Monday, November 24, 2008

If Only Some People Get Hurt?

Does it matter that not all adoptees dislike adoption? Does it matter that not all adoptees feel negative about their adoption?

I ask because some people seem to think that if we count up all the adoptees who feel good about adoption and it turns out there are more of them than those who don't, that somehow that means adoption is a good thing.

If enough people get hurt by something, shouldn't we question whether it's a good thing? Shouldn't we question if it's really a positive force? Shouldn't we question whether it's a practice we should continue?

I think I understand what's really behind the argument. I think that people who are pro-adoption (whatever that really means) believe that those adoptees who feel hurt by their adoption weren't really hurt by adoption at all. They believe that something else is wrong with us. Either we had a bad experience. Or we have bad attitudes. Or some such. It couldn't be adoption that did any harm.

Why should that be?

Why is it so hard to believe that taking children from their parents might have an impact on them? Why is it so hard to believe that changing their identity and creating a fictional identity might create difficulties to be dealt with? And why is it so hard to believe that refusing to acknowledge any of the complications introduced by adoption might lead to additional complications?

I think that's the inherent problem with self-proclaimed adoption advocates and those they label anti-adoption trying to talk. There is little by way of middle ground. If you acknowledge the difficulties of adoption, how do you continue to advocate for it? In order to continue to be an advocate for adoption, you have to dismiss the experience of many adoptees.

No comments: