5 reasons I ignore people who tell me how Adoption did not work out in their family
Few months back, my colleague and I got invited to a ladies’ luncheon to talk about our work in the child protection space. As soon as the talk got over, one lady approached my colleague and jumped into a story about how her nephew was adopted and how it had not worked out well for their family. While my colleague dealt with her, I quietly escaped to find better conversations. I neither have any interest in hearing a relative or parent complain about adoption, nor do their complaints worry me about adoption. And here are 5 reasons why you shouldn’t worry about it either.
1) We don’t know how the kids were raised
Once a woman anonymously mentioned that her mother (i.e. the grandmother) always favoured the biological granddaughter over the adopted one when they visited the grandmother. This woman wondered how to handle this situation since it had been going on for years. I remember freaking out when I heard this question. This had been going on for years? Why hadn’t the woman stopped the grandmother from meeting the granddaughters unless the grandmother improved? How much emotional damage had been caused to the adopted child? After calming myself down, I answered her, but it was a reminder to me that we don’t know anyone’s life. We don’t know how the child was raised and protected after his/her adoption. So it’s not the child or adoption; if we need to have a conversation, it should be about parenting.
2) People are judgemental about adopted kids but not biological kids
Every time someone says, “I know one adopted kid who did this,” I want to reply, “I know thousands of biological kids who did worse than that.” Every single one of us has probably heard parents complain about their teenagers but not a single one would say, “I think me giving birth to this kid is the problem.” So why do we keep saying “I think this kid being adopted is the problem”?
Kids are tough. All of them. We need fairness in our eyes to view the toughness equally. Will adopted kids go through emotional upheaval at some point in their lives because adoption is an emotionally charged topic? Maybe. Will most kids go through emotional upheaval at some point in their lives because that’s how humans work. Yes. So let’s not judge any kid, including the adopted ones.
3) If parents are saying such things, it shows their own bias
Hypothetically speaking, let’s say your kids give you an exceptional amount of grief. Would you go around telling people how awful your kids are, and how you shouldn’t have given birth to them in the first place? Most of you won’t. Because at the end of the day, they are your kids and you will give them a certain amount of respect, privacy, and love, even in the most difficult of times.
So what does it say about a parent if they go around telling people that they shouldn’t have adopted in the first place because their kid is making their life difficult? It’s not the kid; it’s this type of parent that scares me.
4) Every kid deserves a family
My daughters need and deserve a caring family. Every child on Earth needs and deserves a caring family. So whatever scary adoption story a relative or parent may tell, the bottomline is that a child’s right to family and our own belief and confidence in adoption, should always take precedence over someone else’s complaints and scaremongering.
5) Adoptive families have more resources and support now
If I ever have an adoption related parenting question, I can think of ten sensible adoptive families I can talk to. I don’t think this was the case for adoptive parents even in the recent past — adoption misinformation was rampant and people likely didn’t have anyone to talk them through a tricky situation. Times are thankfully different now. More resources and more support means people can now parent with more credible knowledge.
Parenting is tough no matter what, so instead of envisioning and fretting about all the challenges, why not deal with the challenges for something as life-changing as Adoption.
Here are all the articles and videos that I have created about adoption in India.