When we were on the subject of the birthmothers reliquishing rights, Lillie asked exactly how did they try to determine that the mothers had truly wished that their child be put up for adoption. The Holt Lady said that many times they put ads in local newspapers looking for the mothers of these children and if they do not respond, the child is relinquished.
I do wonder how many mothers have time, means, or knowledge to access to these newspapers. I wonder how many mothers return to these orphanages when their situations improve and find that their child is gone forever. I wonder how many know this may happen but have no choice.
I wonder if this woman who has had to leave her child imagines that another woman on the other side of the world would be assured that there is no way the mother would ever be able to find her child. I wonder what this mother would think of a woman who would feel reassured by this. Thinking about this makes me sad.
The Holt Lady showed me a fold out chart that detailed all the countries that I could adopt from. It had waiting times, availability, etc. She thought the best country for me might be Ethiopia. I have no idea why. I noticed that Guatemala was still listed there. I asked if they still were working there. She said no. And went on to say that they had absolutely nothing to do with anything that went wrong there. That other unethical agencies had “messed it up for everybody and it was so unfair”. Her voice raised about an octave and got quite a bit louder at that point. She turned and began to talk to Lillie about something else before I could ask any more questuions on that subject.
With being a bit nervous and fairly pissed off by this time I may be off on my sequence of events, but I think this was about the time we were invited to adoption camp. The Holt lady had been pushing us pretty hard to come to the seminar that was sceduled for later that day, and we had asked waht other programs they had avaialble. she told us about their annual picnic and said that we were welcome to come and talk with the parents and children. And mentioned that they had a yearly culture camp.
I mentioned that we were in Iowa after all, do the kids have any trouble adjusting? the Holt Lady said that they had very little trouble at all and that these kids are very much American. she then said that the kids seem happier at culture camp, where they can be around other kids like them, than anywhere else. the fact that she had just said they were so very much American and in the next breath happiest when around other kids like them, seemed tiotally lost on her. I didn’t even attempt to say anything, it would have been pointless. She did mention that we were welcome to come by the camp and see how well the kids were getting along.
This kind of bothered me too. This woman knew absolutely nothing about us. Yet she was inviting us to come interact with these kids.
Next, Lillie brings up open records…..