This article appeared on a newsletter I received today from Rainbow Kids, and I thought it was worth sharing.
I’ve encountered several people — some family, some complete strangers — who have heard only the nightmare versions of the adoption story. And boy, are they quick to share these stories with me! I’m finding it’s the equivalent of all the horrific birth stories I was told while pregnant with my bio kids.
And hearing them is just about as helpful — which means not even remotely helpful at all.
Every birth, every adoption, every child, every family is different and it’s wrong to think that because Sally’s cousin’s step-brother’s adopted son tried to burn down the house that all adopted kids should be seen as potentially destructive individuals. It’s like the evening news — the happy stories rarely make headlines.
I’m the first to agree that adoption might not be for everyone. But I think it IS for a lot more families than there are those willing to pursue it. If you have ever felt nudged toward adopting, I beg you to look beyond the scary stories and really talk to those who’ve been there. Most are happy to share both the good and the bad of adoption, and what I’ve been finding is that the good seriously outweighs the bad.
Anyway, I could talk about this all day. But, let’s get on to the article…. 🙂
How many of you wonder if adopting a child might be a catastrophic mistake? What if…your child hates you? What if…your child resents being adopted? I mean, where are all the HAPPY adoptees? All you ever read is the angry, hostile, negative stuff written by adoptees.
I’m going to tell you where all the happy adoptees are. They are living next door to you. They are in the office down the hall. Serving you your sub sandwich and selling you your home. They, or should I say, WE are everywhere. We are white, black, Hispanic, Asian. We are Atheists, Christians, Jewish, Democrats and Republicans. We are busy moms and dads, coaches of child’s football and gymnastic teams. We are here, living our lives, just like you. Adoption was how we entered our families. It’s part of us, but so are so many other things. For most of us, adoption isn’t something we think about very often.
I am an adoptee. I only became involved with adoption advocacy because my husband and I adopted 5 of our children, all labeled “special needs”. Angry adoptees become furious when they are labeled “angry”. Okay….but there’s no dialogue for those of us that were adopted and are fine with it. No way for us to get a word in above the screaming and say, “Uh…hey. You know, there are a whole bunch of us who think that our personal issues might come from other places, beyond adoption.”
So this is my place, my moment to say to YOU: It’s going to be okay. Your child is not going to hate you. It’s not a mistake to adopt. Kids who really want to be in a family are waiting and hoping that you will be the answer to their hope and prayer. They shouldn’t have to suffer (and YES, they are suffering) because someone else is unhappy with their life. These waiting kids? They have no one to love them. You could be their someone.