For whatever reason, he didn’t get what he needed so that he could be safe and make good choices. And, I’m so sad that the series of bad choices he made have hurt so many people in such big, big ways. Those 17 people who died on February 14th each had a story too. They had mommies and daddies and brothers and sisters and friends.
But – pay attention to this, my sweet child — 17 people didn’t die that day because Nikolas was adopted.
Being adopted didn’t make him bad.
There’s really not much else to say. Yes, all adoptions DO start with a loss, but please, my friends, don’t let Nikolas Cruz’s actions that tragic day put a stigma on adopted people. If you are the parent of an adopted child who is old enough to have heard some of the media reports on Cruz, please use this opportunity to talk with them about how although adoption was a part of Cruz’s story, it was not the thing that “made him bad.” As an advocate for adoption and the adopted, please don’t allow that lie to be believed by your family and friends.
As Kelly says in her letter to her daughter,
Our histories matter. Our real stories do play a part in who we become. Adoption was part of his story. But, there were lots of other parts of his story. Some parts people know now; some parts they may find out soon and maybe we’ll hear as he goes to court and a judge decides what to do; some parts people will never know. But, don’t make the mistake of hearing him described as adopted and think that is what makes sense of this really bad thing.
Our histories MATTER…but they DON’T determine our present choices. Adoption is a beautiful gift to so many…let’s not spread the opposite message.
Read Kelly’s entire letter to her daughter here at No Hands But Our Own.