Haters Gonna Hate

Image courtesy of Feministing.com

Image courtesy of Feministing.com

A few years ago, in a fit of rage, I slammed out this Facebook post for all my friends and family to see. The response I received was so overwhelmingly supportive that it ignited the idea to write this blog. Of course I was lazy and it took me a couple of winters and a healthy dose of unemployment to actually start, but to everyone who commented on this the first time around I can’t thank you enough. Your encouragement has helped me to press on despite every ounce of me wanting to give up on the whole stupid, impossible dream.

I’ve decided to share it again today because it still adequately reflects how I feel, and it helps to show some of the stigma surrounding adoption and ‘infertiles’ here in Australia.

I should also mention that since I first wrote this rant the Ethiopian adoption program in Australia that we had been waiting on has been shut down. Years of waiting down the drain, another door slammed shut in our faces…

June 2011
Adoption, Infertility and I’m ANGRY right now!

It’s late, and I know I should be going to bed right now and not rambling on facebook, but something has just got me shaking and I’m considering this as my way of expelling bad energy before sleep time.

For those of you who don’t know, Mr. Lady Breaks and I can’t have kids. As fifteen year olds, we used daydream and fantasise about our future children, naming them and imagining what they would look like. Fast forward to our first year of marriage five years later and we were ready to turn our dreams into reality. Except it didn’t happen. Sludge through another six seven years of appointments, IVF, and the looooong road to adoption, and you’ll get to where we are today.

Anyway, by and large, I’m excited about the future, and I feel like I’ve loved and longed for my future child for the best part of the last 12 13 years. Adoption is something we can’t wait to do, we research it constantly, and are making every effort to ensure that we are able to provide our child with all that she/he needs to develop a strong identity, with a powerful connection to their culture. We even already have a collection of children’s books about adoption.

books

But this journey certainly hasn’t been easy, in fact it has been incredibly unbelievably painful – but that’s a story for another day. Anyway, sometimes little things still catch me off guard, like someone complaining about having kids when I would do anything to have that problem, or the sheer length of adoption waiting times. So tonight I was having a little downer with myself in the car, asking God why on earth He made Mr. Lady Breaks and I infertile when we would love our kids so so much? What was the point to all this? It wasn’t fair, blah, blah, blah.

And then I got home.

Like any other good Gen Y-er I checked my facebook and I clicked through to this article about adoption in Australia.

And the article itself is really quite good and just what kind of information needs to get out there. But then I read the comments…*

Now, I know so many of you are amazingly supportive of our adoption journey and eagerly anticipate the day we adopt alongside us. In fact many of you are so supportive that you probably don’t realise there is a whole other side to the story that us ‘infertiles’ have to deal with. That stuff is thoughts like this:

  • It is time adoption was outlawed. Adoption requires the taking of a baby from its mother to satisfy the wants of adopters. It is a very selfish act. If you cannot have a baby of your own then you are not entitled to one from someone else.. It is time people looked at the history of adoption in Australia and come to realise that very few babies were willingly handed over to adopters. They were stolen. The majority of adoptions between 1950 – 1975 were illegal. It is time people realised this and accept that they cannot have a child and get on with it.
  • Adopters do not have the right to someone else’s infant. It is interesting that Mother’s rights are not mentioned in this article just the infertiles desire for a healthy fresh-out-of-the-womb infant.
  • It would be wonderful if people stopped referring to parents as birth parents of Bio parents. These titles are rubbish. You have one set of parents. The ones who created you, then you have adoptive parents. They are the ones who look after you when you are adopted but they are never ever your actual parents. It would be appreciated if people would stop calling mothers these names.

Anyway, that’s just a taster. If you want to see more, go to any adoption video on YouTube – most have comments on them saying that they have stolen a baby, bought a baby, ruined a life, etc., etc.

As many of you know, I have spent time in countries with an enormously high percentage of orphans – many of whom will grow up in institutions or worse. In Kenya alone it is estimated that 300 babies are abandoned every single day. I am not suggesting intercountry adoption is the only answer, far from it! Of course, a child’s indigenous culture will be the best answer for them. However, until adequate foster and orphan care systems are in place, intercountry adoption has to remain an option for the sake of the children.

I do believe very strongly in the absolute importance of ensuring the child’s culture is ingrained in their lives, and yes, I won’t be able to do it as well as their birth mother in their home country would. But the situation isn’t perfect, and no amount of telling me I’ll always be second best at it will change that. There are children whose parents simply cannot or do not want to raise them. There are children without parents at all. We are a couple who can. More than that, we love love them already, just as I imagine a mother expecting a baby would. Only our pregnancy has gone on for years and years.

instaquote

I acknowledge that some of you will read this and agree with what the commenters are saying, and you have every right to do that. You may believe that no matter which way I try and spin it, adoption will never be the same as “having your own” (<—HATE those words). All I can say to you is that for me and my husband, THERE IS NO DIFFERENCE. Our love for our future child is just as valid and as real as yours.

So, after a very long ramble that I’m not sure anyone will even read, I think I know why God made us infertile. And, what’s more I’m thankful for it. I, unlike many others, will get to say to my beautiful child, I longed for you with every fibre of my being for years and years and years. I knew how perfect you were before I met you and I conquered every obstacle placed before me to get to you. That’s how much you are worth to me.

x

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* Comments on article have since been removed

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7 thoughts on “Haters Gonna Hate

  1. You made me tear up (again). I still can’t believe, well, so many things. The ignorant shelteredness of such hate filled statements, the shortage of adoption options, your endurance and dedication as you have waited, the number of children waiting for a family (I can’t even go into what that must entail for the child without having a good bawl) and all the emotions involved, because I know ALL of these are incredibly taxing on the emotions. You’re still an incredible star in my eyes and I am still so glad you’re cutting out a little window so that the world can have a view into your journey. Thank you.

    PS. Thank you eternally for coming to my baby shower… I’ve been thinking about the magnitude of that for about 8 months now.
    xx

    • Thank you for inviting me to your baby shower – some people feel too awkward about it which makes it a gazillion times worse! I love celebrating new life and eating cake as much as the next person! You are such a beautiful family, I’m so glad we’ve crossed paths. Thanks for all your support and comments xoxo

  2. Wow I really love this post. I’ve seen comments just like that about how awful we are for wanting to adopt and I live in the US. I think this is a situation where those people should have to walk in our shoes for a day and feel all the emotion we feel. But on the other hand, I wouldn’t wish my pain on my worst enemy. I think going through this is hard it tests your patience, faith, marriage, finances, etc. I do agree with you that one day when you and I have a child we can tell them how much we wanted them, how long it took to get them, and how we fought every obstacle in our way. I’m currently on my second cycle of Clomid and after this we’re planning to talk about adoption again. In my heart I know I am suppose to adopt and I want to very badly. I pray you have a child soon and I can’t wait to read the day you’re blogging about having one! I know it will happen for all of us keep your faith sometimes I think it’s all we got!

    • Thanks so much Bethany, I’ll be thinking of you in the coming months and praying that your miracle arrives soon! It’s definitely a trial I wouldn’t wish on anyone! Wishing you strength upon strength as Christmas approaches, may you find extra peace, strength and joy during this time. I can’t wait to hear some happy news from you as well! x

  3. “Destiny is not always preordained. Life is about making choices. Our lives are the sum of all the choices we make, the bridges we cross, and the ones we burn. Our souls cast long shadows over many people, even after we are gone. Fate, luck, and providence are the consequence of our freedom of choice, not the determinants. When justice is served by following our principles, making good decisions brings us inner peace.” —Judith Land
    http://judithland.wordpress.com/2012/08/24/destiny-and-ancestral-recovery/

  4. What an amazing lady you are! I can totally relate to your story. My grief around having children is about loss after delivery of to two sons and a miscarriage. And waiting a long time in between babies. I understand your grief and heartbreak, but I just want to encourage you and know that God grieves with you, he loves you more than you can imagine and he wants to bless you in every area of your life. You and your husband were joined together by God for a reason and he will reveal all as you trust in him and honour him with your faith. He has never let me down.
    Traveling to Africa myself I understand the desperate need for loving homes for orphaned children. Some people are so ignorant about the need for these children, but instead of getting angry with these people, I remember what Jesus said on the cross “Forgive them Father for they know not what they do” That’s the only way I can cope with such close mindedness and stupidity.
    Hold onto your promises from God, cant wait to hear more of what he will do in both your lives, wait with BIG expectations my sweet, he is a BIG GOD!!!!

    • Thanks for your words Melanie. I’m so sorry to hear about what you’ve been through, I can’t even begin to imagine what that felt like. You are honouring those children by being so strong and faithful. You definitely sound like an amazing woman! Thanks so much for reading my post xoxo

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