sorry, but I couldn't help but barf on my computer screen as I read about the discussion about the "technical, but adopted" child that happened right there in front of you and your obviously-not-biological-but-technically-your daughter...REALLY??Those women would HATE me! (or at least talk about me behind my back!)
I hear you on all of it.Not only are you dealing with the emotions of seeing your first child take the big step of starting a school, you just had much of your life invalidated by these women with their opinions.I really held high hopes for meeting families at the same stage of life when Widget entered preschool last year, but it didn't happen. We chose a local Catholic preschool because we loved the program, however most of the families attend the local Catholic churches and knew each other already. Hard to jump in, even though they were very nice.I hope it gets better for you. And too bad we don't live closer!
It always amazes me how so unaware people can be about those around them. I learned a long time ago that you can't tell where people are and we're they've been in their personal lives just by looking at them. I hope you find some more like-minded moms and dads in the group that chose not to stay for the coffee break. I'm glad to hear puppy had a better experience.
Ouch. I think it's terrible they said crap like that to people they were just getting to know. I'm so impressed you sat through that and kept your dignity. I don't think I could have done it.We used to get that foster care comment all the time so we stopped telling anyone that Jess was fostered. It's such a ridiculous thing to say and hurtful to the kids if they're within ear shot. And I must say, it actually got worse when people heard that she had gone home to her Dad. Even here I feel like I need to explain that us taking her home to her Dad didn't mean we didn't love her.
@SassyCupcakes - Yondalla wrote a brilliant post awhile back about why that foster care comment is so hurtful, offensive and just plain wrong. I wanted to link to it in the post, but of course I couldn't find it today.
Ohhhhhhhhhh. Those comments are heinous. I feel horrible, just thinking about you sitting there and enduring it. :(
yikes. you are very gracious in the telling. I'd probably be seething and depressed. just know you have more than one friend in IL out here.
Oh yup, yup and more yup, except thankfully, it's rarely IRL for me because I'm completely unsocialized (we're homeschoolers) ;). I find it very awkward to even come up with a retort when you know you have to deal with these people all the time. Correcting them isn't often a road worth venturing really as their mindset doesn't change, just their mindset about you.
I can so relate to this post. Where you're just sitting there thinking, "They know I adopted. They know I'm sitting here. Are they talking about me?" I am rarely offended, but it definitely lets me know who is going to be a surface acquaintance with very little possibility of being anything more than that. I guess it's a good way to weed 'em out quickly. Recently, I was hosting a meeting with a mom's club I'm in (but not for too much longer since I've decided it is so not for me). We literally had a 20 minute conversation where they talked about donor breast milk and one woman kept going on and on about how disgusting it was to use milk from another woman for your child, etc. I didn't choose to do the donor bank thing, but I know of some adoptive parents who have gone this route and how important the breast milk was to them. Finally, I explained that not everyone has the option to breastfeed their own child and I really didn't think she understood what it was like to adopt a child and (potentially) be in that position. The room got very quiet and very awkward, but on the bright side, we finally moved onto another topic of conversation.
I remember this one playgroup where a mom said she'd never ever ever feed her baby that kind of "poison" (goldfish crackers) in front of a mom who DID feed her baby goldfish crackers and by the time I got home, the insulted mom had posted to the email list telling everyone how much they sucked and the list blew up. Noah was, let me see, four or five then? Fast forward a few years later and everyone who was so sure they knew the right way to raise kids was doing all sorts of stuff they swore they'd never do. Because for most people, reality intrudes and they have to get over themselves. But this is the number one reason why I didn't want to revisit that world with Madison. I am just not interested in the babysitter/television/toy guns/transfat debates. They are mean and judgmental and depressing and I DON'T CARE. I'm sorry that this group won't be your people but hopefully you will find the jewels in the group and as your kids grow, you'll be able to shake your heads TOGETHER at the people who are so rigid instead of feeling like your shaking your head alone.(And my hands aren't entirely clean -- I lost a couple of friends early on over work vs. home debates. We were all so insecure and so needed to stand our ground that we hurt each other without meaning to. We've since made up cautiously but I don't know if we can ever really undo the harm we caused each other with our defensive judgments.)
Wow. I don't know that I would have been able to sit by quietly and not say something to shut them all up, particularly with the comments relating to breastfeeding being the only way to bond crap, the foster care debate and the technically daughter comments. I am one of those people who will say what I think about a comment as diplomatically as possible (which sometimes isn't very much at all), and I am sure that some people at work have had some things to say about me, but I don't care. Why make people feel like crap by the comments that you make, pay attention to who is around you. I am not even sure I'd feel comfortable having some of those conversations with pretty much strangers or people that I'd barely known for an hour. I feel bad that you had to sit by and listen to that. We thought about doing a co-op with Jack when he started preschool, but chose a christian preschool nearby instead. The parents we've met and talked to have been great, but we also have not gotten into any deep conversations yet. That could change everything. I hope you find a few people who wouldn't have been comfortable with the way those conversations went as well. No two people can have the same exact opinions about everything, and that's what makes the world go round, but there is a way to discuss things without singling out and offending people.
I have been meeting with a couple of other moms who have open adoptions for this very reason. When your family and friends can't relate to you, you have to seek out others who you can have those open, frank discussions with, and not have to defend your lifestyle to. Just what we all need...hope you can find some "real life" friends who "get it". For now, just know that your bloggy friends hear you! :o)
Oh, blegh. Blegh and blargh and blurgh.What silly ladies they are. I agree with Dawn on where it comes from. But I totally get how they can make you feel lonely, too. I wish you lived next door. I'm currently having a negative experience with Wendell's preschool teacher that's making me regret telling her we adopted him. Which, for me, goes against every grain in my openness loving body. But negative assumptions'll do that to you..Hope you find the good ones soon.
ugh.i don't think anyone is immune from the gaggle of hens when they decide to start clucking. (not all women who gather are hens - but we've all seen the clucking gaggles gather, and they definitely do exist.)my oldest is 16, and i still hear her friend's parents cluck on occasion. i'm glad you were able to remain confident in the face of this icky-ness, and that you walk away knowing that their clucking can't reduce your life in any way.bleh.
This is an old post, but through the wonders of internet I can still join in, right? I'm sorry that the conversations made you feel small. I'm sure that the other parents had specific scenarios in their heads, and they made the mistake of generalizing. I really like your comment about their "casual" judgement. I'm sure that I've made some casual judgements of my own that were hurtful. Since I don't know who I made feel small, I would like to apologize to you on behalf of those coffee break parents.