“How Long Were You Fucking her?: Here and Now FINAL(10) episode and the scenes to focus on if you are an adoptive parent with kids of color.

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We have come to the end of the show and I heard through another Here and Now fan that it has been cancelled. This pisses me off. Finally, a show that I can relate to int he area of adoption and race, and because the public does not understand it, it gets cancelled. I decided to write a letter to HBO about the show’s cancellation even though I don’t think my small voice will keep it on the air. But I thought it is worth a try. I wanted HBO to know that it truly has impacted me and so many other adoptees.

Here is the letter:

Dear HBO, Here and Now needs to stay and this is why…

I am an adoption concultant and an adoptee and for the first time in my life, I found a show that I could relate to in the area of adoption. I’m an adoptee from Haiti and I believe the show Here and Now represents my lived experience as an adoptee of color living with a white family.

I took it upon myself to write a review of each episode and how it relates to transracial adoption. 
I am deeply concerned that this show has been cancelled as it was one of the best steps in the right direction to help adoptive parents better understand the adoptees of color in their home. 

 

Now, on to episode 10.

Episode 10: It’s Here

This episode opens with intense anger as the little girl is being consoled after she was thrown about ten feet from the ground. Ramon believes the tree-house was on fire and so he thought that by throwing the little girl out of the tree-house, he could save her. Focus on how the three white family members embrace Ramon. They are clearly upset about the niece/granddaughter but they seem to be more focused on Ramon. Also focus on who the little girl calls out for as soon as she hits the ground. Who she calls out for is significant….is there a saviorism complex here?

I’m confused at 3:38, when they are all trying to figure out who will drive. Then Hailey’s father says that she needs to be with him. Audrey says that the child needs to be with women, “nurturing, healing women.” I wonder if she is insinuating that the masculinity that has been creating problems within her home was not nurturing. Her husband cheated on her, then she had revenge sex, and then Ramon threw the little girl out of the tree house, and then the man Audrey had sex with turned out to be an asshole. Duc is going downhill, and all hell is breaking lose…..I can only surmise that Audrey’s thoughts at this moment is that women are the nurturers and healers.

At the hospital Ashley and Kristen get into a “who’s more violent” altercation and it ends with them cussing each other out. Six minutes and one second into the 10th episode Audrey says “you have always resented Ramon. You and Duc both.” Focus on how Audrey says this and Ashley’s response. The mother is not focusing on the fact that her granddaughter just got thrown out of a tree house, she is only focusing on Ashley’s response to the situation. This is all too common with white women. They don’t look at the actual issue, they look past the issue (as if it is not a big deal) and they bring attention to how the issue makes THEM feel. That is the worst kind of Becky ever.

Duc and Greg go in search of Ramon who has once again gone missing. At 11:25 Duc asks his father “how long were you fucking her?” It is important to Duc. Not just the infidelity, but the connection the infidelity had with his past, his memories. Duc is the son of a female prostitute and has constant nightmares about his mother and the men she serviced. Having an adopted father who chooses to cheat on his wife with an Asia prostitute is very significant because Duc has spent the past several years trying to not become his past; his mother. He has stayed celibate in order to not fall into the cycle his mother lived in. And then he is raised with a man who sleeps with someone who Duc connects to his mother. This scene where father and son cus each other out is phenomenal. Focus on how Duc describes his surroundings as a child and then focus on how Greg throws in the “saving” trope. I feel they realize at the end that neither are perfect…..one admits it, the other tries to be.

It is tricky with adoption because adoption is supposed to promise a better life for the poor unfortunate child who needed saving. And yet, too often the adoptee ends up in a situation that resembles their past. Too many adoptive parents think that once the child is adopted, that is all that is needed and it is not necessary to continue to seek emotional health for the child. That was the case for me. I’m still in therapy and my APs have never reached out a hand to help pay the bill for emotional struggle. The emotional struggle comes from being separated from my family and the people who brought me into this world. But where I needed and still need intense therapy is understanding why “good” people would willingly and knowingly traffic a child; leaving the mother to wonder where her child is. And not only that but I entered into a family where fidelity was also an issue. We are taken because something was wrong “over there” and things should be better “over here”. And yet, so often (as in my case), the grass is not greener on the white man’s side, though the lawn is better cut, better manicured, better protected by a gate. The grass is well-kept, but still the same color….full of lies.

My aunt tells me that my mother never signed any papers. She never gave me up for adoption. She never said “yes” in court. So how did I come to live with the family I was raised with? How did I come to live in a cult-like environment where the one you worshiped was not God, but the Audrey of the house.

Adoptive parents need to really think about their actions. They need to learn about the adoptee’s culture and race. They need to be part of the child’s life, not the other way around.

Audrey says at 16:01 “I can’t stop thinking. This is what Ramon’s birth mother felt for over 20 years…”. She is referring to Ramon being lost. Audrey feels some sort of remorse because she has realized that Ramon’s adoption story is indeed false. All of it. And the dreams, and nightmares, and hallucinations could all be a result of his loss.

At 33:34 Ashley sits and talks with a representative from Cloth and soon realizes that it is not just her brand they want but they want her black face. They want to add to the diversity of their company. Ashley struggles to balance her workload and her time as a mother. At around 33:43 the lady says “I get to check off 2 boxes.” Focus on how the Asian/White woman explains why she can say she gets to check off 2 boxes. Watch Ashley’s facial expression and her inability to fully comprehend what she may be getting herself into. The woman opposite Ashley says “Ashley, please don’t make this a thing….” policing her feelings of possibly being a “diversity” hire.

Later on in the episode, Duc finally decides to make love to this woman he was wanting to be with but denied himself. For him, he “gives in” to his temptations, losing control. Because for Duc and many other adoptees, it is about control. We try to control every aspect of our lives because as children, we had no control and didn’t choose to be a part of a new/different family. I love the scene that begins at 44:10 not only because I love watching sex in general, but because it shows a side of Duc that he would not let anyone see up until the Finale of the show; vulnerability. Focus on him letting go….and letting himself enjoy the pleasure of being able to do something he denied himself for years. 

We see at 45:19 the members at Cloth…all white men, 1 semi-diverse woman and then the obvious diverse woman (because of her name) and then you see Ashley and all her beauty….the only black woman at the table. Focus on the eye contact that is shared between Ashley and Geitha Nyar (I’m pretty sure I spelled her name wrong). Ashley tells Sharon that she needs to call her attorney to look over the contract. Sharon fears she will look bad if Ashley bags the offer.

The amount of trauma and loss  in this show is not lost to those who have gone through major trauma and loss themselves. We see the complexities of adoption right in our faces as we watch each adopted character wrestle with the nuances of not fitting in.

The different stories intertwined here elevates the show in that it demonstrates how each person struggles to really deal with the “here and the now” while knowing very little about their past.

I did not go into detail about the therapist and his family but it is clear that his trauma stems from being taken from his family, being blamed for doing something he indeed did not do and being abused by the person who raised him in the USA. He believed all his life that his mother loved him but learned in about episode 8 and 9 that she was battling her own demons as well and could not care for him. He deals with guilt, and shame and blames himself for his father and mother’s death. The therapist connects to Ramon in that they both know very little about their childhood and choose to deal with this realization differently. They both seek answers and neither are ready for the truth but are receptive to the path that should lead them to the truth.

I hope you enjoyed my perspective and analysis of this wonderful show. I hope (with fingers crossed) that there is a season 2 as it is much-needed.

If you missed any of my other reviews/things to focus on, please do not hesitate to search my blog.

This entry was posted in Adoption, Children, Family, Parenting, Racism, Relationships. Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to “How Long Were You Fucking her?: Here and Now FINAL(10) episode and the scenes to focus on if you are an adoptive parent with kids of color.

  1. elenacgoodson says:

    brilliant!

  2. Brent Snavely says:

    Thank you for your series of insights regarding this show — I knew I was not going to watch it when I first heard of it.

    • solifegoeson says:

      The supernatural stuff was pretty bad imo.

      • Brent Snavely says:

        I sounded as if it would be. Those-who-raised-me had me undergo an “Indian Test” just to see if maybe I had visions and had a spirit animal affinity — I have about zero tolerance for any adoptee being framed in such a light, but that’s just me.

      • solifegoeson says:

        The SNS drove me a bit cray. The show focused too much on supernatural stuff which i could understand since ramon has no info about his life prior to his adoption. But those who raised me thought they had supernatural powers and tried hypnosis on me on many occassions. I totally get where you are coming from and i would stay away from this show.

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