When you think of all the aspects of life in which competition is involved, you come up with a pretty long list, right? From your kid's soccer league to economics, competition is everywhere. Including adoption. And this, I hate. All too often, hopeful adoptive parents (HAPs) see each other as competition for an expectant mother's attention and even for her baby. (Yes...I'll pause so you can wretch at the thought of half a dozen women constantly emailing and IMing one poor mother who is trying to make the hardest decision of her life...) They clamor and jump and shout, instead of calmly and lovingly supporting the expectant mother--and each other. Adoption is hard enough on HAPs without casting each other as the "bad guys" in your adoption story. And trying to decide to place and whom to place with is soul-wrenching enough without half a dozen (or more) HAPs trying to convince you that their family is "the best one." The only way to catch a scammer in the act, by the way, is through open and honest communication between HAPs, but if we see each other as competition, that doesn't happen.
Really. Can we not just love and support each other through this? Can people not see that this is best for ALL involved? Just...love a birthmom, help her, be her friend. If she decides to allow you to raise her child, give thanks and honor that trust she has put in you. But if she doesn't, don't feel like you somehow lost. Because knowing a woman who has placed her child or is going to place her child is an honor and a privilidge. These are amazing women with stories of their own, and they don't need to be run over by HAPs in a hurry to add to their family.
Well, that came out much more like a rant than I meant it to be. And many of you may not even have a clue what this is about, since adoption is such a unique world. The emotions of "The Journey" are hard to understand if you haven't been there yourself.
Tomorrow (or sometime this week), I'll write about more of the beautiful things in adoption--there are many, and they outnumber the other stuff.