Below is the exact wording of my surrender document that was in my sealed closed adoption file that was opened by court order. Because the myth of confidentiality just never seems to go away, despite no one ever providing evidence that confidentiality was guaranteed, I decided to show you exactly what my surrender document states. The surrender document to the court is the only document that could contain that promise of confidentiality that would make it a valid binding contract under law.
I have said it before, but it is worth noting that my adoption petition with mom and dads signature on it shows the exact same name of my mother, as is on this document and also included her middle initial. I always knew my last name but they had forgotten her first name, and did not have a copy of the adoption petition they signed. So confidentiality was never given. In fact, my family had no idea I did not know who they were, and made the assumption I did not want to know them.
I am a typical non-agency baby from the Baby Scoop Era, the time when all mothers were supposedly so very worried over their confidentiality from their child, and only surrendered because of that promise of confidentiality. I was your typical case where the doctor put the mother in touch with the Chief Juvenile Probation Officer of the court who handled voluntary surrenders by unwed mothers and found us families. Following is the entire wording of the document except I have used x’s where I have stripped out identifying details I am not willing to share – show me where it promises anything to the natural mother.
IN THE MATTER OF THE WELFARE OF BABY GIRL XXXX
This matter coming on for hearing this xxxx day of xxxx, xxx, upon the petition of Miss xxxx xxxx, natural mother of said child, there being present at said hearing, Miss xxxx xxxx, natural mother of said child, Mrs. xxxx xxxx, Chief Probation Officer, and the Court inquiring into the welfare of said juvenile, finds
1. That the twenty-four hour service of Notice and Summons was duly waived by Miss xxxx xxxx, natural mother of said child, and
2. That said child is four days old, having been born xxxx x, xxxx, and
3. That said child, Baby Girl xxxx, is a dependant child in that said child has no parent or guardian willing to exercise proper parental control in that said child was born of an unwed mother and said petitioner prays to relinquish said child for adoption, and
4. That it appears to be in the best interests and welfare of said child, Baby Girl xxxx, that she be made a ward of the xxxx County Juvenile Court, shall be permanently removed from the care, custody and control of said mother, Miss xxxx xxxx, xxxx South x, xxxx, xxxx, and said mother, Miss xxxx xxxx, be permanently deprived of any and all rights to said child; said child shall be placed in the care, custody and control of Mrs. xxxx xxxx, Chief Probation Officer, xxxx County Juvenile Court, with authorization to consent to the adoption of said child by such person or persons as may be approved by the Superior Court of the State of xxxx, and the Court being fully advised in the premises,
IT IS HEREBY ORDERED AND ADJUDGED that the said child, Baby Girl xxxx, be and it hereby is, made a ward of the xxxx County Juvenile Court, permanently removed from the care, custody and control of said mother, Miss xxxx xxxx, xxxx South x, xxxx, xxxx, and said mother, Miss xxxx xxxx, be and she hereby is, permanently deprived of any and all rights to said child, said child is hereby placed in the care, custody and control of Mrs. xxxx xxxx, Chief Probation Officer, xxxx County Juvenile Court, with authorization to consent to the adoption of said child by such person or person as may be approved by the Superior Court of the State of xxxx.
Dated this xxxx day of xxxx, xxxx. xxxx / JUDGE
What is much more likely is that agencies promised no one (society) would ever know they had given birth as an unwed mother, and they could retake their place in society “as if” nothing had ever happened. That the elaborate fiction of going away to care for a sick relative or other story would be accepted, and they were to go home and never talk about it, find a man and get married and have more babies.
Some agencies may have lied to mothers, but is it right to deny all adoptees because some agencies may have lied? I have to say as a cynic, that I am more inclined to believe they fight so hard against us having our records because of how they treated our mothers, and do not want that to come out into the light.
A couple of days ago I detailed the results of Oregon opening their records, and the study done on the first group of adoptees to get their pre-adoption birth records, aka Original Birth Certificates. No harm was done.
There is no reason at all, to not support Adoptee Rights to have a true record of our birth.
Take the time to read the post below by Amanda at Lost Daughters and if you have not read the book the post is about – order it today and really start to understand what happened during the BSE to our mothers. Then go and read the PEAR post and consider standing up and support Adoptee Rights. Finally Amanda has a wonderful post today you cannot miss that really speaks to the whole matter.