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Adoption: Why Is It Taboo?

Have you / will you adopt? Please elaborate in the thread?

  • Yes definitely!

    Votes: 8 34.8%
  • Yes but only a baby or toddler

    Votes: 4 17.4%
  • I have to think very carefully about this

    Votes: 2 8.7%
  • Only if I cannot conceive

    Votes: 5 21.7%
  • No way!

    Votes: 2 8.7%
  • Other (please state in thread)

    Votes: 2 8.7%

  • Total voters
    23

findingmyway

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The Big Questions on Population: 7 April 2013 - YouTube

Adoption seems to be a big taboo among many groups including people who hail from the Indian subcontinent. Why is this? Why are people reluctant to adopt? Why the emphasis on passing on your own genes? When children are adopted, why are only younger ones given a home in preference to older children who need a home just as much?

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Tejwant Singh

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Findingmyway ji,

Guru Fateh.

It is a lot more than that then meets the eye. There are a lot of intricacies involved. There is a stigma in the Indian culture. The adopted child feels that he/she was unwanted in our value system when he/she comes to know about that.

I have an example in my own family. My dad-Papa ji's cousin could not conceive and Ami ji had 3 kids already. My Mata ji, who ruled the household although she was bedridden decided that the next child of Ami ji would be given for adoption to my Bhua ji. It so happened that the next child who was born 2 years before me, a girl was given as told. Unfortunately, they were not as well off as we were. However, despite that she was sent to the best boarding school in Dehradun. After sometime, when she came to know that she was adopted, she had a big fight with both Papa ji and Ami ji and was not very happy because she thought she was unwanted. She became a kind of rebel and married a Marathi guy who is a gem of a person by the way. I was not in India when all this took place. I saw her in 1985 when Papa ji passed away but the things had been patched up long before as her parents came to stay at our house and she realised the wonderful nature of my parents.

Adoption is common in Christianity because of the proselytization. In Sikhi, it is not possible unless the adopted child is from a Sikhi background. Mormons love to adopt in order to spread their cult and because of the mandatory missionary system which helps them in adoption.

It is a common thing among the Scandinavians to adopt even when they have their own kids and religion is not a factor. I know lots of them who have done that for some generations.

Allow me to share my own story of Brasil. I was living with my Brazilian brother David in Sao Paulo. The year was 1976. Most of the apartment buildings have two entrances in Brasil. One is called the social entry where there is a security and one has to write the name and the resident is informed via inter-phone about the guest. The other one is the service one through which all the maids/groceries go to the apartment. Its entrance is from the kitchen's back door. Next to the kitchen there is a studio with a bathroom for the maids. In some places including ours, I had to fight with my security guy to let my black friends in through the social lifts. There is a hidden kind of racism there but things are changing.

We were looking for a new maid. One night, the bell rings from the service elevator. There was this young lady in her early 20's with a 10 day old baby boy with her.She had been fired from her previous job for having a baby. She was a single mom. She came to know that we were looking for a maid. We took her in. Needless to say she was very happy about it. We sort of adopted Roberto, the boy. We used to baby sit him when she went out with our encouragement because of her young age. Many a times I spent all nighters with him walking around while he was crying. It was a great experience which can not be expressed in words.

When the time came for him to go to school. I adopted him officially and took him to the neighbourhood Catholic School. The priest was shockingly impressed to see a guy with a black turban adopting his maid's son, not a common thing in Brasil. I taught him English. I had flexi hours so I was more with him than David. I used to take him to the weekend lunches at my friends' houses over the weekends. As a result, I did lose quite a few of Gopis because I was giving more attention to him.

I had to leave Brasil in Feb, 1985 all of a sudden because of a serious car accident that Ami ji had suffered and sadly Papa ji passed away on the 10th of the same month due to stroke.

I had Roberto's picture in my wallet and used to send his mom the money for his school. This practice continued and he was the first in her mom's family to go graduate from college. He is a manager at Deloitte,a high paying job and was sent to the US- San Diego and New York to study English last year. He arranged his mum to come to the US to see him but she only wanted to come if she could see me. They both came to Las Vegas and it was nice to see him as a grown man after so many years. I picked Trimaan from his school and it was wonderful for them to meet each other. They are FB friends now. After 1985, I visited Brasil a couple of times till 1988. Whenever she used to see me, her tears were unstoppable, even here in Vegas. She told me that without me, Roberto would not have gone to school and would be working as a janitor which I disagree with because I was just a mean not the end. Roberto deserves all the credit. I was just a lucky person to have met him.

Now, let me get back to the Indian stigma. In 1985, I was 30 and ripe low hanging fruit for marriage who had many offers without my knowledge. I proudly showed Roberto's picture to everyone whom I had not seen for 15 years. One day, my Masar and Mama (both deceased now) took me to the corner and told me that they had some matches for me but they wanted to know about Roberto if he was my real son or not. I started laughing. Mind you, I left India at 15 and had very little contact with the culture till I got back at 30. Lucky for me, I was brave enough to say no to all and met Harsimran in late 88 in Los Angeles.

I wish Sikhi encouraged adoptions but for that to happen, we have to change the culture of stigma which seems almost impossible.

I apologise for the long post.

Regards

Tejwant Singh
 

Inderjeet Kaur

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I would love to adopt, even now, but my age and disability precludes that possibility.

I was unable to have children when I married my second husband. I remember him saying, when I suggested we adopt, "Are you out of your mind! What's the matter with you! I'd never raise a kid that wasn't mine." He was from the Third World and I hope this attitude isn't common in the industrialised nations, but I'm afraid it might be.
 
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Jan 26, 2012
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It's important to note that current attitudes towards adoption amongst Sikhs possibly don't reflect older ones. I know from reading Bhangu's Panth Prakash that the famous warrior Sukha Singh (who helped Mehtab Singh slay Massa Ranghar at Harmandir Sahib) was practically adopted by a jatha leader when he left home. I also came across references to Guru Gobind Singh adopting a child in Anandpur. Guru ji's wife also adopted some children after his physical passing, although this did not end well.
 

Brother Onam

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Because of unstable lifestyle I've never been in a position to adopt. But adoption is a most beautiful thing. I've been in orphanages in Africa, India and Japan, and when you see all the beautiful children wanting loving homes, I can't understand how someone wanting a child wouldn't think first of adoption, especially among "spiritual" people.
The desire to reproduce one's genetics, in this overpopulated world, with so many orphans, seems ego-driven.
True believers overcome silly traditions and taboos, and are governed instead by the power of Love.
 

Inderjeet Kaur

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The desire to reproduce one's genetics, in this overpopulated world, with so many orphans, seems ego-driven.
True believers overcome silly traditions and taboos, and are governed instead by the power of Love.
The desire to reproduce our DNA is more than desire or ego; it is hard-wired into us. We are, in this case, driven by our biology. Speaking strictly for myself, when I deeply loved my husband, my great desire was to bear HIS children, not to raise someone else's.

However, as human beings, we have the capacity to overrule such primitive desires in much the same way we can overrule the natural desire to kill people we don't like or to run away when to do so would be cowardly. I agree that adoption should be a first choice, but as of now, few are willing to make what they perceive as a great sacrifice. Look at the lengths people will go to in order to have children with their DNA. We still have far to go.
 

Tejwant Singh

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It is the Christian world that is creating this population explosion by refusing to distribute control methods through their vast networks in the countries they are needed the most. As the result, there are more illegal abortions, deaths of the mothers and many more unwanted kids.
 
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spnadmin

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Once upon a time, children were counted legally with cattle and wives among the "chattle" of a family's wealth. A sure claim to one's lineage was mandated for economic reasons. As with dog breeders the proof of one's sire needed to be certain, and the possibility of a mongrel among the litter of offspring muddied things up. Hence, adoption introduced complications though it has been practiced for centuries, in most societies around the world.

But... our children don't belong to us anyway. They are not livestock. Modern animal husbandry makes great play with artificial insemination in order to pre-determine better outcomes genetically - i.e., greater milk output, a faster thoroughbred, a more succulent pig, a chicken with shorter legs and more flesh on the bone. We can keep our livestock captive to ensure they are not poached by competitors or threatened by nature.

The survival of our species depended on biology, but we are also biologically programmed to adapt and survive in social organizations. That means, to parent and to raise our young in "families" and tribes, in neighborhoods and nations.

A copy and paste of one's DNA only ensures that our DNA will be reproduced: that a child will be like "you." Longer legs? Lighter skin? A bigger brain? Human survival demands much more than that. Our children need the care, protection and guidance of the adults of our species for they are children much longer than those of other species. Then they have to be set free. Set free to make their own mistakes and take credit for their own accomplishments in life. Biological parenting should make no special claims for itself. Adults who can care, protect, teach and then set their young free, are parents.
 
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Aisha

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Adoption is common in Christianity because of the proselytization. In Sikhi, it is not possible unless the adopted child is from a Sikhi background. Mormons love to adopt in order to spread their cult and because of the mandatory missionary system which helps them in adoption.

Tejwant Singh
Tejwant Ji,

so Sikhs are not allowed (as per the SGGS Ji) to adopt any child that was not born into a Sikh family in the first place? If you adopt a child who was born into a Christian, Hindu or Muslim family, would you have to raise that child in accordance with the religion of their birth parents? You are not allowed to raise that child to be a Sikh?
 

Tejwant Singh

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=Aisha;186734]Tejwant Ji,
so Sikhs are not allowed (as per the Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji) to adopt any child that was not born into a Sikh family in the first place?
Not at all but rather to the contrary. Sikhi is for the right of equality for all and spans in all aspects. Giving a loving home to the wanted child is part and parcel of that.

If you adopt a child who was born into a Christian, Hindu or Muslim family, would you have to raise that child in accordance with the religion of their birth parents? You are not allowed to raise that child to be a Sikh?
Aisha ji, yourself being a Muslim can answer from your Islamic side. Can you raise any child who is not born into an Islamic family to the religion he/she is born in? Does Islam allow that?

As far as Sikhi is concerned where conversion is strictly prohibited unlike other religions like yours where it is rather encouraged, it becomes difficult to adopt from a non Sikh family especially the boys because of the turban and long hair. It could be easier to adopt a girl from a non-Sikh family. Adoption means to add a member to your family's environment and values and if that becomes a hurdle then it is unfair to the child.

So, this is the dilemma laced with paradox that Sikhi intellectualistas have to find a way to resolve and also look for the ways to change the mentality of the adopted parents so that the kids should be all treated the same. The adopted ones should not feel unwanted in any circumstances.

Regards

Tejwant Singh
 
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aristotle

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As far as Sikhi is concerned where conversion
is strictly prohibited unlike other religions like
yours where it is rather encouraged, it
becomes difficult to adopt from a non Sikh
family especially the boys because of the
turban and long hair. It could be easier to
adopt a girl from a non-Sikh family.
I don't agree with this. Absolutely not.

Considering raising the adopted child according to your religion as 'conversion' is sheer narrow mindedness, especially if not done for evangelism or gaining converts.

Foster parenting grownup children is another thing, they need to be allowed to follow the religion they are already practising. But shying away from adopting a newborn/infant child simply because he was born into another religion is not wise.
 

Sikhilove1

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Adoption is a beautiful thing. Loving a child as your own, giving a child a better life as long as you’re a good parent.. lovely
 
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I'm not anywhere near ready to take on the responsibility for a child but I would rather adopt than have my own. As to why Adoption is taboo. unlike in the USA where you're in laws are considered just as much family as your blood relatives.

In most of the world if you have the choose of saving your wife or your mother(usually from a capsized rowboat but un africa it's from a lion attack) you chose your mother because you can alway get a new wife but you only have one mother. in America you get one mother and one father for free with each wife you get.

THis concept that it's your relationship to someone not your lineage that makes you family means it's not unusual to adopt people into you family. For example my aunt is treated like the mother of a girl(and she treats her as her other daughter) that she let live with her so the girl could stay in her school when her abusive mother moved.
 

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