By Jenna “Eviana” Bradshaw, Staff Writer
Did you happen to see any pictures with a smiley face drawn on someone’s hand circulating any of your social media newsfeeds and wonder what it was all about?
This symbol is in recognition of World Adoption Day, which was founded on Nov. 9, 2014 to bring awareness about adoption culture and stereotypes but also to celebrate family, no matter how you define that term. Today, National Adoption Day, is another time to raise awareness about adoption. This day’s emphasis is in recognizing the 100,000 plus children in the U.S. foster care system right now.
To learn all there is to know about adoption culture is nearly impossible, but in light of the two days in November that raise adoption awareness, below are common misconceptions and myths about individuals involved.
Adoption is second best. Adoptive parents are no less of a parent than those who have their own biological children nor will adoptees have a less meaningful relationship with their adoptive family.
Adopting is the easy way to have a child. This stereotype devalues the relationship that adoptive parents have with the adoptee. It takes a special kind of person/couple/family to adopt. It is a calling, and when people choose to adopt, it is accepting the responsibility to care for this person and honor the complexity of what adoption will mean to their future child.
Adoptees are lucky to have been adopted. How can we ask a child to be thankful when they have experienced so much loss? This also presumes that the adoptive family provides a healthy and loving environment. In many cases, adoptees have experienced abuse or neglect from their adoptive parents.
Adoptees are less emotionally healthy. Considering what an adoptee goes through and experiences, it is not a far stretch to assume that they would be less emotionally healthy, but like everyone else in the world, it’s a matter of circumstance and experience. Many adoptees have come to terms with what their adoption means to them and have led fulfilling lives. As I said before, adoptees are like everyone else, human, and deal with their issues in their own ways. Some may be dealing with more than others, but that does not mean it should be expected for every adoptee to be this way.
Adoption culture contains people of every race, sexual orientation and background. To say that every adoptee or adoptive family has experienced the same path would be incredibly false. Days like World Adoption Day and National Adoption Day are meant to celebrate the diversity and lives of adoptees and their families around the world.
For more about Jenna “Eviana” Bradshaw’s perspective on adoption, see the following Instagram post.
Featured Image: Blue Diamond Gallery
Article Image: Jenna Bradshaw