Transracial Adoptive Parents’ Grade: F

Yes, I am still on it.

Why?  #1 because I can – I am a grown ass women, after all.

But #2 – y’all don’t seem to be hearing me.

So let me see if I can break it down again.

Over two years of my life, I shared my pain, my joy, my life, my openness, my feelings, my wisdom, my kindness, my understanding with the Transracial Adoption Facebook community.

For over two years, I spent hours with Adoptive Parents trying to help them wade through issues like racial identity formation, racial isolation, racism and how it all plays out in transracial adoption.

For over two years I gave up a lot of myself to help them learn.

And what did I get in return?

Failing students.   Students who failed miserably when it came time to be a REAL ally and a REAL advocate for a Bi-racial Transracial adoptee.

So, when most of the students fail, the first thing I look at is the teacher.  What did I do wrong?  And since I examined that I have given them examples, challenged them to think critically, done some fun things, supported them individually, I am lost as to what I could have done better as a teacher.

Why did they not learn?

All the lectures that they had learned about white fragility and white tears  – wasted.  All those discussions about white middle class norms and how they are aggressively violent toward POC – forgotten.  All the hours spent teaching about microaggressions and the Black tax and the “model minority” – thrown down the toilet.  All the adoption related issues like rejection triggers and loss of family ties – ignored.

And you know what I realized?  They didn’t want to learn.  They just wanted come in and  talk and appear as an expert on something else.  They just wanted to take our stories and push them aside and make them their own.  They wanted to take our pain and our emotions and repackage them in a pretty package wrapped in a bow so they could sell them to other Adoptive Parents without giving the teachers any credit. .

But they didn’t really want to learn anything.

They were too busy telling other “CWAPS” – that’s short for “Crazy White Adoptive Parents” (Yep, that’s what they called y’all in private)- how much smarter and how much more evolved they were.

But in the end, when they had the opportunity to put all that they had learned into real life practice, they failed.

They ran to comfort the poor, fragile white adoptive mother.  They blamed the victim (and I hate saying that because I do not feel like a victim because I spoke my mind, but  that is the term for it.)

They inserted themselves into disagreement on point of view between POC that they did not belong in.  And they KNEW they didn’t belong there.

They used shaming techniques and mental games to try to silence me from speaking even more about what they were doing. (how about telling an adoptee that they know has rejection triggers that you reject them when you simply could have just silently went away?)

You hide behind “We don’t know the whole story.”  (Benefit of the doubt) But you knew a White Adoptive Parent silenced an adoptee of color.  What more did you need to know?

Many of you openly support white tears and white fragility with pats on the back and “there, there, you don’t deserve this.” (Respectability Politics)

Playing into the “Angry Black Unreasonable Women” stereotype much?

How many of you have stood on the sidelines and said “I am not getting involved”?  Is that how you support people of color, only when it’s comfortable you?  You sit on the sidelines of my oppression and you don’t speak up or show support? I thought you all said you would use your white privilege for good.

Remember all the times when we talked about you can support both sides?  I have never asked anyone to take sides.  I have just asked for people to support my right to speak my truth.  Apparently that is not something that some of you want to take the “risk” of supporting.

I sat with you all for YEARS and you said you understood, you said that you had even learned enough for many of you to call yourselves teachers.  You lost your sense of boundaries and when you got called on it, you did not like it.

So tell me, does that make you any better than the people who openly scorn us and tell us that we are making things up?  Please explain to me why I should feel confident that ANY of you can raise an adopted child of color without putting them in a box and leaving them to fend for themselves in this world?

You all failed your biggest test.  And you should be man and woman enough to admit it.

Don’t be hurt that I don’t trust you anymore.  And don’t be mad that I want to keep calling you out until you get sick of it and remove yourself (quietly) from my life.  I don’t want  you benefiting from my knowledge anymore.


About sjwoods318

Mother of six children - five girls and one boy; wife; community organizer, family chauffeur, philosopher, trans-racial adoptee, Deadhead, person of mixed racial heritage, artist, poet, writer who loves to swim, read, and run around with my family.
This entry was posted in Biography. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Transracial Adoptive Parents’ Grade: F

  1. Anyone who adopts a child of any color has got to have a huge ego. To think that you can become the parent of another person, who is not related to you at all takes a lot of gall.

    If they had a heart they would not adopt. Seems like the opposite, but it’s not.

    I mean every single one.

  2. Sara, I hear you. Thank you for sharing your truth. Sick as that truth may be.

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