Digital marketing strategist and Glam-o-Mamas community manager Trix Clasara pens her thoughts about the common misconceptions about adoption. She has an adoptive son, David.
In this article, you will read:
Trix Clasara with her three children
3 common misconceptions about adoption
I had a dream last night that I was in a meeting with Kate Middleton and Meghan Markle talking to them about adoption. Wild right? But I’ve learned over the years that when I get these really vivid dreams (as this happens a lot to me), God is telling me something.
So I want to share what was on the paper I was reading in this dream while it’s still fresh in my memory… These are the narratives of adoption I want to change:
1. “How can a mother do that to their child?”
Mothers who give up their children for adoption are not bad or irresponsible people. To recognise after the excruciating experience of pregnancy and childbirth that you are not fit to care for that child, for me, is one of the bravest acts I can think of.
And while some adopted babies are literally placed or left somewhere, we don’t always really know the reason why. There are too many unknown factors and it’s really not up to me or you to make conclusions and judge them in any way.
Proseso ng adoption sa Pilipinas mapapadali na!
Proseso ng pag-aampon sa Pilipinas: Mga hakbang at kwalipikasyon
Alamin: Lahat ng dapat malaman tungkol sa pag-aampon
2. “You’re changing that child’s life!”
I have to be honest. I, too, had this “salvation narrative” leading up to the day we took our son home.
The constant praise of people through my previous posts and their words of encouragement (though I know were said with good intentions) really got to my head and made me believe like we were somehow going to magically change David’s life “for the better.”
And I realized more now how far from that notion adoption is when David came home and the adjustment wasn’t going as smooth as I thought it would. Not because he’s difficult, but mostly because I was getting frustrated that I wasn’t feeling “good” about this transition—that things weren’t going as I hoped.
I was only thinking of how I felt, how much I’m struggling, how much I’m adjusting (me, me, me, me) and not even considering how David was feeling being brought to this new place to live with people he absolutely did not know.
As you can see from my personal experience, this narrative is actually very selfish and dangerous. It only perpetuates this idea that adopted kids are inferior or are deemed not worthy until they’re adopted—and it needs to stop.
3. “He’s so lucky!”
This is closely related to the one above. Let me just say plainly: adopted kids are NOT lucky.
This narrative is just insensitive, somewhat cruel and it also needs to stop. Many of us (myself included, up until recently) don’t realize what these kids have been through even as babies—something biological children like us will never ever understand.
The reality is every adopted child experiences loss. A child’s separation from her birth mother is inherently traumatic and there is nothing lucky about having to experience any of that.
Furthermore, this notion that their lives are a game of chance, again perpetuates this narrative that adopted kids are inferior and that their lives are not significant without their adoptive families.
Trix and her husband Brandz with their three children (David, Aman, and Ily)
What I learned about the common misconceptions about adoption
If anything, what I’ve learned through adoption is this: for any relationship to blossom or be successful, God must be in the center. And that includes our relationship with adoption and with David.
This is not about me. I am not a better person than David’s birth mom. I am not his savior—and I certainly have not given him good fortune. I am just as broken as he is, and only God will ever fill that void. Adoption is from God and so I look to Him to help us navigate through this journey.
Adoption is complex. It seems daunting but being in the thick of it has made me realize more how beautiful it really is. It is my honor to advocate for it as much as I can. I will not stop sharing our story until these narratives of adoption change.