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Would You Rather Not Have Been Adopted?

It has been over a month since my last published blog. I wish I could say I was busy working on my memoir or other writing endeavors, but no, I was taking a break from the written word and the topic of adoption.

Around the time of my last blog, there was a question being hurled at adoptees online "Would you rather not have been adopted?" I read that question in a Twitter post to another adoptee, and after the deep sigh given the question void of any understanding by a non-adoptee, I found myself annoyed. Answers to that question began to fire off in my head.

  • I would rather my birth certificate not be falsified.

  • I would rather not have to wait until a court decided to unseal my original birth certificate and then charge me $35 to obtain it, which is $15 more than the fee to replace my "fictional" legal birth certificate.

  • I would prefer if I did not have to pay $125 for non-identifying information in hopes of obtaining health information. I paid for a stranger to peruse my file, pull out things they deemed worthy of me knowing and then write up a synopsis.

  • I would rather not feel obligated to protect my adoptive parents' feelings as I sacrificed my own.

  • I would rather not feel torn between my birth family and adoptive family because each feels some ownership of my being.

  • I would rather not feel ashamed or ungrateful for wanting to know my history.

  • I would rather have been treated as a person with the right to know basic information those who are not adopted take for granted.


I have said in previous posts that I am not against adoption. I am against secrecy and the obliteration of an adoptee's existence before being adopted. I am against a society that makes adoptees feel like they would be better off if they forget a part of themselves to assimilate into a new family.

In exchange for a stable life, my sense of identity is what was sacrificed. My birth mother and siblings grew up with hardships I have never known. I grew up with financial support and opportunities I would not have had if I were not adopted. My adoptive family loved me the best way they could. I take none of that for granted.

However, to anyone who may have asked, "Would you rather not have been adopted?" I counter with this. Would you rather not know:

  • Who carried you for nine months and endured labor to push you into the world?

  • Who cared for you before being adopted at age 2, 4, or even older?

  • If you have a family history of medical issues that could impact your life? The life of your child?

  • Where do those quirky facial features or mannerisms come from?

Or maybe the better question is, why are adoptive families so threatened by an adoptee knowing the truth? Where does that fear come from?

Tell me what you think!

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1 Comment

Mary Ellen Gambutti
Mary Ellen Gambutti
Sep 08, 2022

I think you nailed it, my friend! 🙌

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