Korea Ban, Angry KADs, For this I blog…

August 19, 2006 at 11:09 am 12 comments

I’m on a couple of KAD only listservs and a lot of discussion has been happening on a few of them regarding the potential Korea ban on adoptions. Mainly, it seems the discussion is “Us against Them” — meaning KADs against the adoption agencies and a ralley for more “Angry KAD supporters.” I feel like the only KAD who is not interested in fighting this fight. Not simply because I don’t care — but because I really dont want to see a ban. I have more interest in fighting on the side of what I have been told is “the enemy.” Call it self-centered, but I really don’t think that transracial international adoption is THAT evil that it must just be stopped. Matter of fact, I think that just breeds a new problem for the children who are surrendered in Korea. For me my adoption did not result in doom and gloom. Certainly I grieve the loss of the connection to my “homeland” and birthfamily — but my gains as a KAD were pretty damn good too! Again – being self-centered here … but I almost feel like the KADs who had a bad experience are being self-centered as well. It has become personal with me — and I wish it hadn’t — but I feel like they are telling me, I should never have been adopted. That I was just a part of an experiemental mistake that happened and was called “international adoption.” Hell no! I like my life, thank you very much. I don’t like my life blindly, though. I am not saying all is good and well. It seems what I don’t like about my life these days, has nothing to do with my adoption.

I tend to blog about the negative experiences that I have had in relation to being a KAD. It’s just the nature of the blog I think. It being a public journal, all that makes me heated makes it here — and from what I have read, to other Adoptee blogs too. I’ve had a couple of emails from potiential APs considering an international transracial adoption who read my blog and wonder if they should “do this to a child.” I usually respond back with my typical questions and they are shocked to see I am not AGAINST, AGAINST on all grounds. I feel badly about giving that impression.

This will make some adoptees just plain pissed off, but I think I may write a letter to the Korean government supporting international adoption. And yes, I was asked to do so by the very agency that did my adoption. Not because I think international adoption is a perfect process — certainly, it needs work — but because I don’t believe a ban in the answer. It’s not that black & white. The people who think that children are better off being raised in foster homes or with birth parents who were pressured into parenting their child they really felt they could not, make me mad as hell. Take one look at the USA foster care system and you shall see an adoption disaster!

Last night, I was reading through Sume’s blog, Ethnically Incorrect Daughter, and she was able to express what I have long tried to express here…

“I float between feeling saved and feeling kidnapped, between gratitude and resentment but in the end, there is always love. This space serves as a repository for those thoughts and my experiences as I sort through them.”

That’s why I blog, too. Not because I am just plain angry. It’s just not that black & white. Not because I am taking a stand against. Just because, the issues I face are somewhere in the grey area and to weed through them, I blog. I blog.


Entry filed under: Adoption, Korean, Random Thoughts.

엽기토끼 Sista, Sista

12 Comments Add your own

  • 1. brookesblog  |  August 19, 2006 at 6:36 pm

    Thank you Julia, I read lots of adult adoptee blogs trying to learn all I can to help my daughter and I realize that the blog entries are not the sum of who these people are, just what they find the need to write about…it is nice to read a positive blog about international adoption every once in a while 🙂

  • 2. Mama ByAdoption  |  August 19, 2006 at 7:34 pm

    I really enjoy reading your blog. I think you offer a great perspective – your own. And I see you looking at the big picture too. I appreciate all that you have to say and I applaud you for being your own person.
    International Adoption is such a complicated thing. There is no easy answer to this problem.

  • 3. sume  |  August 20, 2006 at 3:30 am

    Hey Julia, thanks for reading. Honestly, I bristle when I see terms like “angry KAD” and “bitter adoptee” or “happy KAD” and “happy adoptee” thrown about like it is. To put such absolute labels on adoptees downplays the complexity of the adoption experience and all that surrounds it. I see adoption as very grey. Most human beings are pissed off or bitter about something. Are we all then, “bitter humans”? It’s much more complicated than that.

    We all must come to terms with our lives in our own way. It takes ALL our voices to get a grasp of the whole picture.

  • 4. Julia  |  August 20, 2006 at 6:36 am

    True that Sume! Drives me nuts too — I was actually using the terms that the groups were using (referring to themselves!) — hence the quotes. I think if they can sum themselves up as “Angry KADs” then there must be a heck of a lot more going on than just your “typical” (is there such a thing?) adoption issues!!

    Love EID btw!


  • 5. Mo  |  August 20, 2006 at 6:22 pm

    Thanks for the post Julia. If it makes you feel any better I’m right there with you. Obviously, since I adopted my son from Korea. It’s such a fine line we walk and sometimes people push me one way or another. The good thing is that I always seem to pull myself back up and walk straight ahead again. Sigh. It is nice to know I’m not alone.


  • 6. sume  |  August 20, 2006 at 10:33 pm

    Ahhh, okay. I guess I was speaking defensively. I’ve had people try to push me into that “bitter adoptee” category even though I don’t see myself that way. If someone wants to define themselves as either a “happy adoptee” or a bitter one, they certainly have the right to.

    I was thinking about it last night and I just want to make it clear that I mean adoptees in general. It’s not my place to speak specifically about KADs or the adoption ban. I just don’t know enough but I think everyone has their own experiences and responds to those experiences in their own way. Still, I do stand by my opinion that the terms are too simplistic and all voices should be heard whether the good, the bad or the ugly.

  • 7. Papa2hapa  |  August 27, 2006 at 8:13 am

    Word up, Julia! And amen, Sume. And the first commenter’s last comment is exactly what us KADs are trying to avoid…being labeled.

  • 8. Sunny Jo  |  September 7, 2006 at 1:30 pm

    i am one of the ‘angry’ ones who is opposed to int’l adoption as a policy but not because i am acting out my own personal ‘issues’. instead, i base my opinion on the fact that today’s int’l adoption is based on AP/PAP-wants and desires, not the children’s best interest. in short, it’s a global human market. and that is what i am angry at, not the fact that my own life sucked or my APs were bad (in fact, they’re the best.

    the anger many ‘angry’ adoptees (a term which i think is so over-simplistic to the real issues) feel is an anger against the system, against injustice, against oppression (which int’l adoption is). most of the KADs i’ve met who are opposing int’l adoption have well-based arguments and reasons for believing so and i really have no clue about how their personal lives are or have been as that is not really an issue.

    korea has had 50 yrs to solve its social problems and deal with them. without a ban, nothing will ever change. and that makes me angry.

  • 9. Grace  |  November 13, 2006 at 11:28 pm

    All I know is that Iwe (DH and I) could not have become a parents without adoption. I know it’s not perfect and sometimes far from it. But I know that fertility treatments, surrogacy, childlessness, and even pregnancy are fraught with questions – of technical, moral, beauracratic natures. Somehow, I think people feel that a system dealing with live – babies – should always be perfect, ideal, loving, generous, saintly. When in fact, we are all imperfect humans. We all.

    Every country has it’s own unique social structure, and their own unique set of social problems. I believe we’ve become the beneficieries of one country’s social problems.

    A Korean immigrant, mom to a 4 yo Korean little boy

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  • 11. Margie  |  May 15, 2008 at 12:12 pm

    I love your honesty.

  • 12. Marcus  |  October 21, 2009 at 6:58 pm

    Nice story as for me. It would be great to read more about this topic.


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Julia’s Jam

It’s just not that black & white. Not because I am taking a stand against. Just because, the issues I face are somewhere in the grey area and to weed through them, I blog. I blog. ~

Glimpse of Julia

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