here’s the background on it…
here’s the background on it…
Her chosen title has always been ‘Forbidden Family’ because she has this obsession; that being adopted meant she was ‘forbidden’ to know her birth family.
See end of this post for updated information
Perhaps, that was true during her childhood with her adoptive parents, but like billions of others, as an adult she eventually KNEW her birth family. But that wasn’t enough for this idiot; she had to cause and make trouble within both families and then write libel about everyone, not once, but twice, in book form, and regurgitate it all over the Internet! Therefore she LOST both families.
In addition, because she couldn’t and didn’t ‘leave’ it (being adopted) alone she began to exhibit serious behavioral problems within her adoptive family, long before the birth family made contact. Then, once she was found and because she didn’t/doesn’t KNOW who or what she was/is and her behaviors were NOT accepted by the birth family, we of that family became her additional ‘targets’ of abuse. Because she hates, is angry, and has serious mental impairments, she poisons every relationship that she ever had, as well as any that come to her, now and in the future.
These are the main reasons why everything, in each version of her story, is so wrong. Because she writes NOT about her life but about how mean, horrible and deceptive her adoptive family were and all about that ‘forbidden family’ who refused to allow her, Joan, to do mean, horrible and deceptive things to them, particularly when each and EVERY member of the birth family refused to accept Joan’s negative behaviors!
With each incarnation, of the ‘book’, more and more embellishments were added to enhance her growing hatred for being adopted and for the two families that she came from, the birth and adoptive families! With each ‘additional’ death in the families, she FELT justified by ADDING more lies because ‘dead people can’t sue’, as she puts in print!
Joan’s one and only issue in LIFE is that she believes that because she is adopted the institution of adoption is wrong and needs to be abolished! She believes that everyone that had ANYTHING to do with her, from her two families has been and always will be against her. Joan is perfect! If only she wasn’t adopted and had those two horrible nasty families…even as she wants the entire world to know about her forbidden family she condemns them!
Now for the point and substance of this post…
Beginning in 2008 Joan M Wheeler, was out there, on the Internet, screaming her outrage and promoting her ‘life-story’ and for most of the time the families DID NOT know!
For the record here are some key points of Joan’s attempts to tell HER the story of TWO FAMILIES!
1) First; it was just Forbidden Family, as she was writing it since around 1976 and as in a 1999 manuscript that I and others have. Personally speaking, by 1981/82, I had divorced myself and family from Joan! I did NOT see her for 10 years because of her interference within my marriage and my minor children. When I saw her next, in 1992, she again caused trouble, so I again ignored her, only to have her continue to contact me! My last contact with her was in 2005 when she lied to me, about loving me, and then wrote more lies about me and my MINOR CHILDREN when she published that book in 2009!
2) Then it was The Secret is Out; 1990. This was NOT a full scale book but an article that included the REAL names of some of the birth siblings, without their permission! I was first shown this article, by Joan herself, at a reunion in 1992, but didn’t pay much attention, at that time; for within a 24 hour time period, Joan had cause YET another series of interference regarding me and my life. I wanted nothing more to do with her! I forgot about the article.
Unfortunately, others were taken advantage of over this ‘article’. The truth of that exposure and the interference, with family members, by a total unknown stranger, a friend of Joan’s, who attempted to intimidate the family members were DETAILED by Joan in both of the full book versions, BUT not by the truth of what actually occurred. I did not know of these various negative outcomes, to other family members, until the first book was published in 2009.
Here is a scan of the article and a link to my exposure of it
3) Then, in 2008, as she was looking to publish, Joan was all over the Internet speaking out and promoting her ‘new’ memoir! At that time, the title was… Forbidden Family: Memoir of a Found Adoptee. Obviously, this book (no matter what title) is NOT JUST a memoir; it is a hate manifesto full of libel!
The basis of THIS POST is this particular ‘title’ and the EVIDENCE is presented below, from a comment of Joan’s on March 14, 2008.
4) Then there are her various webpages starting in 2008! She has said in the past that we, the birth siblings, have ‘closed down’ her web sites! Such paranoia! Such power she gives to us! The reality is that ONCE she did publish, she was FORCED to deal with the truth FROM FAMILY and we have not and will not be silenced! Joan has ‘forbidden’, us, the ‘forbidden family’ from reading her blogs! Sure, like she can prevent someone, anyone, from READING anything on the Internet!
The current link to her blog is https://forbiddenfamily.com/
5) Then, in 2009, she published with Trafford Publications and it was titled Forbidden Family: A Half Orphan’s Account of Her Adoption, Reunion and Social Activism
When we sisters got hold of that book in December 2009, we immediately began to speak with the publisher, Trafford Publications. To refute and counter all her lies, Ruth and I created our blogs. The book was finally pulled from publication, by Trafford in May 2011, after their lawyers determined that the author had violated the contract, by writing libel. They will never publish it again. Joan’s reaction was ‘the book was out of print and sleeping’. From May/June of 2011 Joan kept ‘hinting’ that her book was being revised.
6) Then, in 2015 she created a ‘business’; Identity Press, a self-publishing company!
There are only 9 likes on the Facebook page and no word YET about any book release about identities and adoption!
7) Then, in May 2015, she ‘self-published’, via her ‘new’ business, the book eliminating any publishing ‘middle men’ thereby having full control of her lies about others. It has now became, Forbidden Family: My life as an Adoptee Duped by Adoption.
I saw that this book was available in June 2015 and purchased it. I did NOT make it known publically, that I had, until on a news story I quoted Joan from that book. That brought Joan’s attention to me, as well as the adoptee organization that she wrote about, in the book.
The moment I did so, Joan, ‘released’ the book publically…
‘Kindle Edition released to the world July 18, 2015’.
But there was a PROBLEM! For Joan had ‘bad-mouthed’ several adoptee activists and she got some fallout. Her solution to the problem was to deleted four whole chapters, from the original!
Then the book format became available.
‘Print Edition released November 2, 2015’.
With each review of the book, on Amazon, I commented. I created ‘discussion’ topics as did Ruth.
So here’s a question for Joan…
How’s all that working out for you Joan? Certainly not what and how you expected it to be!
And NOW for evidence of this post; we see examples, in the following, of what I’ve just pointed out.
The following was gathered via a Google search. The web site is no longer available, but I have captured the ‘search’ information, the original ‘question’ and 2 of 4 answers, one of which is of course, Joan M Wheeler.
Mar 13, 2008 – Joan Wheeler says: March 14, 2008 at 6:40 am … You, the “parents” will find yourselves trying to defend why you lied. Building a parent-child …
To tell or to not tell? MARCH 12, 2008
Parents of egg donor kids are having a hard time disclosing the true biological origin to their children. Up to 44% of parents have decided not to tell their children how they were conceived. This surprises both psychologists and fertility specialists who had expected a higher rate of disclosure at a time when openness is encouraged about such matters.
Psychologists are trying to encourage parents to open up to their children in an age appropiate manner about their birth origins. Groups such as Resolve of the Bay State, held a seminar, “Talking with Children about Their Origins,” for prospective parents.
How would you feel about telling your child should you choose the egg donor route?
I think I’d fall into the “not sure” category. Perhaps it would also depend on the nature of the child. If I felt they can handle it. Of course if there was a medical need, I would tell.
I would 100% tell my child. I can see the opposite side though, and wouldn’t judge people for not telling.
Joan Wheeler March 14, 2008 at 6:40 am
I am a reunited adoptee, found by my 4 older full-blood siblings in 1974. Our mother died, our father relinquished me to adoption. My adoptive parents never wanted me to know the truth – ever. The betrayal, mistrust and hurt and rage I felt when I found out the truth was so completely devasting. I was 18, just finishing high school. My homelife was shattered, my life goals turned upside down. All because my adoptive parents never wanted me to know the truth. Beware: if you don’t tell the truth your egg-donor child will grow up and find out someway. You, the “parents” will find yourselves trying to defend why you lied. Building a parent-child relationship on a lie speaks volumns about the kind of people you are — and the child you love will end up hating you for causing such personal pain. You are not GOD. You do not own your child’s genes, nor do you own your child’s destiny. Give that donor-conceived PERSON human dignity and respect. Tell the truth before it backfires on YOU. I am 34 years in a reunion with my natrual family. My 92 year old adoptive mother finally understands what she did was wrong. Appologies now, 52 years later, are hardly enough to compensate for ridiculing me, mocking me, defiantly witholding the truth of birth from me — and treating me with disdain for becoming an adoption reform activist. My natrual father regrets giving me up. My adoptive father died 25 years ago and appologized for his part in the cover-up before he died. If you didn’t make your child the old-fashioned way, you’d better fess-up. Get the name of the egg donor and put that name on the birth certificate because she is the genetic mother. You are only the gestational mother. Put both destinctions on the birth certificate because that is the truth! If you cannot handle the truth yourselves, then how do you think that will affect your child? You can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org. My memoir (and well-researched on repro-tech adoptees) will be published soon. Forbidden Family: Memoir of a Found Adoptee.
Gert back again here…
Joan wrote; My memoir (and well-researched on repro-tech adoptees) will be published soon. Forbidden Family: Memoir of a Found Adoptee.
NO there was no ‘well-researched’ material in that FIRST book and in the SECOND book she deleted four full chapters that HAD any worthwhile materials. Joan is only interested in telling her story and lying about her two sets of families.
She cannot remember what she wrote, when she wrote it and apparently doesn’t care that there are many inconsistencies in her PR campaigns, let alone within the book(s). In this new revision, ‘duped by adoption’, on Kindle and printed versions, besides the many old, and now new lies, against two families, we find some significant ‘additions’ and ‘omissions’.
On the book’s Facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/Forbidden-Family-358715425479/ and on Amazon, in two places, one called ‘biography’, the other called ‘about the author’ (under editorial reviews) and in the book itself. They are three different versions of her ‘bio’!
In the book the first paragraph, of her bio, isn’t even there! I can only guess, of course, about that. Knowing Joan as I do, she uses her propaganda to ‘grab’ people’s attention and then reels them in. Once she has them ‘caught and netted’ (book purchased) she doesn’t need that inflammatory propaganda.
To begin…here is her biography/about the author. After which will be some of my own commentaries, that I could not place on Amazon, and then what I did placed on Amazon as a discussion topic. here is the link to that discussion topic
… Joan’s words in italic
Joan Mary Wheeler is an American adoptee and author fighting for the freedom of 7 to 10 million American adoptees and donor-conceived people. She is a displaced and resettled person by adoption, a reunited adoptee since 1974, an adoptees’ rights activist and adoption abolitionist promoting family preservation, kinship care, then guardianship over adoption. Domestically-born and adopted, she was born legitimately as Doris Michol Sippel in 1956 and half-orphaned at age three months when her mother died.
Since 1975, her articles on adoptees’ civil and human rights have been published in The Buffalo News (since 1976) and The Erie Daily Times (1975 – 1976). Joan contributed to the publication of the United States Congressional Record, Foster Care and Adoption Assistance Program (1985). Her autobiographical article “Dual Identity” appeared in Common Ground: WNY Women’s Newsjournal, Buffalo, New York (1985). A revised version, “The Secret is Out,” was published in Adoption and Fostering: Journal of the British Agencies for Adoption and Fostering (1990), and a Dutch translation was included in the book Kind van Andere Ouders (Child of Other Parents), The Netherlands (1991). Joan contributed to the New South Wales Law Reform Commission’s publication Report 69: Review of the Adoption Information Act 1990, Australia (1992). She presented a paper entitled “Adoptees and Children of Reproductive Technologies” to The President’s Council on Bioethics, Washington, D.C. (2004). A collection of her poems was published in Over Coffee: The Northside Writers Anthology, Snyder, New York (2012).
Joan has been interviewed on radio and television in the United States, Canada, and England.
Joan worked as a hospital social worker with head trauma patients, homeless services, crisis counseling, and suicide prevention.
She received a Bachelor of Arts from Mercyhurst College in Erie, Pennsylvania (1978) and a Bachelor of Science in Social Work from State University of New York College at Buffalo, graduating Cum Laude (1999). She resides in Buffalo, New York, USA.
End of Joan’s bio.
Now, it must be remembered that a person cannot really catch each and every addition or omission or sleight of hand that Joan does; for her constant rewrites makes it almost impossible to spot them. But the birth siblings have enough, more than enough, reasons, and ability, to spot a new lie or fabrication, and point them out.
With no particular reference as such, here are some passing thoughts…
Joan’s MO is NOT to educate or reform but to argue, browbeat and intimidate those that CHOSE to adopt. She did it to me, in 1980/81, when I and second husband adopted my son. She violated my parental rights, because to her adoption is an evil. She said I was HARMING my children. Her violation of my family’s rights was the reason I ‘divorced’ her and for that she continues to harm me within the pages of her libelous story and everywhere!
This type of behavior does NOT win anyone to her side of an argument. She complains that I did not listen to her. I did! Then I told her to butt out of my business. I then proceeded to do what was RIGHT for me and my family; adopt. Joan punished me with false child abuse reports, twice!
For Joan to state that she is a ‘fighter for freedom and rights’ of one group of people and then condemn and ridicule another group of people only shows her anger and frustration at being adopted and her powerlessness to stop others from adopting. Because Joan is so convinced of her arguments against adoption she is totally oblivious to the utter nonsense that she writes/speaks. She is a true believer in her cause; that is a very dangerous person.
She does have a wild imagination! She has delusions of grandeur and missed place self-importance thinking. How can she compare adoption with refugees and nations of people that have been displaced? Adoptees are NOT a race or a nation.
Here’s another example of how she misrepresents her self-importance. She says…‘She presented a paper entitled “Adoptees and Children of Reproductive Technologies” to The President’s Council on Bioethics, Washington, D.C. (2004).’
Well not really! I researched that and found the truth of the matter. She gave a statement at a public comment session and NOTHING was done about her ‘comments’. I wrote about it; see this link…
Other forms of changes and descriptions occur from one edition to the next such as…
From page 645 of the first libelous edition of 2009, where she lists her ‘jobs’ to what she has in the new edition; many are gone or altered. In the first book she listed elder care (that would be her being primary care-giver for her adopted mother and an occasional ‘volunteer’ to help with birth father) until he ‘kicked’ her out after being abused by her.
Youth program development (that would be that position of ‘driver’ she had for a season). I know! She had a short time job ‘driving’ juveniles to and from their appointments. She was a driver and had NOTHING to do with ‘program development’.
She used her contacts there, at that social-services office, to report abuse on me because I was in the process of adoption which she did not want me to do. When I told her to butt out, she didn’t. I refused her contact with my minor children. She then went behind my back telling my children they did NOT have to listen to me. She ‘deemed’ that I and husband were ABUSING my children and we needed to be punished so she called that second abuse report on me. I was exonerated! I still have the court documents that proved that I never abused my children!
What she writes in those books and elsewhere about me and my family are TOTALLY WRONG. It is strictly from her diseased mind that she fabricates ‘what happened’. She violated the sacred bonds between parent and child, because she has a sick understanding of that bond. What Joan did to MY CHILDREN is nothing short of KIN-KILLING, of reputation and privies of CHILDREN who had NOTHING to do with Joan’s life or adoption! I shall never forget nor forgive what Joan M Wheeler did to me and family!
homeless services, crisis counseling, and suicide prevention
She VOLUNTEERED on a ‘crisis hot-line’. Certainly such volunteering would give a person some ‘insights’ but it is NOT the same as saying she had A JOB in that field. I volunteer for Hospice, had training, have continuing training, but that does NOT make me a fully knowledgeable person in the field of HOSPICE care.
‘hospital social worker with head trauma patients’ That type of position would require specialized medical training.
Joan has NEVER WORK as a social worker. If she did she would list the employer. I worked for the VA in Buffalo NY and DOD in Fort Drum NY; I can prove my employment, Joan can NOT, that is why she does NOT list the employers.
She is disabled and been living on NY State Disability for many years.
I would REQUEST that she provide ‘where’ she received the additional training to work in a hospital with head trauma patients (a social worker degree would NOT be sufficient). Joan is very good at ‘resume padding’. In the real world she would be called on these ‘bare-bones’ jobs and experiences she claims.
In the 2009 publication of her first libelous book, she called herself an adoption activist and reformer. Now, in this 2015 self-published libelous book, she is an ABOLITIONIST. The only thing that is acceptable to her is the total elimination of adoption from the planet
There is always NOW going to be a difficulty in knowing for a ‘fact’ where and what Joan has said, in the Kindle editions. I do mean plural here, for she has already UPDATED the e-book, including removing 4 chapters and footnotes. Part of this ‘boiler plate’ nonsense is from (location 8237 to 8256) of the Kindle version. But now it is on location 6956.
On page 645 from the first libelous edition of 2009, pulled from publication via the publisher Trafford Publishers in 2011 has a ‘about the author’. This first book was entitled: Forbidden Family; A half orphan’s account of her adoption, reunion and social activism. With a Foreword by Prof. Dr. Rene Hoksbergen.
This book is ‘out of print’ and ‘unavailable’, since May 2011, because the publisher will NOT reproduce it, as they determined that Joan VIOLATED their contract. You can find details of the book, reviews and comments, via Amazon. Here is the link:
Forbidden Family Nov 23, 2009 by Joan M. Wheeler Currently unavailable
The kindle version has a completely different title and her name, as author now is, Joan Mary Wheeler. She removed her ‘birth’ name, from the front cover and the ‘family’ picture on the back cover, due to our, the birth family’s objections (via our blogs). BUT, within the pages of this new version, Joan gives full disclosure of our family names and heritages, places of residences and photos as well as where to ‘find’ and ‘view’ the family photo!
By doing these things, she expects people NOT to know of and/or find her previous libelous book. But rest assured, just google the title or go to that Amazon link and you will find it.
A very important note, of interest here, is to be mindful that many changes from the first book to this new revised book are what Joan found on her sisters’ (Gert, Ruth and Kathy) blogs and other comments, on many news sites/articles where we have spoken out about her. We know this because Joan, and her gang of thugs (angry adoptees who hate adoption and believe in Joan’s lies about us), have read our blogs since the beginning. We have noted her errors and given the correct information, over and over again.
There are whole BLOCKS of rewritten aspects of her ‘true’ story, from one book to the other, and in many places where rewrites are slanted to ‘prove’ her position against what the family has said about the first book. This proves, to those of us that KNOW the truth, that Joan is still doing the same old, same old, bullshit con-artist games.
We have found ‘significant’ changes that Joan FOUND on our blogs and where she incorporated them. A small example would be Joan’s use of the word ZERO, when describing the LACK of social-services in 1956. It was, and is RUTH, who used the word ZERO, many times. Joan stole it; it is not her first choice of word, wasn’t in the first book but it is in her revision! We have seen this many times BEFORE the second book was published. Joan, in discussions, that we blogged about, would use ‘word for word’ what we said on our blogs! She has limited imagination and is a copier.
This observation have lead us (the birth sisters) to the assertion that what Joan writes is HER UNDERSTANDING and not necessarily the truth; she will not deviate much from her view point, that adoption is an evil, but she lies about everyone and everything and event. A Trafford Publishing House representative, that I spoke with, during their investigation of her book, said to me that he told Joan ‘to write a book your sisters would like’…well she didn’t because she can’t!
And finally here is what I placed on a discussion topic on Amazon
Discussion topic…. title ‘about the author and biography’
Let us discuss what the author puts forth here, on Amazon, in two places, one is called ‘biography’, the other is called ‘about the author’ (under editorial reviews).
‘adoptee and author fighting for the freedom’ …WOW I’m impressed! She’s a freedom fighter! Not! She doesn’t fight for anyone’s freedom! She fights to rid the world of adoption! A person cannot claim to fight for freedom, of one group, while oppressing other groups.
‘She is a displaced and resettled person by adoption’…WOW! I even more impressed! Where does she get her ‘play book’ from? Displaced and resettled?! Double WOW! I’ve seen this elsewhere, oh yes, in those last chapters of this ‘revised’ book that she deleted, where she demands RESTITUTION from the government, for being an adoptee! And it is on page 566, of the first ‘true account’; ‘I demand restitution for my life as a person duped by adoption’. Guess where she got the title of this new and improved book?
Regardless of what the author says, adoptees are NOT considered to be a race or nation that have been displaced and resettled, nor are they entitled to restitution. As long as the institution of adoption exists there cannot be any restitution!
‘half-orphaned at age three months when her mother died’ … using the author’s definition the other four children became half-orphaned, as well, when their mother died! She is NOT the only one who ever was a ‘half-orphan’, only difference is she was placed into adoption, that doesn’t make her unique. Here we see that change in her age. In the ‘what’s in the book’ section, (on the very same page on Amazon), the author states she was ‘age four months’, here is was three months. Not being consistent with even one thing can lead people to doubt the author.
‘an adoptees’ rights activist and adoption abolitionist promoting family preservation, kinship care, then guardianship over adoption’ …
The author gives no suggestions as to how to handle the millions of children, for numerous reasons, that are unable to take advantage of ‘family preservation, kinship care, then guardianship’. This abolitionist position is not only unattainable, it is Utopian; in the worlds of human there is never any Utopian society.
“A revised version, “The Secret is Out,” was published in Adoption and Fostering: Journal of the British Agencies for Adoption and Fostering (1990), and a Dutch translation was included in the book Kind van Andere Ouders (Child of Other Parents), The Netherlands (1991)”
This ‘revised version’ contained real names of family members. It was cited on Page 634 footnote #15 in yet another ‘revised version’, her first ‘book’, ‘Forbidden Family; A half orphan’s account of her adoption, reunion and social activism’.
It is very interesting that this first book is NOT mention, here, or inside the pages of this current ‘revised version’. There is a very real valid reason for that. The book can be found on Amazon including book cover, and comments, here is the listing;
Forbidden Family Nov 23, 2009 by Joan M. Wheeler Currently unavailable
Joan worked as a hospital social worker with head trauma patients, homeless services, crisis counseling, and suicide prevention.
This looks like ‘resume padding’. In the real world she would be called on these ‘bare-bones’ jobs, experiences and be asked to provide references. The Facebook page, for this book, says the author has been self-employed since 1975. Does that mean these jobs were not jobs at all? There’s that lack of consistency again.
She received a Bachelor of Arts from Mercyhurst College in Erie, Pennsylvania (1978) and a Bachelor of Science in Social Work from State University of New York College at Buffalo, graduating Cum Laude (1999). She resides in Buffalo, New York, USA.
The author’s education was paid for by the adoptive parents. She and her children lived with her adopted mother most of the author’s life who still lives in the ‘inherited’ house. She does not live in Buffalo NY. Having a ‘degree’ in something is NOT the same as having a job in that field.
Inside this book it states. ‘2nd Edition Portions previously copyrighted and published 1981, 1990, 2009’ and ‘Published by Identity Press, Buffalo NY’
Identity Press is owned and operated by the author, therefore this book is self-published. The 1990 version had the real names of family members in it. The 2009 version was pulled from publication by the publisher, Trafford Publications in 2011.
Joan M Wheeler doesn’t understand that she can’t pull the wool over everyone’s eyes! This review is by someone who has looked behind the curtain and sees what really is in this book!
Joan’s ‘new and improved’ (?!) book is just another repeat, and more, of the same old hatred that she has for two families and the institution of adoption. I’ve said it many times and in many ways…how does this (Joan’s book) help with adoption reform? It doesn’t! Joan just wants to expose and exploit family members because she hates them. She REMOVED any useful information about adoption reform in this edition, AFTER it was published and purchased.
Here then is review number eight, afterwards will be my comment and some additional thoughts.
I have the author’s first book ‘Forbidden Family, A Half Orphan’s Account of Her Adoption, Reunion and Social Activism’. I also have this ‘duped by adoption’ book. I wonder why the change in title and contents of this one. What is the intent of this second rewritten edition? Was the first book not correct? Is the first book available? I’m confused! Why has the author gone from ‘social activism’ to being ‘duped’?
I don’t get it! How could anyone expose their two families with such an obvious one-sided viewpoint, twice! This book contains more damage to the families than the first book. It contains photos, personal information and rewrites, or eliminations, which are slanted toward the author’s total distaste for adoption and her two families. I believe it is a violation of privacy for everyone in these two families. This book is a travesty! It feels that readers are being ‘duped’.
gert mcqueen says: Your initial post: Nov 22, 2015 4:23:37 PM PST
Yes indeed this book is a travesty! The first book is no longer available; pulled by the publisher when they saw documents that family members submitted. The author had to `self-publish’, eliminating the middle man, in order to get her view point published as she continues to violate privacy of the families.
The author believes that she was wronged and harmed by being adopted. Perhaps, but that is not reason enough to expose and exploit birth family members nor the adoptive family nor her OWN CHILDREN! She portrays every person in a negative fashion; they are all out to get or harm her. She portrays her own mental instabilities and physical illnesses as a result of being adopted. Her activism takes the form of browbeating/insulting pro-adoption people on the internet, that is hardly productive. While having a degree in social work, the author has never held a job as one, because of her `illnesses’ caused by adoption! She believes that this, reality- TV drama style, of a book will shock people into seeing `what happens’ when you are adopted! The author is not interested in reform. To her adoption must be eliminated. Yes, this book dupes the reader into believing they are reading a true account. This book is far from any truth other than in the mind of the author!
And now some additional thoughts from Gert…
If you notice, on Amazon, on the book’s Facebook page, and in the book, there is NO mention of the book ‘Forbidden Family, A Half Orphan’s Account of Her Adoption, Reunion and Social Activism’…even though it is STILL ON AMAZON.
Including book cover, and comments, here is the listing…
Forbidden Family Nov 23, 2009 by Joan M. Wheeler Currently unavailable
So the big question is…Why IS IT that Joan does NOT mention that first book in her public boiler plate nonsense?
Because she CAN’T, can she! For the book for pulled, by Trafford Publishing, once they saw our, the birth family, documents and the CONTRACT that Joan signed, wherein she claimed there was NO libel. Joan BROKE the contract with the publishing house; they stopped publishing it!
Joan doesn’t understand the old adage… you can fool some of the people some of the time, but you can’t fool all the people all the time…
Rest assured that I shall be addressing her LACK of this mention, of the ‘pulled from publication due to libel and breach of contract’, in another discussion topic on Amazon. Stayed tuned!
Finally here is the list of links for the other 7 reviews and more…
Or has Joan used him, again? One never really knows with Joan because she is a sneaky con-artist who is always rewriting her life story, which includes me and mine!
When the e-book, titled, Forbidden Family, My Life as an Adoptee, Duped by Adoption, was first put out, May 2015, and I when I purchased it in June 2015, it stated and still states …. Rene Hoksbergen (Editor), Michael Allen Potter (Editor) I would guess that Joan will NOT be able to change what Amazon has placed there!
Inside the e-book, at Kindle Location 28, it states, ‘Formatting for Kindle: Michael Allen Potter’
That is misleading for he is NOT an editor; he just formatted the text into a kindle language.
And at location 8200, which is now GONE, as Joan removed four chapters, the location is now 6919 and it states, ‘I express my gratitude to the many editors who have helped me shape this book: Dr Rene Hoksbergen, Michael Allen Potter…’
The first book, that she wrote which was pulled from publication by the publisher, was titled ‘Forbidden Family; A half orphan’s account of her adoption, reunion and social activism. Foreword by Prof. Dr. Rene Hoksbergen.’
But NOW the updated second book, done in August, has an UPDATED forward by Hoksbergen, even as he is listed as editor. Was it really rewritten by Hoksbergen or by Joan? Let’s look at this more closely.
It should be remember that he NEVER saw a copy of the manuscript after the date of 2006; 4 years before the first book was published!! Also the birth sisters exposed many professional errors that the Doctor did for Joan.
So the QUESTION to ask is…how can Prof. Dr. Rene Hoksbergen be DEMOTED from the high place of writing a forward in the first edition to just an editor in the second? I believe that once Joan decided to update the e-book in August, to remove 4 chapters, because I exposed certain points in them, she also decided to ADD the forward – but she had to rewrite it first.
Adding a whole new paragraph, changing a word here and there, taking out whole sentences and combining two paragraphs and presto…there’s a NEW FORWARD and a new DATE of 2015! She is a first class con-artist!
But going on the ‘premise’ that this was written by Hoksbergen my initial thoughts were with him in mind, for this blog post and so my thoughts were…
Why does he again have to write a ‘forward’ to a garbage book that has already has been proved to continue libelous materials? Why does he have to use all that ‘gobblely gook’ language and thoughts that ONLY academia pompous has-beens use? To make him, and Joan, appear to have ‘something’ important to say that others will be ‘impressed’ with. It’s just a show behind the curtain! Pay no attention to these great and wonderful wizards of adoption!
Why does he have to engage in quasi-science? Quasi means ‘having a likeness to something’. What he, and Joan, are presenting may have ‘a likeness to something’ (their position) but their position is faulty to begin with. As a man of ‘letters’ he should KNOW better than to exploit two families without their permissions. Using the birth and adoptive families, as he does, solely on Joan’s recollections, retellings and fabrications, he has his AGENDA at the permanent expense of GENERATIONS of people that have NOTHING to do with adoption, its faults or its reform! These two families were NEVER interviewed by Rene Hoksbergen and after being informed years ago, he continues to do the same exploitations. Shame on him!
But then I looked at BOTH forwards and noted the changes. So NOW let’s look at this new forward and ask ourselves, did Joan rewrite this or did Hoksbergen? The first paragraph is totally new and is very much Joan!
The first forward had 3 paragraphs; the second forward has 4 paragraphs. In order to show how the forward changed from the first publication and the second I use these notations;
What is totally new in second one… (a) and underlined
What was changed from the first… (b) and underlined
What was taken out of the first…(c) and underlined
underlined The recently updated forward in the e-book, as of August 2015.
Paragraph 1 (new…(a)
Being surrendered for adoption, for the adoptee means the start of a lifelong process to arrive at an understanding and acceptance of so important fact of his or her life. In the meanwhile all involved in the adoption field have to realize that because basic societal phenomena change over time, it has to be accepted that the meaning over adoption also is likely to change. For the adoptee this means that for instance the searching process and reunion event may have changed over time in their meaning and consequence for the concerning adoptee.
Paragraph 2, (changed… (b) ‘Life stories’ ‘but none’ ‘has’ and the words reunion and search are NOW in bold.
A life story of an adoptee can be very compelling. This is definitely the case with Joan Wheeler’s account. Her life story differs a lot from other stories in nonfiction books about adoption. The main reason why her report is so important is because her Forbidden Family is the first book to focus on the ‘reunion in progress’. Many books have given us a rather complete description of all the feelings and facts involved with the ‘search in progress’. Up until now, the adoption literature has given us brief accounts of reunion and post-reunion experiences, but only a few so far have focused on all the effects of the post-reunion. In Joan’s account, the effects are shown on the adoptive parents, the original father, all siblings involved and also on other relatives and acquaintances further up in the social surrounding of Joan Wheeler born Doris Sippel and her two pairs of parents.
Paragraph 3, taken out…(c) and underlined changed… (b) and underlined
Joan has been able to show us the seemingly weak position of an adoptee in the US of A. By the end of the well-written history of her life one has the feeling that there is a chance for every ‘found adoptee’ to be judged harshly and shunned by her adoptive family and not be to become fully accepted by all her ‘new’ relatives, unless she fulfills the cultural role she is expected to fulfil. This role is to be a grateful and dependent person who is always very concerned with the feelings of all relatives involved.
taken out…(c) ‘Joan has also shown us that deeply-engrained beliefs can hold certain families together while tearing others apart. By careful dissection, Joan has illustrated how the implicit public perception that adoptees are not wanted by the parent who has surrendered the child, is not true. She has also demonstrated that not all adoptees originate from ‘illicit’ unmarried sex, and that those distorted perceptions carry damaging prejudice.’
Paragraph 4, taken out…(c) and underlined changed… (b) and underlined
Joan Wheeler has confronted us with basic questions about family life and the complex problems where two families are inextricably bound together by adoption. Her account is also a strong testimony against the system of closed adoption. She has shown that this adoption policy definitely was not in her ‘best interests’. For the biggest part, however, Joan’s account is a complex, intense and very relevant description or better analysis of adoption life in our culture.
(the original sentence was…Joan’s account is a true description: and intense and intimate analysis of adoption life in our culture.) *** note that ‘true description’ has been REMOVED.
She gives a detailed examination of opinions and emotions of adoptive parents, natural parents, and their children in the USA during the last decades of the 20th century and the beginning years of the 21st century.
Dr. Rene Hoksbergen, Professor Emeritus, Coordinator, Adoption Department, University of Utrecht, The Netherlands. June 1 st 2015
Original date of the forward was August 8, 2006
Also of significant note, years ago, on her first book, which is still is listed on Amazon, she posted, in her own author’s boilerplate, a ‘review’ by Hoksbergen that was written for a Netherlands publication; that piece was not in the book she wrote. She just used it for her own propaganda.
NOW take a look at the discussion on Amazon that I placed about this forward. There has only been, to date, one reply and they didn’t TOUCH on the first paragraph. I find that very telling, for it proves to me that that first paragraph was written by Joan.
Here are links to blog posts where Ruth and I have addressed Hoksbergen
I am placing each reviewer, and my comment to their review, in three separate posts, for they each are worth a post of their own. This introduction paragraph will be used for each one, as the necessary background needed if the posts are read out of order. Of course there are others, # 4 has already been posted and #5 will also have their post.
When I first saw and then purchased Joan’s latest remake of OTHER peoples’ lives, there were no reviews. It wasn’t until AFTER she saw that I quoted her, on a news site, that she announce it and promote it. Once she did that I went back to Amazon and placed a review, which subsequently was removed because I ‘know’ the author! My name was removed, via Amazon, on my comments to the reviewers to read ‘a purchaser’. That’s Amazon’s policy!
One of the three reviewers did NOT like my comment and removed her comment! Gosh what friends Joan has, they can’t take the heat! This reviewer really doesn’t like me!
Reviewer number three, my comment, then other developments and other thoughts
FORBIDDEN FEELINGS ON A FORBIDDEN TOPIC FINALLY OUT OF THE CLOSET 30 June 2015 By Lori Carangelo –
In “Forbidden Family,” the author skillfully recounts her personal post adoption reunion experience, highlighting the emotional abuse to most adoptees upon whom lifelong secrecy is imposed regarding their origins and pre-adoption pasts. For those not familiar with the fact that most adoptees have “legally” falsified birth certificates, Wheeler includes images of her original and “amended” (post-adoption) birth certificates and other comparisons.
Joan Wheeler takes the reader within, so that the reader feels the trauma she experienced. By doing so, the reader can understand that, not only in Wheeler’s case, but also in most post-adoption reunions, no matter how they are handled, adoptees are meeting strangers who had been in on the secret to varying degrees…A “birth” mother, and often birth siblings, have memory of the child up to the point of relinquishment. The adoptive parent(s) are provided some degree of pre-adoption history and may or may not share what they know, at their discretion. “Forbidden Family” supports the need for abolition of secrecy in the adoption process and not just 18 or more years after finalization — as well as the need for better methods of transferring legal custody that are truly “in child’s best interests.”.
–Lori Carangelo, adoption activist, president of Americans For Open Records (AmFOR), and author of “Chosen Children,” “The Ultimate Search Book,” and “The Adoption and Donor Conception Factbook.”
Gert’s comment to the review, as ‘a purchaser says’, which is what Amazon calls my public name.
This e-book, is a rehash of the first disaster (the actual living of the events), the second disaster (the first libelous book written by this author) and now this third disaster, because it contains additional hateful statements about those that have ‘passed on’. Why? Author states ‘dead people can’t sue’. It is certainly NOT written skillfully.
Feelings coming out of the closet? This book certainly is full of feelings of rage and hate, so perhaps those feelings, and the author, should go back into the closet. Afterall, she believes she’s been ‘duped by adoption’!
‘Highlighting the emotional abuse’ … abuse works both ways … it is learned and then assimulated and then passed on to others…abuse begets abuse. The way to stop the abuse is to break the cycle. So why does the author continue to punish others and herself? If she was emotionally abused, as she says, in this ‘docu-drama’, I did not find any explanation or indication that she actually ‘got any better’. Instead all I read is her continuation of the cycle of abuse. The use of descriptive narratives to flush out her story-lines by putting words and deeds into REAL people’s mouths and actions, is not very good means of activiting adoption reform.
This book is like ‘reality TV’ shows…it’s all made up for entertainment purposes…no one really takes these types of TV shows and books seriously. If the author truly wants reform and changes that she ought to write truthfully and professionally.
Gert here again; developments…
Like I said the above review and comment were removed, I can only assume via the author of the review, Lori. On August 13, 2015 I checked Amazon and found the following rewrite of Lori’s review. Obviously, Joan had read a comment I placed on a news site the day before, in which I said I was writing and posting everything that was on Amazon. It doesn’t take much imagination to see that Joan and Lori got together and Lori wrote a new one. I have no explanation about the date of June 29, when it didn’t appear until August 13. Oh the mysterious ways of the internet.
Lori and I have had previous correspondence where she stated that since the first book was still on Amazon it meant that the book was still available and I was wrong. Gosh, I can’t explain those inner workings and complexities and mysterious ways of things to someone who is already convince that they are right! Lori, like Joan, is a great believer in their own greatness! In any event, here is Lori’s second attempt.
Joan Wheeler takes the reader within, so that the reader feels the trauma she experienced. By doing so, the reader can understand that, not only in Wheeler’s case, but also in most post-adoption reunions, no matter how they are handled, adoptees are meeting strangers who had been in on the secret to varying degrees. A “birth” mother, and in Wheeler’s case, birth siblings, have memory of the child up to the point of relinquishment. The adoptive parent(s) are provided some degree of pre-adoption history and may or may not share what they know,at their discretion. “Forbidden Family” supports the need for abolition of secrecy in the adoption process and not just 18 or more years after finalization — as well as the need for better forms of legal custody, such as individualized legal guardianships, that are truly “in child’s best interests
CHOSEN CHILDREN – Billion Dollar Babies in America’s Failed Foster Care, Adoption & Prison SystemsTHE ADOPTION and DONOR CONCEPTION FACTBOOK: The Only Comprehensive Source of U.S. & Global Data on the Invisible Families of Adoptiom, Foster Care & Donor ConceptionTHE ADOPTION and DONOR CONCEPTION FACTBOOK: The Only Comprehensive Source of U.S. & Global Data on the Invisible Families of Adoptiom, Foster Care & Donor Conception
And Gert’s comment…a purchaser says: Your initial post: Aug 13, 2015 5:17:53 PM PDT
Nice sanitized rework! But still not an accurate depiction of the contents of the book! The ‘trauma’ that the author ‘experienced’ was, for the most part, one of her own making, ie. her failure to allow others to adopt if they choose to, and/or to think and do as they choose to. There is NO reason why the author should fabricate story-lines to fit her premise…that’s called ‘junk-science’. I know for fact that details in this book are not accurate, but totally from the author’s perceived ways that adoption ‘should/ought’ to be. Nice try, but no cigar!
This e-book, is still a rehash of the first disaster (the actual living of the events), the second disaster (the first libelous book written by this author) and now this third disaster, because it contains additional hateful statements about those that have ‘passed on’. Why? Author states at location 6577
‘If your father looks bad, it is his own fault, and yours too, for continuing hateful rumors. Uncle Mike died in 2002. Dead people cannot sue, nor can their heirs. Truth is a legal defense. I’m writing this book to expose all the hate and to put an end to it.’
Sounds like the author is ‘getting even’ with people for what? Her adoption? Does the author have a patent on truth? Her truth is NOT everyone else’s truth! ‘Facts are stubborn things’…President John Adams
Gert here again…now before we go any further I will give these blog posts are references to previous contacts I’ve had with Lori. Besides these posts I would strongly encourage you to look at Lori’s sites and see for yourselves what kind of positions she takes on the issue of adoption. Birds of a feather, flock together.
Now going back to Lori’s (2) reviews. Look at her ‘references’. Obviously there was some type of typo for her references were repeated in the second one. Beyond that, look at the differences between the first and the second reviews. In the first she ‘is adoption activist, president of Americans For Open Records (AmFOR), and author’, in the second she is what? Some typo error!
It is apparent that Lori and Joan will not allow me to over-shadow their parades. Well, guess what, I’m not going anywhere. I shall just continue on.
And of course Joan has ALREADY started rewriting and changing. In August she REMOVED 4 whole chapters and ADDED a rewrite of a forward…that shall be addressed as well.
end and here are the other current reviews
update Aug 31, 2015…
I am placing each reviewer, and my comment to their review, in three separate posts, for they each are worth a post of their own. This introduction paragraph will be used for each one, as the necessary background needed if the posts are read out of order.
When I first saw and then purchased Joan’s latest remake of OTHER peoples’ lives, there were no reviews. It wasn’t until AFTER she saw that I quoted her, on a news site, that she announce it and promote it. Once she did that I went back to Amazon and placed a review, which subsequently was removed because I ‘know’ the author! My name was removed, via Amazon, on my comments to the reviewers to read ‘a purchaser’. That’s Amazon’s policy! One of the three reviewers did NOT like my comment and removed her comment! Gosh what friends Joan has, they can’t take the heat!
Reviewer number two and my comment and other thoughts;
A personal account of the complications created by adoption and how these could be reduced EvelynR June 21, 2015
Joan Wheeler has produced an account of her personal experience of adoption separation. Although hers was a rather unusual family situation, she was adopted as a baby and, as with all adopted people, she was issued with a new birth certificate, which stated that her adoptive parents were her actual and only parents. Joan describes the complications and challenges of being a member of several families and the reader follows her journey of self-exploration, through her relationships with the many people to whom she is related in different ways. Joan concludes by outlining the ways in which she feels that adoptions should be conducted more honestly, in order to minimise the harm caused to those who experience separation from family members in this way. It is important for the world to hear from those with a personal experience of adoption to dispel the myths which are, sadly, so readily accepted in many parts of the world.
Gert’s reply…under comments… ‘a purchaser says’
No one lives in a vacuum, with or without an original birth certificate. The author’s family was not unusual. I’m sure many would agree it is not in good taste to exploit families, with personal biases, in order to get changes into adoption. This revised book, as with the first version, is not about her self-exploration but about the work that needs to be done on the ‘self’.
The author’s life is NOT about ‘adoption separation’, let alone reform and OBCs, for if that was true, she would not have waited until chapter 52 to put out her ‘recommendations for change’; it would have been chapter ONE!
This piece of garbage is self-serving. As an example here, at location 6810 chapter 48 Elderly Parents, is what Joan writes…
‘when I read Dad’s death notice in the newspaper, I was hurt to see that my name was left out. That was just typical of the mindset of these people acting out of spite….Whether or not it was his choice to leave my name out of his death notice I will never know.’
The truth is that the ‘father’ removed the author from his pre-arranged papers in 2009 for his own reasons; family members didn’t knew until he died. Joan’s retelling is from her ‘perspective’, always and as in all families, EVERYONE has a perspective and voice. Finally, adoption has NOTHING to do with the subject of the book. The subject of the book is about someone believing they were ‘duped’.
My 2nd comment…
Well the author decided to update the ebook…apparently she doesn’t like chapters 49, 50, 51 and 52. As I said in previous comment chapter 52 was where the author gives her ‘recommendations for change’ and I suggested it should have been chapter 1 if she was promoting adoption reform! Guess she isn’t for reform after all…just wants to tell us all about her terrible life as an adoptee and a horrible life in reunion with birth family! But wait! she’ll be back! She rewrite those chapters, for now, with e-book, she can rewrite the ‘truth’ as many times as she will!
Gert here again… what I couldn’t say on Amazon.
It really is quite a stupid title for a book! ‘an adoptee, duped by adoption’! Just because Joan feels and believes that she was ‘duped’ doesn’t mean that everyone else has been or is! Nor does it mean that adoption is a fraud. But to hear Joan, and believe me the adoptive and birth families have HEARD Joan, you would think that the human race, around the globe, have all by duped, conned, hoodwinked and more by the INSTITUTION OF ADOPTION!
Oh sure, no system is perfect, shit happens, terrible shit happens, but get real! Joan is such a drama queen! But you know…MAINSTREAM adoptees don’t INVITE Joan and her garbage books on their circuits! This new improved piece of shit is NOT on any adoptee reading list. It is NOT on any adoptee WRITTEN book list and there are A LOT of them out there today. No, mainstream adoptee rights reformers and activists don’t want Joan around them. Joan is so out of step with the world not many of her own kind want her around them.
A really strange thing is, how fascinated Joan is with her ‘baby’ pictures! Look at the covers of the two books. They can be found on the ‘about’ page on the blog and on the Facebook page, of the same title; ‘The life and times of Joan M Wheeler; duped by adoption, a book study’
In the first book her eyes are closed. Long after that first book was pulled from publication, because Joan violated her contract with the publisher that she would not publish libel and other things, but she did! I had noticed that she changed her ‘icon’ in various places and started to use another ‘snap shot’ of herself as that infant…with eyes OPENED. You will note that I cropped the cover picture of the second book because her opened eyes are too ‘creepy’, period!
Joan could be a ‘changeling’ or a ‘bad seed’…such things do happen. None of the other four siblings born to the same parents have those creepy eyes! Genetics aside, Joan was NOT raised by the birth family. She was raised by a strange family and all her behaviors were LEARNED behaviors. No one in the birth family behaves as Joan does!
Was does EvelynR say that Joan had ‘a rather unusual family situation’? I really don’t get that! There was NOTHING unusual…death of a parent happens quite often and children are placed into adoption for that and many other reasons. It is also not so unusual for ‘shirt-tail’ relations, generations removed, to have mingled and married within close ‘genetic’ relationships and/or to know the existence and identity of a child’s parentage! Joan is only UNIQUE in her own mind!
EvelynR also said ‘the complications and challenges of being a member of several families’. There were only TWO families; the birth and adoptive families. It was the members of those two families that had ‘the complications and challenges’ when dealing WITH Joan, not the other way around! Joan was a problem child within the adoptive family that had nothing to do with the birth family. It was Joan’s own behaviors and her interferences and various back-stabbings, that caused ‘complications’ that, when told by Joan, became only those DONE by others and NOT by Joan herself. Seems all so one-sided, don’t you think? Joan is always the poor misunderstood child/victim at the raw end of the whip that everyone whipped her with! Give me a break!
‘the reader follows her journey of self-exploration’ EvelynR said of the book! Hate to break it to you Evelyn and others, but his book is not about ‘self-exploration’. It’s a detailed description of the neurosis and damaged brain-cells of Joan and how she ‘goes after everyone who hurt her or whom she hates’.
Case in point, why did Dad remove Joan from his pre-prepared end of life papers? Because Joan finally went over the line of decency and respect for her ‘father’! Joan’s take on it, how she tells it, is NOT the way it happened. In 2009 she attempted to con Dad into paying for her car repairs and to publish the book. He said NO to the car repairs, that was her car not his, and that he didn’t NEED her help any longer. He had read a draft of a long-complicated ‘social-work assessment’ (which she leaves out of this ebook) in which she INSULTED Dad’s heritage and religion! Yes, he kicked her out of his house, again, because each time someone disagrees with Joan, she MUST argue with them. Dad didn’t allow arguing, he had enough of Joan’s conning and yelling. Dad told her ‘call before you come over again’. In 2011, she didn’t call before coming over…but that’s another tale, for another time. It was AFTER he kicked her out that Dad CHANGED his papers and no one, not even his wife knew what he did, until he died and they saw his papers.
But in this piece of garbage, Joan rants and raves, jumping to conclusions, about how it was us, the birth sisters, who ‘took’ her name off Dad’s obit. She gave us powers we didn’t have! So expanding on what I quoted in my original comment above… Location 6807
‘When I read Dad’s death notice in the newspaper, I was hurt to see that my name was left out. That was just typical of the mindset of these people acting out of spite. So I purchased a death notice of my own. This man was my father and I was his daughter. No amount of anger toward me, or bickering over me not being his legal daughter at the time of his death, could change the fact that he was my father. Whether or not it was his choice to leave my name out of his death notice I will never know.’
Contrary to what Joan says, she DOES read our blogs and makes false assumptions about ourselves, other family members and actual events. Again, contrary to what Joan says, she NEVER was a full-time care-giver to Dad and step-mom, she was NOT privy to ANYTHING, no one in the birth family wanted her around. It certainly wasn’t the birth sisters, who removed Joan’s name from the obit! But in Joan’s mind we did and therefore it is a FACT and she printed it! That folks is called LIBEL!
I am including here a link to a post that I wrote back when Dad died. It’s details speak for themselves and of course Joan ‘read’ this back then. It is on Ruth’s blog because I did not have my own blog at the time.
And finally, EvelynR says;
‘It is important for the world to hear from those with a personal experience of adoption to dispel the myths which are, sadly, so readily accepted in many parts of the world.’
While that may be true, it will NOT be found in this piece of shit work. The mind of Joan M Wheeler does NOTHING to help dispel any myths, it only CONFIRMS that her mind is diseased, that she puts HER view upon others and her motives are purely selfish and revengeful.