Reading Reflection

In the Chapter I “Transracial and Open Adoption: New Forms of Family Relationships” from the book “Making Babies, Making Familise” Mary Lyndon Shanley dwells on different types of adoption. She analyses and classifies those types, gives explanation why this or that type of adoption was preferable in different periods from historical point of view. The author differentiates between “as if”-adoptive families (traditional policy: adoptive families resemble biological families) and transracial adoptive families (it can be seen from the appearance that there is no blood relation between parents and the child).

Shanley also points out other challenges to the “as if” model. They are unsealed records and open adoption (i.e. blended families and lesbian and gay families). The author analyses pros and cons of unsealed records and to my opinion does not arrive at any firm decision on what is right – to hide the information about adoption or make it possible for the grown-up adoptees to learn the information about their origin. Shanley analyses the difference between “as if” adoptive families and transracial adoptive families, and though she mentions that “both unsealed records and transracial adoption allow greater room for expression of the values of liberty, equality, relationship, and care in the functioning of families” (Shanley, 2001), I think that the child is the most important in every case.

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No matter how many discussions were led and will be led on the topic, the main point we are to consider – the good for the child. To my opinion the best option for the child is “as if” type of adoptive families. The brain of the child is too weak to embrace and understand the situation. The children can comprehend the information in the wrong way and it can be the moral trauma for the whole life.