Oh friends, I’m feeling a little less sunny side up today. I started this blog so that other people could read about how our family came into fruition, and so I want to tell the whole story even when it’s painful. This blog is one part journal, one part resource, and one part self defense. I think the first two parts are pretty obvious, but the third may require some explanation. Although we haven’t told very many people we’re trying to start a family, there have been a few underwhelming responses. And that’s okay, but I want a chance to have my say, and I want to say it thoughtfully, on my terms.
I read an article about the increase in gay adoptions in The New York Times. First, I have to ask about the choice of monikers. What is a gay adoption? How is it different from adoption? It reminds me of this quote from comedian Liz Feldman:
Personally, I am very excited about “gay marriage”, or as I like to call it, “marriage”. Because I had lunch this afternoon, I didn’t have “gay lunch”. And I parked my car, I didn’t “gay park” it.
Second, I must tell you that I nearly blew a gasket after reading the comments that followed the article. Now, I know that I should not read the comment section. I should limit myself to letters to the editor, where people are forced to say something intelligible and sign their name to it. But the comment section is like an accident scene–it’s hard to look away. The article is about two gay men who adopted 8 children, including five siblings from foster care. They did this in spite of the legal challenges and the emotional risks involved, and some people had the nerve to shame them for depriving their children of a loving mother and father. Never one to keep my mouth shut, I had to point out the obvious to these finger wagging windbags:
VeritasVeritas, Fairandbalanced, and Mdm Mignon: has it not occurred to you that the people who originally denied these children a loving home with a father and a mother are the HETEROSEXUAL birth parents? LGBT families are willing to take on the risks involved in fostering and adopting children who may have been subjected to abuse and mistreatment since they were in their mothers’ wombs. I know hundreds of conservative, pro-life Christian families, and among them there are only two who have adopted a child. Want to appoint yourself defender of vulnerable children and moral compass setter? Adopt a vulnerable child.
After seeing that 4 readers agreed with me, I felt a little bit better. That is, until I read this letter to my favorite advice columnist, Carolyn Hax, about soon-to-be-grandparents who aren’t thrilled with their daughter’s pregnancy because it was achieved through IVF. Again, it wasn’t the main story that got to me, it was the discussion that followed in which one woman said:
Coming from an extended family with multiple adoptions, I honestly don’t understand why couples who are having trouble conceiving go to the expense and physical difficulties of fertility treatments when there are so many children available for adoption. So maybe you can’t get a “made to order” newborn, but why not open your home to an older child? I just don’t see why people put so much value on passing on their genes while children languish in foster care.