One of the things that has always puzzled me in discussions about adoption is the need, by some, to claim that adoption is no different than having biological children. They are both ways of starting a family, and both equally good. Indeed, adoption is often portrayed as better, a blessing that should be shouted from the mountain top.
Of course it's utter nonsense, but it fascinates me. I say it's nonsense because I don't know a single parent that wouldn't admit, if they are being honest, that they feel differently about their different children. My (adoptive) parents feel differently about each of their three biological children. And I'm sure they feel differently about me than they do about their other children.
Please note, I didn't say better or worse. But different. I don't doubt that they love us all a great deal, and probably as much equally as one can measure such things. But they don't feel the same about all of us. As it should be; we are individuals, after all.
Still, I'm curious about this need to normalize (and treat as no different) adoption. I don't mean to suggest everyone does this. Or that all adoptive parents do it. Or anything so universal (and thus, obviously, wrong). I simply notice that many (a sizable minority, perhaps?) seem to think that adoption is no different than having biological children, or to overcompensate and hold that adoption is superior.
Maybe I could feel better about adoption if I saw more people willing to openly acknowledge and discuss the pitfalls and difficulties peculiar to adoption. I don't know if I could ever accept it, even as a necessary evil, but I would feel better for the next generation of adoptees if we were more open about the differences.
I have read some things from adoptive parents on this, and they are some of the best people suited to come clean on this score. I don't know what it's like to be raised by my biological parents. I can't compare what the differences might be. I can only talk about my experiences as an adoptee, and those raised by their biological parents can try to make comparisons. Maybe, in that way, I could ask one of my (adoptive) siblings to write and compare notes. But none of them seem to be interested in that endeavor. However, adoptive parents that also have biological children are uniquely situated to at least draw some comparisons in their own family.
Reforming adoption, better helping adoptees deal with some of their unique challenges, requires us to be more honest about the differences. Until we are, I worry that adoptee voices will continue to be drowned out by the "adoption is beautiful" crowd.