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Ep#40: Exploring the “2nd gen Korean adoptee” experience with Bastiaan Flikweert, aka 신서빈

Not an adoptee and not quite a gyopo, Bastiaan Flikweert, also known as 신서빈, best describes himself as a second generation adoptee. Born in 1999 to two Dutch Korean adoptees, he spent his childhood living in both the Netherlands and Korea. He credits his intercultural upbringing with opening up many opportunities, but also with struggles and questions of identity and belonging. Bastiaan is completing an undergraduate degree with a double major in History and Korean Studies. He is currently living in Seoul, conducting research on the first mothers of transnational adoptees, with a focus on agency versus structure before and after 1966.

In some ways Bastiaan’s experiences reminded us of our own: he occupies a liminal space and has already transitioned through periods of living in Korea and the Netherlands, and back again. Bastiaan is thoughtful and reflective beyond his years; he shares eloquently about growing up with two adopted parents and between two countries, his experiences of racism, returning to Korea as an adult, and his hopes to foster the community of second generation adoptees. This was a fascinating interview that sheds light on the intergenerational impacts of being adopted and the insights that sometimes only later generations have. This interview also made us feel very old. Finally, stay tuned until the very end when Bastiaan indulges us in a classic Adopted Feels random question segment!

Connect with Bastiaan on Instagram (@b_seovin) or on LinkedIn at

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