First They Came For Veronica

Like much of the family preservation and adoption reform community, I am pained by the transfer of Veronica Brown to the adoptive parents.   I am in tune enough with my own feelings to realize that some part of my agony over this little girl is the triggering effect. The transfer of her to the adoptive parents caused me to feel my own pain, my own trauma, the loss of my daughter again.

I feel for Dusten Brown in ways I cannot even articulate.  I feel for Veronica even more.  When I am not emotional, or trying to avoid the pain I feel, I am analytical and yet I still experience overwhelming emotion.  As a mother raising two boys, I fear for my sons. I fear for natural mothers and fathers of the future.  I fear what this portends for our country.

I have much to say yet I am pained.  I leave you to think about this.  Really think about it.  If you are aware of what has happened with Veronica Brown, think about what it suggests for the future. Just think.

First they came for the communists,
and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a communist.

Then they came for the socialists,
and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a socialist.

Then they came for the trade unionists,
and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a trade unionist.

Then they came for me,
and there was no one left to speak for me.

- Martin Niemöller

4 Thoughts.

  1. Suz, like you I have found the story of Veronica to be heartbreaking and triggering beyond words. For several nights I just couldn’t fall asleep. Like so many others, poverty was the number one reason I was forced to surrender my daughter. For me, however, this was back in 1969 so it’s really hard to wrap my brain around the fact that children today, year 2013, continue to be taken for adoption because of poverty. If Dusten had been rich and powerful, he would have prevailed. I’m hoping in the years ahead he will. I wish there was something concrete that I could do because my heart bleeds for him and Veronica.

    • Howdy Gail! I wrote the below on my facebook. Sharing here as maybe it will resonate with you.

      “What people need to understand is that some mothers like me, when reflecting on Veronica Brown, feel more than just the empathy for her family. We are brought back to that time, that instant, the breath when our own child was taken from us. We remember how powerless we were. We feel, again, how little we mattered to others. Not all of us realize that or can separate the two. When mothers say they are sickened by the idea of Veronica crying for her daddy they may also be realizing for the first time ever, that their child was left alone, without them crying for them. Maybe they are like me and they remember hiding and shaking under a table crying after a night of trying to find a child that was no where to be found.

      Yes Dusten Brown lost Veronica but for a moment, a split second, I lost Amber again. This compound pain is debilitating at times. I am the adult mother, activist, aching for the tribe, parents, grandparents of Veronica. I am my adult self parenting my own younger self as she aches and I AM that younger self aching. I am still hiding under a table crying uncontrollable tears. If you are an adoptee, and your mother in reunion is acting a little kookier than usual, just give her a hug. Cry with her. As Oriah says, “don’t move to hide it or fade it or fix it”. If you are a mother or father and your child is a bit off, hug them as well. Yes, this was about Veronica but conceptually, it was about all of us, past, present and future. We all deserve a little extra love, understanding and patience.”

  2. Hello Suz,

    This most excellent piece of writing strongly resonated with me and I thank you for taking the time to post it here. Since I’m not a member of the Facebook community, I imagine I miss out on some things. When I look back on how those of us who were forced to separate from our children were treated, it all seems so barbaric. And to think that what happened to Veronica was legally sanctioned by our court system is just unbelievable in today’s society. I wonder what the fallout will be in years to come.

    • I suspected you might be able to relate. I intend to blow that piece out a bit in the coming days as I have more to say but I am still processing (and living my regular life full of kids and school and work and such!). Hugs. Come back soon and see the larger piece.

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