Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Good Intentions

"My fellow Americans. I'm pleased to announce that I've signed legislation outlawing the Soviet Union. We begin bombing in five minutes." -Ronald Reagan,
joking during a mike check before his Saturday radio broadcast.


The above statement by Ronald Reagan was, at the time, an innocent phrase spoken when he was asked by the sound people to say something so that they could do a check of the equipment. However, it had the effect of sending the wrong message to the Soviet premier and a rise in the defense posture of that nation.

Many times throughout the week, I am presented with a well intended colleague or friend who asks questions about our adoption. Sometimes the questions are well thought out and express the questioners desire to know more about "why we did what we did". At other times, the questions make me scratch my head in bewilderment. But, however insensitive or unintended the question, I make use of a snippet in time to "educate" my good natured friend. After all, you don't know if ya don't know, my dad would always say.

There's no reason to get your feathers ruffled and posture for war like the Russians did over Reagan's statement. I don't get mad, upset or strike back at such comments. Rather, I give a subtle hint to deflect the negativity or hurtfulness of the situation. Most folks aren't even aware of what they say and I believe that they should be forgiven and the question answered in true Christian fashion. We look at it as a chance to educate people about adoption. We don't feel like someone has personally attacked us. People will say insensitive and stupid things. I am sure that I have said my share of things that may come across insensitive or wrong, when I truly didn't mean to do so. I believe most people mean no ill will with what they say, they just aren't educated in this area because they have not had any personal experience with it.

That being said...in the spirit of education and just to have a good laugh, here are a few that I've gotten over the past couple of years, my comments in italics:

- I hate it when people adopt somewhere else. You should adopt one of your own, from this country. God bless you, I'm still going to Ukraine.

- Why do those women in 3rd world countries keep having babies if they can't take care of them? They should all be sterilized. God bless you again!

- Adoption is so wrong. I don't believe there should be any adoptions (from the same person that said the first two comments) Dude, weren't you adopted? Oh, and God bless you! He adopted us!

- Who is their real mom? Variation: Who is their natural mother?

- Are they brothers and sisters? (We get this one a lot about Rimma & Zina, too)

- Variation: Are they REAL brother and sisters

- I didn't realize they weren't yours!

- Now that you've adopted, you'll get pregnant and have one of your own. Gee, I hope not!

- How much did they cost? They are still costing, have you seen my grocery bill?

- You really got lucky, they could have had problems! Have you been reading this blog?

- I could never adopt, I want my own children.

- I could never adopt. I could never raise someone else's child.

- I want to adopt, once I have my own real kids.

- Does it bother you that they won't be your own?

- Your children are adopted? They look so normal!

- The dreaded phrase, "Come on, you know what I mean..."

- Aren't they communists? How does the Air Force feel about that?

- That they look just like me, enough to be my "real kids"

- You guys are Saints! Thank you, but we aren't. You, yourself could experience the joy of adoption.

- No matter how many times you say "Ukraine", everyone else says "the Ukraine". Enjoy your trip to the Mexico, the France, the Italy!

Comments anyone?

~ Felix ~

11 comments:

Heidi and Felix said...

My favorite - don't older kids have problems? My answer - don't we all have problems? Who is perfect anyway?

Barb said...

I hope these people do NOT call themselves Christians. And if they do, they need a lesson in Christianity 101! Having said that, adoption is a calling. When people ask me about the process and say they are interested I know they are absolutely NOT ready if their first question is "How much does it cost? Just like the remarks you mentioned, they are very selfish and self-centered. When God chooses you to venture in this journey, you have already been emptied of that self-centeredness. It is a feat larger than any one of us can fathom, and only attainable with His grace and mercy!

Kevin and Pam said...

Funny but so true! I love the "real mom and dad" comments. I say I am their real mom their response I know but you know what I mean.

Leslie said...

HAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!! God bless YOU for having a sense of humor. Some of those comments make me want to pop the speaker in the nose. Wait, is this mic on???

The McEacherns said...

Funny and so true! We've gotten a bunch of the pre-adoption ones, and now we're trying to prepare ourselves for the post-adoption set of "well-meaning" questions and comments! IMHO, the "real" parent is the one that wipes their snot and cleans up the midnight accidents!

Conethia and Jim Bob said...

I have had our fair share of those questions, too!! You have to sit back and laugh at some of the questions and responses you get sometimes. Our favorite response, "These children are adopted from THE Ukraine, but they're not "colored!"

Anonymous said...

You two ARE saints but that's just who you are, not because you adopted. Anyone wants to know about "problems" can call me and hear my tirade about raising a "real" child with mental health issues. Yikes!

When are we going to take those kids sailing????

Bruce & Cathy S.
Phoenix, AZ

Carla said...

I think you and Heidi have Beautiful little girls and one Handsome little boy. You are my Mentor Phil and I Love You. GOD BLESS YOU AND YOUR WONDERFUL FAMILY....

Amy said...

I have gotten all those comments and a few others... Sometimes people like to ask how you "picked" one out.... I always like to say I was thrifty and went for the cheapest model I could find!
I am to the point that half the time I forget that my kids are adopted and the other half of the time I am hunting down the receipt to see if I can get a refund! haha - just kidding - but some days.... :)

ps- and you may not be saints... yet... but you are pretty darn close!

Courtney said...

The communist/AF comment was hysterical!! :) :)

Jack 8 said...

Qouting -Aren't they communists? How does the Air Force feel about that?

All that, is being paranoid.

First of all, the government that was in Ukraine wasn't communist, it was stalinism, second if you live in a certain country, that doesn't mean you are like the government, especially children.

Communism is a political theory that can never be put into practice. I talk a lot with my history teachers.

Kids are all innocent.

About Us

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Longmont, Colorado, United States
Heidi loves to play sand volleyball, sail and garden. Felix loves to fly at the local aeroclub, sail and fish.