Susan Vickers is a broadcaster, author, and model from Wolverhampton England.
Susan's debut book, ‘I am not a Paki,’ documented her life as a mixed-race person, from growing up in 1970’s 80’s to the present day, in a society where racism was rife. It chronicles the trials, tribulations, trauma and abuse that was endured not only by Susan but also by family and friends.
Susan was adopted in 1971 into a white British family who had already a natural child of their own.
Frequently, when you hear about adoption it is usually from the viewpoint of a adopters and their reasons why they adopted. The story focusses on how their quality of life will be improved, whether it be the need to be parents after struggling with infertility, or they want to give a loving home to a child in need, or maybe to fulfil a lifelong dream of raising a child. Or maybe they want to just increase the size of their family.
However, rarely do we hear about what it is like to be adopted from the point of view of the adoptee, how it feels, not just as a child, but about the journey into adult life. The struggles with identity, low self-esteem, difficulty forming emotional attachments, the lifelong feeling of not belonging or fitting in, a sense of grief over their biological family and the constant stigma around the words “oh you're adopted?.”
These are coupled with the sympathetic faces the raised eyebrows, embarrassment, uncomfortableness and the “so nobody loved you?” comments, and so much more. These experiences influence future whole life choices and feels like a cross to bear.
This is Susan’s story, not only as life as an adoptee, but mixed race too. It documents her life growing up in a family that was not naturally her own, the consequences of this and her search for her biological family.
And hopefully to shed a light to help other adoptees and adopters to understand that we are not just abandoned children who will be forever grateful for you giving us a home, but that sometimes, just sometimes...
Love is not enough!
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