Thursday, January 07, 2010

You just never know

I have been asked more than once, by well intentioned people, that wouldn't it have been better for TM to have stayed in Vietnam. He was living with foster parents who loved and adored him and he considered them his parents. They were comfortable according to Vietnamese standards and TM was thriving. Separating from his foster parents and attaching to us was very difficult and some thought it was an unnecessary trauma to put him through. On some level, I have to admit, I sometimes wondered the same thing. Were we doing the very best thing for TM?

I'm sad to say I now have my answer. My standard response to such questions was, that while he appeared to be in a stable environment, he was still a ward of the state and there was no guarantee that he would be able to stay there the length of his growing up years. I had no idea how these words would be fulfilled. Because of the moratorium on adoptions to the US from Vietnam, the VN agency which works in tandem with our US agency can no longer support the orphanage they were working with in Vietnam. Without this support the government decided to close the orphanage. As of December 31, all of the children were moved out of the center, some to less than stellar situations. Not only were the children living in the actual facility affected, but those in foster care were removed and either placed back into family situations or into another care facility. It breaks my heart. The only bright spot is that an NGO working in Vietnam, the GVN Foundation, which has worked closely with the orphanage, has been working to ensure the safety and well-being of the children who have been displaced.

Not only am I sad for the children, it makes me sad for my son. He has so little of his past; this feels as though he has lost some more of his history. I always assumed that we would be able to go back and visit the orphanage and the agency staff when he was older so he could see it first hand. And now we can't.


sandwichinwi said...

So in the end, he has been granted the best chance at stability.

Adoption is filled with heartbreak and heartwrenching choices. Is there a perfect solution? Usually not.

All we can do is pray for wisdom in the decisions we make and peace for our little ones' hearts.

For TM's sake, I'm so glad that if he had to lose his fparents, it was to you. (that sounds negative, but I think you know what I mean) I pray someday he will understand all the choices that were made on his behalf, in his best interest.

Hugs to your little man.


LawMommy said...

Thanks for writing this. I haven't had the heart to talk about it.

D. Cook said...

Thanks again for addressing these tough issues. I usually just read not post, I sometimes feel that way about our son, would he have been better off if he never left VN. At 4.5years of age it was very hard, he lost so much and I am afraid when he is older it will go from confusing to resentment no matter how we explain it. I know that there were no guarantees he would have stayed with his foster family, but he would not have lost his first language or his birth country and culture. He has been with us for 15 months but misses VN and his foster family there so much. It will be a long time before he understands about being a ward of the state and who the foster family was, let alone the birth family. Most of the time I don't think he believes us when we tell him we are his forever family and that he will be with us forever and that he cannot go back to live in VN. At this point we can't even mention going for a visit sometime in the future. When we went on a plane trip to visit family no matter what we told him he was sure he was going back to VN. When we got back home he spent two days being very sad and quiet.

mrsbroccoliguy said...

This is so sad. How did you find all this out? It breaks my heart to think of those kids getting moved all around, losing the connections they have with caregivers.
And I know what you mean about losing that connection... my daughter R's nanny left her orphanage just a year or so after we adopted her and it made me so sad to think we might never be able to find her again.

thecurryseven said...

Mrsbroccoliguy -- Go to the Holt board and look on the VN forum. A woman who works for GVN has been posting on the situation. I kind of wish that Holt had let the Danang families know themselves and not have us find out about it in a backwards fashion.

D. Cook -- I'm sorry that your son's transition has been hard. All I can say is give it more time. When TM had been home for 15 months, I still wasn't sure where we would end up. (And trips were particularly difficult for him.) Sometimes time is the only thing that will show you are there for him for the long haul. Hang in there.

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