Monday, December 10, 2007

Would I, Could I....Adopt

A brave reader asked if I would adopt. She asked because she's thinking about it and knows I'm an adoptee. I call her brave because, I suspect, most Prospective Adoptive Parents would have an inkling of what I might say and not want to hear it.

After the trauma of infertility, the red tape, the disappointment, the effort, the money, the expectations, the sheer magnitude of the whole adoption process, the last thing a PAP wants to hear is some adult adoptee bursting any balloons by telling them that more hard work is ahead. It's like running a marathon and just when you think you've won some guy tells you there's another 26 miles and a mountain to go. Who wants to hear that?

This is a long way of saying, that's what I meant by bravery for asking.

The answer?

No. At least not a newborn from a birthmother. As an adoptee, there's no way I could take the smallest part of promoting this sector of the adoption industry. It's simply out of control in this country.

Would I adopt an orphan from a foreign country? Again, no. Not after learning about corrupt practices and the way the demand for babies is actually creating supply in third world countries. And while there are legitimate orphans, I would be too terrified that the one I would receive would be stolen or sold or something equally awful.

Before I admitted that adoption did have an enormous (negative) impact on my life, I could see myself adopting in an unconscious repetition of my abandonment complex. Basically, I'd be trying to rescue my baby self and be the kind of adoptive mother my adoptive mother could not be.

But now that I'm out of the fog and realize just how traumatizing adoption is, no. I have finally reached the point of being able to deal with my own issues. I'm so worn out and tired by my own ongoing struggle that I'm simply not equipped to take on the ongoing struggle of another adoptee.

How about adopting a child from foster care? Now there's something I would consider. There are so many kids in the system who desperately need homes. But not even at this stage because I have two teenagers...so trying to attend to their needs while attending to my own and that of an aging narcissistic adoptive father take all the physical and psychological energy I can muster in middle age.

Now remember, the question was would I adopt. This is not advice to anyone considering adoption. My only advice is to take off the rose colored glasses if you're wearing them and make sure you are strong because it's a marathon...not a sprint.

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16 Comments:

Blogger Andie D. said...

Yes, yes, yes, yes, YES NINA. Exactly.

8:42 PM  
Blogger Ungrateful Little Bastard said...

I know. I could never adopt.

3:42 AM  
Blogger Nina said...

Gotcha! The both of you! But not Gotcha in THAT way. LOL! (Har-sick adoption humor)

What's really scary to contemplate is that at one point I was so out-of-touch and people pleasing and practically an adoption poster girl - DESPITE my miserable experience - that I might have considered it under certain circumstances. Shiver me timbers.

11:26 AM  
Blogger Rebecca said...

thanks nina for sharing your thoughts. it was courageous of you to share so frankly.

5:35 PM  
Blogger Mary said...

As a teen I did think of adopting "some day". I think in part because I was scared of pregnancy. What kind of kid would I pop out etc. Now... No way!

2:14 PM  
Blogger Eve said...

Nina, as you know I am an adoptive mother, and yet I have to say you're exactly right: adoption is a marathon, not a sprint! Well put.

As well, it is not for the faint of heart, nor for anyone who thinks that adopting a child is just "as if" she was born to you. That sounds like--and is--a fairy tale.

Happy holidays to you and yours.

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