People are fascinated with our family. In the past day alone, I’ve been asked fairly invasive adoption questions such as the age of our children’s birth parents, why we chose open adoption, why our children were placed for adoption, etc.
I’m good at answering these questions in a way, I hope, that educates and informs, but is always respectful of my children and their birth parents’ privacy.
I’m not sure if it’s adoption alone that is fascinating to the every day person. Maybe it’s that we are a transracial family. Maybe it’s the open adoptions we have.
My day is just like every other mom’s day. I get up, take care of my kids, work, do errands, do chores. Go. Go. Go. Maybe catch a minute to post on Facebook or flip through a magazine. Do some more chores. Think about maybe having a hobby one day. I don’t think during these moments, “Gee! I guess I should make dinner for my black, adopted children.” ;) There is nothing magical about our everyday lives.
I wonder when or if the spotlight will ever shift to someone or something else.
If you sign up to adopt, you sign up for the spotlight, especially if your adoption is obvious, such as the case of our family.
However, I just wonder why it’s ok to ask so many adoption questions that are deeply personal when other questions, equally as invasive questions, would generally not be asked. I feel sometimes that being asked, “Why didn’t Miss E’s parents keep her?” is the equivalent of me asking someone how much they weigh.
A friend of mine recently had a baby, and we were discussing the personal and (think about it) incredibly odd questions a pregnant woman faces. Are you dilated? (Um, is the circumference of someone’s cervix really necessary for you to know?) How much weight have you gained? (Do you EVER ask a woman that? Come on!) Or, judgemental questions about breastfeeding, bottle feeding, co-sleeping, drugs or no drugs during the birth, etc. It seems like how kids come about is somehow a free-for-all topic. Shrug.
I know that whenever people ask about adoption, I have a responsibility first and foremost to my girls. But I also feel that we chose this life, and therefore, we chose to open ourselves up to questions, however they are phrased. How we respond is critical, because our girls are listening and learning.
Readers, what adoption-related question most bothers you? How do you respond? What are your thoughts on the public's fascination with your family?