What I Didn’t Know About Adoption

22 Sep

Yes, that would probably fill volumes.  I’ll try to be a little shorter than that.

Grown in My Heart is having a blog carnival & I found this one rather intriguing.  I’m late to the party, as usual, but here goes.

  • I thought because my whole life had been surrounded by adoption I was an expert.
  • I wish I had known as a child with an internationally adopted sister that race does matter.  It’s part of how you view the world & how the world views you & to ignore that is damaging to everyone.
  • I didn’t realize how much of  the Adoption Class material I would hear but not get.
  • I didn’t know how much I would think about my daughter’s birth parents & how I would ache for contact with them.
  • I didn’t know how sad I would feel checking the box ‘no known family history’ at the doctors office.
  • I didn’t really think I’d have to change my parenting style but adoption parenting is very different from parenting my bio sons.
  • I didn’t know how protective I would feel about Vietnam & it’s culture.
  • I didn’t realize it would take no time at all to forget my daughter looks very different from me.
  • I didn’t think about how taking my screaming daughter out of a store would draw concerned looks from other shoppers.
  • I didn’t think I would have to deal with attachment issues in a child adopted at a very young age.
  • I didn’t know I would feel so annoyed every time someone tells me how wonderful I am for adopting or how lucky my daughter is.  I’m selfish & she lost her birth family & culture.  What’s lucky about that?
  • I didn’t think it was possible to not instantly fall in love with my daughter.  After all, I had spent years dreaming of her & longing for her & yet, for a long time I felt like my daughter’s baby-sitter.
  • I didn’t know I would feel joy & relief at feeling a nursing ‘let down’ when my daughter cried.  It meant to me I had bonded with her on more than an emotional level but a truly physical level as well.
  • I didn’t know how the supply & demand nature of adoption had fed corruption & how hard it would be to act ethically in a corrupt system.
  • I didn’t know I would feel so conflicted about adoption.  Is it good or bad?  Is it possible to have a truly ethical adoption?  Are the gains worth the loss?  I don’t have those answers.  I suspect they are different for everyone.
  • I didn’t know how devastated I would feel about the truths surrounding my daughter’s adoption.  I can only imagine the devastation she will feel when she hears the whole story.
  • I didn’t anticipate the huge & wonderful support network I would find through blogging.
  • I didn’t know how thankful I would be for my friends who are parents through adoption & all the wisdom they have shared with me.

I do know my love for my daughter won’t solve everything, but I’m so glad I get to love her anyway!



2 Responses to “What I Didn’t Know About Adoption”

  1. Tonggu Momma September 22, 2009 at 10:29 am #

    That conflict you feel about adoption? I feel it, too. It’s a difficult thing to navigate because there are so very many layers to everything. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

  2. Jennifer Eckman September 25, 2009 at 2:52 pm #

    That is absolutely perfect….love and agree with everything you wrote!! I hate it all too….strange,huh?

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