God bless the internet. And freedom of speech. And blogging platforms.
All great stuff. All things that let me get on RFTM and share a laugh or rant or talk about the hard parts of life. All good.
There are a lot of us out here, too. I’ve seen figures as varied as 173 million blogs in 2011 (statista) to 152 million blogs in 2013 (WPVirtuoso) but hey – 20 million here, 20 million there – whatever the exact number, I think we can all agree there is a plethora of online reading options.
Lucky for us, this means there are plenty of interesting blogs out there, and I’ve enjoyed exploring. And, being a grownup, I expect that not everything is meant for everybody. As far as blogs go you like some, you love some, some hold no appeal, and some you pretty much hate.
And then there was the time a blog stopped me cold.
Let me reiterate. Freedom of expression – yay. Strength of conviction – yay. Believing in the power of the written word – double yay. Big supporter of the blogging world here.
While exploring the work out there I’ve stumbled across some birthmother blogs that have provided invaluable insight into their perspective. It’s a path I haven’t walked, one that intimately affects my kids, so reading stories from their particular viewpoint is extremely helpful. I’m so grateful that these women are brave enough to share such a personal part of their lives.
Are these stories always pretty? Tied up with a neat little bow when these women relinquish their children for adoption? No. Because humans are complex creatures, and we’re capable of holding many different emotions simultaneously. There are things I know are right, but they can also be unpleasant, terrifying, or intimidating. I believe reading these birthmothers’ stories – all of their stories, even the uncomfortable parts – makes me a better mother. So while there were times the pain rolling off the screen was hard to take, I needed to read it.
Then I came across a website filled with such venomous hatred for adoptive parents…I could almost feel the slap stinging my face.
I guess was naive. I didn’t know there were women who thought adoptive parents were thieves; birthmothers saying the adoption industry is corrupt and only designed to make a profit; women who felt their rights had been trampled on and their babies stolen for rich or infertile couples.
I’d also like to acknowledge that this is a reality. There are unscrupulous adoption lawyers or agencies who aren’t looking out for the best interest of all parties. There are places where babies are literally stolen and sold. There was a time when teens had no voice in the decision to place their baby for adoption, and in some cases that may still be true today. I’m not pie-in-the-sky enough to believe that every adoption is a kumbaya moment.
The anger flying off that blog pierced me through and through. Thief. Bitch. You’ll never be his real mother. It was a hostile loathing I’d never read in relation to adoption or me as an adoptive mother. It was raw hatred.
But it was also incredibly true pain. A woman hurting beyond measure, aching for years over a child she wanted to raise. I recognize this is a woman whose life experience traumatized her.
Even so, I’m careful where I tread in the blogging world now. I’m open to learning about a birthmother’s point of view, but there’s only so much vitriol I can absorb without leaving room for doubt to enter my own mind.