For me, it’s not so simple. I wish that my adoption was a 100-percent-positive thing, that people as well as God did not see the color of my skin, that having grown the tallest of my siblings was a sign of not only good childhood nutrition but of spiritual abundance as well. How do I explain in the course of polite conversation that my seemingly flawless assimilation into America has yielded anything but joy and gratitude? How do I explain my ambivalence? Yet I do have mixed feelings. I feel ashamed and unworthy of the gifts that have been given me; ashamed for not being a better daughter—both a grateful American one and a forgiving Korean one, guided by filial piety; ashamed for opening my mouth, despite everything people have tried to do for me, in what they thought were my best interests. What an unworthy, spoiled, ungrateful, whining, American brat.
— Jane Jeong Trenka, The Language of Blood