Monday, August 3, 2009

Birth Mother Presentation: Adult Adoptee's Comments

Now that my work presentation is over, I can now share as I promised the comments of the adult adoptee and the adoptive parent on the birth mother panel I attended last month. Since the focus was on the birth mothers, the other participants didn't really have that much to say. But I'll share what they did tell us. I'll start with the adult adoptee, and post later about what the adoptive mom had to say.

The adult adoptee was originally from Korea and grew up in Texas. He is now in his 20s and in graduate school. He visited Korea with his adoptive parents when he was 10, as part of a homeland tour. He met his half-sister then, and learned that his birth mother had died, as had a half-brother. He confessed he hasn't done a very good job of keeping in touch with his half-sister. He said that most of his questions had been answered when he was 10, and it was enough for him to know that he could contact her if he wanted or needed more.

He was asked what adoption meant to him, and his answer was, "Opportunity." He also said that knowing his birth mother or birth family "wasn't that big a deal to me." He said he viewed himself as the son of his adoptive parents, and that was that. But when the birth mothers spoke, he was listening VERY intently. I wonder if he is as indifferent as he claimed. . . .


Anonymous said...

He's in the adoption-induced "fog".

Those adoptees are the only ones asked to speak at pro-adoption events.

Anonymous said...

Funny... I am a bit suspicious of who gets asked to speak at adoption agency-sponsored events. But still, I do believe that people who have been adopted differ in their interest levels about birth family, etc. I don't think one need's to criticize adoptees for their lack of interest. Just the agency for not for not finding a more representative sample of people to sit on their panel.
Sue (aka anonymous)

Michelle said...

I've presented to PAPA a number of times about how it feels to be adopted.

So one time I showed up to a room full of PAPS, I thoiught I'd be a bit lessassertive than I usually amd began the session with friendly warm-up exercise. That's always a good way to break the ice:))

First I asked them to hand over their birth certificates or any ID with their name on it.

I gathered all the little ID cards, then asked them to follow me down the hall to the restrooms. We walked into a stall and I dropped all their identification into the toilet and flushed it.

Wendy said...

I am sure he is not as indifferent as he openly may think he is or wants to project. Whether he is aware or not is another story.

J Darling Disney Wedding Mentor said...

If I were to take my family as an example of whether adopted kids "care" about their biological upbringing, I'd have to say it's 50/50. My brother was raised by the same parents as I was, adopted under similar circumstances (though domestic - but closed, 1970's-1980's style). My brother doesn't care to find his biological family. He's content with where he's at. On the other side, as soon as I was of age, I went after it. Took me a year and a half, and I highly recommend any adoptee take the journey to find out the past. The thing is, it's not the result of the journey that's amazing. (Biologically related people are, after all, just people who look like you for the most part.) It's what you discover about yourself through the process. Knowing that I can contact any member of my biological family is enough. While I'm friendly with them, I don't usually seek out their company. To me, my family are those that raised me. True, by bio family is my "family" too, but they are more like distant relatives than 'parents'. I consider myself to be very aware, not in a fog. So I think it just varies by the person.