By request, from a commenter, on another post, we’ve been asked to write about positive adoption stories. The request and the question asked by many potential adoptive parents, as well as, adoptive parents, for positive adoption stories always puzzles me. Why does adoption have to be either negative, or positive? I don’t understand, so I have to ask, “What, exactly, is a positive adoption story?”
I am apparently missing something, because when I look at, and think about, my adoption story, I fail to see it as a negative thing. I, also, fail to see it as a positive thing. I must just be confused? Yes, there are negative aspects to my adoption story. It would be unfair to my adoptive, and my biological, families to say my adoption had no negative aspects to it. It would, also, be unfair, to my families, as well as, myself to say it had no positive aspects. Uhm, so, can I not win here?
I, suppose, that is why I don’t understand: Why people insist on seeing my feelings about my adoption, and adoption practices, as negative, when they are simply part of the process of growing up as an adoptee. Why are my adoption feelings of grief, loss, and anger seen as negative, when those feelings are simply a part of all aspects of life? I don’t get it?
So, please, tell me, someone, adoptees can be normal human beings, with normal feelings, for everything in life, but adoption? Did I miss something? What is it they really want to hear from me? Why is it okay for me to be angry when a friend betrays me, a stranger is rude to me, or I see starving and abused animals, but unacceptable when I think about my adoption and see so many people taken advantage of so that others can profit from the unfortunate circumstance of unwanted pregnancy, or infertility? When I see children portrayed as objects to satisfy the needs of others am I really supposed to believe it is in the child’s best interest, and only see the positive side of adoption? It’s okay for me to be sad when I see stories on the news of people grieving the loss of a loved one due to a drunk driver, a murder, fire, or some other unfortunate situation or circumstance, but I’m not supposed to feel anything for my birth parents, my adoptive parents, and my own unfortunate situation, and circumstance, unless it’s positive? If I do actually feel something less than ecstatic joy, is there really something wrong with me? Does that mean I cannot see the positive? Am I misunderstanding what kind of positive story they are asking for? How do they ever expect me to see the positive aspects of my adoption, if I neglect to see the negative ones?
You asked for a positive adoption story, so here is mine. In spite of all the negative aspects to my adoption story, I have survived. I have loved, hated, felt grief, felt anger, felt sadness, felt loss, seen, and felt, the pain of my birth parents because of the choices they made that brought about my becoming an adoptee, and witness the struggle to come to terms with, and felt the pain of my adoptive parents with their inability to have a child of their own biology. I’ve, also, felt the love, joy, and happiness of all of my parents. The positive part of my adoption story: I have managed to come through it all with my sanity intact, the ability to forgive, and a sincere reverence for reality. My positive adoptions story is that I am not afraid to live, and experience life to its fullest, the good, the bad, the ugly, the negative, and the positive. Isn’t that what life is all about: the experience? Ah, what the hell, what do I know? I can tell you this for a fact. If, I, and my story, are not a positive adoption story, then there is no such thing as a “positive adoption story”.