Will the birth mother's post adoption feelings be explored

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As a birth mother who after 30 years finally was reunited with my daughter and who knows what was to me unexpected pain and trauma of reliquishment. Will this be explored or will the greater good of family simply have won out?

I won't lecture. Thirty plus years ago we were told (and because we were kids for the most part) and we believed (and these poor girls are still buying into it) we would forget our first born lost to adoption -- that didn't happen and many more ramifications than I ever imagined (even while living through the pain) were the result. Are you able to, and more importantly, will you deal with these issues?

I'm open to sharing my own experience if you are interested and if it would be of assistance.

Thank you.

-- Cheryl Lynn Wilkinson (libryrat@pacbell.net), December 16, 2000


Was there an answer on the birth father's part? I know Deb went to ask him to sign the papers, and when she said it was a boy, he hesitated. I was so sure he would walk in the door when Deb was deciding what to do. I have a male friend who was told after the fact that his son was put up for adoption. After trying visitation and a few years of legal wrangling, he gave up contact. Could this be in the future for Deb and Rambo?

-- Paula M. (onemoorebud@mindspring.com), December 16, 2000.

Since the adoption was through the same adoption agency that Chen was dealing with in the prior episode, Frank had to have signed away his rights. Adoption agencies insist on this; they don't want the aggravation or the legal fees involved with custody disputes.

-- Melinda Ross (mross@value.net), December 16, 2000.

"when she said it was a boy, he hesitated." It's possible that he would find it harder to give up a boy than a girl; we don't know a lot about Rambo and the scene was too short anyway. However, my interpretation was that since he was taken by surprise by Chen's pregnancy, her saying it was a boy made it easier for him to picture the child. It would be nice if the adoptive parents send Chen photos of them and the baby a few months from now, and Chen sees Rambo (not a surprise this time) to show him the photos.

-- Driad (Driad@mailcity.com), December 16, 2000.

I'm sure we'll see Deb struggle with her decision. At least I hope they don't sweep it under the rug and conveniently forget she had a child. I would love to see her get info and photos of the son she gave away. Perhaps a visit to the adoptive parents once in a while would ease her mind. I wonder if she'll get any flak from her parents over this?

-- Laura (laurelc@wincom.netl), December 16, 2000.

I sure hope they do. The producer (John Wells?) was talking about how Ming Na Wen "slept her way into a good storyline" funny comment, but anyways, I'm hoping he'll hold true to this for the rest of the season and not just for the big birthing moment. She's a good character to look at. Maybe in a year or two she could get pregnant again and keep the baby, with Carter by her side again...because he's the father!

-- Elaine (mrsclooney78@hotmail.com), December 16, 2000.

Elaine, I would love to see that happen (Carter and Deb and another baby), because I think we haven't seen the flustered and nervous Carter in a very long time, and I never really since Deb happy and excited about something. Then again I'm biased :) Actually I sincerly hope that the post-adoption isn't swept under the rug, it doesn't need to be shoved in our faces, but it would interesting to learn if this was an open adoption and so Deb would receive photos and updates, or if is a closed adoption. I think this type of storyline could be done subtly (as an on going new compenant of Deb's personality now), unlike (for example) Carol and Meg storyline.

-- Emma (webbef@hotmail.com), December 16, 2000.

Cheryl, thank you for your words. It's ironic that the wonderful gift that birthmoms like you give to adoptive parents can only come from a love that's mixed with such grief and sorrow.

I'm sure that our kids' birthparents would agree with you that just because I agree that you will never forget the child you give up - that baby remains just as much a part of you as any child you raise.

You're absolutely right that Deb's experience as a birthmom post-adoption needs to be explored -- her progress through her grief and, as other posters have noted, any relationship or contact with the adoptive family if she chose an open adoption.

-- Wendy (wroe@abilitiescouncil.sk.ca), December 20, 2000.

Was there any evidence to this being an open adoption? I can't remember any, but my memory can be faulty at best, so... :) If so, Jing-Mei would get pictures and news of her son every now and then, and might even be able to be a apart of his life.

Someone very close to me was adopted, and just recently found her birthmother. They have since became almost best friends, and try to spend a lot of time together to make up for lost time. I can only hope this is what happeneds to Jing-Mei some time down the road.

-- Mary (mimiwannabe@discocow.com), December 20, 2000.

I did NOT get the impression that this was an open adoption. Does anyone know for sure? I too, think this storyline was excellent and hope they don't just forget the fact that Jing Mei gave birth. My husband is adopted and this storyline really made him think about what his birth mother went through when she gave him up.

-- amanda (amanda.rehm@home.com), December 21, 2000.

Amanda - I got the same feeling because of the fact that not only was it not mentioned, but because of the birth parents attitude toward Jing-Mei. They did not seem to care what Jing-Mei was going through physically or emotionally and as Phyl stated in her comments, never thanked Jing-Mei either. They mainly cared about getting that baby and not wanting Jing-Mei to have any kind of bonding or contact with him at all. They were even upset that she got to hold the baby to say good-bye. Doesn't seem like an attitude that the parents would have if it was an open apodtion. I just don't see it!

-- Robin (rkonger@hotmail.com), December 21, 2000.

Whoops!! Typo!! It should say adoption in that last line!!

-- Robin (rkonger@hotmail.com), December 21, 2000.

If the adoptive parents even met Jing-Mei, then it's an open adoption. There are degrees of openness, from simply meeting when birthmom relinquishes the baby (to the parents or agency worker), through meeting before the baby is born, exchanging names, addresses, drawing up agreements for contact (phone calls, sending letters or photos, even in-person visits - for however many years). At least in Canada, any degree of the above is considered an open adoption.

And at least partly in defense of the adoptive parents, the emotional upheaval of planning to bring home a baby while simultaneously preparing for birthmom to change her mind is a real rollercoaster. And the actual time in the hospital, especially when you're with birthmom, is awkward in the extreme. Adoptive parents know full well that birthmom has bonded with the baby - how could she not after 9 months? - and there's so much to say. But we struggle with saying "thank you" and "can we do anything for you?" without presuming an intimacy that birthmom may not want from us. After all, we're taking away her child. Not to excuse these adoptive parents from not trying to thank Jing-Mei, but you can see that the situation is really very tense and some people just freeze up, become tongue-tied or just plain say the wrong thing. (It's much easier the second time around - and easier if you've had a chance to at least meet birthmom ahead of the delivery.)

-- Wendy (wroe@abilitiescouncil.sk.ca), December 22, 2000.

If I remember correctly, the adoptive mom hinted that she'd already had 1 birthmother change her mind on her. Selfish or not, I would not make any move whatsoever to get close to another birthmom if I were in her shoes. You know what they say, once bitten, twice shy. I imagine she's built quite a wall around her heart until the time passes that it is not possible for Jing-Mei to change her mind.

I think Carter is going to be the "go-to man" for Abby and Jing-Mei in their time of personal crises but I don't see him becoming romantically involved with either one since they are both unloading so much emotional baggage on him. However - I do think John and "Deb" will be close, close friends after this and he will be instrumental in her recovery.

-- Linda (l.brown@mindspring.com), December 23, 2000.


-- JEANETTA (JEANSHRTY @ AOL. COM.), September 15, 2002.

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