What’s in a name? Re-thinking the terms “adoptee” and “adopted”

I was proactive at a very young age. Ok, full disclosure: I am wordy-nerdy. I have been thinking about how we define ourselves as either adopted or as adoptees. Both of these words feel very much about action that happened TO us. One EFL site referred to adjectives ending in ‘ed’ as words that “show […]

The Adopted as Hero

In Jung’s Symbols of Transformation, at one point he remarks on the irregular origins of birth for heroes in many sacred traditions: The hero is not born like an ordinary mortal because his birth is rebirth from the mother-wife. That is why the hero so often has two mothers. As Rank has shown with a […]

The Right to Choose, The Right to Choose Adoption

I hope, if proposing this question re-treads material already exhausted previously, that revisiting it has also a quality of refreshing it. But also, to avoid taking up a lot of space with any sort of startled “discovery” of the issue on my part, I intend only to submit it to the collective intelligence of the […]

The “Painted Bird”: Preserved “culture” and adoptive backlash.

The controversy over Jerzy Kosinski’s novel The Painted Bird remains, but for me the central image of the novel still holds: A birdcatcher paints one of his flock in bright colors; seen as foreign by the other birds, it is attacked and killed. This is the image that occurred to me after reading a news […]

We know what adoption has “cost” us. What has “anti-adoption” cost us?

A few years after I arrived in Beirut, a French-language daily published an overview of us as adoptees looking for our roots in Lebanon. It was very “poor orphans” in tone, and it didn’t really communicate what I was feeling at the time. Later, when the Arche de ZoĆ« scandal broke in Chad/France, I wrote […]