Things that I wish people didn’t feel compelled to ask….in public…. when I am out and about with my kids…

Okay people of the world…..  why is it okay to for you to comment on my family when we are out together having dinner or running errands?  I mean, we are a large group, and we don’t all look exactly like one another- so I get that you notice….  but why do you feel compelled to voice your comments aloud to me and my children?

If you really want to strike up a conversation with me about my large family or about adoption- cool…..  but how about you notice the fact that I am barely keeping it together and my dance card is a bit full at the moment?  If you really would like to talk- then how about slipping me your card and saying that you have a few questions about adoption and ask if I would be willing to talk to you… later?

I hear little gems like these all of the time…..  and just in case you find yourself curious about someone else’s family that you see out in public- before you ask them an intrusive question- you might want to hear about how I feel about……

Please don’t tell me (or my children) how “lucky” they are….

I know that you mean well…..  but if you really stop to think about it….  were my kids lucky that they were unable to be raised by the birth families?  Were they lucky that they spent time living in an orphanage?  Were they lucky when they were pulled away from everything they knew and taken out of their own birth country to be raised in a culture that was not their own? Whether or not my children feel “lucky” about all of these things, is for them to decide- and not for someone else to lecture them in a tone that underscores how appreciative they should be…..

I am not a saint…  please stop saying “Oh God bless you”….  (I am just trying to be a good Mom…..  most of the time…..)

I did not add to our family through adoption in order to achieve sainthood or to have people praise me. I did it pretty much for the same selfish reason that everyone does when they choose to have children…..  because I wanted to do it- and I wanted to be a Mom…..  And trust me…  if you heard me yelling at all of them this morning that we were going to be late for the bus if they didn’t get moving RIGHT NOW!  Well, you would be taking my picture down from that pedestal and chucking it out your back door!

Please don’t tell me that I took the “easy way out” to finally have a girl….

Yes, I mean you, obnoxious man at McDonald’s who thought you were being so witty…..  to comment that I “finally got my girl”….  while I was trying to keep all four kids (at the time) away from their Happy Meal prizes and focused on their chicken nuggets and apple dippers…..  If you had any earthly idea- of how HUGE the process is that potential adoptive parents go through to become approved to adopt…  how the wait can seem endless and agonizing….. and by the way- I couldn’t care LESS if my kids were male or female!

And to that other fellow who thought he was being so funny by telling me that I could have slowed down and I didn’t have to have so many kids so close together in age…..  I’ll tell you what- how about you worry about your family planning…  and I’ll worry about mine….  Sheesh!

Do you really need to ask me if they are siblings?

First of all, are my children’s DNA any of your business?  And secondly- did you just see how Jack just slugged Charlotte upside the head for touching his DS? Of course they are siblings!

Why didn’t you adopt from the US?  You know there are so many kids here in need of homes, you didn’t have to go halfway around the world….

All kids deserve loving families and homes to grow up in-  all kids, regardless of where they were born, period.  (But by the way Little Miss Patriotism….  how about you take out your wallet and show me the pics of all of your kids that you adopted domestically?)

How much did they cost?

The person who asks this is usually asking because they know someone who has adopted a child, and they have heard that the process is expensive.  But really- they just don’t get what an obscene and rude question this is….  and while I do my best to refrain from kicking them in the shins…..  I explain that you do pay fees to agencies and to immigration to allow the child to come home, and the fees are comparable to how much it would cost to deliver a child in the hospital, without health insurance.  And then I make it perfectly clear- but you are not buying a child.

When we were in the process of adopting our first child, and were sharing this news with our friends, someone asked me if I could ever love my adopted child as much “as my own”…..

Love is not blood……  love grows in your heart…..  love is work….  love requires give and take……

My husband and I are not related by blood- and I have never loved anyone more…..  and I very honestly don’t see how carrying a baby in my womb and going through childbirth has anything whatsoever to do with my love for all six of my children….  not a drop….

And while I am on this topic……  I really can’t stand it when people refer to my biological children as “my own” and my adopted children as “adopted”….  for goodness sakes- I got them all ready this morning, fed them breakfast, made them lunches, helped them brush their teeth and comb their hair.  I will help them with their homework when they get home, feed them all dinner, read to and with them at bedtime, and lavish them with hugs and kiss before they go to sleep.

Each one of them are absolutely, forever, and always all “my own”….

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  1. Meredith says

    Love this Sharon!!! As the only adopted child of 4 my own grandmother asked my mother if she loved me as much as my 3 older siblings. (Yes, this was in the 60’s and my parents only waited 3 weeks for the call that a baby was born, so adoption was not as common as it is today!) For some of us, you will always be on a pedestal because we know how wonderful you are inside and out!!

  2. says

    I know this is an Archived Post but one I enjoyed you Sharing with me now, years later, nonetheless. As a Custodial Grandparent who was a Kinship Placement at birth of two of our G-Kids, then Adopting them years later, which is a complicated enough process and story… we too are fielded all kinds of intrusive and awkward questions in public… and often in front of the children. I especially hate the “you are so lucky” lecture to my Grandkids and the undertones of being more appreciative of their very personal and often difficult reasons for not being able to be raised by parents rather than grandparents. The God Bless You one is awkward, since Saint Dawn I’m not either… and the alternative was placement for what The System likes to label the ‘Hard to Place Child’ at risk in most Foster Care situations since they have Special Needs that are a tough row to hoe for any prospective Parent to manage. Honest discussions about topics like this can inform the general public to hopefully be more sensitive… and maybe just a little less intrusively curious or judgmental. Thank You for sharing your personal Adoption Journey’s daily challenges, it uplifts me to deal with our own. Blessings from the Arizona Desert… Dawn… The Bohemian


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