Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Adoptees, World's Oldest Children

I've written before about the tendency of the world to think about adoptees as perpetual children.  You think I'm kidding?  Well, look at this article about a bill passing through the Rhode Island legislature to provide access to original birth certificates to adult adoptees . . . if they ever become adults:
Meanwhile, Senate leaders say they are working to revise an alternative bill, introduced by Sen. Rhoda E. Perry, D-Providence, to create a more-limited access depending on the adopted adult’s age.

Perry’s bill (S-748), as originally introduced, would limit access to adult adoptees born after Jan. 1, 2012, or to those who are 40 years or older.

“I do believe that this session we’re going to come to some agreement and move passage of an adoption bill,” Senate Majority Whip Maryellen Goodwin, D-Providence, said Thursday. The revised bill would include some type of restrictions, she said, regarding the age at which adoptees would be allowed access to their original birth certificates.

“It will not be 18,” she said. “I think 18 is too young. … I want them to be able to find their records in an appropriate and meaningful kind of way, not because they want to get back at their adoptive parents.”
O.M.G. Like I said in the title to my previous post, Adoptee = Perpetual Childhood.  At 18, you can fight and die for your country.  You can marry without anyone's permission.  You can vote.  You can send in your money and ask for a copy of your original birth certificate . . . unless you're adopted. Then, you're too young, you're too immature, you can't do things in an "appropriate and meaningful way."  You're just an angsty kid getting back at your adoptive parents -- up until you're 40.  Maybe then we can trust you to have left childhood behind.  Until then, you'r just the world's oldest child.

American Adoption Congress is asking folks to comment at the original article, because they've been informed legislators are watching them closely. 


Linda said...

Its so infuriating, really. I sometimes see adult adoptees call themselves an "adopted child".

And Perry is showing her ignorance by saying, "I want them to be able to find their records in an appropriate and meaningful kind of way, not because they want to get back at their adoptive parents"

Get back at my ap's? For what?? And who is she to determine what is appropriate or meaningful?

Im never surprised by the ignorance surrounding adoption, but when statements like this are said by our "leaders", it's just mind blowing.

TJ said...

Oh yikes... really? I can see withholding it until, say, 18, but 40?! I can only wonder their motives. Like, real motives. Are they trying to hide something? Who are they really trying to help in this situation?

asappylove said...

Is this some kind of joke??!!!! Why would they do this?! I'm sorry but at 18 they are considered an adult! Why do people want to take this right away from not only the adoptee but what about birth moms who have waited so long in hopes that when their birth child hits that age that they will want to know where they came from. I also feel that at this age adoptees are more likely to know more about their birth parents and where they come from anyways that getting this information isn't to get back at anyway. It is truly obvious that these congress people are not adoptees or birth parents. This really is upsetting!

Anonymous said...

Btw I read another article along the same lines:

and saw this bit:

-But Charles Greenwood, a lawyer in Providence who handles adoptions, disagrees. “People use the Internet to find all kinds of information that has never been available to any of us before,” he said. “But I don’t see there’s any reason why we should help with this.”

Greenwood said he’d be concerned for his clients –– adoptive couples as well as birth mothers –– if the state unseals adoptees’ birth records.

“The parent that gives up his or her rights, they’re in a sense making a contract with someone,” he said. “That contract is essentially: I am going to give you an opportunity for another life, but I am going to back away from your life. And that’s the last thing I’m doing for you or with you.”-


Nate Goetz said...

As an adoptive father, I find this really ridiculous! Adoptees should have access to all of their information if and when they want it! Accessing this information should be their choice, not that of the government or other entity. Period.