It has taken me all week to compose myself enough to write a measured and meaningful post about the brouhaha caused on the RESOLVE Facebook page on Monday. The jist is that RESOLVE posted a question from a member, unedited and in its entirety, and the question was from a woman looking for affordable ART options, they were going to adopt, but she really wanted a child of her own.
Her question, uninformed and ignorant as it was, reflects a sentiment shared by some who have never adopted or have not mourned the loss of a genetic child, which is that an adopted child isn’t ones own, is a second choice. But it wasn’t the question so much as the lack of intervention or moderation on the part of RESOLVE once the comments deteriorated into ‘just get over it’ and ‘you’re too sensitive’ that caused the rancor.
At issue is that words hurt and if the national organization that purports to support the infertile community as a whole can’t do a better job, how can we expect to elevate the conversation and stop alienating adoptive parents and persons in our own community?
RESOLVE let the comments degrade for a full 24 hrs until enough people complained directly to them that Barbara Collura posted a flimsy response on Tuesday (the entire thread has since been deleted) that amounted to ‘gosh, so sorry you got your knickers in a wad, but pardon us for being understaffed’. The ass kissers came out in force celebrating this pseudo apology, but I did not. I found it wholly unacceptable that they missed the ENTIRE point which was that they should have taken better care of the community by either not posting the question at all or editing it and informing the original poster as to why or actually moderating the comments in real time in a show of support that they do not stand for the marginalization of the adoptive community with words the demean and dilute the adoption experience as a ‘lesser than’ or even less natural way of family building.
It is something that as an adopted person married to another adopted person and as someone who endeavored to domestically adopt myself, I am very passionate about, that as a community, we are inclusive of everyone regardless of the manner in which they choose to build their family. You can’t say you’re inclusive and then disenfranchise a part of the very group you’re supposed to be supporting and protecting.
And, guess what? It is not the adoption community’s fight. It is incumbent upon the rest of us, those in the majority, to fight for what is right, in word and deed, for those who are feeling hurt and ostracized. I liken it to my passion and advocacy for gay rights. It is not solely up to the homosexual population to fight on their own behalf. No, it is up to the heterosexuals to ensure fairness and equal protection for our gay brothers and sisters. We have to fight for and protect them. Just as I don’t need to be gay to understand the plight of those who are who have their rights trampled on, I don’t have to have adopted to understand how hurt adoptive parents or persons would feel at the sentiment that their child(ren) are not viewed as their own.
Because this continued to be such a heated topic and I’m sure many more wrote in to RESOLVE directly, they posted yet another, but more genuine and sincere apology that read, in part:
“RESOLVE would like to again apologize for the events that unfolded this week on this Facebook page. We have removed the posts and hope as a community we can all move forward… together. Several community members reached out to RESOLVE directly who felt their voice was not being heard and we encourage anyone else to reach out to us at email@example.com. We absolutely acknowledge that there were opportunities that we missed to change the outcome of this conversation. We are sincerely sorry as we never intended or imagined that we would hurt or alienate anyone.“
In addition to posting on their FB page, I sent the following to them directly:
I am disenchanted and disheartened. When we know better, we MUST do better.