A Safe Place for Adoptees
This post has been written specifically for inclusion within Weekly Adoption Shout Out #32.
Being as ‘lucky’ as I have been throughout my life, I was fortunate to first arrive on the Internet at uk.religion.pagan; a Usenet Newsgroup comprised not only of pagans, but of intellectual Geeks. It was through these wonderful people that I learned rapidly there is no such thing as “safe” on the Internet. No matter how locked down we may think something is, if it’s on a computer connected to another computer then it’s no longer “safe”.
All that being said, Social Networking now has all sorts of niches for people to more or less ‘hideaway’ in, even if they’re not entirely secure. Adoptees are no exception in finding places to go to meet other adoptees because it is mindbendingly awesome to be able to have a conversation with someone who doesn’t need everything explaining.
My early experiences of discussing adoption was, again, on Usenet within the uk. hierarchy. I did take a nose over at alt.adoption, but wasn’t too keen on the insanities that seemed to permeate alt. in general. I drifted around the adoption communities on LiveJournal and such like, and even created one too, but it wasn’t until I found the Adult Adoptees Advocating for Change fora that I first felt I’d found somewhere where I could feel “safe” sharing my whole experience as an adoptee.
While the growth of social networking media has increased the places available to adoptees for meet in, as different people sign up to use different services the ability to connect has become more disparate while seemingly more accessible. I think this is why I’ve settled so firmly now over on Facebook, since it’s the most people I’ve encountered in one place that’s at least relatively easy (for me) to keep track of. While access to personal accounts is dependant “friendings”, the ease with which both groups and pages can be created has lead to an explosion of adoptee and adoption related places to be able to go. Indeed, in an effort to get as many linkable places as possible in which to be able to ‘direct’ adoption related traffic, I’ve done my fair share of page and group creation, several of which are adoptee specific because my time on AAAfC has taught me how vitally important having somewhere to go to be able to talk with other adoptees has been.
All is not peaceful over within the multitude of groups, however. There is an assumed (false) dichotomy between the so-called happy adoptees in relation to the angry adoptees that leaks over these groups and creates rifts severing adoptees from other adoptees. Being a designated “angry adoptee”, I have often been at the booted end of such rifts, with the latest being my expulsion from I AM ADOPTED over on FB as a result of my refusal to accept adoption being the wonderful option that seemingly grateful and happy adoptees deem it is. Yet this dichotomy appears somewhat one-sided as I don’t recall encountering “happy” adoptees being booted from those places that don’t insist on a state-of-mind for its adoptee members. Indeed, I consciously make the point within the adoptee-specific groups that I run that the only defining factor for membership is that someone actually is an adoptee (apart from in Adoptees Against Adoption, obviously). Then again, I have had adoptees leave them because I do not reign in those who pour disdain and scorn on the institution of adoption, claiming that they are being bullied because they’re happy and/or grateful for adoption.
So is there a win-win situation where ALL adoptees can come together to improve the institution of adoption for those that follow in our adoptee footsteps? I’d like to think there are, and part of the raison d’être for the vast majority of the groups I create is to provide such spaces where ALL adoptees can gather. Unfortunately, I’m not (yet) convinced that such a place will truly exist, at least not in the near future, as there are far too many people who get bent out of shape by the perspectives of others when those perspectives fail to match-up with their own views.
I find that to be a saddening conclusion to reach.
The following are pages I happened upon while seeking out links for the creation of this post that I haven’t used, but that I still want to share.
My (adoptionesque) Pages
Adoption Answers & Adoption UK & UK Adoption & UK Adoptees & Adult Adoptees Advocating for Change – UK & Adoptee Awareness & Post Adoption Charity & Abortion, not adoption & Adoption hurts kids! Support Adoption Reform now. & Adopted in the UK & The Lucky Adoptee
[*mine] (adoptionesque) Groups
Adopted in the UK & *Adoptee Awareness & Adoptees on Adoption & *Adoption Mania & Adoption Sucks & Adoption Truth and Transparency Worldwide Network & Adopting-Back Our Children / Adoptees Terminating Adoptions & Alt.Adoption & *Anti-Adoption & Bastard Nation & *I AM ADOPTED TOO & Life….Adopted! & *Pimping Adoption & Stolen Children of the UK & Stop Forced Adoption – JFF Awareness Week – it could be you
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