Thursday, June 02, 2011

Not For the Likes of Us

I have heard this, not in those precise words, but almost, from other people about adoption, on a number of occasions since we announced we were thinking of adoption. Usually it is from people who actually don't need to make the decision: they have birth children, or they are trying to build a family but have not yet exhausted other avenues, or they may have children in the future but they are not particularly driven to do so.

Usually the reasons given are one of a) you're really brave, b) I don't think I could love an adopted child as much, or c) the process sounds too hard and I doubt we'd get approved/chosen.

Frankly I resent the implication that we are special, unique, or in some way gifted. I don't feel brave - I mainly feel scared - that we won't be chosen, yes, but also scared of being a mum, and scared that we won't do the right things for our child, and that I won't have any semblance of my old life - but that is fear of really major changes such as having a child that is so disabled I won't be able to work - not of missing a Saturday lie-in. I feel these are the kind of fears all prospective parents should have, but they aren't forced to think about parenthood as much as we have been. I do also feel broke, of course!

And although we don't have living birth children to compare, perhaps the ones we don't have would have been perfect. Perhaps we'll have more than one child and, like other thinking parents, we'll worry we'll love one more than the other.

And to be honest if we - medical problems, age and all, and in a fairly traditional part of the country, and very indecisive too, can be approved, I can't think anyone who doesn't actually have a criminal record or is imminently about to divorce or can't be bothered to spend some time with children, wouldn't be approved to adopt - possibly not everyone will find the first agency they approach is the one for them, it is true.

So there just remains matching. And I'm currently torn between "hurry up" and "I have too much to get done!"

Oh yeah, and the being broke bit.


Twangypearl the Elastic Girl said...

Quite, Dr Spouse. QUITE.
One well-meaning soul, with small child afoot AND pregnant at the time, mused to me:
Hrrmm, I'd think about adoption, but I'd be too worried what would be going on in their heads.
Thanks for the encouragement, pregnant lady. URG. What are people like?

DrSpouse said...

Oh dear - I have to say I wonder what is going on in the head of people like that!

Anonymous said...

oh, gosh, that line, so much to do first and yet hurry up, really resonates with me too!
Having 2 birth kids, I also wonder will I love my adopted kids to the same extent and I just have to go by how I feel about my 2, they are both very different and although I love them both in different ways, with my son I love him for his sensitivitiy and his annoying habits to be so particular with things and I love my daughter's independence and also her temper etc, yet I could never choose between them and I can only trust that I will feel the same between them all - adopted or biological.