Dangerous Compassions

adoption is not the solution

adoption is not the solution

This instagram post about how adoption is not the solution and the deep wounds adoption causes blew my mind.  Please take a look at what this adoptee has to say.

Previously I’d believed adoption can be a beautiful, caring handoff with minimal pain.  I feel embarrassed that I thought babies were somewhat clueless and wouldn’t be very aware of what was happening to them, let alone store the trauma in their bodies indefinitely.  I’m sorry I was out of touch with reality and wrong about how pain works.

Humans are brilliant animals with senses–hearing, seeing, smelling, feeling, and even tasting our caregivers.   Of course babies know what’s going on.  And I understand now that our earliest experiences teach us how the world is, what we deserve, and who we are, in a very basic way.

Then we use those early beliefs about the world and our place in it to build all our subsequent beliefs.  So people who learn, “The world is terrifying, I can lose everything I need at any moment, and my needs don’t matter,” before they have language are going to struggle with those ideas their whole lives.

I’m sorry I underestimated the intelligence of babies, toddlers, and young children.  Babies and kids are Paying Attention Beings.  Just because their intelligence isn’t adult, doesn’t mean it’s not real.  It may be extra real.


This post and other learning I’ve done lately helps me understand: what happens early with bonding, matters for our whole lives.

My conclusion is this.  Emotions are not weak or optional.  A feeling is not an embarrassment that we need to pretend doesn’t exist, like an escaped inappropriate fart.  Emotions are vital to knowing what we need and how to live.   Emotions aren’t here to ignore, medicate away, pathologize as illness, deny, minimize, or hand over to psychiatrists when things get tough.  Going off by ourselves to feel in secret because it’s considered shameful is not working out.

Our emotions are our truths.  Killing off how we feel means we lose a ton of information and lose who we are.  Our emotions are us.

A culture that doesn’t know what to do with feelings, fails.  That’s how we get rivers that we can’t drink from, air we can’t breathe, rape culture, violence normalized, racism, homelessness, early deaths of transgender people.  It’s hard work to try healing culture, but I can’t think of anything more important to do.

adoption is not the solution

Please don’t believe the lie that adoption is simple, workable, and heartwarming.  Don’t believe the lie that adoption is a way to eliminate the need for abortion.  Please face the reality of what actually happens to people who are adopted and what their lives are like.

It’s easier to believe a cartoonish one-in-a-thousand success story than to face reality.

Don’t be cavalier when you want to take rights away from people who would like access to healthcare including safe, legal abortion.  Don’t comfort yourself with lies about adoption.  Adoption is not the solution.  Please listen to adoptees, and look at actual data on what happens to these people.

Adoption is a sacred cow to anti-choice oppressors.  That’s one more evidence that anti-choice people are mostly out of touch with reality.  I’m grateful to adoptees who speak out about what’s real.  Thank you for shouting your truth to a world that wants to say la-la-la-la and ignore you.


Doing friendship, community, and radical mental health with many kinds of people who have all different kinds of crazy, I see the results of adoption and other trauma.  Serious trauma is not a rarity to be ignored.  It’s inside of many, many people.

Emotions matter and are a public health issue.  People who deny that and want to squelch feelings perpetuate trauma to the children who are being born now.

I’m sorry I didn’t understand that better before.

By Laura-Marie

Good at listening to the noise until it makes sense.

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