THIS THING OF OURS-ADOPTION

THE KOREAN WAR BABY

My name is Don Gordon BELL and I am one of the earliest of the first generation of KAD's (Korean ADoptees). The Korean War had been settled by Armistice three years before I left war-torn Seoul, Korea, on May 21, 1956. It was the first plane of twelve 'war babies' processed thru the Harry Holt Adoption Program. Read more of MY STORY on My Pages.
I grew up in a typical middle-class family of English-Scottish roots in greater Los Angeles, Ca, USA. Memories faded, Korean language was 'lost' and I did not know anything about the country of my birth until I met Korean Marines in Vietnam while serving with the US Marines. It was my first exposure to real Korean people. I was not completely aware of how prejudiced most Koreans thought towards a Half-Breed like me. I learned what "Tuigi" meant, a Korean word for a "Child of a Foreign devil". Oh, wonderful.


All my life I always had to answer the question: "What ARE you?" and I simply would tell 'my story'. It was not a big deal for me, for my Adoptive Parents had taught me that being an American meant that WE were from many countries. I never 'wished to be White' and just learned to stand up for my own identity. MY Identity was as an American, with mixed heritage. I did not know what being "Korean" meant but often wondered about my roots, and what my birth father's ethnicity. Mexican, Native Americans, and Spanish people would tell me that I had their 'genes' for sure. Little did I know they were right!

After college, I traveled to Manila and for ten years I lived in the Philippines. I was excepted as a 'mestizo' and fit into the former Spanish colony. I was a B-movie Character Actor,
working on international and local films, enjoying a 'crazy and wild' abandonment. Then a life changing experience gave me faith in a personal Higher Being. After walking away from the film business, I lived back in the USA, not sure of my direction in life finding work in construction, finish carpentry, door hanging, and many other jobs I'd like to forget.

In 1991, at 38, I attended a Holt Heritage Camp that was a great experience and really began my own journey of Adoption Identity search. I had never thought much of my Korean culture, though I always felt proud of being "HALF-Korean" and "half-Something".

In 1994 I came back to Seoul, Korea, with my church Vineyard Christian Fellowship, and was invited to stay with a church in East Seoul, for one year. I have lived here since late 1995- re-discovering my "Korean-ness", teaching English and telling my Adoption Story to thousands of Korean students of all ages, helping their understanding of Korean Adoptees. It is one of the issues that Korea is now facing, even for its own secretly adopted children, those who were adopted IN-Country by Koreans who desired a family but due to problems with Infertility secretly adopt.

I was a charter member in 1997 (first dozen members) of GOA'L (Global Overseas Adoptees' Link, founded by Ami Nafzger) and continue to be involved with the complex issues of This Thing of Ours-Adoption. Thousands of KADs have visited Korea over the years, searching for their culture and Some search for birth family. Seventy-five thousand have come, yet only 2,400 plus have found Reunion with Birth family, often with varying results. There are many complexities, many don't want to search concerned about offending their Adoptive Families. Each KAD must decide what they want to do, when to do it, etc.


At 61, I am still 'working thru' my Adoption Identity. Each of YOU need to 'work through' your own understanding and hopefully find forgiveness and healing. Read many different accounts and compare before coming to conclusions. I hope that you will learn what IS happening NOW, in the land of your birth, the Rep. of Korea (South Korea). (See Report Links).

Times are changing, the reasons for 'relinquishment for adoption' have shifted, but there continues to be a need for a multi-tiered approach and understanding of Adoption issues. Slowly, attitudes of Korean society ARE changing for the better. But, the majority continue to feel embarrassment and shame. Thus, Adoption is still shrouded in secrecy even for those who are adopted In-country. There ARE positive signs and movements of NGO's and KAD groups are advocating for the Unwed Mothers. However, two-thirds of pregnant women each year, continue to give up their babies for adoption. One out of four are sent overseas, YET three are secretly adopted in-country. The Myth that "Koreans don't adopt" is false, but they need to open up and hopefully change their shame to pride.


This blog is for EVERYONE, whether you are an Adoptee, Adoptive Family, Birth Family or involved in Adoption in ANY way as a professional, social worker, official, etc, from Korea or the world. We examine the complex issues and personal journeys that we, domestic and overseas adoptees, have to face and sort out in This Thing of Ours-Adoption. (Use the Ligit Search function (Left Column) to check for Posts on various topics, TransRacial, TranCultural, MultiCultural families, Domestic, Civil Code Law Adoptions, InterCountry Adoption, etc.)
I personally have come to a compromised, nuanced position on this thing of ours-adoption. I advocate a Multi-tiered Plan that tries to be balanced, realistic, fair to all.

UPDATE: Living in the Philippines since 2010, at first teaching students from several countries as an Online Tutor, based in Makati, Metro Manila. I was working on a Digital Library for Online Tutoring or ELearning; developing an agritourism farm; and Overseas Retirement Care for foreigners needing 24/7 health care.

Then some 18 months ago, in July of 2012 I met with Andrew Leavold, a crazy film obsessed Aussie who helped "pull me back into film making".

WHEW! Lot on my plate. I have also been learning much about the Filipino society's very different viewpoints on unwed motherhood and adoption.

Latest: As of Sept. 2012, I worked on an Indie Film, "Baybayin, the Palawan Script", directed by Auraeus Solito, and international award winning Filipino director. I had a role in the film and explored my hobby as a STILLS Photographer. Currently I have quit all teaching, co-writing on an international film that will be done in 3D and CGI effects. I am back in the film-making business and I love it.

Adoption Discourse needs to hear YOUR VOICE. Every opinion, even opposing viewpoints will be posted and interaction invited by email and Comments have been activated again with spam filters!)
. Welcome, come learn, and share your thoughts.


April 2, 2010

YouTube – Bamboozled? Or Hostile Takeover?

 

----------------------------------------------------------------------------

Eun-Shil <e.boots8@upcmail.nl>

to  koreanwarbaby@gmail.com

date Wed, Mar 31, 2010 at 4:15 PM

subject FW: *REMINDER* General Meeting this Saturday!

Here my email to Daewon Wenger (former SG).
You can publish it with my name and Emailadress (
shil@upcmail.nl) because I am standing for my view according to 'voting new style'.
By the way I did also forwarded this email towards Seth Hammontree. Also I did ask Daewon Wenger to send me the
incorporation papers of Goal Foundation. I will take a look on it together with NL-lawyers.

Eun-Shil

----------------------------------------------------------------------------

#1 Announcement March of GOA’L Annual General Meeting

Van: daewon.wenger@gmail.com [mailto:daewon.wenger@gmail.com] Namens
> Dae-won Wenger
> Verzonden:
donderdag 25 maart 2010 12:58
> Aan: Dae-won Wenger Onderwerp: *REMINDER* General Meeting this Saturday!

> Dear G.O.A.'L Members:
>
> We'd like to remind you that the 2010 General Meeting will be held this
> Saturday, March 27th from 4:00pm - 6:00pm at the Korean Banking Institute.

> This year's meeting is very important because we will be nomination and voting on new directors for the Board, members of a new Community Board, and the next Secretary General (see attached documents).
> Note that ONLY registered members who have paid their membership dues for 2010 and that attend the General Meeting are eligible to vote. So, voice your opinion by attending the meeting and remembering to pay your 2010 membership! (You may do so on-site at the meeting.)
>
> For detailed info including agenda and directions to visit the FB invite:
>
http://www.facebook.com/#!/event.php?eid=286855543441

We look forward to seeing you Saturday!
Sincerely,
Dae-won Wenger
Secretary General

G.O.A.'L (Global Overseas Adoptees' Link)
>
http://www.goal.or.kr


********************************************************************

#2 Eun-Shil’s second email

----------------original message-----------------
From: "Eun-Shil"
e.boots8@upcmail.nl
To: "'Dae-won Wenger'" sg@goal.or.kr
Date: Thu, 25 Mar 2010 16:23
-------------------------------------------------
> Dear Daewon,
> I am sorry to disturb you again but there is something I do need to go off my chest; I do like on behalf of several adoptees worldwide to ask for changing the rules according to the voting in the future. Although like me as a paying member, but living abroad, has unfortunately no right to vote it all at
> GOAL-elections.
This is not ok. GOAL should stand for all the adoptees
> worldwide as they do say so but a lot of the members would not live
actually in Korea right now.

> Please bring this topic on the table this Saturday at the
election-meeting.
Just only because we as voluntary paying members should be treated as important individuals (adoptees) and should have to right to vote wherever they might live!

Thank you.

Eun-Shil

**********************************************************************

#3 Dae-won Wenger Response

---Oorspronkelijk bericht-----
Van: Dae-won Wenger [mailto:
sg@goal.or.kr]
Verzonden: donderdag 25 maart 2010 20:06
Aan: Eun-Shil
CC:
vsg@goal.or.kr
Onderwerp: RE: *REMINDER* General Meeting this Saturday!

Dear Eun-shil,
thank you for your email.
A formal proposal has been submitted yesterday evening by a member to change the rules of voting. So this topic will be an item on the agenda on Saturday.

Also to simply explain as to why the rule existed: back in the time when
GOAL was founded, the Korean lawyer who created the rules and regulations
did not even think about having the majority of the members abroad.

I hope that the majority of the attendants can agree on a solution this
Saturday.
Eventually it really depends on those who will attend in order to
change things (at least this time).

Best regards
Dae-won

****************************************************************************

YES, THE GANG OF 33 Majority of Members Present (where were others-too busy?) VOTED TO NOT ALLOW ELECTRONIC MEANS OF VOTING EVEN IN THE NEXT ELECTIONS IN TWO YEARS!!!

DO you see? It is not about ME. YOU, who do not live HERE are voiceless, by the hostile takeover.

DO SOMETHING People!!!

****************************************************************************

*****************************************************************

YOU DECIDE DEAR GOA’L MEMBERS, IS THE KOREAN WAR BABY - AS #24 OF THE GANG OF 33 accuses me of being a  “Blue Falcon” (Buddy F#@ker?) here, a guy who runs away from duty/work? This “adopotee”? who claims he “did not know anything about Molly Holt” calls The Korean War Baby, a man who f#@ks his Buddies and RUNS.

 DO YOU SEE ME RUNNING? I’M RUNNING TOWARD YOU!!

WITH HELL COMING WITH ME!!

Beware GANG OF 33.

I AM THE VOICE, CALLING IN THE WILDERNESS, PREPARE THE WAY, FOR THE VENGENCE OF THE LORD COMETH UPON YOU!!!

Judges 14:6  And the Spirit of the LORD came mightily upon him, and he rent him as he would have rent a kid, and he had nothing in his hand.

I cannot do this alone, only with YOU,

Get off your computer Games, stop Wii , Mafia Wars, Sending Hearts for just take a short time out on this date:

April 6th is coming!!!

2004-01-12 07-43-32_0025

Weapons

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

#24 Gang of 33-Choose your weapon,  meet me any day of the week. I will come at you with a tooth brush and shove it right up you punk ass nose into your sinuous cavity in 15 seconds. You may bring a knife, sword, or spear. Marines never run.

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