I realize my reaction to the article I quote is a direct reaction to experiences that I had as a child, and to the “adoptees movement” of the 70’s and 80’s who never met an adoptive parent they liked, and felt that all adoptees were hurt by the mere act of being. But if a celeb dies and their children or one child was adopted, the obit still mentions that. If an adoptee kills or rapes, it’s always mentioned. By that thinking if an adoptee accomplishes anything it should be mentioned. But why would adoptees bring it up? I wouldn’t if I didn’t have a blog. My ex-husband found it much more fascinating than I did. He found my matter of factness about it intriguing. The constant use of the word “adoptee” might by itself bring its own set of problems.
Will probably return next week or the following or the one after that, when I’m not obsessed with adopted serial killers.
I was going to write a warm and fuzzy post about David Berkowitz’s capture on August 10, 1977 as he had held the city hostage, and now it was no longer in fear. Then I read this:
Scott Weinberger, a WCBS-TV reporter, interviewed Mr. Berkowitz recently to make the 30-year anniversary of the killings. Mr. Berkowitz, who was adopted as an infant, said that as a young man, he felt guilty after he was told by his adoptive parents, incorrectly, that his birth mother died while he was born.
David Berkowitz was a sick person. His adoptive parents sound like idiots but that’s not the point. He and he alone was responsible for his actions. He might have inherited “bad” genes; he might not have been nurtured properly.
I feel oh so earnest and stupid when I get into one of these things but I remember going to “adoptee rights” meetings where people would totally negate their adoptive families.
“I met my birth mother. She’s in a mental hospital for life and I have seven half-siblings all with different fathers but now my life is complete.”
Yes that’s simplistic thinking. I had to listen to it without throwing up. I did walk out. I went to a meeting when thinking was supposed to be a bit less simplistic. A woman asked a panel what to do as she had found her birth mother but her adoptive mother was old and sick and she didn’t know whether to tell her or not.
A valid question? Not to that panel who went on and on about how they never had liked their adoptive families and how wonderful their birth families were. I’m not going to go into my reaction. It’s in the archives.
I wrote published article on meeting my birth mother that I should scan in. It wasn’t a great meeting.
But neither she nor my parents are responsible for any problems that I might have. They’re mine and mine alone. Yes my Dad was hard on me. But we always loved each other immensely and I was a rather wild teenager.
Not because I was adopted but because of the times I grew up in, and because maybe I did have my birth mother’s rebel streak. My parents weren’t exactly conformists and at times encouraged my rebellion.
Fortunately life isn’t in black and white but many shades of gray–and pink, blue, green….
This was the day from hell. I reached a place in my book where I’m revising, taking out, editing and adding. Today I added a story about my nine year old self fighting with my 45 year old father.
My book isn’t really, Pia, the very early years but sometimes explanation in dialogue is needed. It wasn’t fun to write and I probably shouldn’t have on a day I had no AC, it was in the 90’s and the city was at a standstill.
I probably should have gone to bed and read magazines, but uh, I would have felt guilty
While I don’t think fighting with my father was the most fun I had, I knew even then how much he loved me and cared about me.
All families are screwed up. It’s the families that work out their differences that produce functional members of society.
Being adopted doesn’t make a killer. Genes, nurture, and ones self do. With the emphasis being on the last.
I shouldn’t personalize. I know that. But I am a staunch believer in a woman’s right to choose and one of those choices is adoption. I don’t understand people who are so vain they have to have their own egg or sperm. Yet when they read things like the above quote it gives validity to reasons not to adopt.
Most “satisfied” adoptees never talk about being adopted. I find that sad also. Maybe if more people talked about their “happy” home life, statistics about too many adoptees being in mental hospitals wouldn’t be bandied about so much.
David Berkowitz wasn’t the only adopted serial killer. So were Ted Bundy and Joel Rifkin for two that come to mind quickly. Maybe they had horrible upbringings that fostered their “bad” genes.
Maybe Berkowitz’s parents should have told him he was adopted when he was an infant or small child and not lied about his mother. Maybe he would have been a serial killer had he remained with his birth mother and she was in that most perfect of all situations, married.
Maybe there wouldn’t be a stigma to adoption if records were open and families made every effort to talk to their children about their roots.
Maybe if the word “adult” didn’t have to be put in front of “adoptee,” things would be different.
I am an adoptee. I am an adult. I would rather die myself than kill another human being unless they were physically attacking somebody that I love. Most adoptees feel as I do. We are a true silent majority. That’s sad.