I default to not speaking up when adoption comes up in conversation. It is striking how often it does come up. Someone will mention a recent adoption by a co-worker, or mention a child they adopted, or an adopted relative.
I know if I mention being an adoptee that I will be reduced to a tidy box that fits their story, the one society built for them. Or I speak out and they look at me quizzically, as if I have said something wrong. Something that doesn't fit.
I prefer to listen. I hear all the things that aren't said. And, the things that should be said.
I want to share what I know, what I understand about the adoption experience. But it doesn't fit into the office banter or the party chit-chat. It's bigger, it's more important. It would be awkward, confusing, strange.
But, when someone says THEY are an adoptee, then I speak. I say, "I am too." We can banter in the office or chit-chat at the party while still holding the weight of our experience, knowing the importance of it.
Someday, I hope to be able to reach the same depth with non-adoptees, but we're just not there.
I hope to read more on this prompt of adoptees speaking out, speaking up and standing up for what they believe. I want to hear stories of the narrative changing, even a little, to listen to the adoptee voice. Maybe for now, the writing is enough. Maybe next, the voice will come.
Thoughts? Reflections? Opinions?