Tuesday, February 15, 2011

not the same?

How do I even start this post? How?

I realize I'm the queen of touchy subjects lately. 

Sometimes I get the idea to broach a topic so sensitive and fraught with land mines of emotion that I don't even know how to discuss it honestly without killing someone.

The thing is, I honestly don't want to offend someone. And that's not out of fear or something. I truly respect others and their rights to believe what they believe. So I guess why I want to address today's topic is to urge others to practice a little sensitivity. Well, sensitivity is not quite what I mean. I'd like others to realize there are a million different perspectives and while mine may clash with yours, I'm still attached to it and feel strongly and sensitive about it.

I honestly kept scheduling the post to publish and the pushing it off. Like 5 times. Because I really didn't want to offend. But? It's important to me, so onward.

I'm adopted. I've mentioned that before. I've talked about my adoption in many different capacities. I'm not here today to advocate adoption; instead, I'd like to think about the insanity that surrounds fertility and reproduction and adoption.

I really want to make clear that I believe in reproductive rights. In that way, I think a woman's choices are sacrosanct. I am not here to question whether you don't want kids, you've had an abortion, you've had a surrogate, have injected yourself with whatever hormones increase fertility, have spent countless dollars for in vitro, have popped out 12 babies all naturally, have adopted 12 babies, or whatever possible scenario I can't even imagine that is unique to you. However you've lived your life and whatever is going on in your uterus is your business.

I will not question that.

I only want to shed some light on another perspective.

Being an adoptee, I've always assumed I would adopt one day. I haven't yet because, well, adoption can be even more expensive than giving birth and while I wouldn't get pregnant with a turkey baster now because I couldn't afford to have a child alone, there's no way an adoption agency would give me baby anyway. Short of stealing a baby from a fire station, I'm kind of stuck with the cats.

I shouldn't say that. I love my cats. 

I do want to adopt. I believe it's important. There are countless children in the US alone without parents, and those are the kids eligible for adoption.

On the other hand, I've also always wanted to give birth. Maybe because I have little knowledge of my own conception and incubation and maybe because my adopted mother couldn't have kids (she had multiple miscarriages and one premie son who died), I greatly want to get knocked up and push out a tiny human.

But I don't necessarily hold on over the other. For me, it's all the same. It truly is.

It's likely I can't get pregnant anyway. I've got ovarian cysts, endomitriosis, and a tipped uterus. I haven't tried, but it's highly likely that conceiving is going to be a dramatic ordeal. Drama that I'm just not interested in.

And I once again point out I don't judge others who pour their money into conceiving, but I don't see myself doing that. I don't see myself poking myself with needless daily and spending my life savings in order to have a child which shares my DNA. Not when I could put that money toward a child who already exists and needs someone to love it.

A family member unwittingly hurt my feelings the other day. We were discussing just this as she's getting older and worrying about her ability to get preggers and I expressed my perspective in a way, I might add, that no way implied she should feel the same way. But she replied back with, "But I want to have my own child. It wouldn't be the same."

Let's forget for a minute that she forgot that her relative she told this to is adopted and her comment might sting. She clearly was just thinking of herself.

But a hint to anyone who feels this way: please don't ever say that. Just don't. Even if you feel like that, it's okay, feel that way. But it's hurtful so try to keep it to yourself.

But why isn't it the same? Why? And why would someone like me be hurt by that?

I've spent my entire life feeling less-than. My mother didn't bond with me when she heard my heartbeat. I don't know my crazy birth story. I don't know if she had drugs or a natural birth or a C-section. wasn't held by my mother just after birth as she met me for the first time and looked into my eyes. I wasn't breast fed.

Instead I was adopted. I was told I was "so special" for it. That I was chosen. Well, I'm here to tell you right now that that may be the case, but I didn't want to be special. I wanted to be the same. Not better or worse. The same.

I'm okay with that. I've learned how to be me.

So why can't we adoptees be the same? Why not? Is DNA really that important that a child born of someone else's gene pool can't be loved equally? Are we really that much slaves to evolutionary imperative that babies whose mothers give them away do not somehow have the same place in the tribe?

"It wouldn't be the same." Why not?

Don't get me started on how society discriminates without even knowing it. On medical history forms, there's never a column for "I don't know" or a line to explain why you don't know. I've had to explain that countless times. And had to fight for a mammogram when I had huge cysts in my breasts because my family "has no history of breast cancer." Um, I just don't know if it does.

Think about the last time you had to get a copy of your birth certificate. You probably went down to the county office and filled out some forms and they gave you a copy. Not so for me. I have two birth certificates, see, one with my birth name (Baby and my birth dad's last name) and one with my adoptive family. It's housed in Sacramento, California. So I either have to drive to Sacramento or order a copy, which could take up to 6 months. Or, I could pay $100 for a service to go get it for me.

I hate to stoop to terms to make anyone feel truly badly about this, but society does expect a certain order to things and adoption is still somewhat on the fringes. Still bears a stigma. Racial and religious and gender minorities have fought for their rights for forever, but adoption is still somewhat secretive.

It wasn't but 50 years ago when we still lied to children because being adopted seemed so horrific. Then they'd discover their birth certificates at 19 and be traumatized.

Or there's the jokes:


Why is that funny? Why is it be so horrifying to be adopted?

Or, like I said, we compensate and call it special.

I know we like to think we don't care. We don't think like that. Of course we would love an adopted child the same. Of course. If we had to adopt.

Adoption is still a back-up plan. Still something couples have to turn to after they cannot conceive. After they've lost children. A last resort.

You know how in Steel Magnolias, Shelby's doctor told her she shouldn't get pregnant because it could kill her? Well she wanted a child of her own and got pregnant anyway and it stressed her body out and she died. Fictional character aside, this still perpetuates the idea that having a child naturally is worth dying for. And her own? As if an adopted child wouldn't belong to a mother in the same way?

Not that I think our children really belong to us. I don't think they're possessions. Belong isn't the right word. But do you get what I mean?

I do recognize the many people who truly don't feel this way, who choose to adopt out of their own will to do so. I've met them and they are my people.

Example: I know a family who adopted all three of their children. And I'm here to tell you those kids are the smartest, cutest kids in the world. And they freaking look like alike too. And they're a close family, closer than many families I know. These are my people.

But for every person I've met who understands this, I've met ten who think that having their own children is of the utmost importance. And if you do, okay, whatever, but every time I hear that it's just not the same, it hurts me personally. So just keep those thoughts under wraps. For the sake of being a nice person.

I feel like you're telling me I'm not good enough. I'm less-than. I'm not a real child, just a stand-in.

I'm here to tell you that's why so many adopted kids are overachievers, constantly trying to live up to the kids their parents couldn't have. I've met so many like me in support groups, all struggling, no matter how supportive and open their parents were, to just be normal.

I really don't understand it. In some cultures, the nuclear family doesn't even exist. Children are absorbed into the community and birth parents are inconsequential. That seems a far-off dream to me. Our society places entirely too much importance on genetic heritage. Tell me you haven't seen a dozen dramas on the news where someone famous (or even non-famous) discovers he's the biological father to some child. Well, who the fuck cares? I say. He's not the father. All he did was donate some sperm. He didn't raise that child. Why all the drama?

On the other hand, most of my family was really awesome. My cousin would forget I was adopted. We'd be joking about some similarity and say it must run in the family. Wait. Pause. Oh yeah! Adopted. I look like my father (my adopted father, for clarity), which he's so proud of, and which I didn't understand as a child because I thought that meant I looked like a boy.

I was also absorbed into bigger, friendship families. My parents' theater friends or swim friends and all their children. There, I could just be one child running around, having fun. It didn't matter how I came into the family because we were all one big family together.

On the other, other hand, my mother (my adopted mother, for clarity) used to leverage my adoption in her abuse of me. Whenever I displeased her, which was often, she'd threaten to send me back. So I took pains not to anger her, because no matter how hard things were, being abandoned a second time was my worst nightmare.

Or there was the time my grandmother, my dad's mom, was dying. I was 19 and my grandma was the only grandparent I'd ever known. She wasn't a warm woman, but I knew she loved me. My Aunt Sandy, the cow, my dad's sister in law (meaning she wasn't related by blood either) took it upon her magnanimous self to pull me aside and tell me that the family never thought of me as adopted, that they always thought of me as one of the family. 19 year old me didn't think to retort: well you clearly didn't because you're doing it right now. Plus? I'm more related than you are.

I didn't like her much anyway, so it didn't hurt too much. I knew she was crazypants.

The point being, the stigma is reinforced whenever people point it out.

Or every time someone I know complains about their own fertility, complains how she really just wants a child of her own, then suddenly remembers I'm adopted. She quickly covers with, "Oh but you're okay!"

That's like the white guy who has one black friend. "He's the nicest black man you'll ever meet." Mmhmm. Do you know what you're saying?

It feels the same way. I wouldn't want to adopt, but we're so glad you were. Right. Do you think about your words before they leave your mouth?

I truly do not get the importance here. Please, make me understand. I want to be sensitive. I get the desire to be pregnant and give birth. I do. I want that too. It's amazing to me. But why turn your life upside down, put yourself through trauma and pain, spend all your money, just to get pregnant? Is it so your child will look like you? Is it because you think you wouldn't love a child otherwise? Is it because you have such awesome genetics you just have to pass them on? What? What is it?

I was discussing this with my lovely friend Sonja the other day. She said, wisely, "A child is a child." Yes! That's it!

So what's the problem? Why am I constantly hearing that it's not the same?

I'm sorry if I've offended. But why are adoptees always carrying around a little bit of difference?

me at 8 days old, taken by my foster mom

43 comments mean you love me:

Kittie Flyn said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

I love this post!

Reason 1 - you aren't afraid to address touchy subjects, talk about sex (or lack there of) or state what's on your mind. AWESOME.

Reason 2 - I'm adopted. My sister (not biological) is adopted. We're both Korean. Our adoptive parents are white with two biological sons of their own. We're both in our 30s now but when we were adopted it was late 70s. My parents lived in Iowa of all places. They faced all kinds of scrutiny from family and friends. My mother's mother was NOT happy at all (but she had issues of her own so whatever).

I always hated that 'you're adopted' was an insult. I always hated that I was told by people I wasn't my parents' 'real child' and they actually didn't love me as much. I always hated the girl who tried to tell me my mom was my step mom and I shouldn't call her mom because she didn't give birth to me.

Blood doesn't make a family. LOVE makes a family. I like to think that because adoptees are chosen and there's a very rigorous process that we're even more special. We were carefully thought out, planned for and eagerly anticipated by our families. If anything I felt more loved and more special.

I don't actually want kids (and I also don't think I'd be able to get pregnant either) but if I change my mind I'm definitely adopting. There are so many children who need good homes, families to love.

Saying you aren't sure if you could love a child the same way if you didn't create it seems so odd. So do people love their BMs more than they would love an adopted child? BMs are created by their body. Seriously. People seem to love their pets like children yet they are an entirely different species. People didn't create them. Are they saying they love their pets more than they could an adopted child?

Clearly this is a hot button for me as well.

You really are AWESOME SAUCE!

The Savage said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

One of my favorite couples has not only their own children but have also adopted. Genealogy is never mentioned and they refer to each other as family.
I have two adopted cousins who are my cousins because they are family (regardless of the a-holes hey became in adult life) and I love them because they are family not because of their bloodline.
They is a very good and thought provoking post.
Thank you for sharing...

Jen said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

My dad was adopted. He never met his birth mom. He never had any desire to. His 4 borthers were adopted as well. And it has never once come up in conversations or family events. The only time I have EVER heard my dad discuss his adoption was in regards to his medical history. "I already know who my parents are" he always said.

I, personally, have always wanted to be pregnant and experience child birth. (I believe this is what your family member MEANT but said it horribly wrong.) I was given that opportunity and would very much love to experiece it again. If I don't? Ok. But, I do know I will have more children. By adoption most likely. I agree with you, I can't see pouring thousands of dollars into fertility treatments when there are children here and abroad that need families. I also know that IF I adopt, I would like to adopt a minority child. I think they would just fit in better in my family. ;)

I was blessed (?) with very fertile lady bits. I don't see fertility ever being an issue for me, but I would still love the opportunity to adopt. I would also love to put my child bearing hips to good use and be a surrogate for my best friend and his husband. This is something we are still in the beginning stages of discussing. At 26, they still have plenty of time to live the child free life.

I also agree with the previous comment. People can call pets their children (which I find odd), but can't love an adopted child the same? A child is a child. It doesn't matter how they came to be.

Keri@GlamorousArmy said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

I think you're wonderful. And I'm glad you posted about this. My sister has no biological children, but is adopting 3 foster kids that are all brothers and sisters. They are 6, 8 and 10, and I can't imagine loving them anymore had she given birth to them. I didn't have to "learn" to love them...it came immediately and unconditionally, as it did when I gave birth to my two sons.

nush said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Good post. It is good that you deal with all kinds of subjects, sensitive or not. After all discussions is what creates understanding.

There is no reason why anyone adopted should be loved less, mean less or be less in my opinion. My best friend is adopted and so is her brother. And he is her brother (not step brother or adopted brother or whatever stupid saying people can have).

Personally I am not sure about having kids. But that is just me. My cats are my kids for now. Maybe I will reconsider having kids (encompassing all options; childbirth, adoption etc) one day - I'll leave it open.

Pup Fan said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Your post brought tears to my eyes. I wish that this perspective was better represented out there - there is such a focus on fertility problems these days, and sometimes it feels like adoption gets the short end of the stick. I think that everyone makes the choice that is right for them - but that we shouldn't stigmatize "the other" whether that's an adopted child or some other group. Great post.

Skye said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

This bothers me all the time, and I am not even adopted! I'm 24 and have decided that if/when I want children, I will adopt. I have no desire or need to ever get pregnant and give birth. I would rather give a home to children who don't have one. For some reason, people (other than my friends) seem to find it really weird that I have decided this. True, I'm not married, but it's my uterus, and if someone absolutely has to have biological kids, then I'm not marrying him. I tend to get extreme in my opinions and now I am really offended by people who spend a lot of money and effort to get pregnant instead of adopting. It bothers me so much that people just ignore all the kids in foster care, and that so many people think adoption is weird or a last resort. Why is it so important that your children look like you/are related to you? I truly don't understand and it makes me sad. Thanks for sharing your perspective as someone who has been adopted. Hopefully more awareness will make more people consider adoption.

Cari said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Adoption is one fo those things that everyone seems to feel so strongly about. I don't know why either. When so many have so little true personal experience. I am the oldest of 4 - 2 adopted, 2 biological surprises! There has never been any big secret about being adopted or that any of us is any more or less special; we just came into the family differently. It's my opinion that what ever you feel about adoption (and anything else really) is your business. While some comments may sting a bit I know they are speaking from a personal, possibly uninformed perspective. If I feel it's appropriate (or worth my time) I will share my experience. They can take it or leave it - use it to strengthen their views or change them a little. And everyone's experience as an adopted child is different; everyone I've talked to has helped me understand why so many feel & think about adoption so differently.

Thank you for broaching this subject here. Don't apologize for possibly offending someone by questioning thier comments that offend & hurt you.

andygirl said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Kittie- thank you so much for your heartfelt comment! <3 I consider my pets my furbabies. hah!

Savage- thank you so much. means a lot.

Jen- I feel the same way as your dad. my parents are my parents, flaws and all. but I DO want to get pregnant too. I just want to do both if I can.

Keri- thank you! your family sounds wonderful. really great people. <3

nush- yes! I hear ya. as always, love. xo

pup- absolutely! you so get me. "the other" is a big thing people forget. there's always some other out there to neglect or stigmatize, etc.

Skye- yes! and giving birth is no guarantee your kids even look like you. why is that so important?

Cari- thank you so much. adopted kids unite! hah. just kidding. <3 to you.

Kristin said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

I think the reason parents want their own child is biology. The purpose of reproduction is for our DNA to continue on. If you compare humans to other mammals, it makes a little more sense.
That said- I don't agree that fertility is always the best choice. Couples spend so much money and rarely get results.
Adoption has long been something I've considered. Your post has given me a lot to think about.

steff said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

you put that all into words so amazingly!

i agree completely that our society, for whatever reason, puts such an enormous weight on genetic heritage, blah blah blah. it's like when you hear stories of how in the future we'll be able to pick gender and eye color, basically customizing children to better suit our preferences. whatever happened feeling blessed when a baby was born healthy? are you going to love it less if its eyes happen to be green?

it's craziness.

my mother had a friend, who at almost 50, decided she wanted to have another child. being that she was close to menopause she had trouble conceiving on her own so she sought out a donor egg. long story short, she ended up pregnant using another woman's egg and carried the baby herself. she ended up doing this again a few years later and had twins in the same way.

i'm not saying those children aren't worth the life she gave them. i just never understood why the thought to adopt wouldn't have prevailed over going to such lengths to create a new life.

i think about how i would feel if i couldn't conceive or carry a child and, sure it tugs at my heartstrings to think i might not be able to experience being a mother biologically, but i've always told myself that it would just mean i was meant to embark upon motherhood in a different way.

and not only is there nothing wrong with that, i think it is has the potential to be quite exceptional.

Sunshine said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Andy, I am new to your blog and have only been following for a couple of weeks. Your post today stabbed me in the very depths of my heart. In a good way. I was adopted when I was three months old and am now 31. Never in my life have I found another person who shares my perspective on adoption. Reading this felt like you were taking the thoughts right out of my own head.

I have always been made to feel like I was differen't (special), whatever you want to call it and my mother used my adoption as her abuse against me as well.

My dad on the other hand was just so proud to finally have his little princess that the fact that I wasn't "of his seed" so to speak, never was an issue and because of that I have ALWAYS been a daddy's girl. My Dad's parents, however, vowed that I would never be a part of their family because I was not "blood" related and so I never had the grandparent relationship that most kids experience.

I don't want to get into my life story and my struggles with adoption and being the product of because I'm sure you of all people can understand the scope of things. I just really want to say thank you for saying what deperately needed to be said. Touchy subject or not, there is always two sides of a story and who is to say that our side should be any less important. A child is a child regardless of where it comes from and yes they all deserve love.

andygirl said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Kristin- I get that. but I'd argue that haven't we moved beyond base evolutionary imperative? thanks for thinking about this. :)

steff- yes yes and yes! thanks so much, hon. you get me. love to you!

sunshine- oh my word, so glad you commented. just reading your comment made me feel like we lived the same life. can't believe it. writing this post has become so worth it. love to you! and welcome!

Ley said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Oh Andy. Thanks bish for being so sweet and touching that I now have mascara running down my cheeks.

I've had the pleasure of experiencing childbirth first-hand, so logically that is what I know and understand. But that doesn't mean that I would rule out adoption, or treat said adopted child any different than the one that I expelled from my body. If anything, I might love that one more, because it didn't cause me indescribable pain! (Sorry, you know my jokes are usually in poor taste, but you love me anyways!)

Kids are kids are kids, and they all deserved to be loved equally, whether they come from our own uteruses or not.

Also? I heart your ability to write about what can be seen as touchy subjects. Someday I might grow lady balls and do it myself...

TheTraveler said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Honey, I'm in this boat with you. We may not have the same oars to row with, but we both deal with the social stigma body of water.

I've never had my own children, not because I can't, or didn't want to, but because my life traveled a timeline that didn't end up including children.

I have, however, raised others folks kids and am the proud Step Parent of 2 typical Millenial kids.

When discussing parenting with parents and they complain about their kids behavior, I give examples of how i have overcome or handled similar situations. Parents then always tell me it's so hard to do that and blah, blah, blah. When i tell them it's not hard, look at me I do it all the time. They tell me, "well it's different for you, you're not a real parent'.

That fucking kills me.

I'm not a real parent?

They always then say, "you know what I mean, their not your kids, you didn't give birth to them...and they already have a mother"

So what? If you don't give birth, you're not a mother or a parent?

And a child can only have 1 mother as a parent?

No wonder we are such a screwed up society.

Here's what I know.

Giving birth doesn't make you a parent.

Having 2 mother's (or 2 Father's) doesn't make you less of child.

Being adopted doesn't mean you're not like other kids.

And being a step parent is just like being any other kind of parent, except you have to walk the fine line between what's best for the kids, and what's best for their biological parents.

andygirl said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Ley- oh thank you for being you! your comment warms my heart. <3

Z- yes! thank you! that is exactly what I mean. I wrote from a child's perspective, but popping a child out doesn't make someone any more of a mother than someone who does the daily job of parenting. and I say the more parents, the more love. <3

lex [lexinthecity] said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Thank you thank you thank you
My dad was adopted and I have always felt so strongly about adoption. From a very young age I knew that I would adopt. To be able to say "I chose you" to someone, god, how can you describe a deeper love?
The whole biology thing really stumps me. I know kids who have nothing in common with their parents, aren't close with their parents and have no desire to be. I know adopted children and parents who have more love and more of a bond than many families. They appreciate what they have. That's what family is.
We've traced my dad's birth parents just to see if we could get more medical info, but he has no desire to meet them.
Also, as a snarky little comment..
All children are not the same. Some are little assholes who flush things down the toilet and rip up your books. Just sayin.
Also also, I've seen the birth process. Does NOT make me want to do it myself. My vag winces just thinking about it.
You're amazing.

andygirl said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Lex, you're awesome. AND? you crack me up! <3

Heather said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

I came across this post via Twitter - hi! I was adopted, too. I am now the mother of the best kid in the world (in my admittedly biased opinion) through adoption. When my husband and I decided it was time to toss out the birth control and start pumping out kids and then discovered this was not going to be as easy as all that? We instantly turned to adoption. For us, it was about being parents and creating a family, not producing a child who contained half our DNA.

Ironically, our daughter resembles me - we were totally prepared for our kid to not resemble us in the slightest (especially after I grew up looking *nothing* like anyone in my family). Now, folks are surprised to learn that she's adopted since she "takes after" me. I've even had people comment on how "lucky" we are that she "doesn't look adopted" to which I say what the ?!?!?!?! And yes, I have had people - including one of my sisters (who us our parents' biological kid) - tell me I don't understand/I'm nit ad much of a *real* mother because I didn't carry my daughter in my uterus. To her and all the other idiots like her, I say go take a flying leap.

But I didn't mean to come here to rant - just wanted to say I hear you and thanks for writing such an eloquent and expressive post. Cheers!

Heather said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

*Not as, not nit ad - sorry, sausage fingers on iPhone keyboard!

Liz said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

People who have that mindset are nothing but ignorant.

It has always bothered me when someone says I look like (insert name of immediate family member) because I knew I didn't.

And medical forms? There isn't even a place to mark "adopted". I have to make some kind of note in the side border area that I don't know due to being adopted.

Katy Greenbauer said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Thank you for writing this. I have 4 girls, 1 of whom is adopted. We are white, she is Guatemalan--so it is obvious she is adopted. We do love her as much as our other girls. I usually assume she knows that because we treat all the girls the same way, but still I worry how she really feels. She asks questions about her birth mom sometimes and I tell her what little I know. So, honestly, there is a difference in her upbringing that her sisters don't have. But really our whole family is different. My oldest has special needs, my husbands brother and sister are adopted. At the end of the day, I just hope we don't end up messing her up any more than we are probably messing up the other girls! Thanks again for writing this.

andygirl said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Heather- welcome! thanks so much. I'm the same way with my dad. we look a ton alike. but you know? most of the men in my family are shitheads and my dad is the BEST, so DNA be damned.

Liz- YES! I hate that. and there's never really enough room to write. stupid forms. love you!!! <3

Katy- you sound like an awesome mom! thank you so much!

Tom said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Well said.

alonewithcats said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

This reminds me a bit of the talk I had with my mom the other day. I told her my girlfriend wants a baby, and that (very far in the future, if things work out between us) she would be the one who would carry it, because being pregnant has never been a priority for me. I also mentioned that if my relationship with my brother were better, I would consider asking him to "contribute." (That will never happen, because he's the devil.) She got all excited and said, "So I might have a real grandchild?!" That really got to me, I have to say. And if my mom made me and my fictitious, unborn baby feel less than, I can only imagine how you feel.

andygirl said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Tom- thank you!

Jess- oh that makes me sad. I mean, happy that maybe your girlfriend might bring you to the dark side (mwahahaa), but sad your mom said that. that's exactly how I feel when people make off-hand comments like that. <3 to you.

Mandyland said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

There's a country song - isn't there always? - that says, "Blood is thicker than water. Love is thicker than blood."

My dad isn't my biological dad. He didn't come on the scene until I was three. And yet, he's my Dad. He has two biological daughters with my mom. They are my sisters. Not half.

He never made me feel that I was less than, or not equal to, his biological daughters. He loved us all the same and taught us all a very important lesson.

It doesn't matter how you come to have the family you create. Whether it's by birth, by adoption, by co-habitating, by marriage, what truly matters is the love you share.

The Barreness said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Andy, my goodness, I'm sorry I've not popped by for a few days.

I think this was extraordinary.

Honest. Frank. Enlightening.

As you're likely aware, I have no desire for children, however they may come about, but if I did...

If I did, I would like to think I would adopt.

And it would be mine and I would love it.

Almost as much as I love Spaniards.

;-)

*big grateful hugs*

- B x

andygirl said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Mandy- I couldn't have said it better myself. love is more important than DNA. I'm so glad you have an awesome dad. <3

Barreness- oh thank you, love! and? funny! you just go on loving your Spaniards. it makes you you. <3

Bitter Betty said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

I'm about ready to quit trying to conceive a second child. I wish adoption wasn't so dammed expensive or I would never try to get pregnant again! Cuz really? Who wants to be pregnant? It's miserable!
But I love and have always loved the fact that you were adopted. It makes me feel like I'm cooler for having you as a friend.
And C has agreed that if this baby shit doesn't work out, we're so adopting!

Chelle Nevar said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Sweetie, I get in trouble for telling people that I don't want kids at all. They ask,usually, why? Now that isn't really anyone's business but mine, but I'll share with you.

Because I feel there are enough kids out there already, without someone like me, that doesn't really want one, having one because it's the "cool thing to do." They keep telling me, also, it's different when you have your own. What if it isn't? What if I went through all the trouble and pain of having a child, and then realized I still can't stand children? How wold that be fair to my child? No thanks, I think I'll stick to cats.

Mom gets really mad about this
and tells me I'll change my mind when I'm older( I'm 30)and that I'd better do it before I'm "too old"! Which is when I tell her if I ever change my mind I'll adopt. She's a real some times. Maybe I am too, but at least I'm an honest (#$%^&.)

andygirl said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Betts- you make a great point. adoption IS expensive. and if you can conceive naturally and easily (like E was) why not try? but yeah, I don't see spending the money and pain when adoption is an option.

Chelle- oh I bet! I have friends in just your position. and 30 is old enough to know what you do and don't want. you're being responsible by not putting you or a child in a bad position. <3

Sarah said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

I'm not adopted but it annoys me(?) too how people react to it...I happened to see a notice somewhere about adoption and casually mentioned I was going to adopt and that automatically led to the "It ISN'T the SAME" or "You'll change your mind once your older" statement. !_!

Satan said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

gah. you're not different. it's just that people don't really think about it, because it's not in their world-view.
but still. they are also kinda dumb about it, too.

andygirl said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Sarah- what is that? once you're older? as if you can't have your own opinions and intelligence at a young age.

Satan- I know, sweets. not everyone is as awesome as us. <3

Lance said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Hey, just found your blog through Sunday Spotlight which we're both on over at Studio 30 Plus.

Thanks for writing such an honest post. I am married with 3 daughters. We are a blended family. I "made" the middle child, now aged 7 and total tomboy. The 15 yr old and 6 yr old are from my wife's biology. My wife can not have more children the "regular" way but we have discussed surrogacy and adoption. I am usually digusted by the attitudes of many people who assume there's something "wrong" with adoption or fostering. My cousin/close friend is adopted and proud if it.

Thanks for the good read. I wrote about 500 Days of Summer last week, so, being a Zooey fan, you might want to check it out.

andygirl said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

thank you! yes, most families are made up of unique and interesting situations and blendings. why are people so worked up? :)

Random Girl said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

You brought up so many great points, I can't even really comment on just one. Overall, I love your honesty and and your candidness. My best friend is adopted and despite her being brillant, kind-hearted, and an amazing mother, she still at 30 years old feels like she has to prove her worth because she was adopted. I wish she could just be the amazing woman she is and know that it is truly enough, like you.

andygirl said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Random- it's been a long road for me to find some peace and I have to work very hard at it. I hope for that for your friend. <3

Bejewel said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

"A child is a child." So true.

This is a lovely post. It makes me incredibly sad to think of you and other adoptees thinking of yourselves as somehow "less" because of your adopted status.

And not to bring up another sensitive hornet's nest, but it also makes me think of the thousands of gay couples in this country who want to adopt but can't -- I wonder if they could, how it would change that stigma? I think it would change so much -- because wouldn't we all see then that "a family is a family," too?

Really great, thought-provoking post! Glad I found you through Studio30Plus!

andygirl said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Bejewel- thank you and welcome! and you make a great point. I'm a huge gay rights advocate and while some states do allow gay couples to adopt, we're still a long way off. we all need to be considered equal. :)

Sassy Stylings said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Just came across this post at Studio 30 Plus' Sunday Spotlight.

Kudos to you for bringing up this subject. I've posted a few times on my own blog about how ridiculous I think modern day fertility treatments are and that people should adopt much more than they do.

I believe this burning desire for a biological child is just egotistical bourgeois bullshit.

I've also had to defend my decision not to have children which confounds so many people, it's almost comical.

In some ways, our "free" society is shackled by its own outdated, dogmatic beliefs and anything outside the norm is treated as inferior.

I think people are simply afraid of anything that's different from what they've chosen, and therefore criticize or put down others who've made different choices so they can feel good about themselves. It's not because they're right, it's because they feel threatened.

I've basically come to this general conclusion: People who poo-poo others' decisions are usually dissatisfied with their own, and want others to make the same decisions they made so that said others can be as miserable as they are. Misery loves company. To that, I say: f*ck 'em.

andygirl said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Sassy- welcome! yes yes and yes! I totally agree. I'm always talking about subverting societal norms because they're very rarely actually good for us. :)

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