Big surprise, “forever families” aren’t really forever.

Okay, so I did all this blogging about how I don’t like the term “angry adoptee” and apparently I am the sort of person whose hijinks amuse the Gods to no end because wouldn’t you know it, today I ran across something that makes me want to tattoo “ANGRY ADOPTEE!” to my forehead and march around carrying a sign that says “ANGRY ADOPTEE!” while I shout to random passers by, “I AM AN ANGRY ADOPTEE! AAARGH!!!” until someone locks me up in the angry adoptee wing of the nearest loony bin.

What could cause such a reaction, you ask? Well, if you’re an adoptee or even just a decent human being and you don’t want to be completely enraged for hours, possibly days or weeks, then do not check out this blog post in which cool adoptive mom Judy discovers, much to her horror, an ad in her local paper for an adoption replacement. Wait, that’s a little ambiguous, let’s hyphenate for clarity: re-placement. As in, placing for adoption again.

Chloe, re-placed adopteeSorry, Chloe. You see, it just didn’t work out. It was time to part ways. After over nine years. Hey, these things happen. We love you, but we’re not in love with you, and maybe it would be better if you saw other parents, and we saw other children. We just can’t deal with all your issues. This just isn’t what we wanted. But hey, we can still be friends.

Tragic, isolated case? Oh, no. This particular adoption agency has a fucking return policy. “When adoption can’t be forever, adoption disruption is an option.” Go read that page. Go read it! And if it doesn’t make you completely sick and/or furious, please do the rest of humanity a favor and throw yourself off the nearest cliff.

I was thinking about going through and listing all the things that are wrong with this, but I don’t even know where to begin. No, wait, here’s the one thing that I think bothers me the most, and that is saying something considering how much everything about this is just wrong. All this bullshit so many adoptive parents spew all over the internet about how they are their adoptive children’s real parents is a big fucking lie as long as things like this are allowed to exist. Real parents don’t need an escape clause. Any adoption agency that offers one should be shut down immediately and the people responsible for it never allowed to work with children again.

I have gone out of my way several times in this blog to say that I am not anti-adoption. However, if we have actually gotten to the point where adoption is not final, where adoptive parents do not have the same commitment to their children as I have to my biological child, then we truly would be better off outlawing adoption because it has become nothing more than trafficking in human lives.


19 Responses to “Big surprise, “forever families” aren’t really forever.”

  1. 1 joyjoy July 28, 2007 at 5:57 am

    Years ago I took a legal research class. I had to spend hours in the law library, and invariably as I would be thumbing through the books I would find, “In re: Jessica S.”, “In re: Michael B.”

    Adoption reversals, the law isn’t the same, adoptive parents aren’t held to the same standards, esp. if the child is in some way less than sound.

    You really want to get pissed, read the case law.

    The worst part of it is, unlike a nfamily there aren’t the extended relatives there to pick up the slack. Many more are simply not interested in a child that doesn’t share the physical bond, not all afamilies of course are like this, but the adoptee is much more vulnerable.

  2. 2 imtina July 28, 2007 at 6:21 am

    I remember our social worker asking us what I thought about people who would ‘disrupt’ an adoption. I clearly remember my pulse quickening and saying slowly, “Those kind of people aren’t clear on what it means to be a parent.” The social worker beamed at me, and I think she started to reach into her purse for a gold star. I passed, but I’ll bet she asks that question all the time and she probably gets answers that are meant for people interested in agencies like A Child’s Waiting. Them. Those assholes with their lifetime return policy, especially those items found to be defective in nature.

    *more forhead slapping with palm of hand*

    Bubbles….rage on. rage on.

    Angry Adoptee is no longer a perjorative term.

  3. 3 Possum July 28, 2007 at 8:37 am

    I cry for this little girl – and the multitude of other children just like her.
    Poss. xxx

  4. 4 prairieguy July 28, 2007 at 12:34 pm

    A great sadness and anger came over me as I read this…sadness for Chloe and anger at the so called “forever parents.”

    This disruption will impact her the rest of her life in a very negative way. A “return policy” after 9 years…how sickning!!!!

    This is the reason I have never called adoptive families forever families…they may in fact not be forever.


  5. 5 suz July 28, 2007 at 1:54 pm

    sadly, i have seen this over and over via adoptive parents who purchased their children from the broker known as Kurtz. In the state of GA, an eleven year old girl was turned over to the State after the adoptive father died. Adoptive mother told her she never wanted her to begin with, he did, and now that he was dead, she could no longer care for her and no longer wanted to.

    My friend Peg was adopted and before it was finalized, given back to the agency. Parents stated they had adopted to fix their marriage and she wasnt fixing it. She was later adopted again.

    Adoptive parents in NJ were given a boy. After a period of time, decided they wanted a girl instead. Gave the boy back.


    (btw, they would NEVER tell surrendering parents this…adoption is better than we are..right?)

  6. 6 Amy July 28, 2007 at 3:08 pm

    You do know that A Child’s Waiting is the agency that scammed Stephanie Bennett of her child? I hear they are under investigation. So hopefully they will be shut down.

  7. 7 Andie D. July 28, 2007 at 6:01 pm

    I am at a loss for words.

  8. 8 Andie D. July 28, 2007 at 6:10 pm

    I couldn’t help myself. I went and looked over the profiles of the other “waiting” children and I am just fucking heart broken. So many of them have attachment disorder. I FUCKING WONDER WHY.

    I might throw up.

  9. 9 Julie July 28, 2007 at 7:09 pm

    Right. Big surprise. Business as usual in the Adoption Industry. And some of you wonder why I hate it like I do.

    In the words of B. J. Lifton, “We will love you as our own unconditionally — on the condition that you pretend that you are really our own” is the attitude agencies generally support with their adopter clients.

  10. 10 Kaylee July 28, 2007 at 7:22 pm

    That’s disgusting .. a return policy on a child… I’d love to see a biological parent try that.. I’m sorry doc, I wasn’t ready, put the almost 10 year old back please. Yeah that would fly.

    I can’t imagine that just because a child has any kind of issue the parents want to give it back, like a trip to the pet store, or Wal Mart. Refund please?! I mean what the hell? As a parent that had a son given up for adoption (open) and with a brand new 3 month old son I find that an adoption agency with a return policy would be the last one I would have dealt with.

    On the other hand if the parents who adopted my first son (out of a very bad situation) ever wanted to “return” him I would step up and bring him home in a heartbeat, but they aren’t like that. They are his parents, I am his bio mom. That’s how it works. Even Autistic they never have mentioned giving up. All three of their children have special needs, all three adopted. The last was a foster child the system placed with them, after having him for several years, they decided they couldn’t bear to part with him ever and asked to adopt themselves.

    I can’t imagine … I just can’t …

  11. 11 Acceptance-with-Joy July 28, 2007 at 10:42 pm

    I have come here to reply several times and wasn’t able to put my thoughts into words. I don’t understand this at all… my heart breaks for this litle girl. My daughter had a disrupted adoption prior to coming to my home. I have watched first hand how painful this is for a child.

    I have been where these parents are. My daughter has a strong family history of bipolar disorder and she has Fetal Alcohol Syndrome. Beginning in the 6th grade, she was alternately shutting down and raging. I didn’t know what was causing it and as she got bigger I was worried about how much longer I could keep her safe. Besides, when she was 7, in kindergarten and acting about 4 or 5… it was easy to believe that she would be fine in a stable home. I was incredibly niave. When she was 12 and developmentally about 7 or 8, couldn’t do math, think in abstracts, was suspended almost weekly and had a restraining order filed against her by a classmate’s parents… well, the future seemed overwhelming and scary. I never even thought of “giving her back.” So I am not going to excuse this couple, but I have to say I cannot even believe this agency. The expectation should be that this family stay together. Who ever heard of a return policy on a human being? What would have helped me?

    * Real full disclosure that includes family and prenatal history. I have been blessed to have an ongoing relationship with my daughter’s family. She was in my house as a foster child and I supervised visits between her and her grandmother. If I hadn’t fostered her first, I wouldn’t know anything about her birth family and wouldn’t have had access to her family/prenatal history. I am lucky, many people who suspect their child is affected prenatally by alcohol cannot get a diagnosis because they cannot confirm exposure.
    * Education – initial and ongoing
    * Post adoption support that includes psychiatric care, personal care attendants.

    If this agency really and truly cared about children, they wouldn’t have an Adoption Disruption Child Replacement Program. You don’t make a program around something you anticipate should only happen in extreme cases… They should invest their time and effort into preservation.

    Parenting my daughter is the most wonderful, hardest, grandest, emotionally challenging thing that I do ~

  12. 12 joy21 July 29, 2007 at 1:47 am

    See, I am not that freaked out about it, I guess because I have known for a long time, when I was in college, I read everything I could find on adoption, mostly sw journals, disruption is a real problem.

    Adoptees are very vulnerable, they don’t have the physical bond with their parents.

    I don’t know why people don’t understand how very vulnerable we (as a class) are.

  13. 13 imtina July 29, 2007 at 2:25 am

    Did you see the “staff” page and that one person’s job title is ‘child recruiter’

    Sometimes I think I might be making a tiny, infinitesimal dent in improving the image of modern adoptive parents, but things like this make me want to give up. The coercion is right there, in the freaking JOB TITLE.

  14. 14 Michelle July 29, 2007 at 2:55 am

    How often do they check with the family the lost the child in the first place?

    A friend of mine was adopted at 2 – sent back at 3 because the female adopter realized she couldn’t handle a bi-racial child. She went through foster care and is still trying to find her mother. The children’s aid made her keep the adopted name of the people who sent her back. Sick. Even though they returned her, she had to go through life with their last name.

  15. 15 abebech July 31, 2007 at 6:41 pm

    “if we have actually gotten to the point where adoption is not final, where adoptive parents do not have the same commitment to their children as I have to my biological child, then we truly would be better off outlawing adoption because it has become nothing more than trafficking in human lives.”
    Exactly. And if thinking that makes you an Angry Adoptee, I’m an Angry Amom.
    One thing I’ve been thinking over and over is that pre-aparent counseling should insist on the pap being aware that ALL adoptions are Special Needs, and if the paparent isn’t ready for challenges, then adoption should never be an option.

  16. 16 Gayle August 1, 2007 at 1:12 am

    Gee, and people say we are paranoid about being worried that those who supposedly love us will leave us. Cases like this show just how real those fears can be.


  17. 17 iBastard August 1, 2007 at 3:12 pm

    I am particularly glad to see there are adoptive parents who are appalled by this. In addition to the harm done to the children who go through this, there is a broader social harm done to the parents who really are committed to their adopted children. I think these kinds of policies–and the fact that they are policies rather than special case situations (which themselves, in my view, shouldn’t exist, but that’s beside the point)–weaken the socially recognized connection created by adoption. It’s a slap in the face to the adoptive parents who really are committed to their adopted children, no matter what.

    Of course, it’s a kick in the groin to adoptees and first families. There’s plenty of outrage to go around here.

    Speaking of outrage, Kevin Minh has written about an international adoption disruption and how badly it had turned out. If your blood pressure has been too low lately, you should check it out.

  18. 18 lisatalks August 10, 2007 at 10:01 pm

    I work with a dog rescue – we look for better commitment for our DOGS.
    My God, how plastic can our world become? I can harp on my upbringing as well as anyone but thank God I wasn’t RETURNED..
    Repulsive, repulsive people.
    Thanks for a great overall blog..just found you today.

  1. 1 Disrupting disruption « boomerific Trackback on July 30, 2007 at 2:02 am

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