The Legacies Of Trees

The Legacies Of Trees
Children face loss in the best of homes. Adoption is not always a better life but a different one. Support The Legacies of Trees.

Thursday, February 28, 2013

What it is like to be adopted

Friday, September 21, 2012

Born Alone

I was born kicking and screaming into this world alone
My mother went on to marry and have children of her own

They gave me away to strangers before they even met me
I never has a chance to know her before she walked away and left me.

They said that I'd be better off with parents who were older
The pain would haunt us both our lives but this they never told her.

I was only 3 days old when she kissed my head goodbye
They never let her see me they told her I'd be fine

They told her I was already with a loving, caring family
But I was in a foster home where no one loved and held me

I rocked back and forth to soothe myself and others banged their heads
We listened for our mothers voice and figured she was dead

I screamed all day for my mother and only faced the wall
The doctors gave me shots of phenolbarbitol

Many sad months passed until I met the one
Who would raise me as her own but the damage was already done

My name had been removed and my vital records sealed
This did not change who I was or the hand that fate would deal

I looked out my window and waited for the day
That I would turn 18 and look at my own face

Adoption stole my family and gave me an empty shell
A false identity, isolation and for some a living hell

Friday, May 11, 2012

My Two Moms by Christine M. Moran

Thought about my Birth Mom today
But that is nothing new.
I thought about her yesterday

And will tomorrow too.
I think about my real Mom who loved me from the start.

Who took me in and raised me the best she could with all her heart.
My real Mom thinks about me and is proud of me each day.
My Birth Mom tries to forget the pain of giving me away.
What it means to be my mother is something she will never know.

It was my real Mom that took me in and gave me love so I could grow

For my Christine M. Moran

Mothers Day 2010

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

The Cons of Embryo Donation / Embryo Adoption

Embryo Adoption (as it is rightly called) is a fertilized egg with no genetic match to either parent being born to people often who otherwise do not qualify for traditional adoption. This can be due to age, lack of funds ect. Even though the child will be born to the mother it will not look like either parent and be no different to a baby adopted at birth.

The donor family is usually a husband and wife who froze eggs due to cost and saving the mother from another extraction. When they have conceived all of the children they wish to have, a surplus is left over. The new term for this is "snowflake baby". They feel they don't wish to donate them to science or otherwise destroy them so they are placed for adoption. Contact between the families can be open or closed. Laws are not in place yet to oversee this.

 The lack of knowledge of and definite relationship to one's genealogy,  “genealogical bewilderment”, and which can result in the stunting of emotional development in adopted children and can lead them to irrational rebellion against their adoptive parents and the world as a whole. Ignorance about their personal origin made adolescence more of a strain for adopted children than other children and genealogical bewilderment is a factor which frequently appears to be present in adoption stress.

Several other researchers found a predilection for impulsive behavior and acting out, antisocial symptoms in adopted children at birth. Adopted children often go through a stage of feeling like an outsider. He may fantasize about the person he would have been had he been raised by his "real " family. The child will think about his genetic parents everyday. This is true with knowing the parents and without in open and closed adoptions. When the child is asked who she looks like or how many brother or sisters he has. His cultural heritage may not be the same and his medical history will not match the parents.As the child becomes an adolescent he will have great difficulty establishing a sense of self because he will have no sense of his true history or heritage. He will not know who is supposed to be because he will not know his true origins if the adoption is closed or semi open. Not knowing another biological relative makes one feel like a misfit. The first relative most adoptees meet is their own child. The birth of a child in an adoptees life always brings the question..."how could I give this baby away"?

How would a person feel to know that they were not needed by their original family? That somewhere there is a loving mom, dad and full blood siblings that get to grow up with them while the child is born to a world where he or she should be grateful they were not destroyed. Would the donor mother feel the same if she carried the child to term and gave him away or is it a disconnection from a group of cells in a freezer? What if the child is abused or not told they are adopted? What if the adoptive family does not honor the open agreement?

The major issue here is cost. In most instances it is cheaper to create extra embryos and cheaper to adopt an embryo than a child. The Catholic Church is also debating this topic.In 2008, the Vatican released a major document on bioethics, “Dignitas Personae” (“The Dignity of a Person”), that reiterated the Catholic view that embryos should not be created in the lab and frozen, but added that embryo adoption is also not allowed. It is, the document said, “a situation of injustice which in fact cannot be resolved.” In the United States, Congress and the Bush administration gave $1 million to promote embryo adoption.

Embryo donation is legally considered a property transfer and not an adoption by state laws. However, Georgia enacted a statute called the "Option of Adoption Act" in 2009 which provided a procedure for couples to become eligible for the federal Adoption Tax Credit.

Embryo adoption is implanting cells which could not grow on their own. If not for artificial means would die on their own. They were intentionally created in a lab and can remain frozen indefinitely."All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights and are entitled to all the rights and freedoms set forth in this Declaration, without distinction of any kind, such as race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status." There will be no original birth certificate or hospital record should the donor recipient decide to not tell the person he or she is not adopted. If there is a flood, fire or unexpected death the identity of the adopted person's ancestors will be lost forever. Not telling people they are adopted is a bad practice. Less than 5 % of adoptions are closed. The sealing of birth records is a short lived, bad practice that caused unnecessary suffering.

There is also a new way to choose the donor egg and donor sperm thus intentionally creating an orphan with no intention of ever being used for the genetic parents. If your personal or religious views support embryo donation as an alternative to destroying the embryo you must consider that creating a human being with no relation to either parent in a closed adoption who wouldn't exist otherwise is morally wrong and reprehensible. Enter the "designer baby" who is destined to be top of the class, excel in math, and have hair, eyes and other physical characteristics that fit his or her parents' wish list.The main objection to the procedure is that it opens the door to a world of unethical possibilities. A very slippery slope for future generations.

Adopted children face loss in the most loving of homes. Our ancestors and family history help give us a sense of belonging and define who we are. Adoption is a life-long issue that deals with identity and the broken thread of family continuity. Being adopted is not always a better life, but a different one. One must decide if embryo donation is adoption or it isn't. If the embryo is a person for abortion issues it must have the same rights for embryo donation issues. One must put their own wants and needs aside and consider the dignity of an adopted person even if he or she is only in the beginning stages of life.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Living With The Loss by Christine Moran

The Loss is a predator that stalks his prey
His shadow has followed me every day

Each birthday when I turn a year older
The Loss gets bigger, darker and bolder

He sucks out the joy from every room
Laces each feeling with sadness and gloom

He crushes my happiness with loneliness and guilt
Smashes the walls from the pain I have built

He is there each holiday evening and noon
He changes the meaning of every tune

At what should be the happiest times of my life
His unwavering stare cuts through like a knife

The Loss has no intention of leaving
He will be there until the day I stop breathing
I tried to outrun him and live in denial
He hid from my view but was there all the while.

He waits in the darkness 'till all my friends leave
When I finally stopped running I was able to grieve

With more days behind me than are left ahead
I asked the Loss if he wanted me dead

You were given away through no fault of your own
But the sadness you bear is not yours alone
You never knew I stalk yet another

Still running away from being your mother
When you turned to face me and looked in my eyes
Your actions and words caught me by surprise
You did what your mother could never do.
You walked a long mile inside of her shoes
She couldn't acknowledge the hand you were dealt
Nor ever imagine the pain that you felt.
She never once bothered to look at the fact
The face in your mirror is hers staring back
You both know The Loss never really goes away
But she is too afraid to ask me to stay.

Now The Loss and I walk hand in hand.
We stare at the stars all alone in the sand

There are still days of both sunshine and rain
But gone is the secrecy, stigma and shame
The Loss is my oldest and dearest of friends
One of few I can trust to be there at the end.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Trauma of Newborn Separations and Consequences of Closed Adoptions

Trauma of Newborn Separations and Consequences of Closed Adoptions

Adoption was a social experiment in which babies born to unmarried mothers were taken at birth and given to strangers for adoption. It was claimed to be in the best interests of the child, who would be protected from the slur of illegitimacy and would have a better life in the adoptive family. Adoption enabled infertile married couples to have a family, and the State saved money on its welfare bill.
Adoption legislation was first introduced in the 1920s, but adoption was slow to be accepted, due to the belief that immorality and other evil tendencies were passed on from mother to child. After World War II, however, when environment was seen as more important than heredity in the development of the child, adoption became more popular. It was believed that mothers would not bond with their babies if the babies were taken immediately after birth, and the mothers were prevented from seeing them, and that babies would bond successfully with their adoptive families if they were placed as soon as possible after birth. All ties with the natural mother were then severed, the child was issued with a new birth certificate which showed him as being born to the adoptive parents, and the records were sealed.
Adoption was promoted as being in the best interests of the child. Mothers were expected to forget about their child and get on with their lives, get married and have children of their own. Adoption was seen as an instant cure for infertility. None of these beliefs was based on any scientific evidence.
In 1952 a British psychiatrist, Wellisch, drew attention to a problem of adoption - the lack of knowledge of and definite relationship to one's genealogy, which he termed “genealogical bewilderment”, and which could result in the stunting of emotional development in adopted children and could lead them to irrational rebellion against their adoptive parents and the world as a whole, and eventually to delinquency. Ignorance about their personal origin made adolescence more of a strain for adopted children than other children and genealogical bewilderment is a factor which frequently appears to be present in adoption stress.
Several other researchers found a predilection for impulsive behavior and acting out, antisocial symptoms in adopted children. (Simon & Senturia, 1966; Jackson, 1968) They were found to have serious adjustment problems in adolescence (McWhinnie, 1969), and all seemed to have a sense of abandonment by the birth parents irrespective of experiences. (Triseliotis, 1971) Triseliotis suggested that the wound could be healed in a loving adoptive family, but the scar always remains.

:xplode:The child who does not grow up with his own biological parents, who does not even know them or any one of his own blood, is an individual who has lost the thread of family continuity. A deep identification with our forebears, as experienced originally in the mother-child relationship, gives us our most fundamental security. :xplode
However it was not until 1991 that anyone writing about adoption gave any serious consideration to the traumatic effects of separating mother and child at birth. Nancy Verrier hypothesised that the severing of the connection between the child and biological mother causes a primal wound, which often manifests in a sense of loss (depression), basic mistrust (anxiety), emotional and/or behavioral problems, and difficulties in relationships with significant others.
Studies conducted on animals, particularly other primates, indicate that there may be a biological basis for what Verrier calls the primal wound. Reite in 1978 demonstrated that when monkey infants were separated from their mothers they experienced decreases in body temperature and sleep pattern changes, even when the separated infants were immediately adopted by another adult female. Reite suggests that these physiological changes are not due to the physical absence of the mother, but are caused, at least in part, by the perception of loss of the mother on the part of the infant, i.e., the cause is essentially psychological.
Separation of newborn babies from their mothers causes a high secretion of the stress hormone cortisol. (Bowlby 1980; Noble 1993) There is physiological evidence from studies of laboratory rats that the level of maternal care given to the infant influences its response to stress: the more care, the lower the levels of hormones like adrenaline in reaction to stressful circumstances. People who are highly reactive to stress are at greater risk for the development of depression, and drug and substance abuse problems, etc. Adopted people have a greater vulnerability to stress, and are also at greater risk for depression and drug and substance related abuse problems.
Studies in primates show that if an infant is deprived of its mother soon after birth, the infant's brain does not develop normally. For example, the number and sensitivity of the infant's brain receptor sites for endorphins - the internal morphine-like chemicals that affect mood - are diminished."
Vicki M. Rummig, author of "Adoption: Trauma that Lasts a Life Time," reports that, "When the adoptee is separated from her birth mother, she undergoes extensive trauma. She will not remember this trauma, but it will stay in her subconscious as she lived it." How long the newborn will live with this trauma is unknown since a baby's memory cannot be quantified. "An event from a person's infancy can and will stay with them through life," says Nancy Verrier, author of "The Primal Wound: Understanding the Adopted Child." It's no coincidence, Rummig suggests, that many of these children grow up to be emotionally wounded. It should be noted that Rummig herself was adopted as a baby.

Adopted children often go through a stage of feeling like an outsider. He may fantasize about the person he would have been had she not been adopted. He'll come up with ideas of what his birth parents are like and may even produce a ghost-like image of what his life and family would have been like. Rummig describes the experience that he and other adoptees have as "feeling like my adoptive family is in a big circle but I am on the outside looking in.
With the adoptee not having a role model who resembles her physically or psychologically, it is more difficult to define where her life shall lead. She may come from a biologically artistic family, but adopted into a scientific family. She may not only feel the need to follow in her adoptive family’s footsteps, attending similar colleges, choosing similar careers, but she did not have the artistic role model to show her that way of life. This further complicates the identity formation of the adoptee. “One’s identity begins with the genes and family history...” (Reitz & Watson, 1992, p. 134)
Adoptees also lack the ability to see their physical characteristics as they will present themselves in the future. A natural born daughter would be able to tell how big she is going to be, if she will have a tendency to be overweight, or if she is going to go grey early in life, but the adoptee is denied this genetic role model and will not know these things until she reaches that stage in life herself. This adds to the curiosity of wanting to know their genetic background.
Rachel says that families are a hall of mirrors, “Everyone but adoptees can look in and see themselves reflected. I didn’t know what it was like to be me. I felt like someone who looks into a mirror and sees no reflection. I felt lonely, not connected to anything, floating, like a ghost.” (Lifton, 1994, p. 68)
The adoptee will feel even more dissociated when conversations regarding other family members or peers births are brought up. She is missing the story of her birth parents meeting, her conception, her birth, and in some instances, sometime after her birth. It is often commented that the adoptee feels placed on this earth, not born or that they are some type of space alien. Non-adoptees take their own life story for granted, but the adoptee is acutely aware that theirs is missing. So now, not only does the adoptee feel dissociated from her adoptive family, but also from her peers, for she is different.
Adoptees are faced with a feeling of loss and grief that they are not allowed, by society, to actively mourn. “With adoption, the child experiences a loss (like divorce or death) of an unknown person, and doesn’t know why.” (Adopting Resources, 1995) She is aware that family members are lost to her, but is expected to not mourn the loss of this family member she has never known. She will often be chastised when asking questions of her birth family from her adoptive family.
The consensus among researchers is that adoption affects development throughout life, with the fact of "being adopted," creating unique responses to significant life-events, e.g., the birth of a child
In Western culture, the dominant conception of family revolves around a heterosexual couple with biological offspring. As a consequence, research indicates, disparaging views of adoptive families exist, along with doubts concerning the strength of their family bonds
The most recent adoption attitudes survey completed by the Evan Donaldson Institute provides further evidence of this stigma. Nearly one-third of the surveyed population believed adoptees are less-well adjusted, more prone to medical issues, and predisposed to drug and alcohol problems. Additionally, 40-45% thought adoptees were more likely to have behavior problems and trouble at school. In contrast, the same study indicated adoptive parents were viewed favorably, with nearly 90% describing them as, "lucky, advantaged, and unselfish."
Not all of these issues affect adoptees to the same extent. Some may spend a lifetime dwelling on it, others may not even appear to notice. This would be true of any group of people that lived through trauma, such as Vietnam War Veterans. It should be noted that adoptees are over represented in residential treatment centers.

Birth Mother

Slur of illegitmacy,
Is this some conspiracy ?
Punished for no crime and severed from my past.
In my first days of life they took me from you.
Dry eyes carried me away and I didn't know why
It was nothing new for them to see, just another little wanderer
I remember your voice as I listen to the falling rain
All I can think about is you, but you gave me away
You didn't die, so I couldn't cry
Instead I felt betrayed.
Through all those complex years my heart was fillled with pain.
Were you thinking of me too underneath the starry sky?
Less and less every year as I faded from your mind.

Mine By Birthright

My heritage is mine by birthright
And no one can take that away
Not a law-maker, a judge nor an agency
At my birth, on my death or today.
My legacy comes not just from my mother
But from her father and his father before
From my grandmother on my father's side
Who never held me the day I was born.
One person may have given me life
But my ancestors gave me my name
You cannot keep from me what is mine
To hide a mistake and your shame.

Top 10 Things Adoptees Hate To Hear

If you can't understand why these things are so awful..then you DON'T understand what it is like to be adopted.

1. You are so lucky to be adopted/ I wish I was adopted
2. You should be grateful for the life your Bmom gave you
3. You were "given up" out of love, you had a better life
4. You could have been aborted/left in a dumpster
5. Why would you want to find her she gave you away
6. Aren't you glad you didn't grow up with them
7. I know (so and so) who is adopted and they are glad and never felt the need to search you should let sleeping dogs lie.
8. You should be grateful for your real parents and searching will hurt them.
9. It was meant to be ...get over it
10. I don't even care about my family history why should you?


Adoptee Commonality - 30 Things We Share

Here are 30 things you may have in common with other adoptees. Add your own.

You have a picture of you that doesn't look like you and you tell everyone it is your bro/sis.

You leave your Facebook semi open in case your Bfamily is looking for you.

You pick whatever cultural heritage (B or A) fits the situation when asked.

You visit the doctor and have to write UNKNOWN on your medical history.

You have to wonder if you are related to your new boy/girlfriend.

You have thought when looking in the mirror of which parts of you came from where....(including aliens)

You try really hard to remember your mother's face or voice, but can't.

You think you'd know your mother if you saw her but wonder if everyone woman that age is your mother.

You are told how much your kids look like you but you don't know who YOU look like.

You can't get a passport because the only birth certificate you're allowed to have is incomplete

You know what AP, OBC, B, N, or F stand for.

Just hearing the word 'adoption' makes your heart skip a beat (and not in a good way.)

People say, "oh, you're adopted! how cool!"

You know more about people-finding Internet sites than the average private investigator.

People ask you if you would have rather been an abortion.

You were born from your mothers heart instead because she couldn't have kids.

You have no baby pictures prior to your adopted parents.

The word "grateful" makes you cringe.

You have a childhood fantasy where you're part of a large family where you all look alike.

You are obviously not caucasian and tell everyone you are German, Irish , Polish ect.

You have no clue who gave birth to you.

You secretly wish on your birthday cake candles to be happy or to find your family someday.

You can pretend you don't know your Aparents when out in public together.

You have two birth certificates....a real one and a fake one.

"Adopt a Highway" signs bothers you and you didn't realize how much until just now.

You had trouble giving away stuffed animals to the GoodWill or throwing toys away.

You're supposed to be interested in history class, but are not supposed to show interest in your own history.

You see people's reaction once they hear your name.

Your parents can't tell you how big you were at birth or what time of day your were born at.

Strangers think nothing of saying you ought to be grateful you were 'taken in'.

Someone has to remind you who your REAL mother is.