- Adoption should be a last resort.
- Babies don’t need stuff. All they need is love – love from their biological families.
- It’s always best for a child to remain in his or her biological family.
Of course, most people would say that I disagree because I’m an adoptive parent. As a parent through adoption, I can’t believe that biology is best, because that would mess with my entitlement issues, or something.
The thing is, I’ve always thought biology isn’t best. Way before I knew about adoption. Way before I knew how babies were made. Way before any kid really should.
I don’t really want to go into it, but I had a crap childhood. It wasn’t Lifetime Movie of the Week bad, but, let’s just say Child Protective Services (CPS) was involved. Heavily involved for awhile, actually. I now believe that, if we – or my dad – had been black, my sister and I would have been removed from our home. Maybe that’s why I don’t have enough guilt over “white privilege.” My “white privilege” left me in a place that was not safe.
Love isn’t enough. I know my mom loved me. I have no doubt in my mind about that at all. But she didn’t have the skills to be a good parent. Good parents are supposed to keep their kids safe, first and foremost. At least, that’s what I’ve believed, my whole life.
Now, maybe I’m still being a hypocrite, because, with as many siblings as each of my parents have (or had), my sister and I would have been placed with biological family. Probably one of my dad’s older sisters, or perhaps my mom’s oldest brother. When I was a kid, I wanted to go live with my Aunt Sue and Uncle Bruce (my mom’s youngest sister and her husband). I see now that that wouldn’t have been a good idea – they’re awesome people, and I love them very much, but they would not have been good parents to me with as young as they were and as damaged as I was. I think my Uncle Joe and Aunt Lynn (mom’s oldest brother and his wife) would have been a better bet for everyone involved. I always had a soft spot for my Aunt Lynn, and, when I grew up and learned about her childhood, I realized why. (Of course, if we lived with them, we wouldn’t have had cable, and I think I might have gone into some sort of detox shock. But I digress.)
No child should have to live through what adults deem “extreme” before they can be safe. To adults, there’s a lot of gray area. I know that to me, as a kid, there was not. I was not safe. I should not have been where I was. I distinctly remember telling a social worker that. But the system places the utmost importance on biology. So, as long as I wasn’t ending up in the hospital, I should remain where I was, even if that wasn’t what was best for me. I firmly believe, even now, that remaining in my home was not best for me. But the adults in my life thought they knew better than I did.
Having been a part of the adoption community for almost 10 years now, I have read so many stories of children in foster care who are returned to unsafe situations, simply because of biology. But biology isn’t best. Biology doesn’t make you a good parent. The act of giving birth doesn’t make you the best parent for a particular child. Genes don’t determine your parental fitness. DNA doesn’t mean you’re safe to be around.
Love isn’t enough. Biology isn’t best. I say this not as an adoptive parent, but as a child who should have been removed from her biological parents. And yes, at the time, I probably would have thrown my whole biological family under the bus to be anywhere else, DNA be damned.