This is just a quick post but it has a message about how important it is to take care of our children, the most precious asset of all.
I was recently taking a stroll through the Roma Street gardens, a beautiful park just a short walk from the Brisbane CBD.
I stumbled upon the following brass plaque encased in sandstone and surrounded by lavender in bloom.
From a distance I could see the word “Apology” and naturally assumed it was in recognition of those dear indigenous children stolen from their parents because of a misguided government policy and ignorant social conscience.
But as I came nearer I was quite taken aback as the intended recipient of this apology was revealed.
The apology was to the children, mothers and fathers who suffered loss through another terrible mistake by bureaucrats in the past.
In 1950s, 60s and 70s Australia it was a socially unacceptable thing for a single mother to keep her child after birth. The whole idea of a woman giving birth to a child out of wedlock or even worse without a known father was considered abhorrent by the church (which cut much sway at that time) and society in general. Women who fell pregnant were considered sexually promiscuous, morally loose and definitely not contenders for motherhood. The social stigma an unwed mother faced was enormous and government support non existent.
So thousands of children were removed from their parents and many of those children grew up with feelings of loss, confusion about their identity, and fear of abandonment.
I know this for a fact, I was one of those children.
I need parents with adopted children to understand that separation and divorce is taken very hard by adopted children and the approach you take as you prepare to part ways needs to take that into consideration.
We like to hark on about how the Family Law Act wants all parties concerned to treat as important “the best interests of the child”.
But the thing is, for many adopted children your separation is another act of abandonment and can have a lasting affect on a child already struggling with identity.
Stability, family and love are at the very core of many adoptees’ concerns. When you are devising a post separation parenting plan do everything you can to help your adopted child deal with their emotions, fears and frustrations.
You may chose not to be spouses or partners forever but you need to do everything you can to ensure their worries and feelings are mitigated.
Finally, with my own story, I wanted to give you a happy ending.
I met my birth mum in 2000 and we have been like peas in a pod ever since.
In a way I feel I have finally come…home.