March 17, 2010

The Sound of Stupid

Miles has been home for almost a full month! Where has the time gone? We're starting to go out more and more which means that more and more people are coming up to us and asking LOTS of questions and giving their 2 cents worth about our transracial family.

I recognize that a lot of people are just curious about how we came to look the way we look. So I'll answer their "is he adopted" question by saying, "Yes- we are an adoptive family." Sometimes they are very genuinely interested in how it all came about and, if you know me at all, I can launch right into a conversation about the injustice and beauty of the Congo right in the middle of Wal-Mart just as easily as John Wall can slam a ball. I love to talk about it and try to use it as a way to raise awareness to people who really do seem to care about our story.

But I can also recognize that lots of people aren't curious- they are just downright rude and nosey! And I brush these people off because they aren't worth my time. But my goodness! Sometimes I get a really good laugh at some of the really dumb things people have said to me!

First of all, I'll just say that in our situation a whole lot more African American people will make comments out loud to us than white people. White people will just stare at us with this "Wonder how that happened" look on their faces. White people seem to be really scared to talk about race or say that our son is "black". People... he is black! (and quite cute I might add!) If you've got a minute,one of my favorite bloggers, Corey, just wrote a great post on race issues Anyway- here are just a few of my favorite idiotic things we've heard:

One woman (men never talk to me in public for some reason) walked up to me and said, "Honey, your husband must be REALLY black for you to have a baby that looks like that!"

Then there is the dreaded question phrased ever so indelicately..."Is he adopted or is he yours?" I always answer this with "Both" and walk away. Or they'll see me out with all the kids and they'll ask about Miles and then ask if the "other 2" are mine. I always say, "All three of them are mine and I love them all very much." I guess I don't get how there is a gap in people's brains that makes an adopted child any less "yours".

And then people do the downright gross and ask (right in front of Miles who will understand to be hurt by this later in life) "How much did he cost?" Dude- don't even get me started on the profanity that nearly escapes me when I get asked this question. It has only happened twice. The first time it took me really off guard and I stuttered out some incoherent piece about how legal fees are expensive, etc. But the second time I got smart and answered with a big ol' nunya- as is "Nunya business!"

And of course we have heard the " well, now what if Sadie wants to marry a black man" debacle. It sucks that we are still in this anti- interracial place in America. Really. Why in the world does this matter? I don't care what color (or gender, for that matter) the person she decides to marry is as long as they treat her like a princess. I place way more weight on the issue that the person love her, respect her and value her than if they are white. Or "yellow" as Sadie would say :-)

And here's my very favorite one I've heard so far. A customer at Chick-Fil-A came up to me and we launched into a discussion about transracial adoption. She was probably in her fifties and was so proud to tell me, "You know, when I was in high school I had a black friend!" I was thinking- Ummm... do you mean to tell me that you haven't had a meaningful encounter with a black person in 30 years??? You may as well have told me that the person at Kroger who bagged your groceries once was black! Since I didn't think it would be a good idea to say what I was thinking, I was stumped. I said a sarcastic little, "Good for you!" and just left it at that.

Ahhh...the sound of stupidity!

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