Adoption and Luck

July 29th, 2010

A while ago, Kevin blogged about how adoption isn’t so lucky.

Since we’ve been home, I feeling the need to reiterate that point. Adoption is not lucky. Milo and Yeshumnesh are not lucky to have been adopted. It’s a very sticky point in adoption but it’s an important one for people to remember. Our children came to our family because there was a need. There is grief, loss, and sadness in their lives.

‎”They have lost their original father, mother, grandparents, siblings, extended family. They have lost their language, culture, and country of origin. They have lost any connection whatsoever to their beginnings, to their identity, to the …most basic elements of who they are. They have lost any knowledge of what happened and why.” (Source: Yoon’s Blur)

That’s not luck. As my daughter put it “you don’t know what it’s like to leave the country you know and move to a place where you know nothing.”

Here are two other articles one on the concept of being grateful and another on luck.

7 Responses to “Adoption and Luck”

  1. MM on July 29, 2010 10:31 pm

    Thank you for the good reminder and for the words from the “mouth of babes.” All of us are working this out – we need to stay in dialogue in ways that help us do our work better and smarter.

    MM :-)

  2. Kevin D. Hendricks on July 30, 2010 8:13 am

    Back when I blogged about this there was a fair amount of debate, but I think the real issue is in projecting how you feel on to the adopted child in inappropriate ways. You may think they’re blessed, but they may not feel that way. Telling them they should feel that way is not OK–it denies what they’re feeling and causes other problems.

    Here’s how I explained it in a letter to our friends and family:

    “We also need to be careful when we talk about how “lucky” or “blessed” someone is to be adopted. This can be a difficult because it’s confusing your feelings with Yeshumnesh’s. Remember that Yeshumnesh is not lucky to have had all this stuff happen to her. Instead of telling Yeshumnesh how to feel (whether explicitly or implicitly) by saying “You must be so happy to be with your new family,” tell her how you feel by saying “I’m so happy you’re a part of Kevin & Abby’s family.” She may or may not reciprocate those feelings—she may not be happy to be a part of our family for a while—and that’s fine. Don’t tell her how she should feel.”

  3. Brian Seay on July 30, 2010 9:07 am

    very well said – most people mean well but fail to see life from the child’s perspective that put them in the adoptive situation in the first place.

  4. chris freeman on July 30, 2010 9:13 am

    Kevin and Abby, thanks for the insight on such a sensitive area. Come to think of it, we should probably stay away from the whole, you should feel line of thinking in just about all of the areas of our lives. How many times has this approach blown up in your face when going down this path with your spouse? Too many times to count for me!

    We stress with our 2 adopted children how fortunate we are to have them be a part of our family.

    I think we can only honestly express how we as individuals “feel” and should never presume or project that onto someone else, adopted or otherwise.

  5. Julie on July 30, 2010 9:58 am

    I always cringe when someone says “They are so blessed.” or “They are so lucky.” to me.

    WE are the ones who have been blessed by the addition of them to our family (and that’s usually my retort).

  6. YoonSeon on August 2, 2010 7:11 pm

    Hi, thanks for linking me. :-) Umm… I guess everything I have to say on this topic has been said in my post. =P Just wanted to say hi and thanks.

  7. Mike Thomas on August 24, 2010 2:48 am

    I am writing to ask for your permission to include your posts on and include a link to your blog in our
    directory. We would
    include a link back to your blog fully crediting you for your work
    along with a profile about you listed on .
    Please let us
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    Mike Thomas

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