A "good enough" mom muses about alpha moms, adoption, computers, the State Of The World, Internet quirkiness, and the Kosmik All
The bug, and something bugging me

So the dotter has what, for all intents and purposes, is the flu.  Oh, the pediatrician waved his hands at the fact that she had had the flu shot, but the sudden onset, the high high fever, the headaches--all said "flu".

Not something easy to take care of, like strep throat.  Bah.  You can give a shot to a kid with strep throat and haul her off to preschool the next day.  But with a virus...sigh...you wait it out.  You alternate the ibuprofen and the Tylenol.  You sneak as many fluids in as possible.  You snuggle on the futon.

(You banish from your mind the reality that neither you nor your hubby have had flu shots.  You decide they wouldn't have done any good anyway, because it looks like the dotter has it, and she did have the flu shot, and so it must be a different strain of flu.)

It does give one a chance to actually read some books, though.

Let's talk judgmentalism.  Specifically, taking info from someone's China adoption blog, deciding they're Doing Something Bad, and going to the agency about it.

Oh, yeah, it's been done.

Apparently there's someone who calls herself a "minister" who makes a habit of tattling to adoption agencies whenever someone blogs about something that she decides is Bad.

A specific example is a China adoptive-mom-to-be who became publicly sober via Alcoholics Anonymous on her blog; this "minister" decided to get more specific information from the blogger under the guise of "helping her" and "reaching out to her", then promptly marched off to her agency with the information and got her drummed out of the adoption corps.

Apparently this woman has done something similar to a number of people.  I knew about the example above many months ago (was appalled then and am appalled now)...then this past week, the China adoption blogs were full of it; somehow the "minister" got outed.

Any way you look at it, it's a cautionary tale.  The words "be careful out there" spring to mind.

Others have clearly and eloquently discussed the fact that what you see on a person's blog is a snapshot, not the whole person, so I won't really address that. 

I think the "minister" claimed that this person lied in her homestudy, and maybe even believed it.  The problem is that alcoholics (or depressives or people with psychological problems or addiction problems or a vague worry that turns out to be cancer) quite often don't see it themselves.  So they happily go through the homestudy, the social worker signs off on it, and then, months down the line (or years) they realize they have A Problem.

Is this lying?  Not in my mind.  People with problems like this are very good at disguising it from themselves.  People who live with people with problems like this are very good at not recognizing the problems, hiding from them.  Twenty-twenty hindsight allows everyone involved to say, "Oh, yeah.  Oh, man, this has been a problem for a long time.  Why didn't I see it?!"  But at the time...it's invisible.

Has the person become a worse person, less a "good parent", than he or she was prior to becoming sober (or medicated for depression, or counseling for the psychological problems or what-have-you)?  I don't think so.

I have discussed, off and on here on the blog, the sturm und drang in the OmegaFamily's lives a few years ago.  I'm never specific about it because of rumors of people like this "minister", and for reasons of privacy.  It is, however, something that knocks us out of the China adoption program.  The thing is, it was a problem before we adopted OmegaDotter (unrecognized and unaddressed, simmering in the background).  Now it is recognized, addressed, and things are (in my opinion) much better off.  But if we had glossed it over, ignored it, let it simmer more, or just flat-out lied--well, we'd be parents of two kids by now, or real close to it.

Now, China has every right to structure their program whatever way they want.  But it's damned frustrating that there are plenty of people who are adopting kids from China with the very same problem as, say, the original blogger mentioned in this post--but they don't realize it.  One could argue that a person who has actually taken steps to resolve big life problems--like alcoholism, depression, cancer, etc.--is a much better bet.

We all make judgments.  Some are harsher than others.  Some are more clear-cut than others.  It's easy enough when you see, say, someone beating on a dog with a two-by-four in the middle of a highway.  But someone calls the cops, the cops figure out the crime scene, and the judging and sentencing gets left up to a jury.  Of course, even juries can screw it up royally (see my post below), but at least you've got impartial folks separated from the original "crime".  There's a process which is humanity's frail attempt to ensure justice.

Taking it upon yourself to be judge, jury, and executioner is...well, it's a bit of hubris to me.

Hmm.  I don't know where I'm going with this post; it's kind of a mish-mash.  But I'm going to hit publish anyway.

posted by Kate @ 2/06/2007 06:31:00 PM  
  • At 2/06/2007 07:44:00 PM, Blogger Space Mom said…

    First, I am sorry that Dotter got the flu and not the strain she was given in the shot.

    Second, I am personally glad the "minister" was outed. I believe she acted terribly. It was un-Christian and unacceptable in all angles that I look at it.

    You and OmegaDad have to deal with your own issues as part of your family. I hate that the situation keeps you from bringing a sister for the Dotter from her home country. But I appreciate your honesty with dealing with your situations (and it's your prerogative to keep things private...)

    I am not sure if I have a point, but know that if I was physically closer, I would take you out to get some coffee and snack or at least give you a break and watch a movie with the Dotter.

  • At 2/06/2007 08:31:00 PM, Anonymous Theresa said…

    I have always thought that those parents who have sought out help for themselves when in a difficult situation will be far more ready/willing to ask for needed help for their adopted child when/if that old "primal wound" really opens up.

    BTW-freezer pops are a big hit with dd when she is sick and needs fluids:)Hope she feels better soon!

  • At 2/06/2007 09:02:00 PM, Blogger Miss Cellania said…

    I have no patience with self-appointed morality experts. Personally, I'll go with New testament love anyday over Old Testament judgement. I'm not up on the story, but these folks always seem to eventually pay the piper (Ted Haggard, etc). The problem is, a lot of other folks get hurt along the way.

  • At 2/07/2007 03:57:00 PM, Blogger MomEtc. said…

    Why am I NOT surprised at the behavior of this minister! I'd like to know who the hell it is should they ever show up at my blog and start commenting or emailing me.

    I feel like deleting all of my posts!

  • At 2/08/2007 11:13:00 AM, Anonymous SBird said…

    Thanks for saying everything about this situation that I wanted to but haven't.

  • At 2/08/2007 01:19:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    OmegaMom - I'm going to post anonymously on this one but I know that you and I have e-mailed about this issue and what you wrote just makes me want to weep. Because it's so true. Look, I got preapproval from China last time because it was x number of years since my issue was active. But I always thought it was bitterly ironic that I had a better shot at adopting before taking care of the issue at all. I agree with everything you wrote. All of it. And sorry I'm anon on this but I think you know who I am anyway.

  • At 2/08/2007 01:19:00 PM, Blogger Julie Pippert said…

    It's more than a bit of Hubris.

    That minister...I hope she gets the help for the problem she must not realize she has.

    Hope everyone gets well soon.

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About Me
Name: OmegaMom
Home: Southwest
About Me: Middle-aged mom of a 4-year-old adopted from China. Love science, debate, good SF and fantasy, hiking, music of almost every style. Lousy housekeeper. "Good enough" mom.
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