RE: How does it feel to be a Korean Adoptee in Korea?

Tuesday, July 04, 2006


Hmmm...My experience.

I guess I blend in very well with my surroundings so I don't get stares or comments.  Also having minimal knowledge of Korean makes me oblivious to most things.  It's not really an issue.  When I mention that I'm adopted the first thing Koreans ask me is, "are you looking for your parents?"  I tell them no and that my parents are in America.  They don't seem to understand that I would consider my adoptive parents my parents.  Most times they ask me again, but to many Koreans this idea- the idea that people that are not of my own blood would be the ones I could identify as my parents.  Sometimes I get this feeling that they pity me and then they often ask me if I've seen the Sunday Night Show.   This was a very popular show that showed dramatic reunions of Korean Adoptees and of their birth parents.

I went to an adoption conference this weekend and it's opened up a can of worms that I might have possibly been trying to hold down.

The conference was enlightening because I now understand why Koreans ask me that question.  It's the way they picture adoptees.  TV shows, songs and movies show adoptees searching for their roots and their birth parents because DEEP DOWN, they are really Korean- even though they often can't speak the language and have not been raised in the culture. 

Adoptees are symbolic for Koreans.  They represent the reunion of the North and South and of solidarity in this war torn nation that has been invaded by the Japanese, Chinese, Mongolians, and you could even say the USA.

I went to a forum at the Adoption conference that was about the media representation of Korean Adoptees.  They only depict Koreans wanting to come to Korea to find their birth parents and with very dramatic reunions. 

I asked if there were any representations of Adoptees that came to Korea that were not in search of their parents and ultimately didn't care about the reunion and identified themselves as American, Canadian, or wherever nation they were adopted too.  They said no.  None. 

I found that fascinating.

Dan

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