neglect over something as simple as a messy house. And in reality, adoption workers are guilty of more than neglect. Since the 1940s, professionals have known about the damaging effects of adoption on mothers and children. In fact, the Florence Crittenton Home brochure from 1942-1956 responded to suggestions of adoption with the statement, “Motherhood, and the love and care of a baby, strengthens the character of every girl who has the mentality to grasp it. As to the child: psychologists and social workers have learned that no material advantage can make up for the loss of its own mother.” In spite of their knowledge, the Florence Crittenton homes went on to become some of America’s biggest adoption proponents, once supply and demand made it more profitable to sever a mother’s rights and sell her infant to a wealthy but sterile couple.
The abuse that adoptees suffer throughout their lives comes in many forms. As infants, they are separated from the only person they have ever known: their mothers. They’re born into the world expecting the familiar scent of family and the warm voice that they grew accustomed to in utero, and instead they’re handed over to strangers masquerading as “mommy” and “daddy.” Because this severing of the world’s most natural bond occurs at a time in a child’s life when he is unable to communicate his emotions and experiences, it is a trauma that will stay with him into adulthood. Adopted people also report struggling with their identities, as the legal lie that they are “as if born to” their adopters works far better on paper than it does in the real world. Already a trying time for any young person, adolescence presents a special challenge for adoptees who lack knowledge of their heritage, family traits, and other critical factors for establishing one’s self. Perhaps this explains why adopted children are over-represented at both in and out-patient psychological treatment facilities.
As if it’s not bad enough that every adopted child is at risk for the complex psychological problems that seem to come with the territory, these children are also more likely to be physically or sexually abused. One fact that the adoption industry would love to ignore is that children are more likely to be abused by people other than their true parents. Perhaps we should evaluate this as common sense. Mothers especially have a primal instinct to care for their children and ensure the survival of their family trees. For true families, a baby is not valuable for profit but for the fact that he is living proof of a connection to the past and future. As parents, our instinct is to protect, rather than abuse something so precious and rare.
However, the abuse of the adopted child is not the only crime committed against him. Adoptees, stripped of their families, given new names and even falsified birth certificates, make up a new generation of slaves in America. In a society where the average cost of a private adoption is $60,000, agencies and social workers see infants only through the dollar signs in their eyes. The child’s welfare takes second place to the profit he can bring in; otherwise, parents would be informed of the risks of adoption before they could surrender their babies. Instead, children are sold like miniature slaves. Their birth records are altered to reflect the names of their purchasers rather than their parents, and their true birth certificate is sealed away. They are the only Americans who are denied the right to know their own name and the names of their parents.
Some are abused, tortured, or killed at the hands of those who claim to love them. Others, like the “fortunate” slaves of the 19th century, are treated well by their adopters. But we all know that once you’ve been stripped of your rights, taken from your family, and forced into an uncomfortable lie, there’s no such thing as being fortunate. In their adopter’s homes, children are the ones expected to do the care-taking, to compensate for the babies they couldn’t have, to fill a void in the marriage that’s gone stale, or to guard them emotionally from the harsh realities of the world. Adoption’s smallest victims become slaves to the lies that surround them and protectors of the only caregivers they have been granted. Denied knowledge of their true parents’ whereabouts, they have nowhere to run. And they know what’s expected of them: to be “as if born to” their adopters, to act out the role they were purchased to play.
Investigating why any parent would knowingly surrender their child to abuse and enslavement, we learn about a third crime in adoption. Since the 1950s, fathers have been exiled while mothers have been raped of their infants. Their bodies have been used as incubators, and once their purpose has been served, they are expected to fade silently into the shadows. The common defense of the rapist is the simple statement, “She asked for it,” and the same has been said of the woman who dared to experience her sexuality outside of marriage. Adoption is the punishment she “deserved” for getting caught in defiance of our puritanical ideals. A life-time of grief, regret, depression, and trauma to make amends for one night of passion (which could have just as easily been a physical rape itself). Used, abused, and discarded, these mothers have been raped of their children and their souls.
Unlike the victim of a physical rape, the mother of adoption loss is not permitted to grieve. She has been told, by the same “professionals” who spied her baby with dollar signs in their eyes, that she is doing the “best thing,” the only thing to do, and if she truly loved her baby she would do it. No one tells her what’s down the road for her, or for her child. No one mentions the grieving that both will endure. No one speaks about the immense gap that will fill their lives once they’ve been separated. Instead, she is told that she is “giving a gift” to an infertile couple, as if it is her responsibility to meet the demands of a barren stranger. Like something out of Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale, she is expected to quietly serve her purpose and promptly disappear.
The tactics that are used to rape the new mother vary. Without anyone to tell her otherwise, and wanting to fulfill her child’s needs, she may believe the social workers when they tell her about the “loving institution” of adoption. After all, they work in a helping profession, and wouldn’t they want to help her? She isn’t told how much money will change hands along with her precious child. If she does become suspicious or recoils at the idea of adoption, she won’t be left alone to care for her child. Instead, they will pressure her when she’s most vulnerable, when she’s just delivered and is groggy from labor or medication, when they lie and tell her that she can’t revoke the pre-birth consent that she signed, when they batter her verbally and accuse her of being selfish for wanting her own baby. Selfish! Yet the adopters, standing at the door with their wallets open, begging to take home someone else’s baby—they are regarded as saints.
Once a mother has been raped of her child by the adoption industry, her torture is just beginning. Every time she turns around, she’ll be reminded of society’s stereotypical “birth” mother; the drug-addicted, child-abusing tramp. In reality, she is none of the above. Yet, when reading the newspaper, she will be confronted with offensive language, labeling her a “birth” or “biological” parent, degrading her by tearing away her right to be regarded as her child’s true mother. Television shows will present sappy stories of happy adopters, and she’ll watch, knowing all the while that for every gloating adopter, there is a mother who grieves over the loss of her child. Mother’s Day will come and go, and while other mothers receive cards and home-made gifts from their children, she receives nothing. At the mercy of the adoption industry, she gave away all her love and has only heartache to show for it.
These raped mothers and their enslaved, abused children are secrets in America. To report on them is to damage a sector of our economy, an industry that earns $1.4 billion a year through coercion, dishonesty, and suffering. We don’t like to recognize that there are people in this world who put on the facade of a helper while working behind the scenes for their own benefits. We shy away from acknowledging pain and suffering, especially when it appears on the face of someone who “should” have gone on with her life. We are cowards when it comes to allowing the truth to disrupt an easier, fantasy life. But continuing down this path will only lead to further destruction of children and their families. We must prosecute those responsible for the crimes of adoption, and we must work harder to ensure that these abusive practices are discontinued. These secret crimes cannot be hidden forever at the expense of our mothers, fathers, and children. The adoption industry may be a money-maker, but the value of family cannot be measured in dollars and cents.

July 9, 2006

Is it me or are others seeing this trend? The courts are getting happy about taking children from their “poor” parents. I think for one thing its not right. This article shows just this. It is the courts fault that things took too long and the boy forgot his ” family.” In my mind this is not in the best interest of the child.

Mother loses 7-year fight to get son back
Court says child has forgotten birth family
Pamela King’s seven-year fight for custody of her youngest son, Cody, ended May 22 when the S.C. Supreme Court permanently terminated her parental rights to the child.
One reason cited was that Cody no longer remembered his mother and siblings, who live in Ruffin, after being separated from them for so long.
King’s three children were removed from her custody by the state Department of Social Services when she was charged with passing a bad check in October 1999 and police said they found a crack pipe in her purse. In October 2000, the Foster Care Review Board recommended ending her parental rights.
Over three years, though, King completed a treatment plan required by DSS. The Foster Care Review Board changed its recommendation, and in November 2002, her autistic son, Casey, who was 12, and daughter Ashley, then 7, were returned.
However, DSS said it was in his best interests for Cody, then 5, to remain with pre-adoptive parents on Isle of Palms who’d had him for a year. King hasn’t been allowed to see Cody since January 2003.
Family court terminated King’s parental rights to Cody in March 2003, and King appealed. The Court of Appeals overturned that decision in January 2005, and the pre-adoptive parents and DSS appealed.
In May, the S.C. Supreme Court ruled “Cody was in a loving, stable environment with the (adoptive parents) and had no memory of his biological family.”
DSS must show grounds for terminating a parent’s rights. Grounds include such things as abandonment, abuse or neglect, willful failure to pay child support for a certain amount of time, or a child being in the care of the state for a certain amount of time. In this case, the only grounds accepted by the Court of Appeals was that the child had been in foster care at least 15 of the preceding 22 months.
That was enough. If the case meets one of nine designated grounds, the court may decide the case solely on the best interests of the child.
This reflects a change in the way the courts of South Carolina view termination-of-parental-rights cases, according to Jim Thompson, a Spartanburg lawyer who specializes in adoption and termination of parental rights and is an adjunct professor at the University of South Carolina School of Law.
“What’s at play here is the ongoing tension between birth-parent rights and the protection of children,” Thompson said.
King’s court-appointed attorney, Robert DeMarco, primarily practices real estate law in Charleston. DeMarco said his client was a captive of the system and had no way to speed up the process.
“(The Supreme Court) has now provided a pathway to DSS to get children who are adoptable away from their parents by delaying,” he said. “DSS has the absolute power in these cases.”
Said King: “They want to focus on how long it took me, and that was four years ago. It’s taken them longer to get their stuff together than it took me.”
The appeals court judges agreed that DSS had contributed to the lack of bonding and has the power to influence the factors that determine the basis of termination. They also pointed out that the Foster Care Review Board recommended reunification only six months after Cody was placed with the pre-adoptive parents, but DSS pursued termination of parental rights.
The DSS attorney, Frampton Durban, and the adoptive parents’ private attorney throughout the process, Glenn Lister, did not return phone messages.
Thompson said current Supreme Court Chief Justice Jean Toal has spearheaded the changes to emphasize a child’s best interests.
“Twenty years ago, Jean Toal … wrote a blistering dissent about how we were placing children’s rights (behind) parents’ rights,” Thompson said. “Even if a ground (for termination of parental rights) was found, family court judges were deferring to the parent-child relationship being primary, not the best interests of the child.”
The previous policy was to reunite children and birth parents whenever possible, as stated in the case of Hooper v. Rockwell in 1999, and other cases in the past that presume that it’s in the child’s best interests to be with a biological parent.
In 2000, Toal wrote a Supreme Court decision that “overturned 10 different cases that called for the strict interpretation of grounds versus termination of parental rights,” Thompson said.
In that case, Joiner v. Rivas, Toal wrote, “We overrule those cases calling for strict construction of the TPR statutes,” quoting S.C. code that says terminating-parental-rights statutes “must be liberally construed in order to ensure prompt judicial procedures for freeing minor children from the custody and control of their parents by terminating the parent child relationship.” In other words, the courts and DSS should be given flexibility in terminating custody.
Another Supreme Court justice, who agreed with the final decision of the court for other reasons, wrote a separate opinion because he thought the court had misread the state code. Justice Costa Pleicones said the code was intended to ensure “prompt judicial action,” not to “expedite terminations.”
Although DeMarco has filed for a re-hearing with the Supreme Court, he’s not optimistic. “Very rarely do they agree to hear the arguments again.”
What This Means for Custody Disputes
If you are or become involved in a child custody case, ask your attorney to explain all of your legal rights, and the rights and responsibilities of the Department of Social Services. Know that courts are taking the length of the appeals process into consideration when gauging a child’s best interests.


July 6, 2006

As I read adoption laws across the country, I continually stunned at the way that adoptees are treated. Recently I read on a blog of a friend of mine that California doesn’t view adoptees as being parties to their own adoption. Gee Whiz it is about us and we still have to ask our adoptive moms and dads to request our records in order to see them. WE are adults and we have to ask permission for records that record our birth. Only in adoption is that totally screwy. Adoption is not about the child but about needy adults and money hungry adoption agencies, lawyers, and social workers. No where is it written that privacy was a guarantee. This is something that certain groups have placed upon us. Why is it when 99% of birthparents in two open states can’t be heard and acknowledged? Its only the one percent is heard. Yet 99% of the triad population is continually ignored. Again only in adoption. Indiana was like that about ten years ago. They changed the laws but they are a prospective only. The screwy part of their law is that the birthmother owns the records. If the birthparents weren’t married, everything is under the birthmother. The birthfather is just the supposed father, therefore he has no rights and neither does the adoptee. They can’t make contact via the adoption agency. We could all be listed on the passive registry and will never be able to make contact because of the birthmother. So here I am trying to find my birthmother and getting nowhere. I can deal with the fact she doesn’t want to talk to me but shutting me away from my birthfather’s life is not fair to me, him, and his daughter. Her choice even affects my brothers and their right to choose. She even refers to me as “that baby” or “that girl.” News flash !!!! I am all grown up.

In every other aspect of society I am an adult. Sometimes I feel like saying since you view me as a permanent child I guess I won’t pay taxes. I remember a quote from the movie “Bad Girls.” I was nothing before I was married, I was nothing after I was married, I was nothing as a widow, but I have value as a whore. If your laws don’t include me, then they don’t apply to me. Wouldn’t that be funny? The law would be on my butt lickety split. Its a shame that I couldn’t do it. Just to make my point loud and clear. In adoption the laws don’t include everyone. They just for the most part include the adoption agency and the adoptive parents. They always forget the rest of us. When it comes the adoptees we are the ones that are the child always the child.