Monday, February 15, 2010

I'm Legit: Adoption Video

I've been meaning to post this beautiful song ever since I saw it on my friend Kim's blog. She's a fellow adult adoptee and even got to be an extra in the video, what an exciting experience for her. I am so glad she's gotten to connect with other adoptees because sometimes no matter how hard your family and friends try to understand, only another adoptee can truely understand the complicated feelings of loss and grief that can arise.

The purpose of the song 'I'm Legit' is to raise awareness about the lack of rights an adopted adopted person has to have access to their own original birth certificate, because birth records are closed in the U.S. in every state except for Alabama, Alaska, Delaware, Kansas, New Hampshire, Oregon, Tennessee and Maine.

I don't think that it's too much to ask for the basic information, that most people take for granted. We just want to know our birth name, family history, medical history. It should be a right to know where we came from and it's a genuine need to know. Not knowing is a loss that hits me every time I have to fill out a form at the doctors. Under family history, there are just no answers for me. Until I had my daughter, I had never experienced looking at someone and seeing my own features looking back at me. I cannot begin to explain how emotional that was for me.

Some will say that the laws protect the birth mother's privacy, but in reality most birth mothers were never ever told that they would be protected nor did most want to be. In fact, 93% of birthmothers are happy to be reunited. These mothers said they waited and mourned for the loss of their children, many feeling pressured by either their families or society that they were being selfish to keep their babies that their babies would have a better life with two parents. In my opinion, the laws punish the innocent child in the triad of adoption, the adoptee whose only fault was in being born. Surely no one can believe that is fair.

When I was diagnosised as Type II diabetic, the doctors said that I had to have a family history, with possibily both maternal and paternal sides having diabetics in it. Had I known that information, maybe I could have been more educated at ways to try and delay the onset of the disease. At the very least I wouldn've known to be screened for it sooner. I'll never know if it would've made a difference, just as I'll never know what other pertinant medical history I should be aware of.

The most poignant part of the song for me is about looking at passerbys on the street, wondering if one of those walking by could be your parent. Are they looking for us too, do they wonder if we're looking for them too. I do that myself, even though as I was an overseas adoptee from Korea, the liklihood of my parents or another relative walking by me is rather remote. Part of me is at times is still compelled to examine any Asian person walking by, searching for a resemblance.

Laws changing in the US will have little consequence for me personally, but I believe knowing our history is important for everyone and helps adoptees lead productive lives. Please help us change this old fashioned law, and visit and donate to help us continue to fight this law.

6 Friends Said:

Mama King said...

Katie, I am so glad you are getting the word out there. I met a birth mother during the filming of this video and she echoed your statistics about birth mothers. She searched for her daughter and was over joyed to reunite with her after over 20 years apart. She is fighting for adoptees to have a legal right to their histories.

Like you I know the chance of me reuniting with my birth parents is slim to none. But I am happy if I can help others reunite and find that missing piece.

MaryAnne said...

Thanks for this post, I hadn't realized adoption laws were still so restrictive in so many states!

Kaerie Faerie said...


Nicole said...

Thanks for sharing. I can only imagine how frustrating this must be.

Personalized Sketches and Sentiments said...

Thank you sharing this clip. My birth dad passed away when I was a mom remarried and I am blessed to have my dad (he adopted me, when they married) that I have known since I was 3yrs old. But I would have loved to know and have met family from my dad's side. It wasnt until I was a teen and older that I learned bits more info. I love my dad, but it still would be amazing to know more. When my mom passed away 5 years ago, there hasnt been anyone that I could ask, although my dad has shared some more information since.

Blessings & Aloha!
(I have not chosen to share this part of my life on my blog... yet. Not sure, why or rather why not...maybe, since my dad is alive, I wouldnt want it to seem "disloyal" or my love for him is less, with wondering about my birth dad.)

Holly Lefevre said...

I have had very little to no interaction with any adoptees...I had no idea how strict the laws are and what a journey your and all adoptees musty go through. Thank you for opening my eyes!

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