Total change of topic, but something relevant in my life. November is National Adoption Month. Why is this relevant to me? Well, because my two younger brothers were adopted from the US foster care system 3.5 years ago.
My thoughts on the subject might be surprising. I’ve seen a lot of posts from parents advocating for adoption, usually featuring their smiling, precocious child, maybe holding a sign that says something along the lines of “I found my forever family but there are so many others waiting,” or “Spread the joy of adoption.” Maybe I’m just a bit cynical about the whole thing because I can attest to the fact that for many, adoption is not a rosy affair. Instead, it’s an emotional draining, exhausting, experience, because it’s not as simple as “opening your family up to someone else” It’s also letting in a shit ton of trauma into your family. But I guess I’m speaking of a very specific type of adoption — older child adoption in the US foster care system, where kids have been through neglect, abuse, been exposed to violence in the home, etc, and recovering is not something that love can fix. I say, do away with the whole notion of “All you need is love” in regards to adoption. All parties, the adopted children, adoptive parents, siblings, need more that just love to make it all work.
Personally, the people I think that ought to be celebrated during National Adoption month are the mothers who are able to make the decision to put their children up for adoption BEFORE exposing them to abuse, neglect, violence, etc. But then again, families like mine should also receive recognition.