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Monica

Wish we didn't have to, but yeah. We know. I've been feeling the same way. When I get discouraged or totally freakin furious, I come on over to see you and my other blog friends and feel better.

getupgrrl

My theory is that those women aren't really making a critique of adoption - they're actually making a socioeconomic critique. But that's a rant for another day.

I'm sorry you had to experience that. I am always leery of "single variable" people, whether they claim that "adoption is always evil" or "the reason I date mean men is because my parents got divorced." Life is COMPLICATED, people, and it ain't that easy. Don't dumb it down.

Jo, lurvin' your stuff, as always.

mollie

G.U.G.: Lurvin! OMG. You say that too. Shit. I shore lurve you. And Jo.

Well, as one of those "selfish" people who adopted a needy infant from an economically depressed country, I can say that yes, there is plenty to mourn in any adoption, as I am reminded constantly as I explain, at least weekly, to my 3-year-old that the woman who gave birth to him "couldn't take care of you, for whatever reason," but I never mention the word "love." I think it would be confusing, and based on conjecture. I'm trying to spare him some hurt, to make the loss smart less. More painful even than that loss, at least if it were me, is the loss of his country, a gorgeous, wonderful place that might be poor in certain resources but replete in other, very meaningful ones, ones that I can't seem to conjure here in the Western world too easily or effectively.

All that aside, I have to say that our son probably is a bit better off as a member of a relatively healthy and loving family rather than growing up in a state-run home for orphaned kids in Vietnam. Is that why we adopted him? Nah.

We adopted him because we WANTED him. What does that mean, anyway? "Wanting" a child? Every child should be wanted. Bio parents who conceive easily don't have to make a big issue of that; it's assumed. But somehow, when adoptive or ART parents "want" a child to raise, they are selfish! Oh well, you're just fucked at every turn when you make difficult choices most people never have to face. Because we are visible, and vulnerable. But criminy, the kids without parents do have to go somewhere. And sue me if I wanted a baby, and not a surly teen. Christ almighty on a habachi skewer (apologies to Mel Gibson, who certainly wouldn't approve).

I'm lucky I'm confused enough by boards and chat to avoid them. I'll stick with blogs. Kind of like individually-wrapped snacks, they are. Easy to keep track of and eat on the fly.

jc

So these women feel that making a teen mother disown her parents and forcing her to parent a child she is not able (for whatever reason) to parent is somehow more acceptable? Interesting. And by interesting I mean WTF?
Sheesh. Damned if you do and damned if you don't. If you find those t-shirts, I'd like one, too please.

Jo

Mollie: yes, yes, and yes. Exactly. The way you do things is the way I want to do things, you know that?

We're just all so *selfish*, aren't we? Yeah.

I was thinking more about these women last night. One of them, I'm pretty sure, is a birthmother herself, and working out some unresolved issues there on the board. I can work up some compassion for that, though that doesn't make it okay to just wander up and start reaming these parents who have gone through so much to get their kids, and who thought they'd found one place where they didn't have to constantly defend themselves.

The second one apparently had her own easily conceived biological children, and was indeed making some kind of socioeconomic argument, the logic of which was poorly worked out. That actually made me angrier, that this person with no investment or personal experience had intruded. People will think what they want, of course. Why they think it's appropriate to share that criticism in such a fashion, I don't know. Manners, folks.

I lurve my blog friends too. Screw those boards! All hail Typepad!

jilbur

I totally get why we 'want' (well more accurately WANTWANTWANTWANTWANT) children, and it's as far from 'selfish' as GWB is from compassionate. People need to give love. Really, really need that. Many of us want more than anything to give it specifically in its pure, white-hot form: parenting. It's a good thing--creest!!! the notion that some people have the idiocy and perversity to represent that as 'selfishness' is something I cannot swallow without gagging.

Summer

Jo, do you think that all of these angry trolls are really women? Because if they are, I just don't get it. I especially don't get it if they are mothers themselves. How could ANYONE be selfish for choosing motherhood, however it comes to them? There's no job on earth that demands more self-sacrifice than motherhood. (Of course I'd know, having held every job on earth before becoming a mother. That's not true, but I did once work as a "funtographer" taking pictures of kiddies on Santa's lap. I had to wear antlers. It wasn't fun, but motherhood is way harder.)

Let me see if I have this straight:
Fertility-challenged women are selfish for doing treatments when they could adopt a needy child.
People who adopt needy children from overseas are selfish for doing so when they could adopt a domestic crack-whore's baby.
Crack-whores, teen mothers, and unwed women are selfish to have babies in less than ideal circumstances.
Anyone who adopts a baby from one of the above women is selfish to capitalize on the pain of said women.
The only possible way to have a child and retain some moral dignity is to easily conceive a child with your husband, and even then you're not safe. You're selfish if you go back to work, and selfish (and lazy!) if you stay home. It's selfish to decide to bottle-feed, and selfish if you refuse to. You're risking your child's health if you decide not to vaccinate, or risking it if you decide to. Blah blah freaking blah....

We, as women, as mothers, as women seeking motherhood, need to cut each other some slack. Anyone who spends their time reading boards and blogs about parenting or TTC clearly cares about children. Why can't that be enough?

Kristine

A big AMEN! I can't believe what's falling under the "selfish" category! As a mother who, in hindsight, kinda got lucky on the first child but who desperately wants another (oh GAWD! how selfish am I??) I will second the notion that parenting is the most un-selfish thing a woman will ever do. ('cause let me tell you it is ALL ABOUT the toddler...ain't no time for mama now!)

I get sick to my stomach hearing about these women passing judgment who haven't walked in our shoes.

PS-- the leery polyp is funny! :) haven't quite figured out for sure who I'm talking about...but I like the site and just added a link from my site.

Jo

Thanks, Kristine! The Leery Polyp's my site, glad you like it, link away!

jilbur: if I ever have occasion to have a parenting blog, I'll call it Pure, White-hot Love. Or, no, maybe that wouldn't be such a super idea. But I love that phrase as applied to parenting.

Summer: the sad thing is, the two on the board aren't even trolls. I've read their posts all around the board; they're engaged members of the community. At least one of them has children. And yeah, it doesn't end with how you get your kids...it goes on and on.

I must put my fingers in my ears, forthwith, and sing "Little Brown Jug" until they all go away.

Sometimes people are just trifling.

Tracy

It's amazing how if we look long enough at the web, we can find people who are for or against almost anything. And if we can't live up to their fine moral or biological standards, we are wrong. Oh my goodness, we are wrong to want our own babies, and shouldn't be spending money on doctors to help us to do that, but should adopt some disadvantaged child. Or if we want to adopt, that's bad, too. I'm so naive that I didn't even realize until recently that there was a good deal of sentiment against adoption, other than the obviously bad "black market" stuff. I think I'll just order a big button that says "Ignore" that I can push if anyone makes comments when we adopt.

Dawn

The other thing that bugs me is that I personally think that former (and current) slutty girls who got STDs from sleeping around deserve kids, too. (I am one although my infertility wasn't caused by said STD.) And also that selfish career women with briefcases who spent their youthful years getting ahead in the corporate world also deserve kids. People who want to parent should get to parent. People who don't want to parent shouldn't have to. People who want to keep their babies shouldn't be coerced into giving them up. People who want to place their babies shouldn't be coerced into keeping them. So many people outside of the equation like to hand down their opinions when they don't know what in the hell they're talking about.

But then I'm a privileged wannabe baby snatcher and former slut so what do I know????

Julie

Dawn said: The other thing that bugs me is that I personally think that former (and current) slutty girls who got STDs from sleeping around deserve kids, too.

Oh, God, THANK YOU. I was beginning to feel left out!

Jo

Unpleasant memories from Ectopic Escapade 2001 are surfacing, in which I encounter heavy questioning about number of partners. What fun that was! Hey, don't let your blindfold and scales get in the way of adequate medical care, or anything.

I think all this judgment must be in part an attempt to distance the judgers from our own unhappy experiences. Place blame, and they prove to their shriveled little brains that this could *never* happen to *me*, because *I* didn't earn the nickname "Little Red Corvette" in college/have the audacity to nurture a career/wear white shoes after Labor Day.

But knowing why they do it doesn't help. Maybe instead of an IGNORE button, I should carry a roll of electrical tape.

Adina

well holy crap lady! That be my board you be talking about! {wave} I am AdinaL there. That was a shitty post. I hope that thread died. :-( yuck.

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