Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Birth Siblings Searching?

At Jane's Blog, she is translating into English Korean-language posts to GAIPS (Global Adoption Information & Post Service) board of first families looking for adoptees. I clicked today and read:

148. Looking for my younger sister
I’m looking for my younger sister who was adopted right from the hospital. I assume that in the spring of 1981 or 1982 she was born in in Kyongnam Province, Jinju City at “Yang Maternity Home.” I don’t know which agency she went through or where she was adopted. I want to know.Father’s name is Jin Wi-chang, mother’s name is Kim Gap-yoon.
Please do a favor and help me.

This is how I always thought it would work for finding families in China -- it would come from siblings. The older sister who remembers when her baby sister disappeared. The younger brother whose birth was permitted because his sister was abandoned. This is the generation that will leave the countryside, the small villages, the farms, and head for the bigcity. They will go to college and trade school, they'll learn about computers, they will learn English, they will have some disposable income. And they will wonder about those family stories of the disappeared. And they'll post on a family searchboard:

1357. Looking for my younger sister.
I'm looking for younger sister, born 2000.11.06.Parents placed her that day near Beijiang Bridge in Guiping.They put her in a cardboard box, wrapped in three layers of clothing, with little hat. They left note with birth date.I don't know which SWI she went through or where she was adopted.
I want to know.
Please do a favor and help me.

1587. Looking for middle sister.
Eldest sister and I, youngest brother, look for our sister. She was born 2003.09.15 at Guiping Women & Children Hospital. Parents were unable to pay hospital fees for sick baby. I don't know which SWI she went through or where she was adopted.
I want to know.
Please do a favor and help us.
DiDi & JieJie

How long did it take in Korea? Thirty years? If nothing else works, maybe my kids will have this. . . .


Wendy said...

I also think this will come to pass in the future. I can't see how it won't. I think it will be siblings or possibly parents if enough time goes by and laws change. However, for some of our kids the policy probably had to part in their story--financial issues could be to blame for children that have extensive needs or requirement of surgery along with prejudical attitudes about differences and not fitting in to the culture at large.

Anonymous said...

I've always thought that the birth parents would keep the existence of the sibling a secret. How can they admit that they had a baby that they abandoned? I guess I could see a death bed confession, but it just doesn't seem likely to me that the family would sit around the fireside talking about the sibling that isn't there. Maybe mom and dad would talk about her at night after #1 daughter and son are asleep, wondering where she is and how she's doing.

malinda said...

Anon: I've always figured that family secrets were not the best kept secrets in the world! I know I overheard things as a child -- especially in big family gatherings -- that spilled BIG secrets! And in small villages, it may not be the family who blurts out the secret in front of a child. And some older children will be old enough to remember. Think about that message from Korea -- relinquishing a child would be a shameful thing there, but a sibling found out somehow.