Adoption wish for 2016

23 Jan

My wish for 2016 is that this would be the year adoption sayings that are created to be shared, simply disappear.  You can’t go anywhere online and not see some foolish one-sided simplistic sentiment highlighted on a colored background, or even just stated as a fact that everyone must agree with.  It’s time for adoption service providers (and others) to stop creating and promoting these sayings.   

Adoption is Beautiful!

The above is one example, and there are many which are truly horrible.  This one may be true for whoever posted it.  It may be true to many others as well, across all sides.  The flip side, though, is that it may be an arrow through the heart for a mother who had no real choice in keeping her baby, or felt she had no choice or was lied to.  Even mothers who stand by their choice, may feel pain because it dismisses all the heartache involved in doing what they felt was right.  For fathers who were cut out, adoption certainly isn’t beautiful.  And, adoption certainly isn’t beautiful for the adoptee who got abusive parents, was rehomed, sent away.  It might not be beautiful to adoptee’s at different points in their journey.  It may cause pain to some adoptive parents as well.  It’s just to simplistic and dismissive of the wide variety of experiences and conditions that lead to adoption.

Simplistic sayings don’t work in adoption.  They may have worked in the past when only the adoptive parent voice was heard, times are different now.  It’s time for the adoption professionals to adjust to the new dynamic of all voices being heard in adoption.  Adoption is too complicated, and has too many sides, to be using such simplistic one-dimensional adoption messaging.

As adoption service providers, you shouldn’t need me to be telling you this, yet, apparently you haven’t been paying attention, or listening.  You are causing people pain, and causing dissension instead of coming together to make adoption more holistic, and less traumatic, for every sector in adoption.  Time for you to do better, even if you just want more adoptions to happen, why pour salt on open wounds.

As adoptive parents, I’d ask you to think carefully about sharing these simplistic sayings that broad-brush stroke adoption messaging.  Think about how each side may feel reading it from their point of view, their experience that caused the adoption to be needed.  What it may be telling your child if they are struggling.  Would it tell them you are safe to turn to, or that they should just keep their struggles inside.  If I posted a saying that said Infertility is Beautiful! and then tried to dismiss the obvious pain that saying elicited, by responding, if mom and dad didn’t have infertility I wouldn’t have been adopted by them, so infertility is beautiful to me, and I’m sorry you had a bad experience – would that make it okay?  I doubt it, because it would still be an incredibly hurtful, horrible, and stupid thing for anyone to say about something that devastates so many, let alone create a saying to be shared by others.

Adoption is complicated, let’s treat it that way…






Posted by on January 23, 2016 in Adoption


Tags: ,

12 responses to “Adoption wish for 2016

  1. Murray Legro

    January 23, 2016 at 10:56 pm

    I agree that simplistic memes from both sides of the debate create falsehoods and false claims. it is much more complicated and quite frankly does no one a service. those of us who want the reality of adoption both the good and the bad to be put out there and never to make stupid claims like being brainwashed, drinking Koolaid and Stockholm syndrome falsehoods along with forever families , happy families etc . Adoptees in genera lhave had better education standards than non adoptees i similar groupings so it os time they start using their higher levels of logic and not regress to simple slogans that help no one


    • TAO

      January 23, 2016 at 11:00 pm

      Thanks Murray…I just want them all to disappear – they do nothing to help, anyone.


  2. iwishiwasadopted

    January 24, 2016 at 4:43 am

    Pinterest is the worst for me. Horrible triggers every time.


    • TAO

      January 24, 2016 at 5:19 am

      I don’t go there…


  3. Heather

    January 24, 2016 at 9:35 am

    So very eloquent. Thank you.


  4. cb

    January 25, 2016 at 1:33 pm

    Well said.

    I think a lot of the problem is also that the word “adoption” is so broad. Quite often APs may be thinking in more broad terms than adoptees so one can end up talking at cross purposes.


  5. onewomanschoice

    January 25, 2016 at 8:27 pm

    Love this Tao. Thank you.


  6. pj

    January 26, 2016 at 12:09 pm

    Love this, Tao ! We need to promote this simplistic saying :
    Adoption is complex !


    • TAO

      January 26, 2016 at 2:32 pm

      It is indeed complex… 🙂


  7. Stefani

    January 27, 2016 at 11:55 am

    I often tell the families I work with that adoption is Terrible, Beautiful. It is terribly heartbreaking for one family and for the child, and beautiful for another family, and for the child. The two cannot exist without the other. I want the families I work with to understand this. Only then can they be better parents.

    Thank you


    • TAO

      January 27, 2016 at 8:04 pm

      Stefani, I just checked out the website and it is one of the most honest I’ve visited. What you say to expectant parents you say to adopting parents too. And thank you for not referring to an expectant mother as a birthmother. Thank you for a refreshing view of adoption.


  8. Starr Lara

    July 16, 2019 at 3:28 am

    Thank you for putting into writing what I feel.



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