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#1 of 152 Old 10-05-2005, 05:39 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Is/Has anyone else experienced this? When we decided to adopt we knew there would come a time when we would run into people who did not agree about adoption in general, we further tried to prepare ourselves for those that would be so against us adopting a child of a different race. It wasn't so much that we weren't comfortable with our decision we just wanted to be prepared on how to respond for when the child was older not to make them feel uncomfortable.

What we did not expect was the amount of criticism or comments on us adopting from a different country and not one from here in the US. It seems like everywhere we go people are asking us why not adopt from here or children in the US need good homes too. I genuinely understand on how they are curious as to how adoption works and are clueless on all the requirements and how they can vary from cuntry to country, when people are truly curious I don't mind answering their questions. Usually they start off by asking why adopt from Guatemala? I (briefly) explain about requirements or DH gets directly to the point and says because that is where our child is being born. Then I ask them why do they ask. Nine out of ten times its, "because there are still children here in the US that need good homes, you don't need to adopt a child from somewhere else."

By the time we leave I usually end up fuming. One time I had a complete stranger so appalled that we would "better" a child from a different country than ours, that I finally lost it and spoke my peace. I basically told her," how wonderful it must be to sit back and criticize others on something you yourself are refusing to do. If you feel that strongly that children here need help, what are you doing? How many darlings are you willing to take into your home and parent? Thats right, none, instead its easier for you to stand here and tell me which children I should help out first. All children deserve good homes, and unless you yourself are willing to take one in don't tell me where I should be deciding to adopt." I mean I COMPLETELY lost it. I felt terrible afterwards, but this lady in particular was just being so mean. This was all said in a Target by the way when we were waiting in line to ask a salesman a question in the baby department and she cut in because she was expecting (her words not mine) and therefore should get help right away.

I am appalled that people feel that it is wrong to adopt a child from a different country instead of your own. I know there must be better ways to handle these probing questions. I know I can always say something and walk away, but the devil comes out of me and I want them to realize why that line of thinking is wrong. Sorry for the vent, just curious how others handle it for next time.
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#2 of 152 Old 10-05-2005, 05:54 PM
 
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I think you handled it fine. That is a faulty line of reasoning that many people have regarding international adoption. A child needing a home transcends nationality. That said, we did adopt in the U.S., but it was a matter of the program suiting us rather than a belief that we were "doing the better thing".

There are people who just think adoption, at all, is unnatural, wrong, or what have you. We adoptive parents just have to grow that extra layer of skin and be armed with positive responses to educate people about adoption. And we have the right to get pissed off sometimes, too.

I grew up internationally, and don't have a strong pull towards the US as "my nation" (especially lately!!!). I feel like an inhabitant of the world at large, and care just as much about other countries as I do the one in which I live.

And, if you adopt from the US, people think you are crazy for not being afraid to meet the birthparents one day.........you can't win. And of course, almost all of these comments come from people who have not adopted.

Hang in there.....

L.
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#3 of 152 Old 10-05-2005, 06:30 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Starr
I (briefly) explain about requirements or DH gets directly to the point and says because that is where our child is being born. Then I ask them why do they ask. Nine out of ten times its, "because there are still children here in the US that need good homes, you don't need to adopt a child from somewhere else."

By the time we leave I usually end up fuming. One time I had a complete stranger so appalled that we would "better" a child from a different country than ours, that I finally lost it and spoke my peace. I basically told her," how wonderful it must be to sit back and criticize others on something you yourself are refusing to do. If you feel that strongly that children here need help, what are you doing? How many darlings are you willing to take into your home and parent? Thats right, none, instead its easier for you to stand here and tell me which children I should help out first. All children deserve good homes, and unless you yourself are willing to take one in don't tell me where I should be deciding to adopt." I mean I COMPLETELY lost it. I felt terrible afterwards, but this lady in particular was just being so mean. This was all said in a Target by the way when we were waiting in line to ask a salesman a question in the baby department and she cut in because she was expecting (her words not mine) and therefore should get help right away.
: Bravo!!!
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#4 of 152 Old 10-05-2005, 08:17 PM
 
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i usually say well we're infertile and this is how we are handling it. i have found that the word infertile usually shuts people up! and then i walk away. i don't understand why people are such jerks, but i think you did well...and please, she needs help faster cuz she's expecting?! pah, so are you!

Kelly, :Mama to Kevin, 10/1/05 & Seth, 7/7/06. ::
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#5 of 152 Old 10-05-2005, 08:58 PM
 
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I haven't gotten much of this yet, mostly because I haven't told many people yet. The people I HAVE told ALL asked "Why China and not the US?" Every one of them! Once I explained my reasoning, they were more or less supportive, although I did get a "You could adopt from Russia..." from my former college roommate. Since that conversation she saw the Shohanna's Hope (I'm sure I spelled that wrong) booth at a Steven Curtis Chapman concert and is more supportive of adoption from China now. Whatever helps her along, I guess!

I wonder most about my dad's reaction -- I suspect once she's here he'll be a proud grandpa, but he did once tell me he thought "Chinese people look funny". He sounded like he was embarrassed to be thinking that, but that he just thought that way "I guess because they don't look like what I'm most used to seeing." That freaked me out a bit, because I had decided to adopt already at that point, but he didn't (still doesn't) know anything about it.

Go you for telling the woman off at the store. No one has any right to tell another person how to create their family. Just because you aren't physically pregnant doesn't mean you aren't expecting. OT, but I've always wondered if when my daughter comes home I could get away with parking in the "new mom" spots at the grocery store. Just once -- I think that would be one of those super small kinda stupid things that can mean a lot, you know?

I don't really think of adopting as "helping a child" anyway, so that really doesn't factor in to my thinking at all -- it's just a side effect if anything. My daughter is (or will be) in China, so that's where I'm going. Yeah, she'll probably be better off with me than in an orphanage, but she's losing a lot by coming here too -- I'm not adopting her to "help" or "save" her, I'm adopting her because I want to be a mom and she's meant to be my child.
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#6 of 152 Old 10-05-2005, 09:04 PM
 
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i don't disagree with your point at all (and thank you, leatherette for your support of open adoption), but adult adoptees flinch a little bit at phrases like 'take them in' & the intimation that people should adopt regardless of their personal inclination or they are bad people disallowed to have an opinion (even if the opinion is pretty lame.)

'journey of the adopted self: a quest for wholeness' by betty jean lifton, is an excellent book to read if you'd like to know more about where adoptees are coming from & why certain phrases & attitudes may be considered offensive. ('bastard nation' is our activist group, btw, for any birthparents, adoptive parents, adoptees, & concerned friends & relations that are interested in adoption rights <g>)

grazie, susan

ps and congrats on your new baby coming!
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#7 of 152 Old 10-06-2005, 09:20 AM
 
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Why do people say things like that? Because in this country, we are raised and indoctrinated in school to be very parochial. We are Americans and America is the best country on earth. We are engendered with a sense of being "apart" from the other peoples of the world. We see ourselves as special in a way that others are not. So of course we should "look out for our own" first.

My FIL told us, when we were planning to adopt, that he "doesn't believe in adoption because people should take care of their own children and not foist their problems off on others." I stood up, looked him straight in the eye, and said, "I'm sorry you feel that way but it doesn't change our decision."

One of my SILs told my other SIL, who was planning to go to Ethiopia for three weeks to build houses with Habitat for Humanity, that she should help people in America first. The other SIL said, "Your nephew is from Ethiopia, and people everywhere in the world deserve to have homes." The first SIL responded, "Well, they should have adopted an American child."

People are ignorant and close-minded.

What I usually tell people when they ask me why we chose to adopt from another country instead of an American child who needs a home is that there are vastly more social services available here for children who graduate foster care without being adopted than there are for children who graduate from orphanages in poor countries. Regardless of whether the resources in the US are adequate, at least they exist, which, for the most part, they don't in poor countries.

Namaste!
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#8 of 152 Old 10-06-2005, 09:22 AM
 
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People just don't understand anything about the different types of adoption. I am in Canada so I can't comment on the US system but in Canada it is very hard to adopt through the CAS system (Children's Aid Society, like CPS). Yes there are thousands of kids who need homes in Ontario. Are they going to let you adopt them? Maybe years later! My sister started her adoption process through CAS in March 2004. It took them 14 months to getting around to finishing their homestudy. In Ontario you have to have a child at least 18 months younger than your youngest and their only daughter is 6 so their max age is 4.5. But they are willing, actually seeking, to take an autistic child or other similar delays. They have been to three A.R.E.'s (adoption resource exchange, in Ontario - a huge exhibition where social workers across the province present "their" children) and personally pursued countless children from adopt ontario and canada's waiting kids websites. Like I said all the children they've inquired about have pretty substantial special needs so you'd think they'd be able to get matched right away. I mean that's what people think. Well they are FINALLY possibly being matched with a 2 year old boy who has autism. Actually they find out officially today (send lots of good adoption thoughts!!!) but it has been a loooooong haul. It is just not as easy as people think to adopt within your own country. Not to mention the fact that it is near impossible to get a baby in Canada and some people would like a baby first. My sister is planning an international adoption for her next adoption because she cannot have more children (she has one bio daughter) and she wants a chance to have a baby again. Sorry people are so ignorant to you.

Shawna, married to Michael, mommy to Elijah 1/18/01, Olivia 11/9/02, and Eliana 1/22/06
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#9 of 152 Old 10-06-2005, 09:44 AM
 
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In Ontario you have to have a child at least 18 months younger than your youngest.
I don't think that is correct. I know that once they place a child, they say no more (by adoption or pregnancy) for 18 months. An infertile couple I know was told to use bc when they got their child. I know all the pregnancy after adoption stories, but that is just insulting.
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#10 of 152 Old 10-06-2005, 10:12 AM
 
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I think you handled this just fine. My oldest dd has been home for 7 years now, so I'm used to those questions. I usually start out with "Why do you ask?" That puts the ball back in the questioner's court. Then if I get the "Why didn't you adopt in the US" tirade, I immediately ask them how many children they have adopted, and that usually ends the conversation right there. On rare occasions, if the person is particularly vile, I'll get all gushy and start congratulating them for their domestic adoptions, using some of the same language they did. If the person is genuinely interested in adoption, I give them a card and ask them to call me, or I'll write down the URL of our local adoption support groups.

While I understand the appeal of the "That's where our child was" response, I've personally never found it in the least bit helpful.

Most people really are clueless about how adoption works. If they are nasty about it, I don't have a problem with doing what needs to be done to terminate the conversation. If they are interested, I'd love to educate them, but a casual conversation in a store isn't the way to do it. My kids are old enough that they don't like to be the center of attention over conversation with complete strangers in the grocery store.

suseyblue does bring up an interesting point. It does surprise some adoptive parents to know that not everyone has a positive opinion about adoption. While I personally think people are entitled to their opinions, I see a world of difference between having an opinion and feeling free to accost adoptive families in Target and beat them over the head with said opinion.

Before we started the adoption process, in addition to a ton of other research, I lurked a great deal on some internet newsgroups about adoption. There are some extremely bitter adoptees, birthparents and adoptive parents out there, who think that death is better for a child than adoption. I was frankly amazed, but it did open my eyes a bit.
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#11 of 152 Old 10-06-2005, 11:22 AM
 
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I just want to add that these kind of comments bothered me so much more while we were waiting for our daughter. I think I just felt more touchy and emotionally vulnerable. Since she's been home, we still get comments, but they roll off more easily.

I'm not really bothered when white people say ignorant things to me about international adoption, but I will admit that I still feel nervous sometimes about attitudes about adoption within our local Latino communities (my daughter was born in Guatemala.) So far, however, people's biggest concern that they've expressed to me is that we make sure she learns Spanish (which we are planning to do.)
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#12 of 152 Old 10-06-2005, 01:44 PM
 
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Originally Posted by EFmom
suseyblue does bring up an interesting point. It does surprise some adoptive parents to know that not everyone has a positive opinion about adoption. While I personally think people are entitled to their opinions, I see a world of difference between having an opinion and feeling free to accost adoptive families in Target and beat them over the head with said opinion. (indeed. i think miss manners covers that situation. quite rude. sb)

Before we started the adoption process, in addition to a ton of other research, I lurked a great deal on some internet newsgroups about adoption. There are some extremely bitter adoptees, birthparents and adoptive parents out there, who think that death is better for a child than adoption. I was frankly amazed, but it did open my eyes a bit.
er, what does bitterness, negativity have to do with adoption rights? i personally (active in the adoption rights movement) don't know anyone 'against' adoption per se; i do know lots of people angry at a closed system that denies them their birthright, knowledge of their origin.

i was, but not everyone is, blessed with birthparents that made it easy to be found & were welcoming & forthright with knowledge. i have, but not everyone has, adoptive parents with enough love & confidence to sign the waivers necessary in some states for AN ADULT (an adult!!!) to learn their own history.

anywhere else on this board, if someone gently mentions that they find some terminology demeaning or offensive, apologies are tendered & people try to look at things from a new paradigm (one of the strengths of this community.) are adult adoptees, bitter or not, not allowed an opinion in this discussion? that's like saying MOC can't have a legitimate discussion here about racism because they might be 'bitter'. wouldn't it foster understanding more to listen to what people directly involved have to say?

anyway, starr, i didn't get the impression that you would knowingly say anything to offend adoptees; i was just pointing out the equivalent of oh, say, 'he's a credit to his race'. no one saying that means it as anything but a compliment, but it is demeaning, nonetheless. (thank goodness no one needs to explain why anymore.) i'd like adoptees to be able to go through life hearing fewer flinchworthy comments from well-intentioned people too. adoptive parents, above all, ought to be able to understand.

(btw, 'bastard nation' is a proactive group whose sole purpose is to open adoption records & fight for adoptee rights. i would hope all adoptive and birth parents love their children enough to want their rights protected. nothing against adoption whatsoever, although closed adoption advocates & the industry of adoption would paint it so.)

shalom, susan
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#13 of 152 Old 10-06-2005, 02:58 PM
 
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I don't know what I said that tied bitterness with adoption rights. Susan, I was not referring to you or to Bastard Nation (I know about that organization) at all when I was talking about "bitterness."

I was referring to what I read on some unmoderated Internet newsgroups eight or nine years ago. There were some posters there who absolutely would make adoption illegal and who genuinely seemed to hate anyone involved in adoption. As a pre-adoptive parent, that surprised me. However, it was a good thing for me to know and to think about, that's all I was trying to say, as it never would have occured to me before.

I totally support an adopted person's rights to have their own records. My kids will never know who their birthparents are and that is something that deeply grieves me as I'm sure it will be a source of sadness to them, just as I'm sure it is to their birthparents.
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#14 of 152 Old 10-07-2005, 12:00 AM
 
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EFmom, I hear where you're coming from! While I've never personally encountered any adoptees who were against adoption, online or otherwise, I have read articles by international adoptees who wish to abolish adoption, especially international adoption. They come right out and say they would rather have died on the streets of their own countries than be adopted into any other culture. These are not necessarily people with parents who failed to help them learn about their birth culture, either. They are, quite frankly, very, very bitter, but their opinions are important and must be heard. I must accept that no matter what I do, my daughter MAY end up feeling the same as them. Adoption is not for the faint of heart, it seems.
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#15 of 152 Old 10-07-2005, 01:56 AM
 
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EFmom, I hear where you're coming from! While I've never personally encountered any adoptees who were against adoption, online or otherwise, I have read articles by international adoptees who wish to abolish adoption, especially international adoption. They come right out and say they would rather have died on the streets of their own countries than be adopted into any other culture. These are not necessarily people with parents who failed to help them learn about their birth culture, either. They are, quite frankly, very, very bitter, but their opinions are important and must be heard. I must accept that no matter what I do, my daughter MAY end up feeling the same as them. Adoption is not for the faint of heart, it seems.
This worries me because I'm desperate to adopt internationally, but it breaks my heart to think that my child would feel that way? Could either of you send me in the direction of these discussions so that I can read them?

It's making me rethink intl adoption.

Homesteading, unschooling mama of three.
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#16 of 152 Old 10-07-2005, 03:09 AM
 
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If you can't handle international adult adoptees questioning the 'ethics' of adoption, then you might want to buckle your seat belt--because many (not all, perhaps not even most, but quite a few) domestic adoptees do the same thing.

It's just a part of searching for identity that EVERYONE (adopted or not) goes through, but adoptees have a few special issues to deal with. I'm sure it's just as painful for a parent to hear "You're not my real mom/dad!" as it is to hear "I hate you!", but most of the time especially in healthy families parents of all stripes are going to hear those two phrases (maybe "I wish you weren't my mom/dad!" in the case of a biokid).

Google "adult adoptees" and you will probably find a wide variety of discussions by adoptees on their many varied viewpoints about adoption and their own journeys.

But seriously, if just the fear of an adult child being bitter or unhappy about adoption makes you want to reconsider it, I'd say that you're not quite ready to be an adoptive parent yet. Or maybe you are. It's not like adult children from non-adoptive families don't occasionally grow up to be bitter and resentful (even if their parents are nice) too, would that make you reconsider parenting? Sure, before you're a parent. But I bet most people once they take the plunge are pretty sure the cost/benefit ratio is in their favor.

You can't control gratefulness or bitterness in your adult kids. That's their own decision. Adopted or not, you have little to no control over that, no matter how perfect a parent you are. Just something to consider!

And, in regard to the OP, I think the reason why you get the reaction of "why not from this country" is mostly due to one of the most pervasive (and destructive, IMO) myths of adoption: that adoption's purpose is for the adoptive parents to SAVE the adoptee. Many people don't get that the real purpose of adoption is not altruistic, it's to create a family of one's own. People are going to look at you like the ultimate in dogooders. And because you're creating a family who is 'not the invisible norm', people act as if they have a duty to comment on it. It's very annoying. But if you are adopting transracially/ethnically then probably you're going to have to learn how to deal with it and let it roll of your back.

I'm just an adoptee, I have no idea what it's like to be an adoptive parent. But, because I have multiples, I have had strangers ask me about fertility issues (are they REAL twins?), make asinine comments about how "oh, I could never do that", ect. Sometimes I feel like being educational, most of the time I wish they would shut the heck up and just let me finish grocery shopping. Over time, it's gotten better to shrug it off or make a sassy comment if I'm in the mood.

I'm feeling strongly that eventually we will add to our family through adoption. I guess I better start thinking of those sassy comments and practicing them, so that when the time comes for people to be obnoxious I can undercut them. But goodness, I heard some really shocking things come out of people's mouths right in front of me as an adoptee (even family members and parents!), so I understand the annoyance and pain, at least from another side of the triad.
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#17 of 152 Old 10-07-2005, 09:42 AM
 
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Niamh, what Tigerchild said. The people who are very angry about adoption are definitely in the minority, but it is important to hear their opinions. You might also want to pick up a copy of this book http://www.tapestrybooks.com/catalog...r.shtml#twenty

I also agree that there are plenty of bio kids who hate their parents, so there's no guarantee building a family that way, either.
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#18 of 152 Old 10-07-2005, 01:32 PM
 
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Just wanted to add that I still think many, many adoptees are angry about it *at some point* even if they don't feel safe saying so out loud. Most do not stay that way or get stuck in it. And out of the ones that do, some of those people have had horrible experiences in their families so you can hardly blame them for their hurt and anger.

Just like many, many adult children go through a period of intense resentment/anger/separation from their bioparents.

And if you do choose to browse the adoptees communities on the internet, please do it in a respectful and open-minded way. Please remember that you might see more venting there (kind of like you do at MDC about 'mainstreamers') because it is a safe place, and because it's socially unacceptable to even whimper about mixed or negative feelings as an adoptee (lest you become the Ungrateful Rescued Throwaway), and they vent there *because* they don't want to risk hurting their parents or siblings.

Would people here run up in person to some mama feeding her babe a bottle and say, "You ungrateful wench! You don't want to be close to your baby! You're just poisoning her for your own convenience!" NO! (Well, maybe 1 or 2 people might think about it, but I doubt it.) But they may come here to vent because it's safe, they get it off their chests, and then they DON'T end up hurting that mama in person. Sometimes people are able to function better when they can get their negativity out in a relatively safe place, and they might be more open to others 'of their kind' calling them out for it too. (Which also happens at MDC).

We know that not every thread or complaint here is representative of AP/NFL mamas as a whole. And we also know that not all AP/NFL mamas want to come here either. I think it's helpful, as you check out the online adoptees communities, to keep that in mind and look at them in the same light. Just as mainstreamers will see things here that really tick them off, as a potential adoptive parent you WILL see those kinds of things in the adoptees communities. But before you go postal just remember that those boards/communities are there as safe places for *them* to vent and you are a guest (on the ones that non-adoptees can actually get onto). Learn, keep an open mind, but don't be quick to judge or make it personal.
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#19 of 152 Old 10-07-2005, 03:28 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Niamh
This worries me because I'm desperate to adopt internationally, but it breaks my heart to think that my child would feel that way? Could either of you send me in the direction of these discussions so that I can read them?

It's making me rethink intl adoption.
It seems to me that what you were expressing was a natural maternal instinct not for your child to hurt, especially because of something you did. (We all acknowledge that it is unrealistic to keep all hurt aways from our child(ren). But we feel the need to try anyway. We don't want the ones we love to hurt.) And for that, I don't believe you should have gotten the response, maybe you need to reconsider what you're doing, maybe your not ready. And feeling that way, I just wanted you to know that someone read your post another way. I think it's great that you're thinking about this issues and want to do what's right by any potential adoptive child.
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#20 of 152 Old 10-07-2005, 03:41 PM
 
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I didn't read the others' responses, just the OP. To the OP, I think you hit the nail on the head 100%. It is one thing for people to ask questions and even say something to the effect of kids in this country needing homes too, but especially if someone is being mean I think you should say just what you said. Funny, I was thinking that exact same thing while reading your post - well how many children have they adopted?

You go girl, and bless you and your dc!

~Tracy

Rockin' mama to Allison (9), Asher (5) and Alethea (3), head over heels in love with my sexy husband, Tony.

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#21 of 152 Old 10-07-2005, 03:47 PM
 
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I'm sure a lot of it is ignorance. I myself am completely ignorant on this subject, and when I hear about the hundreds of thousands of kids in the US foster care system, I often do wonder why so many people adopt from other countries. What about the kids here? That is just my first thought. I have no clue about the requirements/waiting lists, etc. and all that stuff that makes international adoption so appealing, so maybe...educating people a bit would be better?

I am not criticizing. I think it is wonderful that you are adopting. I am just giving my perspective from someone doesn't know very much about the adoption process.
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#22 of 152 Old 10-07-2005, 03:48 PM
 
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Haven't had time to read everything -- i will.

However

we will be adopting internationally -- we think --

my point is

i worked foster care for 9 years....

kids in the US have more options -- in the system or not -- then kids left listless in a orphangae in another county...

that is my short answer.

Aimee

Aimee + Scott = Theodore Roosevelt (11/05) and 23 months later Charles Abraham (10/07)....praying for a little sister; the search starts May 2014
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#23 of 152 Old 10-07-2005, 03:57 PM
 
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Awww Starr; I cannot imagine how hurt you must be! I think you did a great thing by standing up and speaking out
I'm a global family type of thinker too. I am responsible every time a baby is starving anywhere on this fragile little planet. It just happens that my children were born on this continent.
I do love reading these replies! I know the tactic of answering a question with a question is uselful, I could never come up with a question for some of these dumb questions! I love "How many children have you adopted?" Great response! Just act as if I assume that they have done what they think I "should" be doing!
Anyway, thank you so much!!!!
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#24 of 152 Old 10-07-2005, 04:16 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katwoman
It seems to me that what you were expressing was a natural maternal instinct not for your child to hurt, especially because of something you did. (We all acknowledge that it is unrealistic to keep all hurt aways from our child(ren). But we feel the need to try anyway. We don't want the ones we love to hurt.) And for that, I don't believe you should have gotten the response, maybe you need to reconsider what you're doing, maybe your not ready. And feeling that way, I just wanted you to know that someone read your post another way. I think it's great that you're thinking about this issues and want to do what's right by any potential adoptive child.
Wow. I felt a bit attacked by Tigerchild. Thanks for your post.

It's hard to get the nuances of what a person's saying when it's typed out. You understood exactly what I was saying my concern was. It wasn't concern for my feelings, it was concern for the child involved. Do I want to bring a child over to America and have the child wish they'd "died on the streets" of their country? My husband and I live in an area right now with a very strong international community, but we'll be moving to a very rural, I'm sure very white farming community. Is that fair to the child?

I talked to one of my Indian friends today and she said that the few Indians she knows here who were adopted felt really out of place in their white families-especially when they hit their teenage years. And these are kids that love their adoptive families very much, but are clear about forming even stronger ties with the local Indian community.

I acknowledge that most of my fear falls in the irrational "I want to protect my child from pain" category. Even if "protecting" her means not adopting her.

Please be kind to those of us who are working our way through these emotions. It's helpful-even crucial-to hear adoptees stories, I understand this. And I appreciate the link to the books, EFmom.

Homesteading, unschooling mama of three.
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#25 of 152 Old 10-07-2005, 04:16 PM
 
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wow, this is a rollercoaster ride and I'm learning quite a bit. I see how naive I've been about the idea of adoption.
I really thought adoption was a great thing, domestic or international and never considered that my love for an adoptive child could fail them. That if I went into it with an open heart and the best intentions... that anything other than happiness could be the outcome. I mean, I know there are always challenges and issues, but I still thought that OVERALL everything would be okay.
Now I'm hearing that adoptive children would "rather die" than be adopted to another country.
I'm hearing that family members are unaccepting.
I'm hearing that the general public is unaccepting.

It's really disheartening.
I view this planet and all the people that inhabit it as ONE family so the argument over domestic vs. int'l adoption makes no sense to me. I actually think mixing us all up together would be a good thing. People would learn about other cultures and know and love children of different races. I'm not being very eloquent here but I hope you can understand what I'm getting at. I'm tired of groups of people fighting other groups of people. We are all PEOPLE. I'd love to celebrate our differences and strive to find each other interesting instead of threatening.

I LOVE children. I think I'm a good mother. I have two bio kids now and would like to add another. Adoption seemed like a great thing to do for many reasons. Is it? Can't love conquer all? Isn't it possible to have lots of conversations with your kids (bio and adopted) and raise them all knowing that they are special and wanted and loved? Can't love overcome all of this racism and prejudice and ignorance? Isn't it better to TRY than not to?
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#26 of 152 Old 10-07-2005, 04:22 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by artgirl
I really thought adoption was a great thing, domestic or international and never considered that my love for an adoptive child could fail them. That if I went into it with an open heart and the best intentions... that anything other than happiness could be the outcome. I mean, I know there are always challenges and issues, but I still thought that OVERALL everything would be okay.
If I were more eloquent, this is exactly what my first post would have said.

Homesteading, unschooling mama of three.
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#27 of 152 Old 10-07-2005, 04:53 PM
 
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Niamh, I can understand how you might feel attacked, but I don't think that's Tigerchild's intent at all. I think that what she was saying was that before you start the adoption process, these are all issues that need to be honestly examined. Your social worker, for example, will probably want to know that you've thought about them.

If you are going to be living in an area that is largely white, it is a very good idea to check out cultural resouces available. Are there any colleges or universities nearby? They are often sources of more cultural diversity. You also might talk to other groups of adoptive parents who will know about resources for IA families.

No one here is trying to dissuade you from adopting. It is important to support your child's cultural identity, so that they will be comfortable with themselves. Past generations of IA parents thought that their kids should just assimilate as best they could, but that didn't always work so well for the kids.

Through our adoptions we feel we've become a Chinese-American family, and we work hard to make sure that our kids know other kids like them, have good adult role models and have exposure to some Chinese culture. It's not always easy and it is time consuming. It can also be a great deal of fun and a way to expand your own horizons.

Do read about the people who are unhappy about adoption. But don't let it stop you. There is excellent research out there that shows that the overwhelming majority of internationally adopted kids are happy, well-adjusted, successful and love their parents. Rita James Simon is a good author to look for. Some of her books are "Adoption across borders : serving the children in transracial and intercountry adoptions" and "Adoption, race, & identity : from infancy to young adulthood." There are others as well.

I'm a huge advocate of adoption. But I also realize that there is loss associated with it, which needs to be acknowledged.

artgirl, yes, some members of the general public are idiots whose mouths run faster than their brains. Some family members are bigots. If you are a mama, you do what you need to do to insulate your child from these people. In my experience, most people are overwhelmingly supportive, however. Even my family members who weren't particularly happy about our adoption plans did a 180 once the kids arrived.

Being an adoptive family does mean you have a few additional issues to deal with that you can't ignore. So, you deal with them. Adopting our kids is the best thing we've ever done.
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#28 of 152 Old 10-07-2005, 05:17 PM
 
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thanks for the author refrence and the books, i have added them to my wishlist.

Aimee

Aimee + Scott = Theodore Roosevelt (11/05) and 23 months later Charles Abraham (10/07)....praying for a little sister; the search starts May 2014
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#29 of 152 Old 10-07-2005, 05:26 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks guys for all your support, I thought I sounded like a major B*^$#. But I honestly felt verbally attacked by this woman and its hard to think of an eloquent response on demand. For the record I have no problems explaining the differences and requirements of adoption to those that are genuinly curious, but this was not the case. I guess we all learn how to handle things differently, but you should have seen sweet DH's face after I made my little speech . He was speechless.
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#30 of 152 Old 10-07-2005, 05:45 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by artgirl
I really thought adoption was a great thing, domestic or international and never considered that my love for an adoptive child could fail them. That if I went into it with an open heart and the best intentions... that anything other than happiness could be the outcome. I mean, I know there are always challenges and issues, but I still thought that OVERALL everything would be okay.
Adoption IS a wonderful thing, but it's not a surefire formula for "success." No parent gets that guarantee no matter how a family is formed.

Quote:
Originally Posted by artgirl
Now I'm hearing that adoptive children would "rather die" than be adopted to another country.
I'm hearing that family members are unaccepting.
I'm hearing that the general public is unaccepting.
Please don't paint the entire adoption community with the unfortunate experiences of a vocal microminority.

Artgirl, you sound like a loving and caring parent who wants nothing but the best for her children and will go to the ends of the earth for them. If you're drawn to adoption, then follow that path. Children the world over need families and families the world over need these children.

wild.gif  kickin' it old school
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