Usually things get easier to write about over time. Not this time. It's getting harder.
My First Cousin (technically he's not, but he'll always be my Very First Cousin) was eager to help me. He's an elderly man in poor health, who needed the mental stimulation such a puzzle provided. He's been very encouraging, even as my moods have swung like a weather-vane in storm.
I'm one of the least emotional people you'll ever meet, although I'm self-aware enough to realize that for me this symptom is a sign of an underlying problem. But here I was obsessively combing through genealogies and bursting into tears at every photograph. I desperately wanted to know who these people were, what their stories told about them, and how their stories related to my stories. I craved the stories grownups swapped while visiting and told to the kids on the porch during long afternoons.
I cried the first time I spoke to First Cousin on the phone. It was the first time I'd heard the voice of a blood relation I hadn't given birth to.
Earlier this year, the US Department of State published its annual statistics on inter-country adoption. Again a significant decline in the number of children adopted from abroad could be noted. The year 2012 had already been a low-water mark with 8668 inter-country adoptions. In 2013, the number went down even further, to 7094.
Over the years the church and its daughter organization LDS Family Services had been involved in various dubious adoptions, showing a lack of respect for the rights or unmarried parents. On top of that, LDS Family Services has been the least transparent adoption agency in the world. Unlike other adoption agencies, it is registered as a church and therefore it is not required to submit any financial information to the Internal Revenue Service.
LDS Family Services resembled the type of hush-hush operation one would have expected during the 1950s and 1960s, an anachronistic organization out of touch with the societal make-up of the 21 century.
MCCAYSVILLE, Ga. — Jun 20, 2014, 1:27 AM ET
By KANTELE FRANKO and ALEX SANZ Associated Press
They were adopted off-the-books decades ago, scattered by a Georgia doctor who took $100 or $1,000 or something in between to send desperate couples home with new sons and daughters. Now some of the adoptees have turned to fresh DNA testing in hopes of reconnecting with the biological families they never knew, before time runs out.
"This is our shot in the dark, really," said Melinda Elkins Dawson, one of more than 200 newborns relocated to other states from the clinic in McCaysville in the 1950s and '60s.
As children, their true ancestry was erased on birth certificates falsely listing adoptive couples as their natural parents. Genetic codes are the only links left.
So Dawson worked with Ohio-based DNA Diagnostics Center to arrange free cheek-swab sampling Saturday at a motel in Ducktown, Tennessee, a few miles from where the clinic was located. The adoptees hope potential relatives from the area come forward to give samples, even if they remain anonymous.
Two men working in an orphanage in Kathmandu have been arrested and are facing trial next week accused of sexually abusing children in their charge.
Rabin Shrestha, former head of the adoptions at Bal Mandir, and Rabin Chalise, an ex-student who ran a Youth Club at the shelter, were arrested by the Central Investigation Bureau (CIB) last week after child rights activists presented evidence of repeated rape and abuse of girls and boys at the orphanage.
Shrestha had been arrested before in 2012 after a British woman lodged a complaint against him for allegedly raping a five-year-old blind girl that she was going to adopt.
“I tried to adopt her, but Shrestha told me I couldn’t do that. He wanted me to sponsor her instead and told me I would get a decision after she turned 16,” the mother told Nepali Times this week.
Nepal -- Rabin Shrestha (alleged child rapist) & Action for Child Rights International
Thanks for taking the time to visit my JustGiving page.
Rabin Shrestha, the former Head of Adoptions at Nepal’s largest children’s home, “Bal Mandir” (pictured), operated by the Nepal Children’s Organisation (NCO), was arrested this past week by the Nepal police for alleged sexual assault on three minors.
Nepal adoptions chief raped and groomed orphans for prostitution, claims British teacher
The Daily Telegraph
A British woman who adopted a five year old blind girl from a Nepalese orphanage believes she uncovered an abuse and vice ring after her new daughter said she’d been raped every Saturday
By Dean Nelson, New Delhi and Anil Giri in Kathmandu
27 Jun 2014
The former head of international adoptions at Nepal’s largest orphanage is in custody over allegations that he raped young girls and groomed them as prostitutes in Kathmandu dance bars.
One of the alleged victims was a five-year-old blind girl who who was later adopted by a British teacher. Three others suffer from autism and severe learning difficulties.
According to the girls, they and two young boys at the orphanage were sexually abused and raped every Saturday when the adoptions chief, Rabin Shrestha and his friend throw ‘birthday’ and ‘wedding’ parties at Kathmandu's Bal Mandir children’s home.
Nepal Children's Organization -- former head of NCO/Bal Mandir adoptions arrested for child rape (reprinted from PEAR Nepal)
Two held on rape charge
KATHMANDU: Two suspects have been arrested behind alleged rape of three young girls living in a public orphanage, Nepal Children’s Organisation, popularly known as Balmandir. Police arrested Rabin Shrestha, a former employee of Balmandir, and Rabin Chalise, the current president of Balmandir Club, following the complaints of rape and sexual abuse at the orphanage lodged by Action for Child Rights International-Nepal. (PR)
KATHMANDU, June 18: Two individuals previously associated with Nepal Children´s Organization (NCO), one of the country´s
oldest orphanages, have been taken under control by police for investigations into a rape charge leveled against them by three
The Central Investigation Bureau (CIB) of Nepal Police arrested a former NCO student and a former NCO employee - identified
as Rabin Chalise and Rabin Shrestha respectively - after three minor girls living in NCO´s Naxal orphanage, also known as Nepal
Bal Mandir, complained about being sexually exploited.
SP Pitambar Adhikari, spokesperson for the CIB, confirmed the arrest of Chalise and Shrestha but refused to divulge details.
"Both are now in our custody for investigations," said Adhikari. "But, we are not yet in a position to divulge any details."
A team of CIB officials had arrested the two on Tuesday. The same day, the CIB, in coordination with the Central Child Welfare
Board (CCWB), shifted the three minor girls to a safe house run by some other NGO. All three girls are believed to be below 15
PTSD blankets my emotions with numbness. It's hard to feel any emotion, I think them more than I sense them. Unexpected strong emotions tend to cause an automatic whole-body shutdown response. But this was so unexpected it blew through my automatic defenses like they weren't even there.
It had been a few weeks since I was told that my results would be ready in a month and a half. I checked the site everyday, but the expectation of seeing anything had long since slumbered. I almost forgot to check that Saturday when I remembered it before running off to do some outdoor work.
I logged on to Ancestry.com, expecting to see the now-familiar white page with a tiny "come back later" notice. Instead I saw colors. There were greens, beige, browns, oranges, blues, pinks, blacks, and even a few tiny full color photographs. Some of the colors formed words, but I couldn't read them, too shocked to see that there was something -- quite a lot of something -- there at all.
According to a report in the Irish Mail on Sunday, a mass grave has been located beside a former home for unmarried mothers and babies in County Galway. The grave is believed to contain the bodies of up to eight hundred babies, buried on the former grounds of the institution known locally as “The Home” in Tuam, north of Galway city, between 1925 and 1961
Run by the Bon Secours nuns, “The Home” housed thousands of unmarried mothers and their “illegitimate” children over those years.
According to Irish Mail on Sunday the causes of death listed for “as many as 796 children” included “malnutrition, measles, convulsions, tuberculosis, gastroenteritis and pneumonia.”
The babies were usually buried without a coffin in a plot that had once housed “a water tank,” the report claims. No memorials were erected, the site was left unmarked and unmourned.
Searching for my biological family is extremely stressful. Fortunately this time of year my garden can absorb all the nervous energy I can throw at it. But it demands more attention than I gave it recently when distracted by my personal distress I blundered into poison oak and ended up covered in a rash. The medicine they put me on leaves my too drowsy to write my next post. Sorry for the delay, will get back to it in a few days.
STAMFORD -- North Stamford resident Maria Gonzalez will likely spend her second straight Mother's Day without seeing or hearing from her 5-year-old son Santiago.
The Department of Children and Families aggressively sought and obtained a temporary order of custody committing Santiago to the agency's care in mid-October 2012 despite the fact that the child was never abused, neglected or placed in dangerous conditions while in Gonzalez's care. The agency's actions resulted in a prolonged custody battle in which the agency reversed its stance and advocated for a mother and child reunion, but the child has never been returned to Gonzalez's custody.
Gov. Dannel P. Malloy has signed a bill setting new standards for guardians ad litem and counsels for minor children, who represent children in divorce and custody cases.
My name is Todd and I live in British Columbia, Ca on the island. I was adopted from birth and am pretty pissed off about the whole thing but in doing much research and soul searching I've established that there is no healing through my BFamily or my Afamily, friends, therapists, doctors, drugs, alcohol or any other such thing. The wound I carry I believe to be fairly unique to the adoptee specifically or at least closed adoptions in the sense we were taken from our mothers at birth to not see them for at least 18 years or ever again. Recently I have attended AA and feel that there are many similarities between the alcoholic and an adoptee. I feel a lot of my grief and past shames can be put to rest through that program but that primal wound is not going to go away with the rest so being the rather bright young chap that I am figured out that I will need other adoptees just like the alcoholic requires other alcoholics. I've looked for adult adoptee support groups but the adoption agencies don't fund them like they do for potential birth moms who they like to cultivate and brain wash. I know because I went to one of their meetings and was asked to never come back lol.
Been reading a bit more on your site and I thought I would share some more with you. Although I don't think I was necessarily abused by my Aparents it certainly never stopped me from realizing that the whole chosen/ grew in her heart not in her womb thing was bullshit created by a pro adoption agenda. Kinda like an engagement ring made out of a cubic zerconia. Beautiful and yet still fake. You may want and wish it was real but it's not.Also it is the pain of being separated from our mothers that is our true and ultimate abuse.
Adversely an abused adoptee at least is spared the lies and false hopes that a true family bond has formed when I find that to be a childish and wishful notion altogether. I found myself thinking of apes today and what happens when the babies are removed from their mothers. In watching such footage it nearly brought me to tears in empathy and yet it wasn't till today that I actually realized that we generally treat apes and kittens better than humans because that's just animal abuse to do such things lol.
I took a DNA test to learn about my biological relatives and found out some things.
Let's start with the basics, shall we? I found out I was a human being, homo sapiens sapiens (at least mostly, I haven't compared it with the non-human samples yet.) This actually was a concern for my younger self. There were no people around who looked or acted like me in my adopted family or in the society around us, and everyone was quick to point out how weird and alien I was. So what's a kid supposed to think? Where was the evidence I hadn't fallen off a UFO? I became sensitive to attempts to "other" me or anyone else.
(reposted from here I like am happy satisfied with this one.)
We need to talk.
I know you're not big on talking. You've been the silent ghost hovering in the background all my life, your absence a constant presence.
Frankly, I would have preferred Banquo's Ghost, or King Hamlet. They were explicable and helped move the plot along. You have always been a cypher. What did you want?
Nothing, I was told. That's why you weren't there, after all. I was told that I was an impediment to the life you wanted to live, a pothole in the road of your journey that you had sped on past and forgotten. I was better off without you, I was told.
I really shouldn't spend much time thinking about you, I was told. And I didn't. Think about you, that is. Not much. As little as possible, and I'd stop myself whenever my subconscious tried to bring it up.
I always tried to follow the rules. Would you have liked that in me?
[This article originally appeared in print as "Trait vs. Fate"]
Darwin and Freud walk into a bar. Two alcoholic mice — a mother and her son — sit on two bar stools, lapping gin from two thimbles.
The mother mouse looks up and says, “Hey, geniuses, tell me how my son got into this sorry state.”
“Bad inheritance,” says Darwin.
“Bad mothering,” says Freud.
For over a hundred years, those two views — nature or nurture, biology or psychology — offered opposing explanations for how behaviors develop and persist, not only within a single individual but across generations.
An 8-year old girl and a 5-year-old boy adopted by Eraca Dawn Craig and Christian Jessica Deanda were starved, chained and abused by their adoptive parent. A 3-year-old boy, who was the biological child of one of the two women received similar treatment.
Placement type: Adoption
Type of abuse: Non-lethal physical abuse, Non-lethal neglect, Non-lethal deprivation
When adopted children are incorrectly diagnosed with attachment disorder, things can go very, very wrong.
By Kathryn Joyce
Last week in Ohio, a $2 million settlement was reached between the state’s Stark County and 11 current and former adopted and foster children whom county officials had entrusted to the care of a couple who turned out to be far from ideal parents. Almost nine years ago, in September 2005, the children were removed from the home of Michael and Sharen Gravelle, an Ohio couple in their late 50s, after child protection workers found children shut in cages made of wood and chicken wire. The cages were stacked like bunk beds and often either blocked by furniture or rigged with alarms so the children couldn’t get out. Inside them, the children slept on mats that smelled of urine. But when confronted by authorities—and later charged with a wide range of abuses—the Gravelles defended their methods, claiming that the children, who had conditions ranging from autism to Down syndrome, were “special needs,” and had to be protected from themselves and each other.
3 year old Hyunsu (aka Hyeonsu or Hyun-su) was adopted from South Korea under the new laws by Brian and Jennifer O'Callaghan in October 2013. He had a diagnosis of hydrocephalus. He died less than 4 months after his arrival in his adoptive home with a skull fracture, bleeding in the brain, eye hemorrhaging, trauma to his scrotum, and other evidence of blunt force trauma. Jennifer was out of town for several days leaving Madoc with his father Brian Patrick O'Callaghan, a former marine. Brian O'Callaghan has been charged with first-degree murder and child abuse resulting in the death.
Please tell me that I am not the only one who vomited green, gray glob after hearing this story.
It was described as a miracle.
Two young Korean girls are adopted by two different families at the same time, but alias they are re-united decades later.
Twins have a unique bond from birth. Separating them is a crime worst than lying on your home study.
The families keep track of each other via Facebook, sharing pictures of their adopted daughters.
One father said he noticed that the girls looked similar, and SUSPECTED that they were TWINS.
Hey bright one, and you did nothing about it.
So the happy separate families live their lives knowing it is a fraud.
Uggggg. The AP's are content that they have a child to call their own. Don't want to upset that beautiful apple cart, for the best interest of the child.
Shame on the Korean Adoption Authorities.
Split up a pair of twins and get twice the money.
These two have a life time of catch-up.
Another sad story of Adoption Corruption.
There was never a time I did not know I was adopted. In fact, there was never a time I did not feel different, not-quite-right, and not altogether like those around me. I have always felt like I was the outcast, the mixed mutt..the runt... the one who got chosen to live among strangers not because I was wanted, but because someone had to choose me, otherwise I'd be put down or left to die, whichever created less stir for the public.
I was born in 1968 in Newfoundland, Canada, a hot-spot for infertile Americans in want of a healthy white newborn who was "orphaned" by its unmarried and "unfit" mother. I was not born an American; I was manufactured to become one.
As an adult, I learned the facts surrounding my adoption story were nowhere near the "facts" my adoptive mother told me about my adoption history.