Race and Adoption, Part II

January 24th, 2012

I wrote Race & Adoption, Part I, more than 4 years ago. But I just posted it two weeks ago—and, as they say at the end of successful fundraisers, “the response was overwhelming.”

What does “overwhelming” mean for a blog post? Five “likes” on Facebook, four emails, three comments, and one phone call. Yes, people. There was an overwhelming response to my thoughts on race and adoption. I expect Oprah to call next week.

I started wondering today why I waited so long to post those brief thoughts. They have been sitting as a draft on my computer for quite a long time. Longer than my computer has lasted, actually. I retrieved them from a failed hard drive three years ago.

Why did I wait? Well, for one, I didn’t have a blog for about a year. Another thing—by the time I had a blog, the race issues that are part and parcel of adoption in America were so complicated and confusing to me, I didn’t know where to start.

And then there’s this. I know that there are lots of people involved in adoption who don’t want to talk about the race issue. They like to stay on the cheerful side of adoption, the one where all parties are served well and everyone is happy.

Well, there are lots of other sides to adoption. And I don’t like to be the one to talk about them. I’m okay talking about grief—about the grief of birthparents, about infertility and grief, about the adopted child’s grief about not being with his family of origin. But other issues? They make me uncomfortable, because I don’t like to rock the boat. There are so many other people who can rock the boat, and they have a lot more experience than I do with adoption.

But I think I’ll let go of that fear, and just write about what I know. I’ll write more about race and adoption from here on out—I’m hoping for more overwhelming responses.

3 Responses to “Race and Adoption, Part II”

  1. Kristin Says:

    Please continue to speak up!

  2. Danielle Says:

    I think you’re the best person to write about it precisely because you don’t want to rock the boat. Because you can write about it with the same grace, and sensitivity, and compassion that you write about everything else.

  3. Rosemary Says:

    well said, Danielle. I like that.

    Might as well put it out there – who else is going to say it?

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