About the Social Media Revolution

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Updated: Feb 27, 2021
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From strangers to our close friends and relatives, social media has changed the way we interact with others. And birth parents are no exception. Adoption is undergoing a mass movement. Until recently, it has been a closely managed process, with social workers going to great lengths to protect children going to their adoptive families, and from inappropriate contact with birth relatives. The massive growth in social media has changed the way adoptees contact their birth relatives forever.

There is indeed an increasing number of young children being contacted through social media by birth parents, but there are even more instances when the adoptees themselves initiate contact. Everyone wants to know who they are and where they come from. Information like this fulfills the need to belong, and feel like they are a part of something. Wether they are wondering about physical similarities like, do I resemble anyone in my birth family, do I have brothers or sisters out there, or where did I get my curly hair are just some of the questions adoptee’s need answers for. In today’s age adopted teenagers have grown up with technology, and at the time no one could have known just how easy it is to find people through social media. Take seventeen-year-old Katie Doak of Phoenix, she had been searching for her half-sister Kelsey, 18, for five years. She decided to spread the word about her on Facebook, and mere hours later she had over 1,000 shares and her contact info of both her half-sister and her biological mom.

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Dan Spigle was put up for adoption at just 6 months old, and lived with his adoptive parents and brother in Massachusetts. Dans biological family is waiting for his adoptive mom’s annual updates and photos just over 1,200 miles away.“We’d have an update letter of how he’s doing: learning to ride bikes or play the violin,” said Dan’s biological brother, Alex Hunt. When Dan became an adult the updates suddenly stopped. Dan’s biological sister Leah tried to find him on Facebook, but she didn’t have much luck since she didn’t have a lot of information.“I got a message from a friend who went to Babson College: ‘Dan, have you looked on Reddit? There’s a big paragraph; I’m looking for my brother. It was an open adoption. Does anyone know who he is?’ I think there was something like 22,000 views of the pictures. The whole Internet was going nuts trying to find me!”- said Dan Spigle. Within a day Dan was in contact with his biological siblings. Just a few weeks before Dan’s 27th birthday he went to Iowa to meet his family, who missed him without even knowing him, but sadly Dan’s biological parents passed away before he could meet them, but now he’s with those with whom he shares memories and genes.

Though there are many stories of happy family reunions, there are many more that don’t turn out the way they hoped. Like Katie Smith who was also six months old when she was put up for adoption. At 14, she secretly contacted her birth family through social media. At first she was excited, but after the contact with her birth father and one of her older birth sisters was made it turned out to not be what she had hoped. “My birth sister used to email me every morning, saying I was dirt and I should die,” she says. “Once, my birth father said to me on the phone: ‘I know everything that’s going on in your life. I’ve got Facebook right here in front of me’, and he started reading out things from my mum’s profile too. And they have tried to manipulate me, making me believe things that aren’t true.”- Katie Smith. Although situations like this don’t happen often it still happens to too many kids.

The social media revolution has raised many questions for anyone involved in or touched by, adoption. Some social workers are wondering whether it will fundamentally change the nature of adoption forever. These children who are seeking out their birth family, and meeting them with no support from those who are closest to them is heartbreaking. Equally, so for the birth family members who are meeting children without the support that should have been in place for them.

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About The Social Media Revolution. (2021, Feb 27). Retrieved from https://papersowl.com/examples/about-the-social-media-revolution/