You know the rest.
Cliche? Perhaps. Effective and truthful statement? I believe so. But then again, almost anything in life holds true in this statement, which is what makes life so interesting, isn’t it?
Someone I truly respect once said something to me which broke my heart. It was an unexpected statement from this person, and when I say my heart broke, I mean not for myself, but for all the orphans out there. The words haunt me.
In one of those conversations about my husband and I not having children I revealed that if we were ever going to have a child it would be through adoption. The reply to this was, “Why would you want to do that? You never know what you’ll get.”
Read that again and let it sink in.
I was nearly speechless and just responded that all children need to be loved.
Is this an argument of nature versus nurture? I think most people these days believe both play a nearly equal part in child development. Isn’t it true that you don’t always know what you’ll get even if the child is yours biologically? I’ve seen some kids grow up nothing like their caretakers. We all inherit certain traits and tendencies, but we also have our own personalities and free will. There are good people out there with bad kids, and bad people out there with good kids. I just cannot understand the comment made to me that day.
This week I made a discovery to help defend my side. I was reading a random article online about Steve Jobs’s passing. There was mention of him being adopted. So I looked a bit further into it. Sure enough- Steve Jobs was an adopted child. I immediately emailed my husband and said, “What kind of child can you get if you adopt? Maybe a genious who can make lots of money!” This discovery created a small victory in my mind, and now I have ammunition. I think Robert also appreciated this because his heart had been broken that day too.
It had never occurred to me that anyone would view adoption as a bad thing to do. There are children out there without families. How can it be bad to want to take one in and give her (or him) a family? They are children. They will grow up to be adults, perhaps having their own children one day. Don’t they deserve the same love as children with their biological parents? They have already been given the short end of the stick, so to speak. But there are people with a desire and capacity to take in orphans and love them. That is a good thing. After all, Jesus said, “And anyone who welcomes a little child like this on my behalf is welcoming me,” (Matthew 18:5 NLT) and Jesus has never been wrong. He’s Jesus! Even people who aren’t Christians can admit Jesus was a good, loving man.
More scriptures to prove my point: Isaiah 1:17 NLT “Learn to do good. Seek justice. Help the oppressed. Defend the cause of orphans. Fight for the rights of widows.”
Psalm 82:3 NLT “Give justice to the poor and the orphan; uphold the rights of the oppressed and the destitute.”
I recently had a conversation with a near stranger who brought up an interesting argument against adoption. He said he had his own children and also had adopted a child from his wife’s former marriage. He said he loved them all, but there was always a difference and he knew he didn’t love the adopted child as much as his own. How sad! I said my solution to this was that I guess I just shouldn’t have my own then, so I would never know the difference.
My husband and I were recently watching an old episode of Mad Men and a wife was making a plea to her husband in favor of adoption. I liked what she said. It was something like this: “Honey, we don’t have a drop of the same blood, but you love me.”
I guess it’s true that I won’t know how the child I adopt will turn out, and especially since I want to adopt a slightly older child, I may risk that this child has been through some tough life experiences early on, but the future is uncertain for everyone, yet we continue to live our lives. If I can just reach out and give love, it will have to make some difference. I know it’s not the same, but when we adopted our dogs, we didn’t really know what we were going to get, but they fill my husband’s and my life with joy.