Tuesday, April 22, 2008

One Trick Ponies

The circus is full of them. And, as Paul Simon observed, they turn their tricks with pride. The only thing about that is that it limits us as an organized entity out to right the wrongs of the adoption industry. There are so many things that we need to speak out against and Yes, I most certainly do include the BSE.

But there is also this problem of certain adoptionist organizations such as the Evan B. Donaldson Institute and the NCFA who do slanted "studies" and then presume to be the voice of the mothers of adoption loss. As another blogger put it, and quite well, CUT IT OUT! We are mature women who are capable of speaking for ourselves. The last thing we need is facilitators and adopters speaking for us. We can take care of ourselves now...we aren't those malleable, vulnerable teens anymore. We have acquired serious ovarian fortitude.

We are also a diverse group of women with many different talents and perspectives and we don't walk in lock-step to what one person or one group of people says our focus should be. No one person, even if the person is a (self-published) author, can speak for all of us as "THE Voice of Mothers" and shouldn't even try. PHD's and Masters' Degrees, authorship and working at a university and all that other good stuff is no more a requirement for leadership than who has the biggest guns. We are all articulate, intelligent women who have a shared experience and some of us see that experience very differently from others.

I, for instance, do not believe, for a minute, that I was "duped." I was forced, I was coerced, I was subjected to constant threats, warning, urgings and criticisms of my ability to parent my own children, but I was not "duped." THAT came later, post-BSE. It was what was done to me and my sisters from that era that enabled that heinous industry to grow, ripen and become fat on the coveting of their customers and led them to use psychology, advertising science and every other trick in the book to dupe our younger sisters into thinking that adoption was the best thing since paper napkins.

Not only do we hold, within our ranks, a multitude of talent, we also cannot all be lumped together under one banner. Those that are trying to do that are making a big mistake and a mighty entity is going to go down because of it. Hey, even those who have "achieved" can make mistakes. Were I the type to pray in public, my prayer would be, "Sock a little humility to us all, God/dess. because we sure need it....some more than others."

Who are the truly humble? Those are the ones who can say "I'm sorry," without following it up with a "but," and without feeling diminished that they might be able to learn something from someone else. That's the difference between humility and humiliation.

We also have the "childless aunties" among us. These are mothers who have not achieved reunion, but who know exactly how one should be conducted and chastise the ones who have had their reunions crash and burn. Wow, aren't we the compassionate ones?

Well, there is my personal critique. I have received a lot of such criticism, myself. I took what I needed and left the rest. But I will truly be lost if I continue to think I can't make mistakes and I don't have anything to learn from anyone else (well, except adopters and facilitators....ya gotta have some pride).

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

""We also have the "childless aunties" among us. These are mothers who have not achieved reunion, but who know exactly how one should be conducted and chastise the ones who have had their reunions crash and burn. Wow, aren't we the compassionate ones?""

You gotta be freakin' kidding me!! That's like the childless woman telling the woman with children the do's and don'ts of parenting & raising a child. Or if someone who has never done a particular job, no experience whatsoever, is going to tell the person who is doing the job, who does have experience of the job...the right way & wrong way of doing that particular job, though the 'adviser' knows diddly-squat in regards to first-hand experience with that particular job. Freakin' know-it-alls abound everywhere...even in the Land of Unreunited Burfmuggles! I think what beats the Know-it-all Unreunited Burfmuggle giving instruction in reunion (and judgement)...is the unreunited adoptee who believes he/she has all the answers for the makings of a successful reunion. The aforementioned exists also..lacking in compassion, but made up for in tones of judgement.

Reunions are as varied as the people who compromise them. Whatever happened to that old saying.. 'Walk a mile in my shoes'!? Like anything else in life...there are always those people who can talk the talk, but haven't walked the walk.