Over at Grown In My Heart they are having a blog carnival. The subject is What No One Told Me About Adoption. At first I really didn't think I had much to contribute. After all, we had a fantastic agency and social worker that made sure we were educated....before all the Hague changes. I give them a 10 star on education.
We did exercises like putting colored marbles in a cup to represent our lives....such as work, doctors, dentists, most used grocery store, hair stylist, friends and family. My husband's cup was a rainbow of colors. Mine? Way too vanilla. So I went to work on my white washed world and work on it daily still.
We learned that we would attract alot of attention as a multi-racial family. We learned that we really needed to pay attention and take a stand against any and all racism. To open our eyes and see racism in all things...not just the big events. To support our children when they are the victims of racism and to teach them about racism BEFORE it blindsided them.
We learned that people would ask us lots of personal questions they do not have the right to ask. All because we look different than they think a family should. We learned we do not have to answer these people. We learned ways to divert the questions and protect our kids.
We learned about the loss our children will feel. We learned how this can manifest itself since many of the losses are pre-verbal. We learned about the primal wound.
We learned about keeping our home low key and low stimulus at first. We learned about orphanages and what to expect. We learned about RAD and other attachment disorders and orphanage behaviors.
We learned that we need to support our child's nationality/race and instill pride. Foster mentors and make sure our child was just as comfortable with others of the same race as she is with us.
We learned to make sure not to demonize our child's birth mother. Her first mother. To let her feel the grief and pain and ask the hard questions even if we are uncomfortable. It is part of who she is. Support the child.
We learned many other things also. We used a workbook called "With Eyes Wide Open" that was very informative. We had 2 large 3 ring notebooks full of articles that we had to read.
But there was one area we didn't learn about.
We were not told about the adopted people that are totally against internal adoptions.
There are MANY, MANY of these voices.
At first I was very into reading these sites. I wanted to learn as much as I could so that I could learn from mistakes others have made. I wanted to understand what things were harmful and what things were positive. And I have learned from these sites.
I have also been called a racist for adopting a child of another race.
I've been called a baby stealer for having the money to adopt a child and remove them from their birth country.
I've been told I cannot support my child and her battles against racism....because I'm white and therefore unable to feel.
I've been told I am responsible for other people stealing babies all because I would pay for one.
I've been told I don't care about poor people or women.
I've been told I should be supporting my child in her home with her birth family, not stealing her away.
And I've been told other things I won't even put down here.
And I've quit reading those sites.
I had room in my home and heart for another child. I wanted to give that place to a child with no home and no family. An orphan. I wasn't looking for a specific nationality or color...just a child to love. A child with no family.
I traveled a lot growing up and saw orphan children in other countries. This left an impression on me. I always thought that if we all opened our families to one person with no family it would be a better world. Life without family is not much of a life at all.
Well, now I know.
I'm just a baby-stealing racist with a savior mentality.