Friday 16 November 2018


Peanut was rather pleased with herself as she showed me the contents of her box of secrets, she read out a letter she'd written.

My name is Peanut, I am 7 years old, I am adopted and I am special. 

Oh, is that a secret? I asked

No she said, I told my teacher that's why I'm special. 

Heartwarming, well kind of.  Of course, she is special and I can wholeheartedly agree.

The perspectives of adoptees on adoption feels illusive to me. The perspective of my children more so, I wonder if they dance around their true feelings to protect me. Like us all they grow up in a world where they have limited choices about the decisions that are made over their lives. What can they say, what perspective can they have, I can recall overhearing my then 7 year old eldest daughter being asked if she was happy if she'd been adopted. A stupid question but she didn't skip a beat and answered 'yes'. Heartwarming, but what else could she have said and what else did she know. It affirmed our relationship but is no measure of all that had happened to this little girl, it really was an inappropriate question.  I wonder what she'd have answered at 12, 18 and 25 years old if she'd been asked. Like all people our views change and perspectives are informed by life experience and time to consider bigger pictures. All of us are allowed to change our opinions.

National Adoption Month comes round from the US and the voices of adoptees are more prominent on the web. It never fails to surprise me that heated discussions rage as some of the voices tussle and for one true perspective on adoption. It spills into other arguments and sometimes turns ugly and people are hurt. I watch but feel it's wholly inappropriate for me to do anything other than listen.

Back to Peanut, right now she's special because of her adoption but as she grows her views may change and one day she may speak out against adoption. One day she might rage at the sky for all of it, and why not. I hope that she feels that she can, it doesn't change how I feel about her and I'm sure it won't change what she feels about me. That's the thing that seems most important, court orders come and sometimes go, decisions are lost in the fog of children's social care filing systems but our relationship will endure.

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