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Chapter 15

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Chapter 15
Tony and Corenn

I moved in with Tony and Corenn, and slept on their basement couch. I didn’t mind, it was a million times better than where I’d come from. I decided that I had to give up my son for adoption. I didn’t really understand family (how could I?) and I thought that there was no way that I could be enough for him. “Love isn’t enough,” I’d heard and even said. Tony and Corenn made some pretty strong suggestions against it.

But I’d been raised on the concepts of adoption being good. I’d been raised that children have to have a mom and a dad and that divorce or anything that created a single parent home was pretty much evil. I’d been raised on the idea that people are replaceable, and that children don’t remember. Just because I remembered, didn’t mean that other children remembered. In fact, I was assured by adoption agency workers, infants never remember.

And certainly, no other adoptee could feel as out of place, unwanted, and weird as me. I was different, after all.

Our society loves adoption. I got reinforcement from most people that adoption was good. Adoptees are lucky. I was lucky, I got adopted. I got sat down and given a piece of paper. I was told to list everything that I had to offer. Then everything that a (comparatively) wealthy adoptive couple could offer. This, of course, was a no-brainer. I could only offer love, and they could offer that, too! Plus everything else!

I was insufficient. Inadequate. I would only ruin his life. After all, they told me, nearly all kids of single mothers end up in jail. The warnings were dire. The demonization of single mothers was total. I had nothing to give to my son that someone else couldn’t improve on. Nothing.

No one ever bothered to tell me the truth about the other side of adoption. No one ever bothered to tell me how much many adoptees hurt. How the abandonment at birth can have a lifelong impact. They did tell me that it would hurt me, but never that it might hurt my son. They never gave me The Primal Wound. There was never a balanced discussion. Adoption was good. I was bad. But I could become good by giving up my son. I could be a hero and “do the right thing.”

I could abandon my son into the arms of wealthy strangers who were willing to pay for the privilege. THAT could redeem me from the terrible mistake of being a whore and a single mother.

After all. People are replaceable, you know. I could always have more kids, if I could have one.

And if your mother isn’t good enough, you can replace her, too.

Besides which, we all know that adopters are “carefully screened” and as such no adopted child is ever abused. No adopter ever becomes a single parent. Adopters never divorce. They’re forever wealthy.

And no single mother ever makes anything of herself. No child of a single mother ever grows up happy.

What choice did I have, really? Was I going to be selfish and ruin my son’s life, or was I going to be the heroic, tragic birthmother and sacrifice myself for the good of my child?

Of course I was going to do what was best for my child. The fact that I was lied to about the ONLY “loving” choice I had in the situation, is beside the point. I was young, and I was easy prey for the industry. Sure, some of them sincerely think that they’re doing the best thing possible for children and mothers.

But is it, really? Are people really replaceable? Can you really just buy a child and expect them to live up to YOUR family’s heritage when it doesn’t belong to them?

I didn’t know about these questions then. I had been raised in a social and family paradigm. In our society, it’s almost a crime to speak anything but good about adoption. People find a vigorous hatred for anyone who does so. I’d never heard anything negative about adoption.

No one had ever even pointed out the bald fact that my grandparents should never have adopted me when they hated me so much. In fact, society felt they were obligated to adopt us. Because… adoption is good, and can never be bad except in those so ultra-rare-as-to-be-nonexistent cases where someone abuses their adopted child. But if that EVER happened, we’d hear all about it, right?

Because after all, we hear all about all abuse cases, don’t we? And adopters are ‘carefully screened’ and that’s all it takes to guarantee all adoptees are treated like princes and princesses.

Nor did I ever think clearly about the fact that, when children lose their mother at birth due to complications of birth or other means, we all admit and accept that they’ve suffered a loss. But no one told me, and I never realized, that children who lose their mother at birth due to adoption have also lost their mothers.

Young girls are especially prey to these rationalizations of how adoption is good, single mothers are the epitome of evil, and the extreme care that’s taken never to acknowledge even the potential dark sides of adoption. Nor did anyone tell me that adoption is a 1.8 billion dollar industry in the USA. Perhaps if I’d realized how much profit is involved in baby selling, I’d have been less willing to volunteer mine for sale.

Instead, I made my plan. I picked my couple. I met them and bonded with them (notice that, it’s important– it’s part of how young mothers are coerced into relinquishment). I was encouraged to refer to the child growing inside of me as theirs. Their baby, not mine. I was already THEIR “birthmother,” too. My job was birth. My job was to give them THEIR baby.

They didn’t mean it badly. It was established protocol. Normal. Standard. They were doing what millions do… they were picking THEIR baby, and THEIR birthmother, and they were getting excited about THEIR baby. Who would think a thing of it? The mother has agreed, she has made a decision. Now everyone can go forward as if it’s set in stone, before she even sees or holds her child. Why not?

It’s not like she might see everything differently after the baby’s birth. It’s not like getting her to start early on seeing how excited the adopters are could possibly make her feel emotionally obligated, even if she realizes after the baby’s born that she doesn’t want to do it. And it’s all good, isn’t it? It’s all best for the child, isn’t it? Haven’t we already proven that all children of single whores– erm, mothers— will end up in prison? Don’t we have a moral obligation to rescue children from the horrific plight of being the child of a single, poor, and/or young mother?

Certainly we must. Even the Bible says so. “The WICKED snatch fatherless children from their mother’s breasts, and take a poor man’s baby as a pledge before they will loan him any money or grain.” Job 24:9 Okay, maybe not so much. But let’s not let THAT stop us!

You’ll notice that the vast majority of adoption agencies are Christian agencies. They’re doing God’s work = destroying families to make replacement families. Destroying young mothers and creating orphans so that infertile couples can buy themselves a baby. If that ain’t God’s work, I don’t know what is, by Jove!

Anyway, so I gave him up at birth. Tony and Corenn made it clear that they didn’t think it was the right thing, and yet they were deeply supportive of what I chose.

Alex found out that he’d had a son, though, and contacted me. He promised to help out, he said that he wanted me to raise him, and he wanted to be part of Austin’s life. I was pretty skeptical, but before I could really make a decision, the couple I’d chosen dumped Austin in my lap and walked out. The adoptive mother couldn’t handle the possibility of me changing my mind, so she pretty much forced me to.

So there I was, living in Tony and Corenn’s basement with Austin, and with Alex there to visit, to see his son…

He took one look at him and said, “He has black hair.” I had light brown hair, and Alex did, too… Austin had black hair. Then an echo from the past… Alex doubted that Austin was his because of the black hair at birth. I was all Alex could see in my son.

Next, how I lost Austin…. again. And for good.

Written by sandit4glp

July 30, 2010 at 1:32 pm

Posted in Chapter 15