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May 06, 2007

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Michelle

Hey Rocky,
I've been reading your posts for quite sometime now. I'm a mom to 2 children and am always looking online to find out how oher mothers handle the challenges that sometimes motherhood brings. In my search, somehow I came across your site which I quite enjoy. I'm not sure if you'll remember me, but ironically, you and I went to the same high school and graduated the same year. Anyway, I'm appalled at the way you are being attacked for celebrating the adoption of your daughters. It takes a special woman to be mother and an even more special woman to CHOOSE to be a mother for as we know, raising children is not easy. It's something that has to be committed to. I applaud you for your commitment to all your children - biological, step, and adopted.

Keep up the great work (on motherhood AND your blog)!

<3 Michelle

Rocky ~ HeadMutha

Okay...Michelle R. or Michelle Z? LOL

Andrea

Hi Rocky,

This is Andrea, Susan's friend (we've met a few times). So I've been reading your blog on a daily basis and Susan referred me to what inspired her to write a response (which she doesn't do often) I was floored. I have never felt so compelled to come to the defense of someone I don't know very well. (Of course, if Susan loves you it's because you're amazing). So much so, that I had to post a response myself.

I applaud you for what you've done. I have a little brother (9 yrs. old) who my parents adopted after being foster parents for a long time. I have a couple of cousins and uncles who are also adopted, so this topic is very dear and close to my heart. What does it matter where you are from as long as you are rescuing these two precious little girls? That's something that I don't think kim.kim will ever understand.

Keep up the good work, I absolutely admire what you are doing and commend you for saving these girls from what their life would've been.

Much love,
Andrea

HeadMutha

I cannot speak for kimkim, but what I have learned so far is that we, as adoptive parents, need to be aware of what adoptees go through in their process of adoption. What I did not do, is represent that in my post. I believe that if I had expressed all aspects of the adoption, in one post, this would not have happened. I believe I was misrepresented. I do acknowledge all aspects of adoptions. I acknowledge the horror that my daughters mothers must have gone through and I acknowledge the pain and questions my daughters will have. The problem, my friend, is I didn't say it in that post.

It was just a quick post about it being finalized. I would never of thought it would have gotten this kind of attention. But I am so happy it did. I hope the conversations will remain positive and we can learn from each others experiences.

Please stay posted and maybe you can then understand what your family, as adoptees, have gone through.

Margie

Rocky, I feel I need to add a clarification here, too - to add the context surrounding the quote from my post referenced above, which (although I may be overly sensitive) seems to imply that I don't understand the fact that the poverty of Guatemalan women and children leaves no other alternative but adoption.

What I said in my post was this:

"There is danger, too, in equating these advantages with "gifts from birth mothers," for that makes it possible for us to view a woman's relinquishment of her child as heroic act, one to be praised and repeated. Positively institutionalizing relinquishment makes it unnecessary to face the problems that led to it in the first place."

My post focused on the conflict that arose on your blog and mine regarding the language in "Two Less Orphans." My point was that the language we use to describe a woman's act of relinquishment can subtly influence the way people and governments respond to it.

This is precisely what happened in Korea. Following the Korean war, Korean children suffered the same horrors you describe above that today befall Guatemalan children. Children were orphaned, abandoned, diseased, left in poverty, rejected by Korean society for being bi-racial, separated from families by the 38th parallel, starved, and more. The adoption of Korean children that started with the Holts literally saved thousands in those early days.

But now, 50 years after the war has ended, adoption in Korea has become something else - the intersection of the demand for adoptable infants and the lack of societal support for unmarried Korean mothers. In those intervening years, adoption evolved from an act of necessity by adoptive parents on behalf of orphaned children, to an act of selflessness by a first mother on behalf of a child with a living mother and possibly father. Korean mothers were praised for their selfless acts, thereby finding a way to redeem themselves in the eyes of Korea's unforgiving culture. At the end of the day, though, it became simple supply and demand, and in some cases coercion, force, and even abduction.

It has taken the recent generation of Korean adoptees' return to Korea to gain the attention of the Korean government and to remind them of their responsibility to make it possible for Korean children to stay with their mothers. The Korean government's positive stance on adoption is beginning to change, and along with it, the requisite laws and social welfare programs.

I understand the very real need of Guatemalan women and children, just as I understand the very real need of Korean women and children after the Korean war. I simply hope that adoption from Guatemala doesn't become disconnected from other solutions as has been the case in Korea. And I believe our words have the power to influence the outcome.

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