One comment that really gets under my skin is this: "you definitely made the right choice!" Really? I know it's mean to be reassuring, it's meant to be a positive comment, it really is. I also know that it's a bit of an awkward subject when it's suddenly sprung upon someone who had no idea. In short, an old friend who has actually taken a step back into being an acquaintance asked me (via facebook message) if it was true that I had had a baby. I found it a silly question because I have photos of her on my facebook (ones that were taken in the hospital, as well as some newer ones that only my friends can see. I stress the word 'friends' because I have almost 300 facebook friends and nearly all of them are people I went to elementary school and high school with. They cannot see all of my profile) and when she was about 3 or 4 months old, I openly stated something about her. So it was no secret as it once had been when I was pregnant. Anyways, I responded and told her yes and she replied saying she wishes she had known because she would have gotten her a blanket or given her a gift. I explained that I never even had a baby shower and that I had chosen adoption for her. It was an impersonal setting, yes, and it was out of the blue, yes, but I had to reply and I couldn't just act as if I still had her here beside me. She replied saying she hadn't realized that and that she was sorry she had been so casual about offering the blanket, etc. This is the part that irked me: it almost seemed like she was trying to justify my own actions to me. She then said that I 'definitely made the right choice.' Now, I know she was trying to be nice and wasn't sure how. And honestly, before I had my daughter, if someone told me the very thing I had just told her, I probably wouldn't be sure what to say without stepping on any toes. It can be awkward, I get it. But I was annoyed because this is a person who (a) doesn't know anything about my education, other than that I'm still in school, (b) doesn't know anything about my relationship with her birth father or anything about her birth father PERIOD, (c) doesn't know anything about my living situation, and (d) just plain doesn't know much of any of the circumstances surrounding the adoption in the first place. I am not a drug addict, I am not piss-poor, I am not an abusive person, I am not a child molester. I don't have "I'm incapable of raising a child" plastered on my forehead. I could have and would have been a great mom. But the problem is, a child needs more than love to survive, even though I love and would have loved her more than anything in the entire world for the rest of my life. I see that a lot - people saying 'you made the right choice' when they don't know WHY the choice was made in the first place. Maybe I sound ungrateful. I don't care. Even if she had said "you're her mom, so if you did what you felt was best for her, then you made the right choice," that would have put a completely different spin on it. I wanted to ask her why she thought that. I wanted to tell her she knows nothing about why the decision was made. I wanted to tell her I changed my mind a few days before I signed the papers and started ordering baby supplies online. I wanted to tell her that the only reason I was able to go through with it was because I found a couple (a family) that was absolutely more perfect than I could have dreamed of for my baby. I wanted to tell her that my daughter's bio father already had a child and he didn't spend a lot of time with her as it was and I didn't want my baby coming second to him. I didn't tell her that YES, I was in a relationship at the time and I wasn't 'abandoned' by him, so that did NOT affect my decision. There's a plethora of things I wanted to say, because I felt as if I was being judged. Bottom line. I WAS being judged. Maybe not intentionally, but I felt as if I was being looked down upon. Patronized. I don't know. I'm just in a bad mood tonight, that's all. I thought maybe writing would take some weight off my shoulders, but instead it's just making me more frustrated and causing me to think of even more 'condolences' that are more hurtful than helpful. So, here's a list, not directed at anyone in particular:
(1) tell me I did the 'right' thing (I know you mean well, but just...don't)
(2) tell me that I should have been offered more help (from her birth father, from my parents, etc)
(3) tell me you could 'never go through with it' if you were pregnant (it may seem like you're trying to make me feel strong, but in reality, it makes me feel like I did something awful and evil and heartless)
(4) tell me you don't know how I did it (same criteria as #3)
(5) beat around the bush when it comes to my adoption. Don't NOT ask me if I got pictures, don't be afraid to ask about her. She is the one thing in the world that I am most proud of. Yes, it might make me cry at first, but deep down I will be overjoyed that you asked...that you thought about her long enough to ask how she is doing, and that you still consider her to be a part of me.
Okay, end rant. I don't mean to offend anyone, and I am surely not talking about anyone who is reading this right now. I just had to blow off some steam, that's all.