#flipthescript, adoption reform, adoption reunions, age differences between parents and children, amended birth certificates, being downright nasty, blood siblings being silenced, browbeating people over adoption, bullying, co-dependency, confrontations with Joan Wheeler, falsified birth certificates, family honor, Forbidden Family a book of lies, how not to be a social-worker, Identity Press, sins of omission and suppress of one's own misdeeds
#JoanWheeler has a new business & is asking for submissions! Here’s mine! #flipthescript
She sure wants to jump on the bandwagon of adoptee written stories and books! She had a book ONCE but it was libelous and therefore no longer! Wonder how many submissions she’ll get. How many people are going to be WILLING to have their DOCUMENTS AND NAMES printed in a book published by a KNOWN libelous writer? Still wondering how she will get anything published, printed and shipped out. What about NYS SSI? Will she keep them informed? For sure I’m keeping my eyes on this one.
On WordPress….Introducing Identity Press and Their Call For Submissions http://wp.me/p1v46a-10W
For our forthcoming book – FORBIDDEN AND CREATED IDENTITIES:
Adoptees Speak Out on Sealed and Falsified Birth Certificates
Identity Press will publish this book as a tool to educate the general public – especially policy makers – on the realities of the sealed and amended birth certificate problem in America and the world.
Seeking 20 to 40 Adoptees (Domestic-USA and Intercountry) who are interested in publishing their views on how sealed and falsified birth certificates have affected them – including being denied a US Passport. Essays will be accompanied with each contributing adoptee’s scanned images of their Original Birth Certificate (certified or uncertified) and their Amended Birth Certificate, and Final Order of Adoption, if available.
If you would like to participate in this project and you are an author, this will be good exposure.
Deadline for Submissions: April 22, 2015
Target Publication Date: October 2015 — Just in time for Adoption Awareness Month (November 2015), National Adoption Day and World Adoption Day.
Please email us via the Contact Form to begin correspondence and to receive Submission Guidelines.
Gert here… Well I used the ‘contact form’ that clearly had positions to
Indicate your position in adoption: Blood Sibling of Adoptee
and so I clicked on my ‘position’ and said that I have a submission ready for her new book.
but knowing that she’ll not take mine, I was not surprised when I got the following reply…
The Call for Submissions clearly states we are looking for adoptees to submit works. You are not an adoptee. We have changed our Contact Form to reflect that we are an adoptees-only publisher.
> Date: Tue, 24 Feb 2015 13:05:15 +0000
> To: firstname.lastname@example.org
> From: email@example.com
> Subject: from Identity-Press website
> Name: gertmcqueen
> Email: gertmcqueen@
> Website: https://gertmcqueen.wordpress.com
> Comment: I have a submission ready for inclusion in your new book!
> Indicate your position in adoption: Blood Sibling of Adoptee
> Time: February 24, 2015 at 1:05 pm
> Contact Form URL: http://identity-press.com/contact/
> Sent by a verified WordPress.com user.
SUCH AN IDIOT SHE IS….change the format so that a BLOOD SIBLING can not be heard! So I tried another POSITION (ORPHAN) (didn’t see the adoptee only thing) and got this reply…
You obviously do not understand. Identity Press will publish essays and books by adoptees. You are not an adoptee.
> Date: Mon, 2 Mar 2015 14:54:48 +0000
> To: firstname.lastname@example.org
> From: email@example.com
> Subject: from Identity-Press website
> Name: gertmcqueen
> Email: gertmcqueen@
> Website: https://gertmcqueen.wordpress.com
> Comment: I am now a orphan, was a half-orphan in 1956, here is link to my submission
> Indicate Your Position as an Adopted Person: Orphan
> Time: March 2, 2015 at 2:54 pm
> IP Address: 126.96.36.199
> Contact Form URL: http://identity-press.com/contact/
> Sent by a verified WordPress.com user.
And then I replied…
Comment: why do you have ‘orphan’ on your ‘position’ list if you will NOT accept a submission from an orphan? Did you read my submission?
Before I get to my submission here is an update
UPDATE APRIL 2016; as older posts are being seen I’m updating with links to my second blog and a Facebook page wherein I expose AGAIN the lies, fabrications and hate that Joan M Wheeler says about me and family. After the first book was pulled from publication by the publisher, May 2011, she has ‘self-published’ another ‘revised’ version. This woman has no shame no sense of family honor!
To continue…In any event here is my submission for all to see!
How my family has been affected by adoption; both positive and negative aspects.
by Gert McQueen
Preface: I take no official position for or against adoption. I am a birth mother, as per adoption terminology, as I relinquished my son in order to adopt him. I have two children. I am an adoptive mother, who provided my children with a father after their birth father didn’t want them; it was positive. I have a birth sibling, who was placed into adoption at the death of our mother; the aftermath of reunion was devastating, that was negative. I reject the notion that separation and adoption affects negatively on all family members, all the time. Adoption and the separation of a sibling did not adversely damage me or my family. The individual adoptee’s behavior, since reunion, is what caused devastating effects. It is always the individual, not the institution, who causes the problems; all politics are local.
Here is my family’s story.
In the winter of 1955/56, in a hospital bed, where she laid, to keep her pregnancy intact and where she was given the drug DES because she had a miscarriage a year before, a young wife/mother gave birth to her 5th child, a girl; there were 3 other girls and 1 boy, all very young. The husband/father had his elderly parents helping with the care of the four and the newborn was in the care of a maternal family relative. The husband/father knew that his wife was dying, of uterine cancer, since the surgery in January after she gave birth; she died March, 28, 1956.
Beginning in January 1956, before he became a widower, the father searched for a solution to keep all his children together. He proposed to a woman, he had known during the war, who had 2 fatherless children saying that he would help raise them, if she would help raise his 5 motherless children. She agreed, but not to the infant; the last born. They were married, 3 months after the death of the children’s mother, in June 1956.
Other family members knew of an older couple (10 years older than the natural parents) that were infertile and wanted a child. Adoption was the solution to provide for this infant, as the second wife refused to take the infant. The rest of the children stayed in family during the second marriage.
The infant was adopted quickly, removed from the relatives who had been giving physical care, to the adopting couple; for the day that the husband’s wife died, this last child also became ‘dead’, for that was the only psychological ‘means and way’ that allowed him to give up his child. Others in the mother’s family wanted to ADOPT two of his other children as well as the infant. But the father said NO. If he could NOT raise his child(ren) NO ONE in the extended family would! The only option he had for the infant was ADOPTION…out of sight, out of mind!
The remaining 4 children and 2 step-children’s lives were uprooted again in 1957 when the second wife developed mental illness and was hospitalized. Five of the six children were placed in various orphan/foster homes; the oldest of the woman’s stayed with his grandmother. Over several years the five children were returned to the father’s care. I, the oldest, only returned to my father’s care three months before graduation from high school at the age of 18. I was already pregnant with plans to marry right after graduation.
Life was hard at times and the 4 children always wondered about their baby sister. That child, which was adopted out of the family, was raised as an only spoiled child, that and more were to be learned, the hard way, in years to follow.
I, (G), am the eldest, had married, had 2 children of my own in 1965/66. My brother, 2 sisters and a step-brother, were living with our father; it was rough for them, they all had to be ‘grown-ups’ fast, to keep house and home; for Dad had to work two jobs. Early 1970’s my father met a woman with 2 girls, the youngest ‘fall in love’ with my father. Dad married again, we all were happy for this. In time Dad ‘adopted’ his step-daughter. Yes, he gave away one and then later adopted another. Does anyone know what life will bring them?
In 1974, we four siblings decided, after researching it, that yes, siblings can make contact, and we did when she was 18, the legal age in NY State. We had known, through family members, who knew who adopted our sister and what her name was. We collectively made the decision that we would ‘make contact’. This, as it turned out, was the biggest mistake of our collective lives! For, our sister may have our genes, but she was not raised with us and we did not share any common history. She ‘inherited’, unfortunately, many negative views and behaviors from the adopted parents as well as some mental imbalances that could have been from genes or from the adopted parents. Who knows what the fates decide for anyone!
We were ‘reunited’ in 1974. Right from the get-go there were signs, warnings and eruptions, which quickly turned extremely damaging, destructive and deadly. It would be years before the birth family would be able to get any kind of real sense of the life of our sister had, in adoption. It seemed that under the surface, there had to have been some abuse which prevented this 18 year old to mature reasonably and sanely. According to her, it’s always someone else’s fault; whatever ‘it’ is and adoption ‘made her this way’.
We birth siblings are NOT responsible for adoption circumstances nor should we pay the price, over decades and still at this moment, for that person’s hatred and rage over being adopted. Adoption in itself is not the problem; it’s the individual’s reaction and mindset that is the problem. An individual MUST take responsibility for their own actions; I do, and I expect my birth sibling, who was placed into adoption, to do the same.
Instead, I and every member of the birth family have had nothing but severe traumas done to us by this ADOPTEE, because she hates adoption. This adoptee believes that adoption is an evil that must be abolished and that we siblings have suffered great damage to OUR mental health and life circumstances, because of HER adoption. This is faulty logic at best; at worst it is the core cause as to why the birth siblings have taken action against this ONE angry, hate-filled adoptee, who has harmed family in the worst form of ways; character assassinations and insults that is nothing but kin-killing!
Now we have to ‘fast-forward’ to November 2009, for the rest of the story to make any sense. Prior to 2009, and after long years, depending on the family individual, anywhere from 5 to 30 years, of NOT having this sibling/adoptee, in our lives, anywhere, the adoptee published a book! It was called, Forbidden Family, a half orphan’s account of her adoption, reunion and social activism, published by Trafford Publications, with the forward by Prof Dr Rene Hoksbergen of the Netherlands. This person, Hoksbergen, was not professional enough in checking out this adoptee’s story, he just wrote what he was told was the story and in the end did a grave disservice to the birth family and the adoptee as well.
The publication of this book was a ‘print-ready’ package deal which meant; it was the cheapest package the author could afford. The publishing house NEVER read the manuscript and therefore was not aware of the libelous material and raging hate within the pages of this book. Needless to say the entire birth family was taken by surprise and as we read it, we became very angry!
Our father said, ‘it’s garbage, throw it away, she is mentally unsound’. Two of my sisters created two blogs, in late 2009. I published my posts on one of them before getting my own blog in 2011. It took me a year of reading and writing about the lies in the book before I called the publisher, with our complaints about the lies, misrepresentation and fabrications. We provided documented evidence, of the lies, to the publisher. In May of 2011 the book was pulled, by the publisher, and no longer can be printed. The book may appear, say on Amazon, but those sites are automated, they never take books off; the book will never be reprinted.
Since 2009, we have been refuting the lies and reclaiming the truth and honor of ourselves and family on our blogs and on internet forums where this adoptee seeks after and attacks pro-adoption individuals. This adoptee, this sister, has continued to spread lies, created a blog with intent to continue her slander upon our reputations, enlist other adoptees to attack us, had a boyfriend, who is a stranger to us, created a blog in which he insults, demeans, bullies and intimidates us, birth siblings, because he ‘says’ we are preventing the adoptee from speaking ‘her truth’. Why? Because we had the book pulled, we counter her lies on the internet, because we tell our stories and because we exist to discount the adoptee’s views!
In a somewhat outline format, here are some of the severe transgressions that this adoptee has done to each birth sibling and our family and the lies/misrepresentation she states. I use her initials JW, for the adoptee, for clarity sake in the narrative.
Late 70’s when my father adopted his step-daughter, JW caused great distress in his household and with his wife, to whom JW argued that she was ‘giving away’ her child ‘into adoption’ and that it was wrong.
*To clarify the process of adopting one’s own child with a husband that is not the parent, it must be understood that there are legitimate ‘legal fictions’. In the adoption papers, the first three pieces of paper are; a) said natural mother signs giving said child up to adoption, b) said natural mother becomes foster/guardian of said child given up into adoption, c) said natural mother becomes the adoptive mother of said child that was given up into adoption. The said child NEVER left the mother!
In the book JW grossed over all the distress, arguments and tension that she created and instead stated that everyone misunderstood her! She further neglects to inform people of the legal ‘legal fiction’ of adoption papers and the process of adoption and the need to change names and to keep things legal. This adoptee calls these, laws and ways of keeping vital statics, lies and fraud that government and church commit. There are laws of the land that must be obeyed, except if you are an adoptee who is angry. Laws can be changed, but that does not happen by slander, libel, browbeating and harassing people that do adopt.
In 1980, before my marriage to second husband, JW wanted a sexual experience with both of us, it happened once, when she asked again, we said no. This is important to be told here because it is something that JW believes she has as a ‘secret’ that I’m ashamed of, that I don’t want told and that she can blackmail me with, so I will stop refuting her lies. I’m certainly not the first person who had a three-some, even with a sister. JW even has her boy-friend intimidating me, on his hate blog, with ‘if you were not ashamed of your actions’. I cannot be held hostage to a ‘threat’ of something I am ashamed of…I just spoke of the incident.
Because my husband and I said no to her, JW then began telling my minor children that they did not have to listen to me. She told my 14 year old daughter that it was okay to date outside of our race; which was a violation of ‘my’ family’s core values. JW had no right to alienate my children from me and my parental values. In 1980 my husband and I ADOPTED one of my children, my son; my daughter did not want adoption (they were 15 and 16). JW said I was an unfit mother and was causing great harm to my son, by adopting him. This was said in my kitchen in front of my children. I had to remove her from my home. (*See the above explanation of the legal fiction and how it works.) We told her to butt out of our lives and refused her contact with our children. JW retaliated by calling two separate child abuse reports against us; they were proved false and expunged. In 1981, I ‘divorced’ her and my family moved out of that city. It would be another 10 years before I saw her again.
In the book, she lies and states that I got her drunk, stoned and sexually molested her, that my husband was abusing my children, and that our home life was not a good one. She glossed over all the abuse reports and the aftermath with statements that I (G) was unwilling to look at my own misconduct and I blame it all on her! In addition, JW said that over 3 decades I and my other sisters harassed and stalked her.
Truth is, my contacts with JW, after 1982, were a brief afternoon ‘visit’ with family in 1992 (I was willing to let by-gones be by-gones) but within a few hours after the ‘visit’, JW stated many falsehoods about my religious beliefs and mental health to my father. I then continued with my no contact ‘divorce’. I received a letter she wrote in 1998 where she wanted to ‘get in touch’ with me, when I called she screamed at me and hung up. I replied with a letter of my own telling her to stay away. Somewhere in 2003 or 05, I called again, to ‘bury the hatchet’, (I’m getting older, would like to put this to rest) we talked, she said she ‘loved’ me, but it wasn’t until the book was published did I see just how much she loved me. In the book she said that last phone call was because I was ‘fishing for information’.
And so after JW’s interference in the lives of my children and marriage I had a total of 4 contacts with her in 30 years; hardly any stalking. In the book she has me writing letters, making phone calls, harassing her aged adoptive mother. In the book she attacks and mocks my religion, putting words in my and other people’s mouths and fabricates any manner of untrue stories to paint me as a horrible, dangerous religious nutcase that will not leave her alone, for decades.
One of us sisters, K, lives in England since the 70s. JW went to England and proceeded to ingratiated herself upon the birth sister, who had limited space/funds, and in general made herself a pest to K’s friends later by writing and phoning them continually. No one wanted JW around and told K to make sure JW did not write or phone, causing K great distress.
In 1990, JW wrote and published, in England, a short story called The Secret is Out, in which JW had published our real names. K in England wrote to the editor of this publication to complain about the lack of privacy. She then asked JW to return personal property that she had taken back to the States. JW was given monies for the transactions but did not send the goods. When K demanded the return of her goods, JW enlisted the help of Prof Dr Rene Hoksbergen of the Netherlands to write to K in England. In his intimidating letter, my sister K was taken to ‘task’ for not ‘understanding’ the adopted sister, that she does not have funds, etc. and on and on. K wrote to this interloper saying that JW is trying to extort money from her for her own goods. JW was given enough money to do the task but told the Prof that it would be hundreds more to do so. Our father eventually got the goods from JW, returned them to K himself for less money that was given to JW in the first place.
In the book, these episodes are described in a very demeaning fashion, which portrays and slanders a woman who has lived in another country for decades and has many professional distinctions. In the book, JW says nothing about her own lack of responsibility, or, the involvement of Prof Hoksbergen in the private life of our sister, nor the article that publishes our real names. In the book, JW does reference the article, buried in a footnote, which could still be used to access our full names. In the book JW plainly states our family’s heritage names, places of residences and more, contrary to the publisher’s own guidelines, to prevent libel, which also contributed to their decision to pull the book…breach of contract, on the author’s side.
Our brother, who died a few years ago, lived in Arizona, had little to no connect with us, did not like to hear, from JW, the constant negatives she spoke about family members. He stayed neutral. He would not hear negatives about JW from others. He stayed neutral. He did refuse to answer a letter she wrote to him because she wrote nasty things about his other sisters.
In the book JW portrays our brother and his life as one of ‘wealth’, kindness and he being better than the sisters, but that he was ‘turned’ away from her, by all the negative, mean things we sisters told him about her. JW had NOTHING on our brother, because he stayed neutral and out of her reach. So she was reduced to blaming our brother’s lack of contact with her as the ‘three sister’s fault’.
As terrible as these episodes are, of things that we have endured with JW, the sister who had the worst deal, of pain and anguish is our sister R, who lives in the same city as JW. R and JW are closest in age and space/place. In the early years of reunion the two did a lot of things together. R knows JW better than most, for R spent decades dealing with her, giving to her and forgiving her, over and over. The dirty deeds that JW did to R, are numerous, here are only some episodes:
Stealing goods and monies, attempting to break up R’s relationship with her fiancé/husband, writing letters to various agencies/ persons of authority in local government naming R, telling all private matters, accusing R of harassments, taking her to court, getting an order of protection. Calling R’s place of employment, daily, for months on end, to get her fired, because, JW believed that R committed computer fraud even after R’s employment investigated and cleared R, JW was SURE that R did it, and wrote letter after letter and sent copies to R to prove that JW was going to get R.
In the book, JW portrays R as far less than the honorable person that R is; a citizen in good standing with a job history of 40 years at the same hospital. JW paints her in ‘white-trash’ terms of attitude and behavior with mocking words and created/fabricated stories of events that never happened. In print JW states that R has an ‘arrest record’; she does not. JW makes conditions/situations to be longer or shorter than reality, depending on how she wishes to ‘get at’ R. JW mocks R’s infertility and her miscarriage, being insensitive to R’s, or anyone’s feelings of loss, portraying people as ‘not understanding JW’s wealth of knowledge on the subjects’.
In 1998, JW wrote a letter to my adult daughter asking her to commit a crime. She wanted my daughter, who worked in an insurance agency, to access JW’s daughter’s medical claims so JW could proceed with a potential mal-practice upon doctors. My daughter refused. In the book, nothing is said of this deed.
And of course, our father is not immune to the dirty deeds and words of JW. Right up to just before the book was published, JW tried to con my father into paying for her car repairs and the publication of the book. She can, give face to face niceness, politeness and other social nods, but once you disagree with her, she takes off the gloves and goes after you, any way she can. In other words, to my father’s face, she was sweetness, but when she begins to argue with him, he showed her the door (on three separate times) and then JW condemns him to others and in print.
In the book she describes him in very extreme negative terms, condemns him as being over-bearing, authoritative, insensitive, and more, throughout a 30 year reunion. JW is very critical of anyone who does not see things her way, including her father. She describes how our father ‘insulted’ her, by telling her the truth of an ordinary situation, that of car ownership. My dad did not own JW’s car, it is her responsibility, not his and if she expected him to pay for her car repairs he doesn’t need her help. JW volunteered to help him get to appointments. If one volunteers to do something, one does not get to make the rules, if you don’t like the rules don’t volunteer.
Just before publication of this book of lies, which my father called garbage (he had read a couple of chapters) he told JW that ‘it was best that we don’t have contact anymore’, that her arguments, upset him and his wife; they were in their 80’s and didn’t need the stress. My father then ‘removed’ JW’s name OFF his prepared obit; he was going to acknowledge her but then withdrew it because of her behavior and what he saw of the book. The family did not know about this change until he died, in 2011. The family gave JW a private time to come to the viewing, when family was not there; no one wanted to see her or be in her presence. When JW went to the viewing, the first thing she did was to yell at the funeral home employees saying that they made a mistake in the obit; leaving her name off. JW then placed a private obit listing, in the newspaper, naming only herself as his child.
The reasons that my father was insulted were because in the book chapters that he read, and which ended up in the published book, were JW’s insults about my father’s heritage and religion. In the book, her telling of episodes, with my father, she again paints a picture of being ‘misunderstood’ when in actually she was attempting to intimidate him (read elder abuse). JW further has lots to tell, in the book, about what the adoptive mother had to say; ‘we were HIS babysitter for 18 years, HE gained over the years, where we lost, now HE can take care of us’. And this is from a REUNITED DAUGHTER! This is how JW describes, in print, the father who gave her life and the adoptive mother who raised her for decades, whose house JW still lives in! This is how you honor your parents…by lies, slander and gross misrepresentations.
JW details, in the book, her own life of derangements and delusions, how she burnt, in front of her children, all their childhood pictures because JW was upset over being adopted. She tells of horrible arguments with the adoptive parents. The book is 642 pages of pure mental derangements, lies, fabrications, slander and libel. And its purpose is what; to help adoption reform? No, its purpose is for the author to get back at everyone in her life. It’s a hate-manifesto.
This adoptee would not accept my divorce from her, in 1980. She repeatedly made trouble for me and every member of the birth family. Then she wrote a libelous book. She violated the peace. She violated the sacred bond of blood. Today she enlists others to harm the family, to speak for her; so she can claim no knowledge. She is evil. Because she will not stop, she now has me in her life; to death do we part. I shall counter her lies, everywhere I find them.
Adoption is not an evil that needs to be abolished. People are people; we are all not perfect. When one individual is so consumed with hate and rage, to destroy FAMILY, time and time again, it is that individual that is evil! End of my story.
Addendum: I feel it important to give some information relating to the religious backgrounds of both birth and adoptive family and to clarify my ‘opinion’ as to whether JW was abused as a child or not.
Our birth families, mother and father, were generational Roman Catholic, as were the adoptive families’ people, who adopted my sister JW. In our birth family; when my father, who was a widower twice, married the 3rd time, she was from the Greek Orthodox Church. The Catholic Church would NOT marry them because she was a divorced person. My father changed to Greek Orthodox, was very happy and active in that church. My father always allowed his children their own views on religion and any other topic/issue.
My deceased brother married Catholic staying as such with his wife and raised his son as Catholic, but, in private he was attuned to the ancestral Gods of Northwestern Europe (the Gods of the Norse) and was buried in both traditions.
I myself left any all forms of Christianity when the church would not (1) accept that I needed birth control and (2) when they didn’t recognize my divorce. My first marriage was abusive and there was another child, outside of our marriage, that ‘needed’ to be legitimized, by marriage, if the father was divorced. In my second marriage, religion was no issue; his families were generic ‘Protestants’.
I was agnostic until I found my ancestral Gods of Northwestern Europe as they were known and loved in England (the Angles, Saxons and Jutes, brought their gods into the island with them) and call myself a Heathen. I also study and practice many aspects of Buddhism and Hinduism and have affiliations with certain gods/goddesses in those traditions. I allowed my children from pre-teen years to explore and choice their own religious paths. My son is Catholic. My daughter is Pagan, Wiccan.
My sister R, is Pagan, Wiccan, and has a great love for certain Middle Eastern cultural gods and traditions as she was once married to someone from that culture. My sister K, converted to Reformed Judaism, is very active and happy in that.
JW’s, the adoptee, is very hostile to any form of religion. She claims to be a Unitarian but, in my opinion, because of her constant mockery and insults to other’s religions, she hasn’t a clue of or about Unitarian philosophies. She also claims to be a ‘secular humanist’ and an atheist. Apparently, the adoptive parents were not open to anything outside their own Roman Catholic beliefs. They were 10 years older than our parents and that had obvious limitations as to how they could ‘handle’ a child’s questions of the world, religion, science. I have the sense that that family was not opened minded and were very rigid.
As far as ‘abuse’ in JW’s childhood, no, we have no basis for knowing anything concrete. We get the ‘sense’ that it must have happened, because over the years, some of JW’s behaviors and attitudes are typical of those that have been abused; she does not like ‘hands raised toward her’. In her own words she describes many incidents that could have been abuse. She states often that she has mental issues that have prevented her from working and is on permanent disability.
In the book she describes being able to ‘get an adoptive uncle’ who was very negative towards her. The adoptive father was a closet alcoholic, a severe hoarder, and was intimidated by the overbearing wife and daughter. The adoptive mother was also alcoholic, very dominating and possessive. It was common for mother and daughter to yell and scream constantly at each other. JW did the same to her own children. It is my opinion that once JW had proof of her birth family, that gave her, in essence, a weapon, called adoption, to use over the heads and hearts of the adoptive parents and family, for the abuse she ‘suffered’ before age 18. End of part one
As a member of the real ‘forbidden family’ I answer 10 interview questions related to my article ‘how adoption affected my family’
by Gert McQueen
Joan Wheeler is an adoptee and my birth sibling. She’s the adopted one. I’m part of the forbidden family; the family that SHE was forbidden to know. Such is the way of adoption; not all adoptions are equal and the same. When Joan wrote a libelous book, called Forbidden Family, in 2009, she opened herself, and that book, to full disclosure! And so it goes. Joan Wheeler is not the only one that can write about adoption!
- Based on your experiences with re-uniting with your sister who was adopted, do you think this happens a lot? The resentment and bitterness that comes from being adopted and her other siblings not being?
1) Of course I am only speaking for myself. But, from my readings of other adoptees I’ve come to the conclusion that there are perhaps 3 major types of adoptees, with degrees within each type. Each type then reacts with varying degrees of resentment and bitterness.
Type one, are pretty much like the rest of humanity (on or about any topic) mainly indifferent. So if an adoptee is this type they are ‘indifferent’ to the status of ‘being adopted’. They accept what life has given them, have learned to accept the good and bad and try to have as good a life as possible.
Type two, have in general a more positive attitude towards life, have a strong spiritual and moral compass, view their personal circumstances as ‘learning opportunities’. If an adoptee is this type, they have learned to live comfortably with ‘being adopted’.
Type three, have in general a negative attitude that can ran the gamut from low/mild to high/hate/rage. It appears that they can’t make, or maintain, a spiritual/moral compass to over-ride the base-negative aspects of human emotions and worldview. They have difficulty with or never have learned to live happily, comfortably in any situation and in the extreme can be pathological, in their belief systems and behavior, about ‘being adopted’. This type of adoptee sees themselves as a victim and finds any example or source to justify their victimhood and point the finger at others or the system.
I do believe that there is a lot of resentment and bitterness when an adoptee cannot rectify, mentally/emotionally, the circumstances for their being placed into adoption. Upon being ‘found’, or to ‘know’ of the birth-family, it seems that the ‘grass was greener on the other side’ type of resentment surfaces. If there is little to no moral compass the bitterness will turn on, to everyone, by the adoptee; no one wins, everyone loses.
My sister, the one placed into adoption, does not accept the reality of the circumstance of her placement into adoption. She repeats the falsehood that father was ‘coerced’ into giving her up when mother died; to an infertile couple who ‘just wanted a baby’. The truth is that there was no one to help him raise her. Father’s second wife, whom he had an arranged marriage agreement with while his wife was dying, refused to take and raise the infant. There were six other children to consider. The seventh was removed quickly; out of sight, out of mind. In addition, about 5 years into the reunion, father ‘adopted’ a step-daughter. I’m sure that twist of fate caused more resentment and bitterness. She feels the same resentment towards the infertile couple (her adoptive parents); if they weren’t infertile she wouldn’t have been adopted by THEM.
- You mentioned believing she may have been abused by her adoptive parents. Do you have any evidence/did you ever ask about this?
2) I have never asked about whether there was any abuse, in my adopted-out sister’s life. It was only after she had published a hate book, since pulled via publisher for the libelous contents, and speaking with other family members that had more years of contact with her that I became aware of the extent of her anger and wondered where it came from. I base my assumption, of likely child abuse, either by adoptive parents or someone in that family via my adopted-out sister’s own verbal and written accounts and her actual reactions over the years.
She is quick to condemn anyone, of and over, any imagined transgression that does not fit into her own worldview. She is quick to report false child abuse upon others in various degrees. She did it twice to me, once when I told her to butt out of my own parent/child relationships and my decision to ‘adopt’ and again in retaliation for me denying her something and moving my family out of the area and my daughter’s ‘run-away’ episode.
In her own documentation and repeating her narratives she details rages with the adoptive mother, an adoptive uncle and of her own behavior towards her children. These episodes, which she clearly has no problem relating, indicate that she was raised with anger and fear. Upon becoming aware of her birth family and details of her adoption, she used that knowledge as a weapon to go after the adoptive parents, mostly the mother. She details many of her rages against her own children seemingly without realizing that she is describing her own child abuse to and on her children! She details how, during pregnancy and right after birth of her children how she felt ‘sexually’ towards them. She taught her children about adoption this way…you are a mommy, then you fall down and die, then you get up and go over to the other side of the room and pick up someone else’s doll (baby) and become the adoptive mommy.
In her ‘studying’, of adoption issues and related psychological aspects, she has become a psychological hypochondriac, using these against both adoptive and birth families. As a couple of examples; she accuses me, in print, of using drugs and alcohol to sexually abuse her upon first being united; as a ‘means of getting back to mommy’! She wanted, and initiated, a sexual three-some with myself and husband. It happened once and when we refused any further activity she began her campaign against our parenting and called child abuse upon us. She has a fixation on child sexual abuse.
A birth family member had seen her shake violently with fear when she thought she was going to be ‘hit’ by a boyfriend. Her own documenting of her excessive drinking and sexual activities, her many abusive boyfriends, how she ‘curled into a fetal position afraid to move’ and then afraid to end the relationship; all red flags that she was physically and sexually abused, before the birth family knew her.
She has never spoken to members of the birth family about her childhood; we know nothing about her childhood, only her teen years. She doesn’t even discuss it much in her book; there is little to nothing about her childhood. When a birth family member asked specific questions about her early childhood she dodged the questions and brought the topic back to the birth family’s childhood of which she is fascinated and jealous of.
She has put in print and on a web site a blackmail attempt to us stating that each one of her sisters have some ‘secret’ we are afraid she will expose. Clearly, there is some kind of transference from HER childhood upon us birth sisters because we REFUTE her lies and book.
- What do you think drives someone to give a child up for adoption – would you ever give up a child if you needed to for example?
3) There are many reasons to give up a child into adoption; most of them are very valid! While there are certainly many unsavory, illegal types of activities that place children in adoption, domestic and foreign, I cannot speak of them, for the same reason I can’t speak of say…drug or prostitution traffic; totally out of my range of concern or influence.
I learned a long time ago to ‘never to say never cause you never know until the time comes’. I can speak about my own personal opinions and actions. In 1965, as an 18 year old high school senior, Catholic, being pregnant would have been reason to expel me from school, even in the public school I attended. I was pregnant with 2 months to go till graduation. I married in July. Right up to the last second, the priest said I could ‘still give up my baby into adoption’. The reason was because I was marrying a non-Catholic. I said no, we both wanted the child and marriage. We had two children before the marriage failed, but we WANTED our children, then. It was many years later that my children’s father wanted me to ‘get those kids adopted so I don’t have to pay the child support’. My fiancé at the time wanted to adopt my children, but he DIED. Years later another man married me and did ADOPT one of my two children. My children were over the age of 14 by that time and HAD to give their own permission to be adopted. My daughter, age 15, was in the midst of the usual teenage ‘identity crisis’ and chose no adoption. Whether legally or not both my children were ADOPTED.
It was financial reasons and lack of responsibility for the father of my children to want to have them adopted. It was for love of child and family that my children would have been adopted earlier, if not for death. It was also for love and family that my children were adopted.
The death of my mother was the main reason for the placement of her last child, my sister, into adoption. When my father learned that his wife was dying, after giving birth to his fifth child, he arranged a marriage of convenience to provide for his/her children; a total of 7 children. But the infant was refused by the second wife; hence the reason that adoption was the only option available. Guardianship, with other family members, was not an acceptable alternative. If my father could not raise his last child NO other family member would raise her. His reason for giving up one of his children was out of love and necessity to provide for the majority of the children. The only way that he could psychologically ‘give up’ his child was to make her ‘dead’ in his mind and heart; which he did when his wife died. We know this for it is recorded in my mother’s family Bible, in my father’s hand. The last child is listed as dead, the same day the mother died.
- Obviously, adoptions do go wrong, and meeting with birth parents later on in life can be upsetting – do you think most children should meet their birth parents/ how do you think this should be approached if they do?
4) Its normal and natural for anyone to want to know their family and be ‘accepted’. People come from different maturity levels at different ages and have many varied levels of knowing and understanding of personal boundaries and behaviors. But just because people come from the same gene pool does not mean that they have the same family beliefs and sense of what is acceptable in the birth family. Behavior that was acceptable in the adopted family will not always work when applied to the birth family. There is absolutely no way that anyone can know, with certainly, that if and when, parent and child met, that it is beneficial or not. Not everyone is capable of kindness and so meeting birth parents could go from good to bad.
Speaking from personal experience; I do not believe that any adoption should take place where ANYONE in the birth family and adoptive family know each other. This occurred in my family, various birth and adoptive family members knew each other and the birth identity of the adopted child and her family. Facts of who, and where my sister was, were given to me when I was about 16. When we birth siblings knew our adopted-out sister was 18, we were told, via an adoption agency and a lawyer, that siblings can make ‘contact’ and we did. Our reasons were based on love and wanting her but our own levels of comprehension of her and adoptive family was not mature. Upon being found, at 18, the adoptee was not mature to handle it and the adopted family erupted in anger, fear and hate for all.
I would NOT recommend for anyone in the birth family to look for the adopted-out member; you don’t know what you will find. If the adoptee finds the birth family I would recommend being very careful, again, you don’t know what you will find. In our birth family, everyone, tried and tried to accept her back but her behaviors were always a source of tension at best and dangerous at worst. Each immediate birth family member had grave difficulties with the united-adoptee, some more than others, and overtime each, including the parent, wanted nothing more to do with the adoptee. Over the 40 years since reunion, things that were done, by the adoptee to birth family members, could have been forgotten about except that the adoptee’s way of dealing with being adopted and then being rejected was to write a scandalous libelous hate manifesto against everyone in birth and adoptive families. Needless to say that was not a good thing to have done.
I do believe that adoptees should have available to them, their medical history from their genetic parents. I also believe that under optimal circumstances that they should be able to have the names of their parents. By optimal I mean, as a suggestion, a ‘clearing house’ where requests can be submitted and then a ‘committee’ review to determine whether both parties want the contact and then a social-work assessment to see if both parties are mentally stable enough for the contact. From my experience we did not made contact with our birth sibling ,we made contact with a person who was raised with abuse, fear, hate and anger who then developed major disturbing behavior patterns, who displays several mental illness traits and who has harmed the birth family and the adoptive family severely.
- What are your views on domestic vs intercountry adoption?
5) I believe that we should take care of our own first, whether that is our own family, community or nation. In the US we have more than enough people/children that need help before going elsewhere. Feed, house, give child care, education, adopt, give medical care, whatever, to the population of the United States before going anywhere else.
- Do you have people have even more problems with intercountry adoption/meeting birth parents etc?
6) There are many tragic circumstances in the ‘global’ world; far too many for my one brain to handle. But I would guess that it would be far more difficult, with many unseen problems, for inter-country adoption and reuniting with parents. One should just not adopt outside of one’s homeland.
- Can you just describe in short how adoption itself has affected your family and yourself – emotions, how has it changed you, what you didn’t expect, what you have learnt from it.
7) The death of my mother was tragic in itself. Five children, 3 months to 9 years, lost not only a mother, but also a sister who was placed into adoption out of necessity. I was the oldest and had more memories of this missing sister. Then within a year, we also lost a step-mother, due to illness. Four siblings plus a stepbrother were placed in orphan and foster homes, separated from our father from anywhere between a couple of years to 18 years. As siblings, all we wanted was to have our sister in our lives. Our father, the rest of the family, including another step-mother and step-siblings, willing, lovingly and openly received the adopted-out family member back into our lives and hearts; but we all were betrayed.
None of us ever expected to have such disturbing and dangerous things done to us, not once (when the acts against each of us were committed) but twice (with the publication of the libelous book). Contacting her was the worst mistake of our collective lives! In the years since we three birth siblings have refuted and attempted to restore our personal and family reputations, we have had to fight continuous nasty battles with several ‘militant’ angry adoptees, of which, seem to consider ANYONE who adopts or is pro-adoption to be an enemy. I am sickened and appalled at the level of hate some adoptees have towards adoption. Perhaps my adopted-out sister had a ‘bad’ gene, but mostly likely it was because she was raised in an abusive, hate-filled and fear based home.
On the other hand, the adoption of my own child, with my second husband, was a wonderful thing. My children were in their teens, had a ‘relationship’ with their birth father and it was their choice to be or not to be adopted. But, that adoption was violated by my adopted-out sister. Her actions of interfering in my parental rights cause a deep rip in the fabric of my marriage and relationships with my children, who since hate their ‘aunt’. The slander that has been and still is being said about me, my marriage, my children, my siblings, my parents, my entire life, is devastating! Other siblings have had to deal with more slander (letters written to all manner of people), friends being harassed, and interlopers intimidating them, stealing, false reports to employers and many other nasty deeds.
What I’ve learned is…don’t open the box! Leave it alone! If someone was adopted out of your family leave it be; they were not raised like you, don’t have ‘history’ with you and could be dangerous to you. Don’t go looking yourself. If they come and find you, keep your distance.
- Are you in contact at all with her now? Does this make you angry/sad?
8) No, I am not in physical contact with her, since 1981. When she interfered into my parental rights, I tried to get ‘mediation’ (she denied cooperation). I ‘divorced’ her in 1982. I saw her at a brief family visit in 1992 (she proceeded to slander and condemn me within hours of visit. I maintained the divorce). In 1998 I wrote her a ‘get lost’ letter after I received a letter from her wherein she ‘wanted to talk with me’. When I did phone her she screamed at me and hung up. The letter was just another way for her to cause trouble for me with other people. In 2005, after my brother died and my father was ill, I wanted to close the negative stuff between us and had one short phone conversation with her, wherein she told me she ‘loved me’. But, as with all other ‘contacts’ she fabricated things, libeled me and others, in a book published 2009. At one point, the visit in 1992, I was willing and able to ‘forgive’. But her repeated attacks upon me and other family members and the publication of the libelous book was the end of any positive feelings. I’m not so much angered as I am horrified that a person would do things that she does and that she has no feelings or concerns about the lives of countless family members, both adoptive and birth.
- What do you think adopters do for an adoption to be successful..?
9) LOVE the child! Treat them with respect and dignity as any one ought to with their children.
- Finally – can I have your age, occupation and which state you live in/location.
10) I am 68 years old, retired from a 37 year career as a Certified Dental Assistant, in private and federal employment. I live in Upstate New York, in a small village.