Next Generation Indie Book Award Finalist for Autobiography/Memoirs (2009)

Editor’s Choice award and Rising Star Designation and is now part of Barnes & Noble’s Special Collections, “Catch A Rising Star”, a page dedicated to finding Up-And-Coming Authors.

"...Her story is unforgettable." -Kathleen Daley for the Star-Ledger

"Bauer’s yearning to understand her past the journey of her search and the resulting complexities make for captivating storytelling..... Bauer is able to make a personal narrative feel like a universal truth." ForeWord Review

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Kay Jewelers Adoption commercial...mixed feelings...

I saw all the posts yesterday about the outrage on both sides concerning the response to Kay Jeweler's commercial featuring Adoption as a way to promote their jewelry, ...and, I needed a good nights sleep to really think about this one before I posted as well from an adoptee perspective.  I can see how many are upset that Kay Jewelers was being highly insensitive to all parties involved in the Adoption Triad. The grieving birthmother was not portrayed nor was the confusion and sense of loss the infant is surely feeling on an emotional level, even at such a tender young age. Yes, the commercial fulfills all the stereotypes of Adoption and makes it appear as if a couple simply shows up at the Adoption Agency and picks up their new baby while commemorating the event with a new charm. The commercial is all about the Adoptive Parents and making them usual.

But the funny thing is, this is exactly what happened in my personal tale of my adoption.  I still have to this day my mother's charm bracelet (they were popular in the 1960's) that contained all the precious moments of her life like her birthday pendant, one for her marriage, one for her sisters, her graduation, and yes, there is also the "Mom" one she received after she adopted my older brother in 1962.  Seeing that charm over the years always made me feel happy.  After all she is my Mom.  I know I have another one, the one who gave birth to me but this is the one I know really well and this is the one who is filling the role of my Mom. And I am glad that my Mom received that charm for her bracelet probably in the same way that is depicted in that Kay commercial.  Is is wrong for me not to be upset by the commercial?  Maybe yes, maybe no.

Adoption has many problems and many birthmothers are exploited along with their babies but sometimes a mother still decides not to keep her baby, even without being exploited.  My mother did not want the responsibility at that time of raising a baby.  Was she exploited?  I'm not sure if she was or wasn't.  It was socially unacceptable to raise a baby by yourself in the 1960' yes maybe society did steer her in the adoption direction.  Was she sad, yes, she was extremely sad.  She was sad for 23 years until the day I went and found her.  She is no longer sad now that we have a relationship.  But I know she, along with me, is happy that my Mom was there to raise me and I know my birthmother would not be upset that my Mom received a charm to commemorate the event of becoming a mother. If anything, she is glad that I was loved by a caring family. I only think she would have loved to able to have seen me over my younger years, an occasional letter or visit would have been nice. I don't think the "Mom" charm would have upset her though, if anything she felt good to know that the woman caring for me was proud to be my Mom.

We should not be focusing on what  Kay failed to depict in their commercials, after all, commercials are designed to sell, not to educate you about an issue. What I would rather educate people about is the fact that the secrecy in Adoptions still exist.  I still cannot access my own legal records pertaining to my birth, something that every other adult who is not adopted has access to. This, not the commercial, upsets me as the adopted individual in the adoption triad.


  1. "Is is wrong for me not to be upset by the commercial?"


    "We should not be focusing on what Kay failed to depict in their commercials, after all, commercials are designed to sell, not to educate you about an issue."

    Even though like you, I was not triggered by the ad, I did feel compelled to address the stereotypes this ad perpetuates. Not showing a more complete view of adoption lends to the public perception that there are things to hide, keep secret, turn away from.

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