I'm sure you all know about the "Circle of Moms" blog contest by now. It is a sad statement about the purpose of that website. It isn't for all moms. It's for moms they deem worthy of being on the website. This excludes anyone who speaks anything other than the fabulous rainbows and sunshine of adoption.
I managed to get a pdf printed of the contest page just seconds before it was taken down. So I was still able to go read some of the blogs listed to see what the big deal was. Why some were "offended". The only things I read that I felt were not supportive were the blogs where the bloggers and the comments to the bloggers were bashing those they deemed "anti adoption" or "adoption haters". The blogs that had the worst bashing of people were on blogs that praise the institution of adoption.
Here are the Top 25 blogs, their number of votes, and place in the triad as of taking the contest down:
1. The Declassified Adoptee ~ 360 ~ adult adoptee
2. Musings of the Lame ~ 301~ natural mother
3. The R House ~ 265~ adoptive mother
4. Dreaming Big Dreams ~ 244 ~ adoptive mother
5. Adoption Talk ~ 213 ~ adoptive mother
6. Neither Here Nor There ~ 207 ~ adult adoptee
7. Ordinary Miracles & The Crazy 9 ~ 198~ adoptive mother
8. The Sky Is Laughing ~ 195 ~ adoptive mother
9. Finding My Way To My Little Starfish ~ 182 ~ adoptive mother
10. Marvelous Love ~ 170 ~ adoptive mother
11. iAdoptee ~ 160 ~ adult adoptee
12. To Tell The Truth - Please Stand Up ~ 157 ~ foster care alumni
13. Ethiopian Ties ~ 151 ~ adoptive mom
14. Traded Dreams ~ 130 ~ adoptive mom
15. Marty's Musings ~ 113 ~ adoptive mom
16. Costain Party of Six ~ 113 ~ adoptive mom
17. Write Mind Open Heart ~ 113 ~ adoptive mom
18. Welcome to my Brain ~ 104 ~ adoptive mom (and adoptee/natural mom? seems like I read that before on her blog?
19. Rage Against the Minivan ~ 102 ~ adoptive mom
20. Last Mom ~ 99 ~ older-child adoptive mom
21. Ni Hao Y'all ~ 97 ~ adoptive mom
22. The Road Less Traveled ~ 96 ~ adoptive mom
23. I Will Pull This Blog Over! ~ 96 ~ adoptive mom
24. the5parkers ~ 83 ~ foster care adoption
25. On Our Hearts ~ my pdf cut off right after the title of the blog!
Not in the Top 25, but their posts regarding this should be read:
Adoption Truth ~ Cassi was the one removed from the contest ~ the beginning of the end... I have never thought of Cassi's blog as being offensive. Not even her post after finding out she had been removed from the contest.
Production, Not Reproduction ~ adoptive mom, I think she took herself off the list in protest after Cassi's removal? I think there were others who removed themselves from the list also. If you know of any, please feel free to add them in the comments.
One Option Means No Choice
What was it that offended me? People who were name-calling and bashing those who spoke out of the negative aspects of adoption. Calling us "haters" and such. Although now I have no proof since most of them have been deleted. Oh well. I guess if anything positive came out of this mess it's that someone realized that they were going a little bit too far hating on those they were calling haters...
From a dad who reads all the adoption blobs and loves them I was planning on setting my alarm everyday to vote for you! If you had one more day you could have beat the haters who came in number two! Keep it up!
There were a few blatant lies posted though. This one I found particularly offensive: (directly copied ~ misspelling is theirs)
Be glad that you were not one of the targets. The antiadootion groups set out to personally attack blogs that had positive adoption messages or just didn't focus on the hard stuff exclusively. They flooded the blogs with negative comments and threatening emails. Be glad that you were not put under attack.
Really? I didn't see anyone in the top 25 personally attack any blogs nor bloggers themselves. I didn't see any blogs flooded with negative comments, nor hear of anyone receiving threatening emails. Maybe this did happen, but I didn't see any proof of it.
As I was going through the blogs just now, I was only offended (strongly) by one thing I read:
Excuse me? adoption is a loving response to a tragic reality? Is she calling an unplanned pregnancy a tragic reality? Maybe I'm wrong and the tragic reality is that a mother and her child were separated. But then where does the loving response come in? Nope. I still think she was being very offensive. I don't know the percentage, but the majority of children born in the world come from unplanned pregnancies. Two of the children I was lucky to raise were not planned. Are they tragic realities?? I think not.
I could see someone being offended by things said on one adoptive mother and one adult adoptee blog. If they were looking to be offended...
Here are some of the good things that came out of this fiasco:
No, I am not "anti-adoption." No, I do not think children are better off left in orphanages, foster care, in abusive homes, in homes that cannot care for them, or homes where they are not wanted. Absolutely not. I do not even begin to believe that I offer the only perspective on adoption; my goal is to offer a different one. Not one that fixes all of the world's or adoption's problems but one that gives people something different to think about, than perhaps what usually comes to mind, when they think of adoption.
However, you summed up what we all should be coming together on: the children. The love and care of a child is most important. Adoption, when broken down to it's simplest form, involves so many emotions and issues. I believe that anyone involved in adoption should have access to ALL views to make well informed decisions; further, the understanding that comes from differences perspectives is priceless.
Cassi is being censored because of WHO SHE IS as much as for what she says. Cassi relinquished her child for adoption. She writes about coercion in adoption consent. So do I. She writes about adoption reform. So do I. She writes about open records. So do I. She writes about how adoption has affected her now-adult child. I also write about how adoption has affected my not-yet-adult children. SO why is Cassi censored, and I am not (or at least not yet!)? Because adoptive parent speech is the only privileged speech in the adoption triad. Because I sometimes post photos of my cute adopted kids. And isn't that a shame, that my status privileges my speech, while Cassi's status enforces silence?
...when I was accused of being "anti-adoption," the short-hand equivalent of not writing about adoption in "a supportive, positive way:"
The point I'm trying to make here is that adoption is way more complicated than simply saving the orphans from the hellish orphanage. There is domestic adoption. There is international adoption. There is black market, illegal adoption. There is human trafficking that ends in adoption. There is corruption. There are lies. There are falsified documents. There is profit generation. There is abuse of power and children. There is entitlement. There is desperation. To ignore or turn your back on the realities that the adoption industry cultivates is a misguided act because it is all--good and bad--interconnected.
The whole situation is so ridiculous. Adoption is hard. It's complicated. The blog they pulled, Adoption Truth, reflects that from the author's perspective. Just as my blog reflects how hard and complicated adoption is from my perspective. Some adoption stories may be all rainbows and unicorns, but I think those situations are pretty rare (and often fabricated or exaggerated).
I'm even more offended now that they wouldn't allow this blog in there...a blog that reflects this person's reality, and quite frankly, a point of view that adoptive parents need to consider as they are raising their children who weren't born to them. The thing that really gets me, though, is that they banned this blog for being bitter, yet so much of their other stuff that they freely publish really is anti-family and promotes a lacks morals.
BUT this post is important because it calls out the very, very important reasons we need to continue to break the stereotypes surrounding adoption.
Ironically- I think all members of the triad felt welcome and supported UNTIL they disqualified Cassi. (although I suspect there was a contingent of "Sunshine and Roses" bloggers who complained about Cassi's blog in the first place) They don't have to agree but Cassi had the right to be on that list- if they didn't like it they didn't have to read or vote. Circle of Moms should had left it alone. It was when they didn't that the problem started.