“I’m putting you up for adoption because you were bad” IS NOT SOMETHING TO JOKE ABOUT.


If you miss behave, we are going to put you up for adoption. 

I have heard this way too many times. But I heard this recently on Fuller House-you know, that show where there are mainly white people, filled with cultural appropriation and plain stupidity?

The episode included the babies….they were running around-they were twins….so they were acting like twins do. They run, and shit on things, and rip things up, and shit in their pants, and color on stuff, and fight with each other.

It is what kids do.

Is this obnoxious behavior? Yes! But is it bad behavior? Nope….and is it bad enough behavior to be told you are going to be put in an orphanage to be adopted? NOPE….

Is there any behavior that warrants kids being put up for adoption? FUCK NO!

It does not work that way so I would love for bio parents to stop telling their bio kids that they will do this. As if adoption is some kind of joke.

As if adoption is the answer to family problems…

As if adoption will make a child good…

As if being raised by strangers is in the best interest of the child…

As if being raised in an institution empowers a child…

As if cutting ties because of behavior is enough to give your child away…


Stop telling your kids this.






Please, take it from an adoptee and millions of adoptees out there. We did not get adopted because we were bad children, kids, or babies.

We didn’t get adopted because we drew on the couch.

We didn’t get adopted because we may have peed in the bed.

We didn’t get adopted because we used a potty word or have a potty mouth.

We didn’t even get adopted because we punched, kicked, stabbed, or hurt someone.


Stop lying to your kids. Stop pretending that adoption is a better answer for YOU and this way you can scare them into being “good kids”.

Why did we get adopted?

We got adopted for many different reasons…NONE that were fair, and NONE that were right, and NONE that could be fully justified.

And listen….her’s a secret…


We didn’t get adopted because our mothers didn’t want us anymore. Actually, it may be the opposite for some. For some, our mothers wanted us to have a chance at life. They wanted us to thrive in a way they felt they could not.

Do I believe it? yes…no…sometimes.

It really depends.

And today, ONE day before mother’s day, this “if you keep being bad I’ll put you up for adoption” phrase/joke/wording really hurts.

It’s almost mother’s day and I ask myself if I did something so wrong that not even my flesh and blood wanted me.

It’s almost mother’s day and I cry at my desk as I type this out because I know I’ll never get to hug my mom again.

It’s almost mother’s day and I won’t send my adoptive mother a card because the lies she told does not add up to being a mother who really showed love.

It’s almost mother’s day and I get antsy around this time because I am an adoptive mother and there are days I do “ok” and other days I want to die.

It’s almost mother’s day and my daughter should NEVER feel that she has to celebrate me and not her real mom.

It’s almost mother’s day and I can’t bear to think that my daughter feels she did something wrong and thus she had to be adopted.

On days like this, and weekends like these, ALL media romanticizes a day/experience/holiday that should be picture perfect.

But for so many…it is not.

For adoptees, the idea of celebrating 2 mothers can be daunting.

For adoptees, the feeling of having to smile and saying “I love you mom” can be paralyzing.

For an adoptee like myself who is no contact with her adoptive parents and in a strange reunion with her biological family; the thought of celebrating a mother who gave me up, and then died searching for me…..it’s….it’s….mind-blowing.

And I can sift through the complexities of her love for me, vs my love for her. I can sit with the discomfort.

I can evaluate, I can synthesize, I can analyze….I can use all of the blooms taxonomy verbs I was forced to utilize as a teacher.

I can open the Bible and try to believe the white man’s perspective of property and how many Christians believe that you don’t just save the physical body when you adopt but you also save the soul…..(google it, Harry and Bertha Holts started this movement). I understand how twisted it is and I can reason….because I have a Masters in Theology.

I can sit down and discuss one-on-one with my wife how I want my mother’s day to go….or not go.

I can sit down with my kid and ask her what she wants out of this day…..or if she wants anything at all.

I can pray…eat…and love…..on this day….but….




I WILL NEVER be OK with the notion that my behavior as a baby, infant, toddler, child, teen, adult….warranted me being ripped from my essence and the only person I knew as mom.

I WILL NOT EVER pretend that my attitude meant that I was not mold-able, fixable, or important enough to help, that it warranted being adopted.

I WILL NOT EVER IN MY WILDEST DREAMS understand how biological parents can make this joke….as if their kids are products that can be juggled around and purchased to the highest bidder.

And though I can’t be ok with it, I will never pretend, and I will not understand….I sometimes feel this is the case when I hear that hellish phrase “if you don’t behave, I will have to put you up for adoption.”

For any parent who has joked about that…..there is a special place in hell for you.

Adoption is NOT a joke.

Adoption is NOT a punishment.

Adoption is NOT a choice for the adoptee.


This entry was posted in Adoption. Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to “I’m putting you up for adoption because you were bad” IS NOT SOMETHING TO JOKE ABOUT.

  1. Gary Lafever says:

    Also, this behavior from the parents will instill into a child the notion that someone who has been adopted was bad and is worthy of ridicule and torment. I can back that statement up by personal experiences. This is not ok, it needs to stop. We adoptees are the only minority that is legally allowed to be bullied and discriminated against. It has to stop now.

  2. bethanyk says:

    What a fantastic post! I very much agree with you! How and why parents threaten with something that is so personal and real and put this bad stigma on it as if it is a punishment. How cruel. How wrong. You wrote this so well! Not having anything to do with adoption I also dislike parents threatening for the entire month of december that “santa is watching and won’t bring you any gifts if you keep being bad” . That’s just shit parenting!

I can't wait to hear your thoughts that come from your heart. Any rude or potentially offensive comments will not be displayed. Please think before commenting! Thank you.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s