Another father fights for his rights to his child

Please visit this Facebook Page to learn more:

https://www.facebook.com/events/290872121107148/

***We are in the 4th quarter at the 2 min warning*** Trent is in his final extension to file his appeal. He has been going at this alone. It has been a struggle to find an attorney to take his case but we have FINALLY found one. We have an attorney set up for him and we need to get this money to him ASAP so he can start working on what needs to be filed. Please…$1, $5, $10, $20…what ever you can donate to help would greatly appreciated.

PLEASE INVITE EVERYONE YOU KNOW…so another father does not lose his child to unethical adoption. He deserves the right to raise his daughter as he has fought so hard for!

Please…We can not let Trent and his daughter go down with out a fight!

The Real Philomena: NPR Radio Interview and Commentary

A radio interview with the real woman named Philomena who lost her three year old child to a forced adoption in Ireland. The movie, Philomena, is a fictionalized version of her search for her son.

I am glad that the discussion of intercountry adoption has been slowly turning in favor of examining what adoption means to the natural parents and their lsot children. This is a start. Discussion leads to action.

The movie depicts the result of barbaric behavior from Catholic nuns in intentionally separating a mother from her toddler son – because the mother “sinned” for being pregnant “out of wedlock”. The lesson? Realizing a mother loves her child, with or without marriage.

The further lesson? Bringing out to the open the cruel treatment mothers received in Ireland is not limited to Ireland. It has happened, and still does, all over the world. Babies are stolen and given up in forced adoptions all the time.

This movie, Philomena, quietly invades the viewer’s heart and mind. What are we doing? Why are we doing it? How can we stop it? What are the humane solutions to teen pregnancy? What are the solutions to religious indoctrination that persecuted Philomena way back pver 50 years ago ? How can we educate deeply religious people and institutions as to the damage their social control has had, and still does, on vulnerable mothers and their innocent children?

There has to be a better way. Punishment of mother because she got pregnant before marriage is not the way to go. Removing her child from her caused Philomena a lifetime of pain. Her son, like millions of stolen children, grew up believing his mother didn’t want him.

This should not happen.

Now that you’ve seen the movie, do something. Get busy. We need you to help put a stop to stories like this. Contact American Adoption Congress, Adoption Crossroads, as a start. There are other groups, such as Origins USA. Find a local organization that is set for social and political action.

This is a side note to Mannix Flynn: the questioning has begun. People are starting to ask why this happened. People are asking who should be held accountable for this tragedy.

 

Backing Up Mannix Flynn on the Meaning of the Movie “Philomena”

After seeing this movie — Philomena — I now know what the writer of this blog post means. He is dead on: script writing and movie making need to be followed up with social and political action. The writer and star of the movie needs to take this further into real action to put an end to this torture of mother and child, and the millions of women and infants and children torn apart by adoption. When will we stop seeing this as fodder for films, but additionally as an introduction to real social and political change? Get involved! This tragedy did not only happen in Ireland, but all over the world and in domestic America: the Catholic Church stealing babies from girls and women because of the notion of being “fallen women” — punishment for being pregnant outside of marriage. This is barbaric treatment of women and their babies.

Another Dead Mother as Proof that Adoption is God’s Will and Destiny

This post is written as a response to an article in The New York Times in which the writer addresses adoptive parents who think adoption is God’s Will, part of God’s Plan, and their adoptee came to them by destiny and that “it was meant to be”.

After reading the article and a few comments, I dug out a photo, and wanted to write, but left the house for other obligations.

Turns out, while I was away, kostvollmersblog on Land Of Gazillion Adoptees, wrote his own blog post, Dear People Who Believe Placing Children For Adoption and Adopting Children Into Your Families is Destiny and part of God’s Plan. He posted a photo of his mother’s grave.

He had the same idea as I did.

And so, I have been moved to write my own answer to those adoptive parents who believe that adoption is God’s Will and destiny.

Yes, it is God’s will that my mother died, too.

This is my mother:

Mother's Grave, taken 1974-9-1

It was God’s will and His Plan for my widowed father that he relinquish me, his fifth child, born in January of 1956, to be raised the only child of my adoptive parents. Yes, it is destiny that my mother was dying while pregnant with me and her only purpose was to stay alive long enough for me to be born. But she lingered for three more months.

I was two months premature, almost died at birth and was placed in an incubator for two months. Then, I was taken to my dying mother’s bedside where my godparents, a priest, and my mother witnessed the Holy Sacrament of Baptism. I was Baptized under my legal and religious name, recognized by Jesus Christ himself, while my father was at home with his four older children. Three weeks later, his wife, and our mother, died.

The priest said to our father, “The baby needs two parents.”  At the funeral parlor, a woman came up to my father and said, “I know someone who will take your baby.” So, my father, being the obedient Catholic that he was, took the priest’s words to heart. A woman who knew his deceased wife came to pay her respects. It must surely be God’s will, it must surely be destiny, that this woman appeared to my father at the exact moment that his newborn daughter needed a new family because, after all, the priest said that the baby needed two parents. And so it came to pass that my father handed me over to my pre-adoptive parents nearly one month after my mother’s death.

Praise the Lord, Alleluia!

My adoption became final one year and one week after my birth. Within the following three months, the government confiscated my birth certificate and placed it under seal, never to be opened, forever. Paperwork was sent 400 miles away from Surrogate’s Court in the city of my birth to the State Capital where all birth certificates created for NYS adoptees are made and filed. One year and three months after I was born, the Registrar of Vital Statistics set forth a new birth certificate in my  new adoptive name, naming my new parents as my parents by birth, naming my hospital of birth, the time of my birth, and stating that I was a “single” birth and not a twin or a triplet. The Registrar then signed his name and affixed the raised State seal to this new birth certificate certifying that the facts stated were true. He lied. He knowingly created a false government document. He committed fraud and perjury as lying under oath is a crime. But, it was God’s will. It was destiny. He just had to do it since it was God’s Plan.

Three and a half years later, when my adoptive parents wanted a new baptismal certificate for me in the name they had given me, they asked their lawyer to do something. He did. He requested that the parish that performed my baptism in 1956 issue a new, amended, baptismal certificate in my adoptive name so that I could go to Catholic Schools and receive the rest of the Catholic sacraments. The parish pastor created a new baptismal certificate that stated that I, in my legal adopted name, was baptized on the date of my actual baptism in 1956, he named my adoptive parents, named my godparents who were my deceased mother’s brother and his wife, and then issued the new baptismal certificate in May of 1959. This Pastor knowingly issued a falsified baptismal certificate, yet he, being a representative of God, committed a sin by signing his name in witness and testimony that all the information was true as taken from Official Records of that parish church.

Yes, it is all God’s will. It is all destiny. Praise the Lord! I am Saved!

No, it is manipulation, magical thinking, and delusion. My mother’s cancer was not a gift. My father’s grief was not God’s Plan. My living a life devoid of my four older siblings, and they of me, was not destiny. The Lord did not save me.

The woman who told my father she knew of “someone who will take your baby” was the sister of the man who became my adoptive father.

The priest who said that the baby needed two parents was not concerned that the other four children needed two parents, too, he was only thinking that the newborn needed more immediate care. The immediate care could have been found by some charitable ladies coming into our home while our father was at work so that his family could have been kept together.

The only ones to have benefited out of this arrangement were my adoptive parents, Surrogate Court, the Registrar, and the lawyers.

Oh yeah, I forgot. I was raised a spoiled brat, got everything I ever wanted, lived in a house in the suburbs, went to private schools, had a bedroom all to myself, and my Mom made me dresses. Got “everything I ever wanted”? Except for my siblings and my father, except for my name at birth and baptism, except for peace of mind.

Because of this, I left the Church many, many years ago.

Now, all of my parents are dead. I spent part of the day visiting their graves, all of them, because of this magical thinking.

As for the government…

Coercion of a Pregnant Woman to Give Up Her Baby to Adopting Parents

The following blog post — My Story at Living in the Shadows — is a very well written account of a mother’s loss of her child to adoption by coercion from church members (this is God’s will, etc) and a crisis pregnancy center (with a pregnancy counselor not even offering her help to keep her baby). This mother conceived following rape and she still wanted to keep her baby. This happened in 1997-1998 in New Zealand.

Think this doesn’t happen in the United States today? Think again. It does.

Not married mothers are talked into believing that they cannot parent their babies. This brainwashing continues in our modern society. It is discrimination against and abuse of a mother and her child for the benefit of adoption.

Read this post; it’s a must-read. Perhaps this will help one mother to keep her baby.

As the author states,

“There is no place in today’s society for adoption.”

~ ~ ~ 

~ ~ ~ Joan M Wheeler, BA, BSW, author of Forbidden Family, Trafford Publishing, Nov 2009.

There is No Rational Explanation for Coercion to Give up a Baby for Adoption

This blog entry is a response to reading Cedar’s blog post: Adoption Practice: “What is coercion?”

Many years ago I was the only adoptee rooming with a half dozen mothers-of-adoption-loss in a hotel room. They were surprised at my support for them, saying that adoptees were hostile to them because of being given away, but I wasn’t hostile to them.

Maybe it was because I before I entered into adoption awareness in 1974 I was introduced to feminist thought in 1971. I was 15 at the time. Womanhood came first and with that came the understanding of what it means to be able to carry life within and the struggle to gain independence from men. So, I understood womanhood long before I was thrown into shock at being found by siblings I was never supposed to know.

So, when I hear of women’s voices telling of what actually took place for them, I believe them.

It is a great burden to have reunion thrust upon an 18 year old who was raised in a sheltered life. My upbringing lead me into believing that sex before marriage was a sin, and was bad, that pregnant teens were, well, you know. That was what I was forced-fed in home and at school and at church. The cognitive dissonance really hit me in 1971 when Canada Jane came into my life. She was a beautiful traveler who had a perspective that was so unlike what I had been taught. Her freedom of self lifted me out of the holds of suppression. And she did it through poetry and photography.

So I am female first and adoptee second. And, the experience of being a real bastard is not mine so when I hear (rather heard in the past) adoptees speak of rage at being abandoned or given away, I did not experience abandonment in the same way. I knew my mother was not a teenage mother. She was not a “tramp”. She was not a seductress nor was she seduced. She was a wife and mother of four other children at the time of my conception, gestation and birth. My mother was nothing less than my mother in the full sense of the word. My father was nothing less than my father in the full sense of the word.

I knew these points instinctively at the moment I was found and heard my sister’s voice on the other end of the phone. When I met my father for the first time and developed a relationship with him, he was my father, he was not some sperm donor or a cad or a womanizer or a creep. He was my father.

My father was talked into giving me up for adoption. His experience in relinquishment is different from that of a mother. Mothers and pregnancy and giving birth are a different experience. But from his perspective as the husband of a pregnant wife, and the father of four children expecting the fifth in the mid 1950s, well, he was the breadwinner, the paycheck, the head of the household. It was his responsibility to take care of us all, to pay for us to provide for us. We were all dependent upon him.

When my father was faced with a pregnant wife who was violently ill, he was frightened. He did not think that the baby has to go, he thought that this was his family and he had to figure out how to fix it all. Illness made his wife go into pre-term labor. She delivered her infant two months too soon on the hospital bed before the nurses could get there. A few weeks before that, she was X-rayed to determine why she was so sick. A massive tumor filled her abdomen along side of the “fetus” who was guessed to be five months at that time. The tumor was real but the age of the “fetus” was wrong. When I was born the doctor determined I was 32 weeks of gestational age; a real feat of birth and survival in those primitive days of 1956.

I survived my mother’s cancer. I survived a premature birth. I survived six weeks in an incubator. My mother died. My father was stressed. Instead of help all he got was talk. The baby needs two parents. The baby? The baby was part of the whole family. The five children needed two parents, but the reality was that the mother died and the whole family needed help to cope with that loss. But no help was given. Just convince the father that the baby, alone, needed two parents. Make him believe he was not worthy to be the real father of his own daughter… make him believe that the only solution was to give her up permanently to another couple so she could lead a better life without him or her siblings.

I say that my widowed father was coerced into giving up his youngest child to adoption. And for that, he was crucified and his given-up daughter was both smothered in love by her adoptive parents and isolated by them. Stockholm syndrome is the better name for what I feel for my adoptive parents for I have those 18 years of a bliss or happiness of childhood gooiness. Yeah right. How do I justify the sad feelings I have for the father who died in 1982 when I see his picture playing with me as a one year old on the floor with the reality that he knowingly and willfully kept me apart from my own siblings for his sake of raising a child of his own? How do I justify the sad feelings I have to recall those happy times when Mom sewed those matching mother-daughter-doll dresses when she wanted me to grow up as she dreamed I would to fulfill her visions of the daughter she called her own? Did I have any rights or feelings? How did these two people justify within themselves what they were doing to me and to my siblings and to my father? How did they justify taking a child away from her family so they could call me their own?

Coercion is just that. There is no rational explanation.  

~ ~ ~ Joan M Wheeler, BA, BSW, author of Forbidden Family: A Half Orphan’s Account of Her Adoption, Reunion and Social Activism, Trafford Publishing, Nov 2009.

More Questions for Nancy Grace About Baby Gabriel Johnson

Nancy Grace’s spotlight on baby Gabriel Johnson still has not posted my three Comments. Not that I mind. It’s not my name that matters. What matters is the safety and life of this baby. What also matters is the pervasive attitude of adoption-is-superior-to-not-married-parents.

Sure, it is easy to point the finger of blame at Elizabeth Johnson, the baby’s mother. She is in trouble. How did she get to the point of taking drastic steps to prevent Gabriel’s father, Logan McQueary, from obtaining custody of his own son? What support systems were not in place for these parents and for their baby?

Even though Nancy Grace may not print my comments, I am. Questions beyond finding Gabriel Johnson alive or dead need to be asked. These questions currently are being banned from online airtime on Nancy Grace’s CNN article, Rpt: Potential Adoptive Couple may take 2nd Poly (January 12, 2010): 

Joan M Wheeler   January 13th, 2010 2:08 am ET
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

To Nancy Grace:

Adoptees and our first parents watch your show. It is biased and discriminatory for you to label Gabriel’s father as “the biological father”. A man is labeled that demeaning term only after his parental rights are terminated upon the Finalization of adoption. Did Tammi and Jack Smith formally adopt the baby? Have they been declared adoptive parents by a Court Order? If not, they have no business talking as if they were the ones violated. Gabriel’s father, Logan McQueary, desrves some respect. His son is missing.

 
Joan M Wheeler   January 13th, 2010 10:24 am ET
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

Did Elizabeth Johnson sign Relinquishment papers to formally relinquish her parental rights of Gabriel? Is there an attorney involved in a private adoption arrangement with the Smiths to adopt Gabriel? Or, is there an adoption agency involved? Until the Final Order of Adoption is signed by a Court Judge, no one has rights over baby Gabriel except his mother and his father. Do your homework, Nancy Grace.
Signed, Joan M Wheeler of http://forbiddenfamily.com.

 

There are still more questions. If Elizabeth Johnson signed away her parental rights by signing formal Relinquishment papers, she does not have parental rights. Gabriel may be in the custody of the State in which he was born. He may be a ward of the State. If Elizabeth Johnson did not sign any formal papers of Relinquishment, then any connection to the Smiths is purely social and not legal. The same goes for any couple Elizabeth Johnson says she gave her baby to in a park. Purely an emotional and desperate act on her part. Elizabeth’s text message to the baby boy’s father that she killed their son seems like a revenge tactic to me.

There should have been professional intervention way before Gabriel’s birth. This is so sad.