Adoption: Infertility, Entitlement, and the Gift of a Child.

Psalm 127:3 Behold, children are a gift from the Lord, the fruit of the womb is a reward.

I’m no Bible scholar but I’m certain this verse is referencing the womb of the mother who carries the child. I don’t believe it’s referring to this mother as simply a vessel for another woman who is unable to carry a child of her own.

Children are absolutely a gift. But, for whom? God has already chosen who He wants to be the mother. He does not allow a pregnancy to occur in the womb of one woman so she will then give her baby away. I refuse to start believing He makes mistakes. The error, or sin, is made by those scrambling around, trying to make alternative plans for the voiceless being who continues to grow, completely unaware, in the safety of their mothers womb.

Adoption has never been and will never be God’s plan. Let me explain why:

1 John 5:17 All wrongdoing is sin, and there is sin that does not lead to death.

I can’t speak for anyone else so I will say that in relinquishing my firstborn I disregarded the plans God had for me and my daughter. In my arrogance I presumed to know better than Him. He chose ME, not someone else, to be the mother to my child. Every pregnancy is His perfect plan. In God’s infinite wisdom He knew what was best when he placed a child in my womb. When we deliberately make decisions that are in opposition of His plan, we are sinning. I sinned against my daughter and this sin continues to ripple out for generations. Mercifully, by His grace I’m forgiven, but my actions caused harm. Not because my daughter had bad adoptive parents, they’re exceptional people, but because every baby/child experiences life long trauma when separated from their mothers.

Nowhere in scripture is pregnancy or motherhood a sin.

Psalm 139:13 For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.

When a girl/woman finds herself in a pregnancy crisis she’s swimming in fear. She runs through every available option. Once she decides to stay pregnant, she’s then faced with how she will be able to parent her child. Much of her decisions from this point forward will depend greatly on the responses and support she receives from those around her; her family, her church family, her friends. As her pregnancy progresses, like every mother in the world, she will develop attachments to her child. This is God’s miraculous and perfect design; the bond between a mother and her baby. When those in a position of authority or power sway (coerce) a vulnerable girl/woman away from a relationship with her own child, there is culpability and someday they will have to answer for it. If you claim to follow Christ, there is a responsibility to do what is just and right. (1 John 2:6) Is it possible that in our ignorance we are suggesting a mother make the wrong decision? If we aren’t being obedient to His plan we are complicit in not only a sin, but also an injustice against mothers and their children.

Psalm 127:3-4 Children are a heritage from the Lord, offspring a reward from Him. Like arrows in the hands of a warrior are children born in one’s youth.

I’ve heard this same story told over and over by mothers who have lost their children to adoption; we were told our own children “deserved better,” they put us on a pedestal of selflessness, using the love for our children against us; if we really loved them we would give them away.

For the adopted person, love= abandonment.

Deuteronomy 5:21 And you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife. And you shall not desire your neighbor’s house, his field. or his male servant, or his female servant, his ox, or his donkey, or anything that is your neighbor’s.

Is it a sin to desire (covet) another woman’s child?

I’m in no position to understand the depth of grief associated with infertility, but I have had several friends who have walked through its wretchedness. Watching them agonize through the process was heartbreaking and I have tremendous empathy. We know that couples will try, often for years, to conceive their own children. When their efforts are proven unsuccessful they often look to adoption as an alternative, or, as a last resort. It then becomes apparent they will settle for any baby to fill their desire to be parents. So often the desire of our heart can cloud judgement and good intentions. There is a very fine line between what a person desires and what they feel they deserve.

In order for one family to be created through adoption, another family must be destroyed. How can we say one mother’s pain trumps another?

James 1:14-15 But each person is tempted when he is lured by his own desire. Then desire when it is conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death.

When the desire of our heart is to be a parent and adoption is viewed as a loving option for everyone involved (a “win-win-win”), lines become blurred. We begin to justify an attitude of entitlement by disguising it as an ‘answer to prayer’ or ‘a gift from God’.

What is best for the child?

If a child via adoption is truly a “gift from the Lord”, why does it continue to destroy so many in its wake? Why is there so much pain and suffering as a result? (www.dearadoption.com)

The best place for a child is with their biological parents. Period. When that isn’t possible, kinship care is the better option, rather than being placed in the arms of strangers. Adoption should always be a last resort. Adoption, at it’s inception, was created for children who truly need permanency and love, not as a way to provide children for couples unable to have their own.

Typically, in most adoptions there is a group of people with more power and/or money who believe they have the right to determine what’s best for a mother and her child. The running narrative in our society, and more specifically, The Church, states that a child would be “better off” if they are raised by a married, Christian couple with a stable income, a four bedroom home, two cars, reside in a wealthy suburb, have a college education and substantial savings…etc. etc. When this is seen as suitable criteria, a very important piece of information is being overlooked: This was never the life God had planned for them.

 

Photo credit: Anne Heffron

 

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9 thoughts on “Adoption: Infertility, Entitlement, and the Gift of a Child.

  1. As a CASA volunteer I encounter frequently children who’s biological parent/s are incapable of parenting them, even with help and support from family and community. Many times there are no biological family members who desire to parent these children. How long does a child wait in limbo for permanency? A year, two, five, ten? Children need the stability of a family where they can develop and grow. Continued contact with biological parent/s is the ideal and hopefully is supported by all those actively involved in a child’s life. To suggest that parents who adopt, “settle for any baby to fulfill their desire to parent” is as judgemental as those “who believe they have the right to determine what is best for a mother and her child.”

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks for taking the time to read this perspective. I fully support foster parenting and guardianship. I’m well aware there will always be parents unable or even unwilling to parent their children. However, that has nothing to do with the topic of this blog post. This post is specifically directed towards the domestic infant adoption industry, the church, Christians and their responses to a women in crisis. Moreso, I touched on my own personal experience which I have found is shared by many other mothers of loss in the community of adoptionland. I value your insights and commend you for your involvement with CASA.

      Liked by 4 people

  2. Back in the 1970s when I was a teen, and when I was Catholic, it was “Choose Life”. When I was in college in the mid to late 70s, it was still “Choose Life” but by this time I understood that the Pro Life Movement had bumper stickers “Adoption, not Abortion”.

    A bad slogan on a bumper sticker does nothing to promote understanding of the deeper issues involved.

    I am glad to see that you wrote about coveting they neighbor’s child… I’ve been saying this for many years. Yes, it is a sin. Tell that to the Bible-thumpers who steal other people’s children. They are not listening.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I am an adoptee, from the Korean War. As in many countries, birth control was not available, nor the resources the feed the mouths families have, infanticide is a common fallback, cultural practices and norms can leave a woman pregnant with no option but to become uneducated, unmarried, unemployed, a beger or worse a prostitute that will only reap another pregnancy. I was tossed into a garbage can at birth. Yet, I am grateful for both my first mother and my second mother.
    Yes, I am both Christian and pro-life. It appears you have a very first world view of adoption and your interpretation of scripture. I have lived in 3rd world countries, and seen first hand the realities from their eyes. No, I would rather see the woman who conceived the child, carry and raise the child, I’ve watched many a woman’s milk drip as she “did what she must”. Do I think God makes mistakes, no.
    We live in a sin filled world, where sex is often not seen from the eyes of the west (and even in America), infants and children presented for adoption are Gods plan B. Adoption, from my world view is fraught with emotions and pain for the family of origin and the child. So the same is true for the child you birth, there are no guarantees and no assurances. God created (think conceived) Lucifer, and yet God gave him and you and I the power of choice. Satan chose to rebel against his Creator. Do you imagine God’s heart is not broken that many of us choose to rebel against Him?
    Sometimes, we must acknowledge that what our experience is, does not mirror into all lives, cultures, stories and lives.

    Kindly,
    2 Mothers Child

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much for taking the time to read this. I, too, am an adoptee with two mothers that I love very much. No, my perspective isn’t universal, yet there are enough of us (mothers of loss to domestic infant adoption) that iit requires a closer look, or another perspective. This post wasn’t referring to trans racial or trans national adoption. While I find it fascinating that so many ‘orphans’ have the same stories of abandonment, we have discovered that only 20% are true orphans. They are ‘paper orphans’ manufactured by an industry to make quite a lot of money. I digress.

      This post is specific to the issues mentioned in the title. The coercion and manipulation of vulnerable women in the name of a ‘better life’ is avoidable. Until we can recognize the complex issues attached to adoption and the corruption involved there won’t be dramatic, necessary change. I share my truths hoping ipeople will listen with an open heart and an open mind. Thank you for sharing your story and experiences with me. Trans racial adoption is something very near to my heart for many reasons, but suffice it to say, I understand how broken this system is. A child deserves, at the very least, to remain in the country of origin. White saviors need to stop buying babies. It’s unethical. The costs to buy a baby could care for an entire village- for years- AND keep a family intact.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. God’s perfect plan? Really? A 14 year old girl who is pregnant because she was raped (repeatedly) by mom’s live-in boyfriend (who’s not going anywhere), and she has to raise the baby in those circumstances, is a “perfect plan?” What kind of God would contrive N that as a perfect plan?

    Like

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