Would it be in poor taste to dress up my korean adoptee son as Psy for Halloween?

This question was on Twitter. With Halloween coming up, how many adoptees are going to find themselves paraded around like so many dress-up dolls? What does this say about the adoptive parents who would do this to the children temporarily in their care?

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3 thoughts on “Would it be in poor taste to dress up my korean adoptee son as Psy for Halloween?

  1. His question brought back memories of my adoptive mother dressing my sister and I up as poor orphans in the church to ‘advertise’ the wonderful work of what ‘adoption’ can do. The ignorance of what adoptive parents do can affect the child forever. Pretty discouraging and frustrating to say the least.

  2. Appropriateness depends on the age of the child. Is s/he old enough to know who Psy is and is a willing participate in the costume? Or is this a baby/toddler not privy to the reference? The former is okay, adoptee or not. But the latter can be perceived in poor taste for an adoptive parent. Psy is a sensationalized viral hit, not an enduring cultural figure (at least for now). Dressing up a baby as Psy, while not “wrong”, doesn’t exactly scream of an adoptive parents’ respect for the culture. It borders on exploitation for amusement…..all this is arguable.

  3. The first thing that hit me was the reference to “my korean [lowercase k] adoptee son”. Not “my son”; not “my adopted son”: my “korean adoptee son”.

    If there were, anywhere in the pictures of me as a child, anything that in any way smacked of “ethnic dress-up doll”, I don’t think I would be able to forgive my adoptive parents.

    Even worse, as pointed out, is the fact that this isn’t something researched or looked into, but which happens to be one of the aspects of Korean popular culture that has bubbled up and over into the American psyche.

    These are the kind of “anthropological slips”—like Freudian slips—that speak volumes as to what is going on behind the mythology of adoption.

Adoptees, what do you think? We welcome your replies!

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