Where are the positive stories…

10 Mar

Yet again, an adoptive parent asked where are the positive adoptee stories.  I didn’t answer because if you don’t see the blend of positive and negative woven into an adoptee’s story, then, you aren’t looking hard enough.  There are some wholly negative adoptee stories out there, there are also wholly positive stories as well.  The majority seem to be a mix of both, kind of how life works…

Getting back to the reason I wrote this – I’ll make a deal with adoptive parents.  When I hear adoptive parents asking adoption agencies why they only post positive adoptee stories, then, and only then, will I take the time to create a post listing the posts I’ve written, or read, that are more upbeat than negative because life is a mixture of both, and anything else is cherry-picking and/or a fairy tale.

Wait a minute – I take the fairy tale part back because most fairy tales, perhaps all, include loss…like adoptee stories and everyone else’s story come to think of it…


Posted by on March 10, 2015 in Adoption, adoptive parents


Tags: , , ,

19 responses to “Where are the positive stories…

  1. Mercy McCulloch Hasselblad

    March 10, 2015 at 4:00 pm

    I like this. Adoption is tough. Having children and getting married is tough by itself, when you add in all the expectations and past experiences of an adoptee and their parents, it’s even worse!!! Check out my last post. My husband was the adoptee in a failed adoption…


    • TAO

      March 11, 2015 at 2:19 pm

      Thanks Mercy…you are right – adoption is tough.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Lucy Sheen aka 4gottenadoptee

    March 10, 2015 at 4:33 pm

    I guess that’s part of it though isn’t it? The positive sell, the way that adoption is now marketed it’s “perfect” solution to an imperfect set of life circumstances for both the prospective A-Parents and the adoptee. The language and syntax of adoption is general spun as positive, yes fairy-tale “and they all lived happily ever after” it’s the clean sanitised Disney take.

    Liked by 1 person

    • TAO

      March 10, 2015 at 4:56 pm

      And then we ruin it by being human after all. Thanks Lucy.

      Liked by 2 people

  3. Snarkurchin

    March 10, 2015 at 5:31 pm

    Where are the positive stories? Literally anywhere *except* on a few blogs/sites. I’ve had an “adoption” email alert for many years now, and most of the articles I get either shower praise all over adoption or discuss the “adoption” of pets.

    Why do happy adoptees owe the world their positive stories anyway? Do people who weren’t adopted owe the world a happy story about how great it is they grew up in their family of origin?


    • TAO

      March 10, 2015 at 5:35 pm

      Snark – you know we are special…


  4. cb

    March 10, 2015 at 10:56 pm

    “When I hear adoptive parents asking adoption agencies why they only post positive adoptee stories,”

    Elsewhere, I’ve seen APs discuss certain articles and say that what they dislike about the articles is that things are presented as absolutes, “eg all adoptees will feel X ” and that is fair enough – I try to avoid using absolutes myself.

    Why then is it OK for adoption agencies and professionals to use absolutes, especially when counselling expectant mothers? So many of these professionals say “Your child will feel this, your child will feel that” and the eparents are making their decisions based on these absolutes. This same view is often then presented to the PAPs. There is no room for complexity.

    To me, this overpositivity and lack of complexity and thus subsequent decisions made with only these absolute views is like building a house on sand. The house may well appear beautiful but if the foundation isn’t solid, then it will not withstand the outside pressures and if one looks closely, one can see the cracks.


    • TAO

      March 11, 2015 at 2:21 pm

      I agree with your foundation analogy.


  5. cb

    March 11, 2015 at 12:09 am

    There are positives to my story – I have a great adoptive family and a great birthfamily and I have great relationships with them all. Yet my story apparently cannot be considered a positive one unless I then go on to say “I am so thankful my bmother chose adoption for me because who knows what terrible existence I would have lead”, something I am not prepared to do because I’m not psychic and have no idea what the “alternative future” would have held.

    Sometimes I feel like going “Curse you, bfamily, why do you have to be so nice – you are preventing me from being the “ideal” adoptee in the eyes of the world because I can’t in good conscience say the things I’m supposed to say” lol.


    • TAO

      March 11, 2015 at 2:21 pm

      Good point cb


  6. rhegankim82

    March 11, 2015 at 3:25 am

    Loving this deal.


    • TAO

      March 11, 2015 at 2:22 pm

      Thanks rhegankim!

      Liked by 1 person

      • TAO

        March 17, 2015 at 3:30 pm

        I shared your current post on a closed fb page – all comments are good, your words can be heard by those who need to understand…just thought I’d let you know – drives me a wee bit crazy when I see it in my stats…


  7. yan

    March 11, 2015 at 11:51 am

    “Only the things that fit my world view can be considered absolutes.” That’s what I hear/read/see from PAPs asking this question. That and “make me feel good about my life decisions.”


    • TAO

      March 11, 2015 at 2:23 pm

      You are right Yan – that is the basis for quite a few…at least until their kids reach the teen years…


  8. mgquinonez

    March 11, 2015 at 5:25 pm

    Just like on newspapers and such, the gory and horrific news are more appealing and they get highlighted because that interest people more


  9. Tia B

    March 12, 2015 at 3:28 am

    To me, the opportunity for adoptees to talk and read openly about the negative from other adoptees IS positive. The ability to read and discuss the whole truth in narratives written by adoptees is important and makes a feeling of community. There are so few places for open dialogue of our complex truths.

    When I read that an adoptive parent wants us to write more positive, what I understand is that they are still so very focused on having our communication speak to their interests. It does not seem to occur to them that giving air and space to the “negative” serves a very positive function for us and that the chronic insistence on hearing primarily positives serves a very negative function for us.


    • TAO

      March 13, 2015 at 10:53 pm

      Tia B – so very sorry for the delay in answering. YOU NAILED IT…


  10. onewomanschoice

    March 13, 2015 at 11:54 pm

    Good point Tao and nice comeback. I’ve wondered the same thing myself.



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