If an adoptee offers anything online that could be considered less than positive about adoption there is a common reactionary statement that goes something like this: Most happy adoptees are out living their lives and aren’t on adoption forums (often littered with I’m sorry you had a bad experience, bitter, ungrateful, the I know an adoptee, etc.). I haven’t met an adoptee online who hasn’t had that said to them at least once, if not multiple times.
The same is offered to first moms online – different but similar to what is offered to an adoptee.
A similar disclaimer was included in a recent study on first moms:
“Additionally, Wiley and Baden (2005) make an important observation that many of the studies that inform our understanding of birth mothers’ experiences postrelinquishment are inherently biased, as these studies often disproportionally focus on birth mothers who have sought support to process the complex feelings that emerge in the months and years following the relinquishment. It may be that birth mothers who self-selected to participate in the current study were more likely to be dissatisfied with their decision to place their child. The use of online birth mother support groups and blogs to recruit participants likely increased this possibility, as women struggling with their decision may be more likely to access these types of support opportunities.”
A study that seems to me to fairly consistent and logical. I’d guess it isn’t the results the adoption community will find terribly comforting if they actually read the full study instead of just the take-away, nor be offered to expectant moms to read and the implications thoroughly discussed before making their decision. I also doubt any of the recommendations will be put into practice (call me cynical, but I’m also open that a few might follow the recommendations).
What I’d like you to answer: If both the adoptees and first moms online are the ones most dissatisfied their adoption experience, does that mean the adoptive parents online are also the ones most dissatisfied with their experience? Why or why not?