Monday, October 18, 2010

People Just Don't Get It

Last night, we went to family dinner at my MIL's house. As much as I enjoy spending time with the family, I always dread it a little bit because it seems like the biggest topic of conversation is always babies. There is only one grandchild on that side of the family, and don't get me wrong - I love my niece - but sometimes it would be nice to talk about something else. Anyway, of course the adoption came up and people were asking DH and me if we had heard anything yet. We said no, and then my MIL proceeded to question us. This is how the conversation went:

MIL: Have you guys considered getting a baby from another country?
Us: Yes, but it is much more expensive and the wait can be much longer. We felt like domestic adoption was the best route for us.
MIL: But there are so many orphans. Why can't you just go to a country and pick out a baby?
Us: Well, it isn't that easy. There is a lot of red tape to go through with both our country and the country where the baby comes from.
MIL: Well, it seems like you should just be able to go pick out a baby and then pay a lawyer to do the adoption.
Us: Unfortunately, it just doesn't work that way. It's not that simple. Some people wait years to adopt a baby from another country, and it just depends on that country's rules.
MIL: When C and J (her sister and BIL) adopted a baby from Columbia, they just went there and got him, and I know it wasn't that expensive. I realize that was a long time ago, and he was 18 months old when they got him, but still.
Us: Most children that are adopted from other countries are not adopted as new babies.
MIL: Well, I bet that D (her brother who lived in Columbia) could call up his friend in Columbia and have him watch for a baby for you. And then you could adopt that baby and not have to keep waiting.
Us: Unfortunately, it just isn't usually that simple. There is much more to it than going to another country and just picking up a baby.
MIL: What other options do you have to get a baby faster?
Us: We could have chosen another agency that has faster placement times, but the fees would have been double or triple what we are paying with ours.
MIL: We can just have a bake sale and raise the money that you need to get a baby faster.

This conversation continued for a little while. I think that my MIL was still convinced that all she needed to do was have her brother call his friend in Columbia and it would be that easy for us to get a baby. I know that she is just excited for us and excited to have a grandchild, but sometimes it is a little much. It would be nice to sometimes talk about other things besides babies...after all, DH and I are still people who still have other interests and lives outside of adoption!


  1. Ugh. No, they just don't get it. In some ways it's nice she's excited enough to be like this - just think what she'll be like when she can put this energy to fussing over your child! - but difficult that she won't just accept that you know what you're doing and trying to not adopt! :-)

  2. Oh my, how frustrating that she just.didn' I agree with the above comment, but seriously, it's hard enough on you with the waiting. I wish she could have been a bit more compassionate for you, but I guess she means well. You are 100% right about all the things you said.
    Take care

  3. Totally agree with you. My mom used to talk only about our nephews and while I love them to pieces too, it was just too much.

    Oh, and I can't stand those sweeping, uninformed statements!!! My mom makes them often and it's the same repeated answer that you gave: it's just not that simple.

    I'm so sorry you had this frustrating time with them. Hugs to you!

  4. we have one niece and that's all anyone talks about anymore, i love her too but it's not as much fun when it's not your child they are ooohing over

  5. ugh, she doesn't get it at all, does she? That's so frustrating and ridiculous...I would be tempted to tell her sternly that you two know what the best path for a baby is for you, and that's that. No more questions. UGH.

    And yes, family gatherings are totally dominated by babies right now with my 3 yo niece and 6 month old nephew. They're super cute, but it does get old...

  6. Sounds like the conversations in our family as well.... We finally just stopped talking about the process and said that when we know something we will let you know and until then please don't ask because this process is harder for us than you. We have a niece who is 5 a nephew who is 3 mths a little brother who is 2-1/2 and another little brother on the way so all anyone talks about is BABIES!!!! Keep strong and know that God's plan is in action :) J

  7. Ugh! I was waiting for the part where she suggested you just go take a baby off the street. My mother in law is the same in a lot of ways. I have sent her numerous emails on adoption, adoption terminology and all sorts of other adoption related info. She still says some of the most ridiculous things. I just want to scream. You handled it much better than I do.

  8. This sounds a lot like the conversation I had with my MIL when I told her that we were stopping infertility treatments. Ugh!!! Sometimes it's just too much and people want to know too much information and then when you tell them the information they still don't understand it. Sigh .... I think you and your DH handled the situation really well.

  9. We've had a few frustrating conversations like that. Thankfully none from family. It is tough though to try to explain it in a way that will make people "get it." Point her in my direction and I'll give her a rundown of what is actually involved with international adoption. LOL!

  10. Wow - it was like an interview with a reporter! There are so many common misconceptions about adoption. In the beginning, when we started the process to adopt domestically, I e-mailed a couple articles out to family and friends to help "educate" them. And, I've continue to post things on my Facebook page, like one today - 8 things to never say to an adopted kid. Sometimes that stuff helps, but of course not always...Hopefully you won't come home from work one day and see a Colombian child and your MIL sitting on your doorstep. lol. Good luck with everything!

  11. Yikes! Just reading this conversation made me feel uncomfortable, I can't imagine. I'm sorry, this must add a whole bunch more stress.

    Thinking of you

  12. I haven't had any conversations like these, but I've heard so many similar ones from other adoptive parents that I assume I'll have to deal with this from someone at some point. I absolutely dread the idea. Which is pretty much why we haven't told anyone we're adopting... ;)

  13. Gotta love the in-laws. We're also adopting and my in-laws think it's just a matter of finding someone and handing over the baby. We have tried and tried to explain it just doesn't work like that. I just bought them a book called "Adoption is a Family Affair" and I hope they take the time to read it. We'll see...


    Oh by the way, I'm a new follower!