So we all know people that say, “Have you ever thought of adopting?” Not really helpful, but ok. They usually mean well for the most part.
But then, when that morphs into something more judgmental, more ignorant and more arrogant — it crosses the line.
It goes something like this…
I don’t know why you are bothering with all of these fertility treatments. There are so many babies out there that need homes anyway, so why don’t you just adopt?
These comments are proliferating across the internet.
I’m thankful that these views are coming from strangers and not my family and friends.
You’ll find this type of opinion in the comments of pretty much every single article, blog post, or video about infertility with a widespread audience. There’s usually a whole gaggle of people ready to throw their unenlightened remarks at you.
For me, they are not simply asking a question or pointing out a solution, but rather taking aim at my decisions, my journey and my plight. The comments are completely uneducated.
Well, I’m tired of biting my tongue. I’m tired of feeling bullied. I take offense. Big time.
You know what, people? It’s really none of your business. However, that being said, I will attempt to break this down even though I shouldn’t have to.
For the “I don’t know why you are bothering with all of these fertility treatments” part
It’s a deeply personal choice. It’s my choice. This is a disease and I have the right to treat it.
It’s so offensive to hear this. It somehow downplays what we have been through. It says you are too stupid to make decisions about your life and your body.
Sometimes these comments are aimed at anyone experiencing infertility, but sometimes I think they are a cheap shot that are aimed at those like me who have been through the ringer with infertility treatments. Yes, we did IVF six times, but along the way, we discovered different problems and treated them. After we couldn’t find anything else wrong and it still didn’t work, the doctors no longer had hope and neither did we. I’m not an idiot. I know that there is a line between persistence and delusion.
I also have the right to attempt to have a biological child, if that’s what I want. Yes, that is what I want. Most everyone else wants this, too. Why do I get singled out and talked down to because I want this?
For the “Why don’t you adopt?” part
Some of us just do not want to adopt for a myriad of reasons. We just don’t have the heart for it or don’t feel it would be right for us. End of story. It’s not a good situation for anyone involved if adoption is forced upon someone. What birth mother would would want to choose adoptive parents that were unsure or uncomfortable with the idea of adopting?
Some of us want to adopt, but can’t afford it. Adoption is expensive. Like buying a Mercedes expensive. It can be much more expensive than infertility treatments. Adoption costs anywhere from $20,000 – $60,000 and up. A basic insemination procedure costs $300. A round of IVF costs around $10,000. None of this is cheap, least of all adoption.
So, when these kinds of comments are bantered about, it crushes some people because they desperately do want to adopt. Yes, they know it’s an option, before you mentioned it.
Now, as for the whole “There are so many children out there that need homes” business
Number 1. See above. Adoption is not right for everyone.
Number 2. Even if someone wants to adopt, many times they want to adopt a baby. It’s a personal choice.
We have already lost the ability to be pregnant. We have lost the ability to carry a child. We have lost the ability for our child to share our DNA. Now, we don’t want to miss out on anything else. We want to know our child from as close to the beginning as possible. We want to do diapers and the whole nine yards. We want to see all of the firsts — rolling over, crawling, walking, talking, etc. We want to hold a sleeping baby on our chest. We don’t need to apologize for this.
Contrary to popular belief, there are more adoptive-parents-to-be than there are babies. There are huge wait times for adoptive families to adopt an infant…years! And, the cost is outrageous.
And, yes, unfortunately there are many older children who need homes. It’s a really sad situation, but it’s not ours to solve. It doesn’t fall to the infertile to give homes to orphans.
Fostering to adopt is a great option for some people, even for those that want newborns. However, we knew that this option was not viable for us. We have already experienced so much loss. There is NO way I would take the chance of falling in love with a baby, only to potentially have them ripped right back away from me. It would be my undoing.
And, finally, who are these outspoken commenters?
Surely, they have never experienced infertility. And, I think it’s a safe bet to say that they either: have biological children sitting at home or don’t have kids and don’t want kids.
Well, isn’t it easy for you to say these things? My question to you is, why didn’t you adopt? Or, why don’t you? You decided at some point that you wanted children. So, why didn’t you use birth control and adopt instead?
Oh, what, it’s different for you? Oh, ok…gotcha!
These questions are unfair no matter whom is being asked.
What do you think? Do you get these kinds of comments from people? How does it make you feel? If you’re not infertile, what do you think about this?
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