Whose Story Is It Anyway?

Stemming off of a recent post by Melissa Ford, I pose the question: whose story is it anyway?

Obviously, as this is the adoption community, I'm talking about our adoption stories. Karen Walrond is directly quoted in the post as saying that she stopped blogging about her daughter's adoption because it's her daughter's story to tell.

Yes.

And no. (For me.)

I get the point that our kids' stories are theirs to own and make sense of and I hope that my daughter will be able to do so in the future. However, I am hesitant to shy away from talking about it all together. That smacks too much of the secrecy and shame that accompanied the closed adoption, Baby Scoop era. I find that when people actively speak about their adoption journeys, either via blogs, forums or other Internet means, I learn so much. Every time. I even learn when people say, "I don't really want to share." I learn from others' boundaries; I learned to set my own because of their dedication to what they will or will not share.

I find it harder, perhaps, to walk the appropriate line as a birth parent. The truth is that I hate when others tell me that I don't have a right to write about my adoption journey because it's not about me. I call shennanigans on that one. I don't share a lot about my daughter unless I'm having a direct exchange with her anymore. I have my reasons for that. I don't speak about her (adoptive) father for reasons that are too complex to share on the Internet. But I won't stop writing about adoption. Adoption may not define my life but it is a big part of who I am and why I am the way that I am. More over, I need to make sure that other expectant mothers are not taken advantage of the way that I was by unethical adoption agencies. I feel pushed to help others. Lastly, I refuse to be too ashamed to talk about my story. I don't want my daughter to think I'm ashamed. I'm not. She's the bees knees, folks. Bees knees.

And so, please, share your boundaries with us. What do you refuse to talk about? Do the other people in your adoption connection approve of your blogging/sharing? How did you broach the subject?

 

Jenna Hatfield (@FireMom), from Stop, Drop and Blog and The Chronicles of Munchkin Land, is a freelance writer and newspaper photographer.

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