Has anyone else experienced a windfall of negative reactions to adopting months after you started the process? We've had some very strong and discouraging comments made to us by close family and friends. One of whom is a reference for our adoption. All of these people were completely supportive initially and before when we were trying to get pregnant. But now that we're halfway trough our homestudy we're getting comments like "can you REALLY love a child that isn't yours" and "how long do you have them before you can't give them back" and "are you SURE you don't want to look further into infertility testing." (We didn't look that far into it because to us getting pregnant wasn't as important as being parents.)
I know that if we got pregnant tomorrow, another word wouldn't be said, but because its adoption, everyone feels the need to weigh in on whether or not we should be parents. It's been over a week and we're still reeling from the argument my husband's parents gave us. It's hard enough having a bunch of strangers rifle through our lives like this. Having people we were so close too turn on us like this has been near impossible.
But now that we're halfway trough our homestudy we're getting comments like "can you REALLY love a child that isn't yours" Please excuse my bluntness, but when you adopt a child, that child becomes "your" child. Can you really love that child? I hope so, otherwise, you shouldn't adopt. JJ
k, how sad your family has reacted the way they have and if I were you, I would be hurt, too. However, good for you for going ahead and realizing your dream of having a family. Hopefully, your family will come around one day. If they don't, it's their loss. JJ
Originally posted by jl cauling
I'm finally gearing up to talk with my Mother about the adoption. I am expecting a horrible reaction from her, particularly because we are adopting a child from the state system, not an int'l infant she can show her friends.
Jl, I really dreaded telling my Mom too and when I finally did she said.....oh, ok......that'll be good.
I about fell in the floor :D I did take the chickens way and told her on the phone and all that worry for nothing. Almost made me mad....hahaha
Good Luck with your Mom
Support of family is indeed a blessing when it is there. I think as women we all particularly want approval from our mothers. When it is not there - it hurts, but you need to move foreward with your own desires, needs and what you think is right for your immediate family and hopefully another child to love and care for.
To share a story - When my parents adopted me in the early 50's my Dad's mother was anything but supportive. Of course, she was in most instances a very difficult woman. She was upset with my parents and actually told them "No, you shouldn't adopt because you never know how someone else's child will turn out"
Over the years she was not a "loving grandma" by any stretch of the imagination. She blatently favored my cousins "her real granddaughters". My Dad spoke to her many times but she was very stubborn. Fortunately, she was the only one in the entire extended family that was like that. It was her loss, she missed out on many family events. When she died, I went to her funeral out of respect and to support my Dad. Her "real granddaughters" did not attend. Although it bothered my parents, they focused on the love and support that was there - not on one person who was not supportive.
Just wanted to share. jl cauling - Good Luck on Thursday and with telling your Mom.
To those aparents or soon to be aparents, if you have not seen the thread, "Insight for Aparents from an Adoptee" [url][/url] , you might want to check it out. One person attempted to deviate from the positive stories adoptees were sharing, but other than a couple posts addressing that person, the thread is all about positive experiences.
Hi -
I'm new to this board, but I will certainly agree that people, family and friends included, will sometimes say the most outrageously insensitive things about adoption. Usually these comments come more from ignorance and anxiety rather than bad intent, however they're still very hurtful.
My wife and I are in the midst of adopting our first child from China - we're going into NYC tomorrow to drop off our documentation at the Chinese consulate as a matter of fact. Without going into tremendous detail, one member of my wife's family made a series of horribly rude and insensitive remarks to her about it early on in the process that upset her so badly that when she called me at work to tell me, I thought someone had died or that the house had burned down or something! After having a civilly delivered request for an apology denied, I went and "got medieval" on the offending party. We had never had so much as a cross word between us in the decade before this, either, but I let him have it with both barrels and the Howitzer besides. We've since resolved the issue, but it took some patience and educational materials.
I think the bottom line is that any time anyone is perceived as stepping outside some sort of norm, someone will pop up to say something stupid. Most of these folks don't actually mean harm, though some do. Those that don't should be treated honestly - tell them you're hurt, tell them why, the try really hard to fogive them. Those that do mean harm should be pittied because they are miserable. Forgive them, too.
I'm somewhat "battle hardened" as I have mild (but quite visible) cerebral palsy, a brother from Laos (adopted at age 16), and I've seen all sorts of stupidity about these two "non-issue" issues for a very, very long time. I had a physician ask me if I could read when I was a 16 year old honor student and I've heard educated, professional coworkers of my Dad ask him who "the Gook" on the front lawn was. I never saw the doc or the Dad's "colleagues" ever again after those incidents.
Stand tall, be proud, and have confidence in what you're doing. It's the right thing, and I think it takes someone special to do it.
Just FYI, I am absolutely TERRIFIED! ME??? A DADDY??? Hoooboy...that's a big one! :cool:
I'm just not anywhere close enough to being terrified enough to let it stop me.
Good luck with the family. I hope you're pleasantly surprised :D
My advice for other's in this situation is to focus on you and your family. Don't let others dictate what is right for you. Great advice k! Sorry! I don't know how to quote and then reply. :-( JJ
I'm Daddy2b's wife and he was referring to my father's reaction. It has been a year and even though he has made a strong effort to be happy about this (and he is) there is still pain in my heart from the whole experience.
The first thing you have to remember is that the people with the most to say have the least amount of knowledge when it comes to adoption issues. One of the hurtful things said was that the birth mother was going to fly to America from an underdeveloped country and take her baby back or be expected to be paid off so we could keep it. This was said with absolutely no basis in fact-just fear and ignorance. Others who have never adopted a baby tell us how it's "supposed" to be done because they have heard from so and so about the procedure. Others assume that this adoption makes the pain of infertility go away. People have no problem telling me how "lucky" I am that I'll never get fat or have sleepless nights because I don't have to deal with such a tiny baby. She'll come fully prepared to sleep through the night, apparently! And I can gain weight all on my own! I've always felt I ate for two anyway!
All I'm saying is that, like anything, everyone wants to put their two cents in and unfortuanately it can be very negative. I didn't talk to my father for awhile until things cooled down and I don't think there is anything wrong with a respectful, temporary separtation. As an adoptive parent told us, surround yourself with positve people and ignore the rest.
We too have had our share of negative comments and reactions from family. We did foster/adopt. It was funny to see that they were supportive when we were fostering but when it came to adoption one family member said " are you sure you want to keep her forever, You know were all all products of heredity and her past will catch up with her one day"
And, then there were the negative comments about her not being the same race as us.
It's hard to belive that people who are supposed to be "family" can have such cold hearts. We have family who had always remembered our bio kids on their birthdays/holidays but fail to remember our adaughter. This past Valentines day our bio kids recevied Valentines from a family member but not our adaughter. This time I just could not be quiet anymore. I called them and explained that I would not be giving out the valentines because there was not one for every one of my children and that it would hurt our adaughter too much.
I always walk in love towards those who are hurtful and I still said what I had to say nicely but I hope I got my point across.
My step mom has been a great source of support through it all. She adopted her daughter a newborn. 3 weeks into the adoption they discovered that her daughter had several handicaps. They told her that the baby would never be able to care for herself and ask her if she wanted to give her back. My step mom said "no way, she's my daughter now". It took a lot of determination on her part and her daughters, she had 8 major operations before she was 3 years old. She grew up happy and well adjusted. And, while she was still handcapped physically she studied art and received her masters degree from a well known university. When she died she was only 30 years old but I always admired her, she was such a beautiful person.(I did not refer to her as my sister because we were both adults when our parents married).
Judilyn, how sad that your Adaughter was excluded on Valentine's Day. Kudos to you for standing up for her. So sad that race still seems to enter in, rather than thinking we are all God's children. Your StepMother sounds like a wonderful woman. JJ
Hi. I can relate, because when we were going through process, homestudy and such, it seemed like all i heard from my family was horror stories from dateline and such about adoptions gone horribly wrong, violent kids with severe attachment disorders etc. and absolutely no one seemed that excited or interested in the process...but after we were actually matched, and the process became more real, everyone really turned around, and planned showers, were supportive.
As far as my family goes, i dont even think they were trying to bemean, just scared because adoption is often portrayed badley in the media, and they dont know any different. Im not sure what they thought i should do exactly as an alternative, just be childless, which for us in not ok!
So, anyway, I hope your friends/family come around as well...
best of luck!