Monday, November 10, 2014

Why Must We Search for Our Birth Parents?

Photo by Carmen Jost via Flickr

Lately every time I see a story about an adoptee who is searching/has searched for her birth parents, I think this one thought: How crazy is it that we MUST search for our own parents?

Why must we look for our own parents?
Why must we try to find our own parents?

Besides stories of actual searches, I notice adoptive parents saying things such as “we will help you search when you’re ready” and “we support your search” without any examination of why the act of searching is required in the first place.

Some adoption agencies and government agencies offer assistance to adoptees searching for their birth parents, typically for a fee. The irony of these agencies requesting payment to undo a situation they created in the first place seems to be lost on them.

We must search for our birth parents because when we were adopted our identities were altered. We must search because our parents’ names and whereabouts have been concealed from us.

Why must it be this way?

Adoption does not need to be handled this way. Adoptees’ names do not need to be changed. Birth parents’ identities do not need to be kept from their children.

Adoptees’ birth certificates do not need to be altered; the adoption decree itself is enough. Adoption does not need to erase the identity a child is born with.

We would not need to search for our birth parents if they had never been lost to us.

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