We designed this site in order to keep in touch with friends and family who are far away and in order to communicate with other adoptive families from around the world.

When we first started researching this wonderful way to become a family we read everything we could get our hands on. Even though there are a lot of great books out there, nothing was as informative or touching as the blogs we found by adoptees, biological parents, and adoptive families. So we are writing this blog now in hopes of returning the favor. We hope that if you are dear to us you will enjoy keeping up with our adventures. If you are someone out there involved in a part of the adoption triad we hope you will find information and comfort here and provide us with some of your own!

If you would like to get in touch with us we can be reached at:
Feel free to stop by anytime. We're happy to share our family story.

Take care,
Brian and Rosemary

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Label Crazy

This morning when I was walking the dog, I was thinking (this is my best thinking time) about all the words used to describe us as kids - words which define us so powerfully.  Even as adults many of us still struggle not to think of ourselves as a bouquet of those childhood adjectives:  "Class Clown", "Preacher's kid", "Army brat", "lonely only", "four-eyes", "learning disabled", "jock", "child of divorce", etc...  We could comprise a never ending list of these earliest labels.  What is saddest about them, in my mind, is that most of these labels are just tainted versions of the truth.  A "jock" should be simply a kid who is considered to be athletic.  However, for some, the use of that word is reflective of a whole other paradigm.  "Jock" as an arrogant, dumb, sport who crushes beer cans on his forehead and will only date the Prom queen.  

I was thinking about all of this because I was wondering what life will be like for our child.  He will carry "adoptee" as a personal adjective from the moment we bring him home.  There is really nothing we can do about that.  For most people that term is simply a description of how you came to be in your family.  For others though it is a negative word, which implies all sorts of emotional handicaps.  

There are a lot of childhood monikers I was forced to endure and, trust me, one of the delights of meeting new people in my adult life is that they don't have pre-conceived ideas about me based on age-old misinformation.  I wonder if this option will ever be much of a possibility for our kids.  As a member of a transracial family it would be very hard for people not to know of their adoptive status.  Will they always be "adoptees" and all that means for good and bad in the eye of the beholder?  

I think it must be hard to grow up constantly bearing the added label "adoptee".  I'm not sure how that must feel but I'm sure it's very powerful.   What if my accomplishments were mentioned in this light: "She's done so well especially considering she's adopted."  Or worse yet, in moments of failure to hear said, "Well, what could you expect?  You know she's adopted." While I am not assuming that our child will face this kind of prejudice we do know that everyone confronts ignorance at some point in their life.  

We can't solve this problem for our child but at least we can recognize it.  We don't know what makes some families share such enviable bonds of closeness but we truly feel that it probably begins by having empathy for one another.  

- Rosemary


Mireille said...

Interesting read, adoptee is not a bad label I find personally. People we come across react always very positive about the fact we have adopted our girls. It is changing and for the more positive...luckily for us!

Chock Dee!