August 12th, 2009
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Categories: Television

I have a guilty secret: I’m addicted to the Lifetime show Army Wives. Part of it is because I used to be an Army wife. (I’m still married to the same wonderful man. He’s just no longer also married to the Army.) The rest of it is the great acting, juicy stories and general drama of the show. There have been some storylines that made me roll my eyes. Other plots have sucked me in without question.

The most recent episode threw a surprise adoption story at me! Those meanie-heads!

I’ve talked about other guilty secret shows of mine in the past, like One Tree Hill, throwing adoption at me when I least expected it. This particular plot twist was totally unexpected. Here’s what happened, in a brief rundown.

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A woman with straggly blond hair walks into a bar and asks if she can work for a meal. The bar owner, one of the main characters, recognizes her voice as a famous (but has-been) singer from Tennessee. This upsets the woman and she leaves. The bar owner later sees the straggly blonde-haired woman sitting outside the Army base. She gives her a ride in when she learns that the other woman is there to see her son. Eventually, after the bar owner tells her that she was sixteen when her first son was born, the other woman admits that she gave her son to her older sister to raise. She’s on base looking for him because he’s about to deploy to Afghanistan. Her parents kicked her out of the house. She then went off to Nashville to make something of herself. She had mediocre success. She was embarrassed and hadn’t seen her son in thirteen years. She said that her sister, raising the son in question, told her that if she couldn’t raise him right, to leave them alone. So, she did. At this point, the bar owner takes it upon herself to reunite them. Turns out that the son doesn’t want to be reunited and hangs up on the bar owner. The other woman tries to leave but, in the end, fixes herself up and sings a song at the bar. She leaves the Army base and heads back to Nashville. She smiles as the bus pulls away. End of story.

Or is it?

I don’t know if the show will revisit this random stop on the storyline. I can’t imagine that this was a one time deal. Last season they dealt with a minor character who battled breast cancer. It became a key point in the show as that is how the bar owner in question inherited said bar. I imagine the writers will bring this particular character and plot twist back at some point. I can’t quite figure it out right now.

I do know that I wasn’t horribly put off by the portrayal. I mean, it was all very stereotypical. The birth mother was fifteen when she gave birth to her son. We in the adoption world know that mothers who choose to place their babies for adoption are usually in their early twenties. That aside, she was also the typical portrayal of a woman down on her luck, lacking in education and in need of a good pick-me-up. But there was something not too horrible about the exchanges.

I felt that the part when she said that her parents couldn’t tolerate her getting “knocked up” was easy to relate to for many a birth parent. While I wasn’t kicked out of my home, my pregnancy was a serious issues of contention between myself and my parents for quite some time. There was a lack of communication which lead to a lack of support. (The communication problem was equally, if not more so, on my side. Not pointing fingers here.) I thought it was a good representation that many birth mothers end up placing because they didn’t have that familial support.

I will be watching the show to see if this plot shows up again. I’ll let you know when/if it does!

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Photo Credit.

One Response to “Army Wives & Adoption”

  1. susie703 says:

    I also love this show! This was such an accurate portrayal of a birthmom. I also was 15 when I gave a son up for adoption. By the end of the show I had tears pouring down my face. I felt the stab of pain when the son refused to talk to his birthmom. I felt such joy for her when she came back to sing with the band. I hope that they keep up with this story line, and of course am hoping for a happy ending with the mom/son eventually having a relationship : )

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