Why is it people just automatically assume that someone who's been adopted is different? That somehow, that person isn't really family or loved the same because there's a lack of genetic connection?
Growing up I was always asked what it was like to be adopted. To be honest, it made me mad. Why would you assume it's different? I have two parents who love me. I have two brothers who love me. I have extended family that loves me. What makes that different from any child born into a family? My mom and dad both look at me as though I am theirs...full of love. Why is there so much stigma.
I was talking to a friend of mine last night and she mentioned that one of our mutual friend's has an adopted sister. She made it sound like this girl was different...not that she wasn't part of the family, but like a lower level sibling or something. That may not have been her intention at all, but somehow...I feel like she could never accept a child not born of her own womb as her own. She'd still love the child, but would not accept the child in the same way. Bullshit. It's not like spouses are genetically related to each of us...and yet we love them with all of our hearts like we can't ever imagine life without them. Yes, the realtionship between a spouse versus a parent and child are different...but why do people think the love is different?
IT'S THE SAME! For those of you who are wondering. There is no difference.
Studies have repeatedly shown that to a parent or to a family there's no difference. Sure, adopted kids have issues...who doesn't have issues? Adopted children often struggle with the feeling of abandonment...that our birthparents didn't want us or love us. In truth, our birth parents loved us enough to realize that they couldn't care of us the way we needed to be cared for and loved. In steps the couple who can...the couple who wants to love and care for a child they themselves couldn't have. In my parents' case, it's because my mom couldn't physically have children. What a blessing. I'm sure we have caused my parents quite a few headaches through the years. Health problems, us not being treated fairly (people are actually still quite racist in the U.S. whether they realize it or not) or whatever other issue came up. Sometimes I hate talking about adoption to women...mostly women because they feel like there's this bond between a mother after she's had a child. I'm sure there's a bond...there's also a bond between my mother and I that will never be broken. Go figure.
So tell me...where's the difference? Is it the fact that I don't look like my mom? Because I sure as heck sound like my mom. In fact I have the same vocal pitch that my mom has, the same awful, loud laugh of my father's and the same dry humor that my dad has. I have all the quirks of my parents as well as all the wonderful traits. Is my family any different from yours? Probably not. We have similar family issues...but our family is close and we're all we have. I wouldn't change things for the world and I know my parents wouldn't have their family or life any other way.
Adoption comes with its own set of issues. I'm not naive enough to think that things are perfect. But what family is perfect and what parent does things the right way? What child is ever what a parent would expect? That doesn't change the fact that families are families no matter how they're brought together. Adoption. Remarriage. By Birth.