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The Myth of the Failed Adoption AKA The Comandeering of the Biological Imperative

{AKA The Commandeering of the Biological Imperative}

Failed adoption is typically defined as an adoption plan that has been cancelled because the relinquishing mother of a newborn changes her mind and decides to parent. When the HAPs waste their time, money, and emotion getting invested in "their birth mother" (I.e. the child's mother) and her unborn child. Picking out names. Buying baby clothes. Outfitting nurseries. Traveling. Visiting. "Bonding".

All this done, mind you, before the child is born, much less before any papers are signed or custody relinquished. The HAPs begin to look upon the fetus in another woman's womb as quite their own. Many refer to these women as "our birthmother" and the fetus as "our child".

Their lawyers and agencies are advising this coercion. "Get to know [your birth mother], establish a relationship. She will be more likely to relinquish when the time comes." In other words, "Establish a rapport. That way when the time comes, she will not be thinking about the best interest of herself and her child. She'll be too busy feeling obligated to you, and hopefully feel too guilty to change her mind at the last minute and parent "your child"." HAPs are advised invade doctor's appointments, OB visits, and sonograms. They are advised by their peers to provide gifts and mementos to make "their birthmother feel valued" (obligated), and "show their appreciation for the "gift" she's giving them" (make sure the indoctrination that she's a human angel, giving you the very best present ever, sticks very well).

They're so excited when it's time. You'd think THEY were pregnant. Often, when HAPs are "matched" with a "birth mother", they call themselves "paper pregnant". I've also heard the phrases "expectant adoption" and "expecting expectant".   In some cases, a HAM will go so far to wear a fake belly to simulate the stage of pregnancy of "their birthmother". They commandeer that biological imperative. They race to the hospital, invade the delivery room, and destroy the sanctity of the birthing chamber. In some cases they even cut the cord. Some even coerce the imperative of being the first to hold the child. (On this point, I cannot believe any woman who has felt her child inside her womb would willingly allow another woman to be the first to hold her child, regardless of circumstance, without somehow being deceived into it.) Less common (but becoming alarmingly more prevalent) is the practice of inducing lactation in adoptive mothers via drugs. This drug- and unnatural hormone-laced milk is used to breastfeed "their child". (An abhorrent and amoral practice for another blog post.) In this way they commandeer the biological imperatives of pregnancy and childbirth.

"Oh, our baby has arrived!" You'll hear them exclaim on their Facebook pages and YouTube channels. "Our birthmother has had our baby!" Twitter. Instagram. Snapchat. All the places they ran their illegal ads, "Look what a beautiful couple we are, won't you let us purchase your child?" The places they've been blog posting "our doctor's appointments" and the drives back and forth where they YouTube "our journey". The biological imperatives of another woman's pregnancy splattered all over the internet.

The next complaint of the HAPs... the eternal 48 hour wait before "their mother" can sign custody of "their baby" to them. They talk as if they're waiting hear if a loved one has died. I've read proclamations of "never having been so nervous in my life". One woman actually said, "I was so afraid she was going to change her mind and decide to parent our daughter that I didn't sleep the whole 48 hours." 

Imagine their trauma If they had to wait the six weeks to adopt a puppy! And most HAPs don't have the human decency to leave "our mother and baby" alone for the 48 hours, either. You wouldn't see them  dropping in daily to the breeder's house, hanging out incessantly to bottle feed "their puppy" and pooper scoop its messes. However, there they are the morning after the birth, cuddling and confusing the child, commandeering biological imperatives left and right (feedings, diaper changes, being called the baby's "parents").

Then visiting hours are over and they, the child's "parents", are forced leave. Why? Because they're visitors!! They aren't the child's "parents" at all!! Not only has no paper been signed, but there is no DNA in common with the child... no one has recently given birth... in short, THERE IS NO REASON FOR THEM TO BE THERE!! The only reasons I can see for HAPs to be in the hospital with the child is to commandeer the biological imperative of the child's parenthood, establish ownership of the baby, maintain command of the situation, and maintain the coercion and guilt that has been so carefully established and cultivated prior the child's birth.

So here they sit, our HAPs in their sad little hotel room, gushing on and on about "our baby". YouTubing "our journey", and exclaiming about how exhausted they are after such a long exciting day. After video, probably starting to plan "our baby"s future already, what sports they will force it to play, what instruments it needs learn. What college will we make it go to? We ARE putting a substantial financial investment into this. They say they don't think about that, that they don't buy their children, but I think somewhere in the backs of their heads they all know it's not true. No one wants to cop to purchasing a person.

While they are off planning and celebrating, what do we think happens? "Their birthmother and baby" have time. Alone. Together. Which they should have had from the moment of birth. Without the pressure of beaming faces and the thousand yards of guilt. And guess what happens? Often, the bond is finally allowed be forged. Once she's  no longer being crowded by the pushy HAPs with their gifts, their guilt, and their demands, she bonds with her little one. The HAPs get the call the next day. She's decided to parent. She finally got a little time, came to her senses, and decided to be responsible. Celebrate for the little life going undisrupted, for the best possible outcome!

OH NO. The HAPs are devastated. Heartbroken. Unable to reconcile the mother's choice. They always say in their YouTube videos, "We understand her choice, BUT we're devastated." It's always, we understand, BUT. We understand we have to appear human and support not destroying a family for our own selfish needs, BUT we're not really human, we don't really understand, and once I turn this camera off, there will be rage, oh yes. I'll show you my sorrow and hide the rage that a woman would dare keep her own child after I thought I had her convinced to give it to me. Because through my gifts, my cash, and my "care", I've established my right to this child.

Thus an occasion that should be a cause for celebration is commandeered into a time of mourning. A new life, the birth of a new family united by blood and genealogy, turned into a selfish loss. For one HAP it was, "worse than the death of my child; I knew he was out there, somewhere, every day, and mourned that he wasn't with me. His death would have been more humane [to me] than this failed adoption." Quote from one of the MANY blogs I've read on the subject over the last few days. I really wish I had saved the citation on that one.

Because of the HAPs and their selfish need to commandeer the biological imperative of reproduction; their "paper pregnant", "expectant adoption", horning in on doctors and  hospitals, intrusion at birth, the more and more common practice of drug-induced lactation; the birth of a child into a particular family has been reduced a time of mourning and financial dissolution. Time to cry about the denial of a selfish need.


  1. Greatness, Awesomeness, Please Keep Speaking Adoptee Truth. I Love Your Work!!

  2. Barn Wheway: phew, that was a close shave! you painted their grubby hands well Julie


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