I cannot remember exactly when I was following her blog. We were either waiting to travel for Joy, or had just returned home with Joy. Whenever it was, I do remember not understanding why this woman would travel all the way to the other side of world to adopt a little boy, but change her mind once she met him. She never detailed her reasons, but people on the adoption forums made their assumptions. I admit that I, too, passed judgment on this lady, albeit quietly, not on forums. But that was before.
Disruption is a dirty word in the adoption community. Opinions are very strong on this topic. Many adoptive moms say that they would never even consider a disruption. And, I have to admit that it never once crossed our minds. When we started the adoption of Yang in 2008, we knew that she had a variety of delays. But, I also believed we could work through them. I did a lot of research and reading preparing myself for this adoption. While doing the paperwork, waiting, and doing more paperwork, I never once considered that we would not bring Yang home with us. Never. We were prepared.
We traveled in 2009 and met Yang in Nanchang. She looked just like her pictures with the happiest smile on her 8 or 9 year old face. Her delays terrified me. I thought I was prepared, but hindsight, no amount of reading could have prepared me for the face to face reality of the disabilities. I filled out paperwork, but could not rid myself of this gnawing feeling in my gut, this fear. We were her parents briefly. My husband and I talked, cried, prayed all night long as I watched this beautiful child sleep. Without going into details, we knew that Yang's needs were so great. We had to make a decision for our family as a whole, not just what I wanted. We had 5 other children back home to consider, each that would be impacted greatly in one way or another. We chose not to continue the adoption. Shortly thereafter, the emails and comments came.The adoption forums started their discussions and judgments about our decision, all without even knowing what was happening in our lives.
It was not an easy decision. I never thought I would be in this situation...having to make this choice. We once had to make a decision about removing our child from life support. We could see our daughter deteriorating before our eyes, but we didn't want to accept it. We knew we were prolonging the inevitable, unless God intervened. With both decisions came grief and the loss of a child. The feelings were the same.
One lady on a particular forum stated that those who choose to disrupt are not "good human beings". Another stated it was just a wrong decision to disrupt. These are both judgmental attitudes. No one knows what a family is experiencing. No one knows their financial or emotional situation. A serious, unexpected special need could be detrimental to a family financially. No one knows what is happening with the other children in the home. One child at home could be resentful of the new sibling that takes mom or dad away many days a week for various therapies. Everyone has to make a decision based on what is best for their families at that particular time. If Yang had been our first or second child, I'm sure the outcome would have been very different.
With China special needs adoptions becoming more common than non-special needs, there may be more disruptions. My hope is that the adoption community would be one of support and not one that tears down. If you've never disrupted, you cannot understand what a family is going through. It would be like comforting a mother who just lost her child by saying, "I know how you feel. Our child ALMOST died." I've heard people's "almost disruption" stories numerous times. It is not the same.
I've learned never to say "never". You may say you know in your heart you would never disrupt. I'm glad. I hope you are never put to the test. I've learned that I have limits and am not perfect. It is very humbling to leave China without your child.
*3/3/12 Many people have sent me very personal emails and comments that I have chosen not to post. I did not want to put some of the comments on for the purpose of protection. Some of these families truly do fear the attacks from those who disagree with their heart-breaking decisions. My post was not saying any one person is right or wrong for their decision to disrupt or adopt. Most (almost all) of the families' decisions were very traumatic and not for trivial reasons. My post was meant as an encouragement for those who have experienced the pain of disruption and for those that may have preconceived ideas towards families that make this life-changing decision.
Ephesians 4:29 Let no unwholesome word proceed from your mouth, but only such a word as is good for edification according to the need of the moment, that it may give grace to those who hear.
Welcome to my family blog. I have been married to Mike for over half of my life. I love my Savior, Jesus. I am a stay-at-home, homeschooling mom to six terrific, interesting children. My 3 oldest were born to me in my younger years, while my 3 youngest were given to me by God in my older years. I am very blessed. ~Cheri