I am a birth mother, but I am wondering where this bit about “rights” comes in.
Those of us who surrendered our child under the terms of the old laws should be willing to admit that we surrendered our rights. Truly, most of us did not know exactly what that meant, but we agreed to it.
What we did could not really be classified as “natural.” It isn’t natural to give your child away, even when you say you are doing it out of love. For that love usually took into account that we were giving the right to love, parent, and protect the child we are surrendering to the adoptive parents.
As a birth mother I kept quiet and waited until my children were in their forties and fifties to take a positive step toward a reunion. Even then, I did not initiate it fully. I just let them know through a go-between that I was ready and willing if they were.
One contacted me immediately. The other waited several months. In the end, both decided they could do without me. And my heart broke for the second time– more deeply than the first. Yet when someone said to me (kindly and lovingly) “They don’t owe it to you.” I had to admit what she said was true. They owe me nothing.
What makes us, as birth mothers, feel we have the right to write the rules? If we allow someone else to become a parent, then we should be willing to let them do so without the sword of being rejected or abandoned hanging over their heads.
As a facilitator in searching, I have not seen enough positive outcomes to feel that the triad finds a positive outcome in reunions. There are few happy endings in these if one follows through for a year or two after the first reunion. As a counselor I have seen hurt, confusion and guilt being worked out amongst the birth mothers, the adoptive mother, and the adoptee. I will agree there are times due to medical problems, emotional illnesses etc. that the search has a legitimate need. These are rare.
If laws are to be changed, let them deal with the future and not with what has already been done in the past.
I submit this with love and compassion for all involved.