Thank God You Got Him Outta There

Sunday was Canada Day.  Tomorrow is Independence Day in the USA.

This year, I’ve been thinking about something someone said to me recently.

Thank God You Got Him Outta There

This was said about Little MPB, in reference to the fact that he was born in the USA, and now lives in Canada as a result of his adoption.  I know this was clearly a comment about the current political situation in the USA, and the very real problems he may have faced due to the current culture in the USA, especially where he was born.

But you know what?  We never in our lives thought about adoption as saving a child.  In fact, we still do not.  And I find the notion that we “saved” Little MPB very troubling for a number of reasons.

  • One, we adopted from the USA, not a war-torn country where children face life and death circumstances daily.  We chose to adopt from the USA because it was a country that gave us the infant experience we so desperately wanted, a much quicker adoption time-frame and also enabled us to pursue an open-adoption.  And, as the USA is a democratic country, while we may not like the current government, we also have hope that this is not a forever situation.  (Please democrats being doing something in the background to get your act together for  2020).
  • Two, we did not adopt for altruistic reasons, we adopted because we desperately wanted to be parents and after a lot of research that included meeting with adoption agencies, reading books and academic literature, talking to other open-adoption parents we made an educated decision to adopt.  In making this decision we knew it wasn’t really about us, but rather about what was best for the child and knowing that we would help a child through some of the tough adoption related things that will very likely come up in their lives.
  • Thirdly, and maybe even more importantly, I do not believe adoption is about saving a child, and I believe that attitude has potential damaging long term impacts for children.  In my opinion, adoption is about loss – loss for birth parents, loss for the child and previous losses for the adoptive parents.  And, those are facts we must acknowledge and be prepared to work through as they come up.  And even more, I never want Little MPB to believe we saved him and he therefore owes us something for that – we simply want him to be a child who like other children shouldn’t be indebted to their parents for providing them with the things all children need in life (food, safety and love).

And so, yes, I am thankful Little MPB is our son (obviously) and that he is therefore a Canadian and living in relative safety.  But, I can honestly say I don’t dwell on the thank god we got him out of the USA mentality.  In fact, just like we celebrate Canada Day, we also celebrate his USA heritage on Independence Day and we plan to continue to.

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6 Comments on “Thank God You Got Him Outta There

  1. Your mindset and approach to raising your son always blows my mind. It is so selfless and well thought out and beautiful even though a lot of people who have faced your losses would rightfully just be focused on making your own life more comfortable and insulated. I admire you more than anyone else. What a fabulous Mom you are!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. We have elections at the end of this year that will hopefully give us good insight for 2020, and it is Congress which will hopefully balance out the powers.
    But yea, we aren’t a third world country, and there are good people fighting for change. And change is happening on state levels.
    And yea, all the things you said about adoption too.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. You continue to amaze me with your thoughts on adoption and motherhood. The statement made about getting him out of the US is quite sad actually but your reflection on it is so meaningful.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I’m really glad you don’t view adoption as saving a child… so many adoptive parents do, and you’re right, it is hugely damaging to adoptees. It’s very rare that anyone would go through adoption if they didn’t want to parent a child, so ultimately there is an aspect of fulfilling parents’ desires. I don’t think that’s necessarily a bad thing as long as it’s acknowledged. I’m heartened to hear you challenging the commonly held assumptions and trying to educate people about the realities of adoption.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. I get your point about not using the tern “saving” a child by adopting him. However, the child doesnt have to come from the war torn country to be saved. You saved the kids from the abusive environment, from the poor environment, orphanages (your son perhaps would have ended up there hadn’t someone adopted him-correct me if i am wrong) etc. Every adopted child when a grown-up, will even realize that by oneself. Of course you should never mention to him “i saved you”, but showing him for ex about less fortunate ones (like what I do to my son whom I gave birth and this should be done no matter how you got your child. It teaches us understand and appreciate life better, and it brings compassion), will make him realize that he is on the other side thanks to you. There is nothing wrong about that. Actually, it might inspire him to adopt one day himself.

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