Friday, October 23, 2009

For once it wasn't really about adoption

It seems some weeks that every TV show I watch touches on adoption somehow. Sometimes it's a subplot that carries on through many episodes or sometimes it's the bad guy portrayed as the crazed adoptee out to kill everyone.
So when we sat down to watch Criminal Minds last night and I read the 2 line write up, I joked with Hilary that for once a show wasn't going to be about adoption. Well, it kinda ended up being about adoption after all. Just an adoption story with a twist.

As much as I try to portray myself as this big, strong WOMAN - hear me roar, I'm really just a big ole softy! I cry at Canadian Tire commercials for bicycles. (and yes I just got teary eyed again watching it now). Hilary frequently has to pre-screen and censor my tv viewing as certain topics are just too hard for me to watch. Adoption story lines either make me angry or reduce me to tears. Last night's Criminal Mind was well written and managed to take me from anger to tears in one 30 second scene.

Without spoiling the whole show for you I'll just tell you about the scene the really struck me. An abandoned baby had been adopted 4 years ago and the grandparents (first mom's parents) had just found out about her. The Grandfather was all indignant, insisting that the adoptive parents give him his granddaughter right away. "that is my blood, they have no right to raise her, she has to come home to us." This is the part that angered me. As an adoptee my back goes up when I hear people spouting about how blood is thicker then water and so on. I've lived my whole life without having a single family relationship with someone who shares my blood. So I don't see it as the be all end all of what makes up a family.

The camera shot then pulled away from the Grandfather and focused in on the Grandmother. You could see the emotions and struggles she was going through. And just as you thought she was going to back up Grandpa, she gave him that look. You know the one. The look a wife can give her husband that can get him to stop talking instantly. And then Grandma asked the important question that almost never gets asked. "Would we be doing her more harm by taking her away from the only family she knows." And then my tears started. Tears for the pain that the Grandparents felt at maybe never knowing their only granddaughter. Tears for the adoptive parents who might lose their child. But especially tears for the little girl at the middle of this mess. As an adoptive parent it hit so close to home. I could not fathome losing Liam. But another part of me screams "but it's the right thing to do". Ultimately though it needs to be about what is best for the CHILD. It was so nice to see a mainstream show get that. They rarely do. In the end the Grandparents did not try to get custody of the little girl and the adoptive parents agreed to include the grandparents in her life.

A win-win for everyone!
Post a Comment