“In all of us there is a hunger, marrow deep, to know our heritage, to know who we are, and where we have come from. Without this enriching knowledge, there is a hollow yearning, no matter what our attainments in life, there is the most disquieting loneliness.”
This movie brought tears to my eyes.
It explored the philosophical and historical meaning of "family" and how its breakdown affects our lives individually and as a society. Delving into issues such as sexuality, feminism, marriage, parenthood...asking the hard questions:
When did we as a society stop valuing family?
Why did pregnancy become a burden rather than a blessing?
How did we start making children into commodities and building "designer" families?
Have we failed to encourage men to step up to the plate and be father's to their children?
The documentary addresses all these issues and does it well. It is a beautiful documentary that speaks to the heart of these issues and the brokenness in every person, every family...and it gives hope.
One idea that stood out to me included the fact that some people in America don't even know where they were born...their identities are unknown.
Unfortunately, the way adoption is done in our society, it strips a person of their biological connections and identity, forever. Even "open adoption" is not enforceable by law, and all birth certificates are sealed and amended upon adoption, to legally change a child's identity and family connections. The demand for designer families and the business it creates, turns children into commodities.
This creates a further breakdown of family, because it shrouds family histories in secrecy and unknowns, rather than allowing the light of truth to bring a person through their history to healing.
It may create a home for a child, but at the expense of their wholeness.
The only mention of adoption in this documentary was the story of one adoptee who "went back to their biological family"...key. It speaks of the innate human drive to know oneself and restore whatever family connections are possible.
Adoption and sealed records prevent a person and family from this. It may actually be creating more harm than good, the way it is practiced in society today. The Bible speaks of "re-digging the wells" for a reason.
Some genealogists have estimated that within four more generations NO American will have an accurate family tree because of archaic sealed records law in adoption.
Could this be part of the problem in the breakdown of family? Are we creating a country of identity-less people, because of our desire to build "designer" families, but disregarding the long-term affects this has on individuals and their ability to maintain healthy relationships?
Families are God-ordained. They are irreplaceable...not designable.
The film aptly speaks of the right of every child to "a" mother and father, but I would venture further to express the God-given right of every child to "their" mother and father, and identity...without being turned into a "product".
If a child needs a home, must they be expected to live a new identity with legal connections that erase their God-given place in the family-line God saw fit they be born in to?
Have we allowed adoption to become a class issue, using the children of the poor, to create designer families for those with more money?
If we honored the sacredness of the mother/child bond as the miracle it is, rather than turn it into a societal "crisis"...in order to obtain products for designer families...we would create a much healthier society long-term. Fathers could not be "unnamed" or thwarted to "streamline" adoption. Family connections would be honored rather than disenfranchised. We are a nation of sickly family trees with missing branches. And then we wonder why the breakdown of family? We have been sold.
When Moses was "adopted" into Pharaoh's house, he ended up running into a wilderness. God appeared to him in a burning bush and said, "I am the God of your fathers, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob"...He RESTORED Moses' identity and lineage. He said "take off your shoes" (you are enough). The ground you stand on is Holy. He sent Moses back to his family of origin. Our places in our family lines are sacred. Adopted people deserve better than sealed records, amended birth certificates; high-priced transfers, as replacements.
We are a misplaced people. We can love a "new" family, but it doesn't erase our profound loss; our reality.
I pray society takes this to heart. Families are truly irreplaceable.