Blame the genes…

21 Jan

Yup it’s all because of the genes that adoptees don’t do as well in adoptive homes.  Must not blame a.d.o.p.t.i.o.n. or the i.m.p.a.c.t. of adoption on the adoptee.  It is clear that adoptees inherit inferior genes to those passed on by the adoptive parents to their biological children.

This study Genetic and Environmental Influences on Adult Life Outcomes: Evidence from the Texas Adoption Project which I actually assumed would not be biased makes some incredible leaps, and by leaps, I mean discounting any impact adoption has on the child.  I do believe nature is stronger than nurture in determining many things, but I also strongly believe the impact of loosing your family at birth, and being adopted into a family that you have no genetic relation to IMPACTS you in ways others will never understand.

Note that this study is a continuation study on adoptees who were adopted at birth or shortly after birth from christian maternity homes.  This study is on adoptees between the ages of 30 and 40.

Such an average difference between these groups of offspring can be interpreted in two ways. First, it might be all or in part due to the genes supplied by the two sets of parents. The genetic parents of the adopted children were prima facie less well adjusted in their lives than the parents who supplied the genes to the biological children, a hypothesis supported by the differences in scores of the two groups of mothers on the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory (Loehlin et al. 1982)

And they did the personal inventory of the biological mothers when?  That question is not answered and if they did it on the mothers while they were in maternity homes or shortly after surrender, you think that would be indicative of what they would have been like before such a life changing event happened?  What – that wouldn’t have crossed your mind?  Obviously they did not interview them before they got pregnant…good grief…

A second possible interpretation might emphasize environmental or interpersonal factors, such as emotional insecurity due to a sense of being abandoned by their birth mothers, or less positive expectations by the adoptive parents, or the like. Such possibilities are often discussed in the adoption literature (e.g., Brodzinsky and Schechter 1990).

Obviously must not say feelings of abandonment or identity issues or growing up in a family you do not mirror could have one iota of a difference on how an adoptee feels.  That would be bad for the adoption industry…don’t trust those who actually have worked with adoptees for many years to know what they are talking about.

Although this second category of interpretations cannot be completely ruled out, we note several limitations of such arguments. First, the adoptees in the present study did not begin under a cloud.  At the time of the initial testing, the adopted children were rated as favorably by their parents as the biological children (Loehlin et al. 1990). If their later rating was lower, they apparently did something to earn it. Secondly, the psychological effects of adoption as such do not provide an explanation of why individual adopted children tend to resemble their birth mothers (Loehlin et al. 1987). And third, the patterns of parent-child and sibling resemblance in the present study lend themselves more readily to interpretation in terms of the genes than in terms of special environmental factors affecting adoptees. The latter factors, if powerful, and if varying from family to family as a result of parental beliefs and attitudes about adoption, might be expected to produce correlations among the adopted children in a family—correlations that were for the most part not observed.

Lets start with this statement aboveFirst, the adoptees in the present study did not begin under a cloud.” means what? – no abuse?  Being separated from your mother at birth is normal and natural?  So you are saying voluntary domestic infant adoption adoptees do not have any valid feelings of loss or abandonment or identity issues to work through?  Pssst – then why do some agencies provide counselling for the adoptee, and there are multiple if not dozens of books on adjustment, overcoming loss, allowing the child to grieve, etc, let alone real live adult adoptees saying being adopted is HARD and it HURTS…

Now lets look at this statement At the time of the initial testing, the adopted children were rated as favorably by their parents as the biological children (Loehlin et al. 1990). If their later rating was lower, they apparently did something to earn it.” You obviously have not watched how AP’s need to validate that adoptive children are just as good if not better than having your own.  Kind of like keeping up with the Jones mentality, which I get BTW.  And then of course – blame the adoptee – they did something to not be as favored – that’s always the best course of action – never blame the AP’s or adoption.  Perhaps you should also realize that the adoptees you just studied are all grown up now and have processed their adoption, and come to different conclusions than when they are were 5 or 15 – you know when they were just children…perhaps, if you are seeing the AP’s response as less favorable perhaps the adoptee “betrayed” them by searching for their family…

Now this statement does not make any sense whatsoever and somebody needs to explain it to me, because I cannot see how “apples” the psychological impact of adoption has any relation to the “oranges” of Mendelian inheritance: Secondly, the psychological effects of adoption as such do not provide an explanation of why individual adopted children tend to resemble their birth mothers.”

I just can’t understand how this study was accepted based on what it says.  Do people really think being adopted is the same as being raised in your biological family?  Do they think there is no trauma?  No impact?  If they don’t then perhaps they believe that all babies should be surrendered at birth and placed in the home at the top of the list of approved parents. 

I can’t say more because it would not be pretty, and I have already been  snarky enough for the day…


Posted by on January 21, 2012 in Adoption, adoptive parents, biological child


Tags: , , , , , ,

5 responses to “Blame the genes…

  1. cb

    January 21, 2012 at 11:05 pm

    Yes the common view is that:
    When we turn out well, our aparents have done a wonderful job.
    When we don’t turn out so well, it’s in our genes.

    Apparently, it is never the other way around (rolling of eyes).

    I think these articles by Judith Rich Harris are quite interesting:

    Click to access Judith%20Rich%20Harris.pdf,8599,1881384,00.html


    • The adopted ones

      January 22, 2012 at 12:57 am

      I went and looked at the funding and that was really revealing…will look at the articles tomorrow. No idea why the comment went to moderation.


      • cb

        January 22, 2012 at 1:09 pm

        re the moderation thing – I might have just used wrong email.


  2. The adopted ones

    January 22, 2012 at 2:49 pm

    CB – Now that I think about it perhaps wordpress reverts to moderation if there is more than one link attached.

    I agree with Harris that peers shape a whole lot of who you are. I think parents do too and genes play a big role. It just isn’t either/or.

    I took exception to the inferior genes stand the author of the study came to. I was reading the study and interested in the results until I came to the discussion portion. Then the bias came out from left field as it’s all in the inferior genes. There is no valid way that he could come to that conclusion based on the limited questions asked, or without intimate direct knowledge of the actual families (both families) who participated. Instead he took an level of adjustment study (whatever it was called) on a completely different set of women who surrendered done by someone else and applied their results on the (bio) mothers of the adults who were adopted. Really? He applied a stereotype of a *birth* mother as a one size fits all model for ALL women who have surrendered a child and called it a day.

    I did understand it better once I understood where the funding came from. Just like adoption studies funded by the adoption industry – they want a certain result and choose what and how to present the results.


  3. eagoodlife

    February 17, 2012 at 6:54 am

    So another study in which adoptees are rated by their adopters?? Not worth the paper it’s printed on.



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