Adopted in the UK

The life of a UK adoptee

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Support 4 #WASO

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This is my post supporting the Weekly Adoption Shout Out (#WASO), episode #36, whose suggested theme is “support”. :}

I could, to fulfil this theme, go over the many points I’ve made under my Post-adoption support tag, but those who’re already reading me ‘ve probably read much of that lot already, and those who’re new to this blog via this post aren’t gonna wanna wade through a tag’s worth of posts before you’ve finished reading this first post. Thus, instead of talking about the lack of post-adoption support that adoptees receive, I’m going to talk about the support that I have had. Predominantly, this support has been from within the Adoption Community, however, I do have the privilege of having some exceptional non-adoption related friends, many who have seen me at the lowest points of my life. That those people are still willing to be associated with me is in itself is priceless support.

The Adoption Community is, like all niches, a conglomeration of extremes. I’ve been lucky enough to find some of the sanest (they’ll deny every word of it ;)) of the bunch that there is. I’d love to do name lists ‘n’ stuff like that, but when I do that I’m always worried I’ll upset someone by them not being remembered in time for listing, so instead I’m going to talk about how important the type of support that adoptees can give other adoptees is.

I haven’t, sadly, had all that much opportunity to talk to adoptee-comprehending people in Real Life(tm), thus the virtual support I get through my Internet connection is pretty much the only chance I get to acquire conversations with people with whom I don’t have to preface everything I say about my life with why it’s adoptee-triggery. I am talking to people who’ve accepted that no matter what their current station in life, the effects that adoption and all that it entails has had upon their lives actually has influenced the way they deal with Life(tm) and the triggery things it throws at us. This is what we mean by adoption honesty.

It doesn’t matter if we’ve been ‘lucky enough’ to have ragingly successful careers, or managed to bag a Job For Life as soon as we left school, or not found a Job(tm) until we’re beyond 40; our adoption continues to impact us on a daily basis in ways that the non-adopted don’t (usually) realise. Genealogy is big business and there are ad’s from Ancestry and Genes Reunited across T.V., radio, everywhere now – yet what does the adoptee get told? this yearning for some stranger who gave you up because of a biological link is a slap in the face

Adoptees have to deal with this sort of stuff often, and so finding educated adoptees who’ve been able to help me learn where the information about $subject is has been incredibly helpful in learning how to deal with such seeming dichotomies. We aren’t supposed to want to know from whence we came, unlike the rest of the population. We’re instead supposed to form an attachment to our adopted lines, which stops when it hits us anyway ’cause we don’t count. We’re not blood.

If bloodlines don’t count, then why is 23andme and all t’other tracing companies growing so fast?

Other adoptees understand how confusing these thoughts get, and the gamut of emotions they can engender. Other adoptees help guide us down in ways others can’t begin to get near.

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Written by 7rin

Sun, 29 September, 2013 at 5:16 am

See, Joss DOES grok adoptees

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In the Jezebel post Joss Whedon Is Pissed That There Aren’t More Superheroine Movies, Joss yet again demonstrates (again inadvertently) that contrary to the belief of some he DOES grok adoptee stuff.

How can I tell this? From his quoted comment that says:

I read a beautiful thing Junot Diaz wrote: “If you want to make a human being into a monster, deny them, at the cultural level, any reflection of themselves.”

Ok, so this is probably intending to be from a “feminist” angle, but given that the two other tabs I’ve had open for the past few hours are Adoption is a Feminist Issue and Mother chimps crucial for offspring’s social skills, I think they all fit well into one post. Of course, I could waffle trying to artistically tie it all together, but I’ve been stuck here ages trying to clean up enough to be able to respond to Sir @martinnarey’s call for explanation, and so I’m knackered, so I’m just linking ‘n’ going to bed.

Written by 7rin

Sat, 7 September, 2013 at 4:08 am

Stop trashing adoption

with 9 comments

Yet again I’m being accused of being all manner of awfulnesses for daring to be a voice against the sanctified glorification of adoption that is common in discourse around the subject. I’m not linking anything ’cause I don’t want to be reading such stuff tonight to find it, as I’m currently on hiatus from adoption for as much as I can manage because I have been sent over the metaphorical edge by some of the stuff I’ve encountered of late. In order to retain my sanity, I’ve been minimising my time around the subject, but I am the only admin. in some of the FB groups I run and so at least occasionally I have to go in to at least check for spam and such like.

I’m sick though, of being asked things like “when are you going to stop trashing adoption?”

This post then, is the answer to “when will 7rin stop trashing adoption?”

I’ll stop trashing adoption when just two very very simple things happen.

1. I’ll stop trashing adoption when http://epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/38120 has been passed into law, thus giving the ADOPTEE the right to make THEIR OWN choice.

2. I’ll stop trashing adoption when https://adoptedintheuk.wordpress.com/tag/post-adoption-support/ is available to ALL ADOPTEES from professionals fully conversant with the devastating impact that the process of adoption can have upon the psyche of the adoptee.

That’s it.

Nothing more.

That’s all that’s needed to be done to get me to stop trashing adoption.

And now I’m going to go to bed, and may be AFK for a while as I am still trying to get my head back together and stop myself collapsing massively, since I can’t get any post-adoption support, and can’t currently keep fighting to get it ’cause I’m utterly exhausted from so many years of it. There are so many of you out there who I miss ’cause of my self-imposed exile, but I really need to be strict with myself ’cause I’m >.< that close to a meltdown, which I don’t have time for.

Written by 7rin

Wed, 26 June, 2013 at 11:41 pm

Taking newborns

with 8 comments

I first started this post in reaction to 6th March’s Daily Wail Mail article, social workers arrived at hospital to take woman’s baby while she was in labour.

A mother is demanding an apology from social services after her baby was taken away from her as soon as she was born.

Kelly McWilliams, 36, claims that social workers arrived at her bedside while she was in labour and took her newborn daughter Victoria into foster care.

I’d already posted about this subject before (AMBER ALERT! Missing child snatched!) and wanted to look at it in more depth. However, due to my entire crapness at getting things done, the post has been sat here as one of my many unfinished drafts.

Friday just gone (5th April), there appeared yet another post about a Social Services (Staffordshire, again) snatching (literally) a newborn from its mom. This time, it’s an extremely harrowing video showing the newborn being snatched from its screaming mom’s arms.


Sadly, this is the same family as appeared in my previous reblog where the SWers were waiting in the delivery suite for the mom to give birth so they could take the baby away from its mom straight away.

While I, like all the other adoptee advocates I know who’re campaigning for changes to the Institution of Adoption, realise there are people out there who’re harmful to the wellbeing of the children they create, I am absolutely convinced that unless a newborn is in immediate physical danger from its mom, then it should not be removed at birth.

Heck, it’s even advised that puppies are kept with their moms for up to the first eight weeks, or else there is a greater risk of separation anxiety, yet Social Services (and especially Staffordshire) – despite all the evidence of the need of babies for THEIR OWN mothers – in their accumulated ‘wisdom’ are happy to wade in and disrupt those very important early weeks.

SWers cite “concerns” for the baby’s welfare for actions such as this, yet unless those “concerns” are that the mom will be an IMMEDIATE threat to the baby’s physical safety, these SWers are acting contrary to scietific research that demonstrates why newborns should NOT be removed from their mother.

I’d already done the following research when I first started this post, and so because I’ve got to go out, and because I want to get this done in time for inclusion in this week’s #WASO hosted by The Boy’s Behaviour, I’m leaving you with the list of posts that I’d already filtered through that relate to those important first weeks in which yes, even people NEED THEIR OWN moms UNLESS that mom is going to be an immediate physical danger to the kid.

The First Hour Following Birth: Don’t Wake the Mother!

The First Hour After Birth: A Baby’s 9 Instinctive Stages

Care Practice #6: No Separation of Mother and Baby, With Unlimited Opportunities for Breastfeeding

Ms McWilliams, from Scawthorpe, Doncaster, says that she was separated from her baby for three months and allowed to see her for only six hours a week under close supervision until a court ordered that Victoria should be returned to her mother.

The Fourth Trimester – AKA: Why Your Newborn is Only Happy in Your Arms

Developmental milestones: Separation and independence

Attachment And Separation: What Everyone Should Know

Margaret Mahler and Separation-Individuation Theory

The Mother-Baby Bond @ Scientific American

Pre and Peri-Natal Psychology: An Introduction Part 1 by Thomas R. Verny MD, D.Psych, DHL, FRCPC
http://www.adultadoptees.org/forum/index.php?topic=31192

Found some videos by Dr. Thomas Verny on prenatal and perinatal psychology. I found them very interesting. It’s too bad this stuff isn’t common knowledge.

Part 1: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kJBO0C1iYp8
Part 2: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aUb_5F12V6A



UPDATE: 12 April

There’s been another video released; Father Of Snatched Baby Speaks Out

Paul Roberts and his wife Asha had their one day old baby taken last week by Staffordshire Social Services personnel assisted by the police. He spoke to Brian Gerrish about the circumstances on today’s UK Column Live.

ARTICLE | APRIL 11, 2013 – 5:23PM



UPDATE: 06 September

In an effort to protect their own villainous behaviour, Staffordshire SS attempted to get the first video in this post banned. Thankfully, as reported in the much maligned Daily Fail, I mean Wail, um Mail, sensibility has prevailed, and it’s now no longer banned.

Written by 7rin

Sun, 7 April, 2013 at 3:30 pm

Martin Narey is wrong. #justsaying

with 3 comments

Martin Narey is entirely wrong in his belief that…

… and that …

So very very wrong.

Socialisation is what makes being adopted so hard. The socialisation adoptees get IS different, whether it’s politically correct to admit it or not.

Read Verrier and Lifton and Kirschner and Brodzinsky and learn that it’s actually far far harder than you currently believe. No matter how much you want it to be, it’s not “better”, it’s just different.

I have other post in progress, but just wanted to point ^that bit out.

Written by 7rin

Sat, 10 November, 2012 at 8:44 pm

Narey on Adoption

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Martin Narey answers some parents… but not the adoptees.


 

Embedded above, rewritten below by me (so any typos’re likely to be mine, and I apologise in advanced if I got any wrong – all corrections’ll be followable by any thread :p); originally pimped out on Twitter by Mr. Narey himself.

{quote}

This is an open letter to some people who use Twitter to challenge my views about adoption. Some of those people have written or e mailed me and have received replies (albeit often necessarily brief replies). Others have preferred to stay anonymous and that’s fine. Some who tweet and blog have been abusive. I don’t much like that but I understand it because I believe it reflects an anger and sometimes a helplessness about their individual cases. I would, I am sure, feel the same way were our positions reversed.

I have never denied the reality that sometimes children are taken into care unnecessarily. It would be silly to believe otherwise when we have a workforce that is fallible. But I believe, and all I have read and seen supports this, that we have a far greater number of cases where we leave children at home when they should be removed. My interest is in children who are neglected (I know that children are taken into care for other reasons). I believe that, as a society, we tolerate neglect for too long. We do not, as many people believe, have record numbers of children in care. At the end of the eighties the care population was half as big again as it is now. And that was at a time when there were at least three times as many adoptions.

So I believe the case for care, for intervening earlier to stop neglect and then sourcing a new permanence for a neglected child is overwhelming and of course I shall continue to argue for that.

Incidentally, I do not – as many tweeters suggest – profit in any way from adoptions. And Barnardo’s, which I ran for six years never, in all that time, made any profit or surplus from the very small number of adoptions they dealt with. Nor do I have any power to intervene in cases. So I cannon, even if I wished, help to achieve the return of anyone’s child.

My role is simply to offer a view to Ministers about adoptions. That view is based on my experience at Barnardo’s and, since my resignation, many, many days spent visiting local authorities, voluntary adoption agencies and speaking to adopters and the adopted as well as children in care and charities which support families struggling to keep their children. Some people call me the Adoption Czar, evoking an image of a large salary and a retinue of staff. Those things, like the Adoption Czar title, are inventions of the press. I have no staff and last year my total earnings from the Department for Education were about £40,000.

So what advice can I offer those who feel their children have been wrongly removed? It is this. Fight your case of course. But do not seek to do so by attacking adoption in general. Whatever the circumstances of your case it is demonstrably true that thousands and thousands of adoptions are successful. The number which breakdown are much lower than commonly believed (new research from the University of Bristol is likely to confirm this) and there are thousands of adult adoptees willing to speak positively about their experience. I am very close personally to four such adoptees and have met hundreds of others.

Nevertheless, I believe (and say frequently) that adoption is only appropriate for a small minority of the children taken into care in England, largely those neglected by parents who are unlikely ever to be able to be successful parents. It is indisputably right that for those children adoption brings stability and compensates for that neglect.

So, continue to pursue that which you believe in. But don’t undermine the specifics of your argument by ignoring the reality of neglect and the need for us as a society, when parents cannot be supported to offer decent homes (often because of drink and addictions) and if good quality kinship carers cannot be found, to find an alternative stability through adoption. Those who might advise that the way to seek resolution of your own cases is by seeking to undermine adoption are – at best – misguided. Instead I offer this advice sincerely, concentrate on demonstrating that the authorities have made grave mistakes in _your_ case

Kind regards

Martin Narey

{/quote}

Written by 7rin

Tue, 9 October, 2012 at 1:36 am

Big Shiny Adoption

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Before I respond, I’d just like to clarify that as well as being an adoptee, I’m also a massive Joss fan, and a Lokean too. As such, there’s only one part of this article that I’d like to criticise…

{quote}
All joking aside, adoption is an awesome thing. It brings children to families who perhaps cannot have children of their own … and it brings families to those children who … don’t have one
{/quote}

So sayeth Arse-bot, over at Big Shiny Robot.

Unfortunately – especially in America – adoption is no longer about providing children with families. Unfortunately – especially in America – adoption is far more about providing adults with children.
Unfortunately – especially in America – adoption is nothing more than BIG BUSINESS.

The Finances

“The National Council for Adoption: Mothers, Money, Marketing, and Madness” parts One & Two goes into minute detail about how much PROFIT is made by so-called adoption “charities” from their trade in human life.

Additionally, Babies for Sale provides a PRICE LIST showing how a child that is not a ‘healthy white freshly-squeezed womb-wet’ can cost far far less – what with the disabled or the traumatised or the non-whites not even being as high as second-choice on the wannabe-parenting dream scale.

Finally on the theme of cost, this thread is a bunch of adoptees discussing how much each of them cost – along with the impact that such knowledge has had upon their lives.

Everyday Discrimination

Sadly, the truth of the matter is that adoptees in much of America are much maligned by their own Government – to the point that they are legally and lawfully discriminated against.

Got a (fake) birth certificate filed over a year after birth? Tough luck if you want anything like a passport or a driving licence then, because many adoptees are now finding that they are now ineligible to be provided with such things due to rules introduced in the wake of the 2001 terror attacks. Same goes for applying for jobs that require some forms of identification. I know adoptees who have experienced all these forms of discrimination directly.

Even if you’re not one of the adoptees suffering from discrimination that way, should you actually wish to get at YOUR OWN factual (as opposed to “amended”) birth certificate – sorry, but unless you’re in one of the few states that allow adoptees access to such things (six of them I think, though it may now be eight), then you’re pretty much out of luck. Even if you can (possibly) get at it, chances are that – unlike the other 98% of the population, you may actually have to go to court and beg and plead with the judge/s you’re petitioning in order to get what most of the rest of the population can walk into an office and get handed over the counter with almost no fuss at all.

Adoption Records by State is a useful list of lengths adoptees have to go to to get at something given willy-nilly to the rest of the population (since don’t forget, these laws also affect those who have been adopted by step-parents too – not just those of us who weren’t even good enough for our own families to want to bother with).

Of course, this also affects international adoptees in ways that are even more devastating, with some being deported back to their original countries

The Emotional Costs

Being adopted, contrary to popular belief, is not “wonderful”.

Adoptees face a multitude of psychological issues that the non-adopted rarely experience. However, being such a vast subject, I’ll resort to saying please visit the link included for further details.

Adoption Loss is the only trauma in the world where the victims are expected by the whole of society to be grateful” – The Reverend Keith C. Griffith, MBE

Finally, for a far more coherent rebuttal of the quoted text than anything I’ve managed to throw together yet, please go read Amanda’s post, “The Opposite of Adoption“. In fact, if you’re AT ALL interested in adoption and its effect on the adopted, then please go and read lots of posts in Amanda’s exceedingly articulate blog.



 

ETA: Tue 15 May 2012 @ 02:42

I’ve mentioned in one of these The Avengers posts, the wealth of other articles and blogs on the subject. Unfortunately, I’ve been having a hard time tracking down all the ones I thought I had read. Thus this ETA section of this post will be dedicated to linking to articles and blogposts on the subject, sometimes (though not always) from adoptees themselves. Feel free to nominate any posts that you feel worthy of inclusion, should I have missed it. I may not add them all, but that doesn’t mean they shouldn’t be suggested.

May 06
Disney, Adoption and The Avengers… by Doug7856
… with alex9179’s reply being my favourite explanation of the scene yet.

May 10
Some in the Adoption Community Angered by ‘Marvel’s The Avengers’ by Arse-bot

May 11
Was ‘Avengers’ joke cruel to adoption community? by msnbc.com Entertainment (has link to msnbc.com Entertainment website post on the issue)

‘Avengers’ Joke Does Impact Kids Waiting For Adoption by Beth Robinson

May 14

Why I Found “The Avengers” Line Offensive by Amanda

My thoughts on the “he’s adopted” line from the Avengers/I’m an angry adoptee by kostvollmers

NCFA is not the “Expert” on Adoption Issues by Susan P

May 16
That ‘He’s Adopted’ One-Liner in ‘The Avengers’? Not Funny. by Jessica Cromwell

May 17
An Angry Adoptee Fangirl Responds To Avengers Adoption Joke by Triona Guidry

The Avengers attack on adopted children is mean and unfunny by Andrea Poe

In an article proving how spot-on the original complaints are, Natalie Zutter goes to great lengths in demonstrating her own lack of lack of comprehension.

May 18
Avengers: He’s Adopted Joke Creating Controversy by Scott Johnson

May 20
Another “The Avengers” Interpretation: Your not a “Real” Member of your Family by Amanda

May 21
Stigmas About Adoption Remain, and Hurt Families by Abbie Goldberg

May 29
I Belly-Laughed all the Way Through the Avengers by Earth Stains

ETA: Wed 05 September 2012 @ 00:04

He’s adopted – Thor (Avengers) Facebook page

===========================================

Not about the controversy, but where I got the link to Tom Hiddleston’s article: A little homework for you…

Also not directly related, but something I found while ‘liking’ EB’s Team Loki (Tom Hiddleston) fan page: How to tell Loki that he’s adopted.

Written by 7rin

Sat, 12 May, 2012 at 9:03 pm

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