POV is launching a series of adoption documentaries to air August 31st, September 7th, and September 14th on PBS. (Be sure to check your local listing or click here). The first film, Wo Ai Ni (I love You) Mommy by Stephanie Wang-Breal follows a Long Island Jewish family as they travel to China to adopt an 8 year old orphan. The film shows the struggles Sui Yong faces as she leaves her Chinese foster family and adjusts to life in America. Through her eyes, we witness what it feels like to be adopted by a loving, yet foreign American family and culture.
Be sure to read the filmmaker’s interview to learn about her inspiration for the film and her experience coming to know this family. Stephanie shares, “Adoption is complicated. In this case, Faith gains a new family, but she loses a very loving foster family. She gains a new language, a new home, a new sister and brother, but she loses her birth language and access to her culture. As we see her blossom, we also see her shed something that we all want her to hold dear. I hope that people realize that, although it’s great that she’s developing into this new human being, her journey is also very complicated. There are all these losses at the same time, for everyone, even for [the adoptive parents].”
What is it like to be torn from your Chinese foster family, put on a plane with strangers and wake up in a new country, family and culture? Stephanie Wang-Breal’s Wo Ai Ni (I Love You) Mommy is the story of Fang Sui Yong, an 8-year-old orphan, and the Sadowskys, the Long Island Jewish family that travels to China to adopt her. Sui Yong is one of 70,000 Chinese children now being raised in the United States. Through her eyes, we witness her struggle with a new identity as she transforms from a timid child into someone that no one — neither her new family nor she — could have imagined. Click here to read more.