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Surviving Christmas TV with a child who joined the family by adoption

143 replies

Italiangreyhound · 14/12/2014 17:31

Oh look, Kung Fu Panda (adopted by a stork), on Sat 29th, Cinderella (lost her birth mum and dad married a bitch) in 22nd, The Rugrats movie (returning a new born baby to the hospital) in 23, Puss in Boots (and Humpty Dumpty was in the orphanage) on Christmas Day! Plus on that day we have Nanny Mchee (the children who have lost their mum), the child catcher on Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and later Kung Fu Panda 2. All we need is Tanged and Elf and we might be part way to a full set!

We started watching Elf last week on DVD but once they started talking about Will Ferrel going to find his 'real dad' I felt we should probably stop!

So there are a lot of programmes on TV this Christmas that some of our kids might find worrying.

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ArcheryAnnie · 18/12/2014 19:59

To be fair, Italiangreyhound, there's also a subset of children that really, really long to lose at least one of their parents. (I'm not even being sarcastic here.)

Italiangreyhound · 18/12/2014 21:41

ArcheryAnnie how sad, of course I can imagine children wishing to lose abusive or negligent parents, although I even wonder about that as some children may still feel a great attachment to negligent parents. Something about how you view yourself in relation to others being formulated by such parents.

WillkommenBienvenue you said Nearly all stories consist of a combination of problem/resolution Yes, I agree.

and Imaginary play/reading stories is a way for children to play out potential obstacles and resolutions. Every child does it and every child needs to do it to develop an understanding of their place in the world around them. Yes, I agree.

With regard to the Most children go through a phase of frequently thinking about the death or demise of their parents (whether in dreams or conscious thought) and it's absolutely normal.

Those are interesting thoughts, are these your own ideas or are they things that are regularly discussed in media, I am genuinely interested as I am a writer (although unpaid) - that's certainly another sad story! Grin

I do think fairy tales and the like are what we might call cautionary tales and are intended to teach not to liberate. Little Red Riding Hood (do not stray from the path or talk to strange men/wolves).

I suppose I do not automatically see the demise of parents as the necessary for liberation and growing up, and wonder if this is a western thing or is genuinely universal. I do not know enough about world literature as I probably should (I mean as someone who has travelled quite a bit).

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Devora · 18/12/2014 21:54

That's a nice post Wilkommen Smile Flowers

Italiangreyhound · 19/12/2014 09:00

WillkommenBienvenue I have another theory around children's novel and books, which is the basis for many fillms, and perhaps even for the films themselves. And that is that they are not written for children at all! Aside from the fact they are obviously written for money, they are maybe some out working of the authors own childhood.

For example, JM Barrie, the author of Peter Pan .....

"When he was 6 years old, Barrie's next-older brother David (his mother's favourite) died two days before his 14th birthday in an ice-skating accident. This left his mother devastated, and Barrie tried to fill David's place in his mother's attentions, even wearing David's clothes and whistling in the manner that he did. One time Barrie entered her room, and heard her say "Is that you?" "I thought it was the dead boy she was speaking to", wrote Barrie in his biographical account of his mother, Margaret Ogilvy (1896), "and I said in a little lonely voice, 'No, it's no' him, it's just me.'" Barrie's mother found comfort in the fact that her dead son would remain a boy forever, never to grow up and leave her.[2] Eventually Barrie and his mother entertained each other with stories of her brief childhood and books such as Robinson Crusoe, works by fellow Scotsman Walter Scott, and The Pilgrim's Progress.[3]"

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/J._M._Barrie

I feel that kind of explains a lot. And it is not about liberating children but working out his own griefs from the past, not just about the loss of his brother but about the fact that to his mother he felt he was 'only' himself and not his lost brother. Sad

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WillkommenBienvenue · 19/12/2014 14:58

Thanks for that I had no idea about Barrie's story. Interesting theory but I thought Peter Pan was about children not wanting to grow up and not about loss or rejection. Perhaps Barries feelings of loss and rejection by his mother made him want to explore feelings about not wanting to grow up because that would be the only way to retain the dependent child/mother bond.

Kristingle · 19/12/2014 18:08

Without commenting on all these deep issues that you have been discussing ......I just wanted to post a warning about Annie, which comes out in a few days .

We saw it last weekend and really enjoyed it . Great acting, good story, music, car and helicopter chase, cute dog, feisty Annie and feel good ending

However there are lots of Big Issues for adopted or fostered kids


Drunk and negligent foster carer, with 6 kids on a room . It's mentioned several times that she's only doing it for the money

Foster kids left to care for themselves, then used to clean the house for social worker inspection

Ongoing confusion between foster child and orphan

Social worker who is more interested in rich handsome man than completing paperwork for child

Child who is moved from one FC to another with nothing more than a few forms being filled in

Child fostered by single rich man because he believes it will help his bid for mayor

Child handed to fake " real parents " without proper check, who then try to kidnap her

Just wanted to give y'all a heads up

Italiangreyhound · 19/12/2014 22:33

Kristingle, YIKES! Thanks for that. Grin

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auntybookworm · 20/12/2014 19:34

Just wanted to thank everyone for the insightful heads up you have given me. I will be watching all films from a different angle

Jameme · 24/12/2014 11:36

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AdventuringAbout · 24/12/2014 11:51

Me too! Especially the oart whete they talk about having a "real mother and father back home". But DD absolutely loves it mainly for the pirates song, so as I recorded it we basically just watch that song. Over and over and over again. I was humming tick tock fecking croc in my sleep last night.

AdventuringAbout · 24/12/2014 11:53

*part where (clearly got Sellotape on my typing fingers, sorry)

Jameme · 24/12/2014 12:04

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AdventuringAbout · 24/12/2014 13:37

Ha! Her harness can't have been THAT big under the nightie, and they managed to keep Peter Mr Bloom Pan looking svelte, so yeah, I'd say Nina is not in their good books Grin

ArcheryAnnie · 25/12/2014 01:28

Popping back in to say that I forget, every time, how heavily Toy Story 2 and Toy Story 3 are about abandonment and ageing, and how, though DS is unmoved by these themes, I am bloody traumatised and have to keep on leaving the room to make cups of tea.

Italiangreyhound · 25/12/2014 22:34

I cried when I watched TS3!! Xmas Wink

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Jameme · 25/12/2014 23:53

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ChampagneAndCrisps · 26/12/2014 00:49

This has been very interesting to read. My children aren't adopted, but my friend has two adopted children.

Films have brought up things for us too. My two with Tourettes really identified with Elsa in Frozen singing about the need to appear normal in public and to hide her true self. It was a positive experience for them to have their own feelings expressed on film.

I do admire the way you all think about your children so well, and are so aware of their needs.

Italiangreyhound · 26/12/2014 01:20

Thanks Champagne I think mumsnet adoption threads have really helped me to see things in a new way, and that is all the regular posters here. I know we get prep and training but individual posters here have made a huge difference to me - you know who you are!

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