I’m so glad that adoptees are taking back National Adoption Month this year with the hashtag #FlipTheScript. During this time of year, especially light and wonderful depictions of adoption can be seen everywhere. Please realize asking me to celebrate adoption is asking me to celebrate the loss of my first family. Celebrating adoption simplifies my story and my identity. And celebrating adoption doesn’t validate the range of emotions the words home, family, love, and citizenship carry for me.
About 65% of Americans are impacted by adoption in some way, either having a friend, sibling, daughter, nephew etc. who’s adopted or by being an adoptee or birthparent, so I’m pretty sure most Americans know that adoptions happen. Why then do we have this month of awareness and what is it raising awareness about? Does National Adoption Month raise awareness of the issue of medical and identity erasure through not having access to original birth certificates? Does National Adoption Month raise awareness about the politics of race in adoption – that black children stay in foster care longer and adoption fees for black children are lower than non-black children? Does National Adoption Month raise awareness that most adoptees become adoptable for preventable reasons including poverty, poor access to health care, social stigmas against single motherhood, gender inequities etc. Surely these causes are not celebratory.
Below is a conversation with The Lost Daughters on National Adoption Month.
Below is just some of the twitter conversation happening – we’re rewriting our own stories by literally flipping the script.
During this #NAM14, please pay attention to the adoptee voices. We’re out there and waiting to be heard.