Telling Others about the Adoption

May 17th, 2013

secretWho’s job is it to tell people our child’s adoption story?  Is there even such a thing as a right to know when it comes to a person’s adoption status?  Of course the child herself or himself has a right to know, but that’s not what I’m talking about.  What about the child’s relatives?  Friends of the family?  Parents’ coworkers? There are situations when it is abundantly clear that an adoption took place.  The parents may have needed to take a lot of time off work for travel, or a group of people see the mother on a regular basis and go from seeing her slim one day and with a baby the next, or the parents look nothing like their adopted child. … [more]

Adoption Experiences… Tastes Like Chicken?

February 18th, 2013

3243220364_105f083561_qCraig is one of my better friends and stops by all the time. He stays well informed about everything happening with my family and we often talked freely about the goings-on in our life. So when my wife and I adopted our son he was one of the first to stop by for a visit. We sat across the living room from one another talking about the different aspects of adoption—specifically about the things we hadn’t anticipated. We were talking about what it was like to be full-time parents while someone else, living somewhere completely separate, also carried a title of “parent”. It was something unique to get used to; a concept we needed to adjust our minds to. I had been… [more]

Other People Just Don’t Relate

October 11th, 2012

“I know how a birthmother feels,” a man told me once. “My nephew and I were really close, but one day my brother told me he got a new job on the other side of the country and they would be moving. I miss that kid so much.” I couldn’t believe my ears. This man honestly thought he could directly relate to a birthmother because his nephew moved across the country. Wow. The human mind is a funny thing. When we’re little kids, everything is new to us. We spend our days exploring new shapes, situations, and ideas. Our minds are constantly being filled with concepts that are completely brand new to us, which makes the whole experience of being on this crazy world an exciting adventure. Once we become adults, though… [more]

Adoption + Unknown = Fear

July 31st, 2012

The last few weeks have been bubbling in the adoption community. I head up a lot of discussion forums and am a regular reader/participant in a lot of others. Ever since the horrific and tragic shooting in Colorado, there have been a lot of people talking about how the shooter was adopted. A lot of people blamed his antisocial and demonic behavior on how he was abandoned by his biological parents, never fit in with his adopted family, and so on and so forth. I slipped in a few comments here and there, but for the most part I stayed out of the discussion. Finally, when I saw it posting so many places, I decided to start my own thread on my own Facebook page (Open Adoption, Open Heart) about the… [more]

On Anti-Adoption Rhetoric…

September 6th, 2009

Let me be the first to say that I believe in the freedom of speech wholeheartedly. If I don’t agree with your stance on something or you personally don’t subscribe to my theories on insert-topic-here, I welcome that difference. As long as there’s no slander/ abusive language or concepts (and the like) involved, I believe the element of debate in speech is one of the greatest freedoms one can maintain. That said, I will admit to this: the first time I heard a handful of anti-adoption rhetoric, it floored me. I’m not writing this blog today to try to convince you that adoption is the answer, or that your opinion of the very process should be purely favorable, no matter the surrounding circumstances. To be… [more]

Would a Break in Parenting Help a Prospective Birth Parent?

May 4th, 2008

Here is the scenario. My mother is a foster parent to teenage girls. I talked her into fostering when my father died about 10 years ago to keep her busy and provide her with companionship. Obviously, since she only parents teenage girls, many are now adults. She told me this morning that an older sister, around 25, has given birth to a healthy baby girl about four hours from where we live. The father, a boyfriend, isn’t helping, nor is he interested in parenting. The mother of the baby told her sisters that she is thinking about placing the baby for adoption. My mother asked me if I would be interested in another baby. What I have learned here at is that many birthparents later… [more]

They Shouldn’t Allow Blacks in Here

April 5th, 2008

It was bound to happen. We can all pretend that racism is a thing of the past, yet we know in our hearts that it isn’t. We were told during transracial adoption training that it would happen and that we needed to prepare our children for it. Of course, we didn’t think it would really happen to us. It may be especially difficult for those of us raised in Midwest, middleclass, suburbia to accept. We were never exposed to racism growing up because we weren’t exposed to people of other races enough to say so. My high school had three blacks in attendance and two of them were actually biracial. I guess I am a little more prepared than my friend was today for negative comments… [more]

Are You a Daycare?

June 25th, 2007

daycareI have been asked this question a LOT since becoming a foster or adoptive mom. I do have a lot of children, which people notice. But, the question is asked even when I'm out with just a few kiddos. So, am I a daycare? Am I offended by the question? First of all, *I*, as one stand-alone human form, am not a daycare. My body shape possesses no buildings, no staff. Am I daycare teacher? Are these children in my daycare class? No, ma’am. They are mine. 24/7. I’m the mom. Am I offended by the question? No. We are of a variety of skin colors. Most families are not. I understand an onlooker’s confusion… [more]

More Rude Comments!

March 4th, 2007

rudegiraffeMore of my favorite personally received rude comments about my children and/or parenting:

  • I was walking through the grocery store with four children. We were just doing our shopping, not bothering anyone. A lady approached me and asked if I’d mind if she asked me a question. “Ummm……okay, sure”. Then she looks me straight in the eye and – I kid you not! – asks me if I’d mind if she paid for me to have a hysterectomy!! Again, I had no ready answer. I can’t even remember what I said to her. But, I did get home without the hysterectomy. I told my sister about this. She was upset that I hadn’t countered with one of

Rude Comments !

March 4th, 2007

rude giraffeRude comments. About your child. About your parenting. What parent hasn’t heard them? They aren’t exclusive to adoptive moms or foster moms. I remember a few from when I was “just” a birth mom. But, since we've added children to our family “non-genetically”, It sure seems that we hear them much more often now! A couple of “fun ones” that we’ve heard over the years (translate to “most offensive” and, oh, it was HARD to limit this to just a few…):

  1. At the grocery story, I was buying a cart full of food with several packages of each item. The clerk asked if I ran a daycare. I told her that I didn’t (at that time), but that I did have a