The Open Adoption Roundtable is a series of occasional writing prompts about open adoption. It’s designed to showcase of the diversity of thought and experience in the open adoption community. You don’t need to be part of the Open Adoption Bloggers list to participate, or even be in a traditional open adoption. If you’re thinking about openness in adoption, you have a place at the table.
Publish your response during the next two weeks–linking back here so we can all find one other–and leave a link to your post in the comments. If you don’t blog, you can always leave your thoughts directly in the comments.
I don’t know how this happened, but it’s been over a month since our last roundtable. Yikes! September went by faster than I thought. Let’s get back to business, shall we?
This round’s topic was suggested by adoptive parent blogger Rebecca: privacy, blogging and open adoption. Figuring out boundaries is difficult when you write about your personal life. Any on-blog mention of family, friends or co-workers risks invading their privacy. Bloggers who write about or post pictures of their children are accused of exploitation. Where is the line between your own experience and other people’s personal lives? What information is yours to share and what rightfully belongs to someone else?
Add the overlapping relationships of open adoption to the mix and you’ve got yourself a potential ethical and personal mess. And yet it’s impossible to talk about one’s open adoption experience without mentioning the people involved. Where do you draw the lines–on your blog and in your personal life–and why? What, if anything, don’t you tell?
First mom Ginger at Puzzle Pieces: “I write knowing that the world could be reading.”
Adoptive mom Spyderkl at Evil Mommy: “The only thing I care about is that nothing happens to my family because of what I’ve written. It’s so much more difficult in an open adoption, when there are other people not actually living with you who are directly affected by what you might say. It’s caused me to want to stop blogging altogether several times.”
First mom SJ at From the Mind of a Bmom: “Part of how I cope is letting my moments of grief and times of joy be useful or encouraging to others. If I change the life of only one person by writing about my experiences then this is worth it (I know that is cliche!).”
First mom Valerie at From Another Mother: “I guess that’s the measure I hold to, then–the adoptive mother’s level of comfort. Because she is his mother, I think she has the right to decide (even implicitly) what level of privacy we’ll all hold to.”
First mom Thanksgivingmom at I Should Really Be Working: “At the risk of rambling, I wonder if we – on both ‘parental’ sides of the triad – relinquish some right to ‘possess’ our stories…”
First mom susie_book at Endure for a Night: “My adult compromise is to say everything–but not to everyone. My blog is a place for me to say everything without hurting anyone, which seems to me like the best of all possible worlds.”
Adoptive mom Tracey at Grace Comes By Hearing: “My blog started out as an extension of my journal that I have kept since I was 12.”
Adoptive mom Barely Sane at Infertility Licks: “I don’t think it’s right that folks out in cyberspace get to know all about my life and those that really should be privy to the information are left out.”
Prospective adoptive parent A at A+A Adopt a Baby: “…I don’t feel the need to be anonymous on the Internet. I find writing here to be an interesting personal discipline and a helpful place to express myself, developing a public life that is authentic, open, and honest without sharing what is actually private.”
Prospective adoptive parent Prabha at Baby Steps to a Baby Dream: “To me, the web is unlike the real world. We have to be careful about the footprints we leave for they can live on in perpetuity.”
Adoptive mom Shmode at Random Musings of a Frogged Mind: “I can’t. I can’t seriously post a single thing about her, or our, situation that would in any way harm her.”
Adoptive mom Luna at Life From Here: “I feel the need to be authentic in telling my own story, but this must be balanced with the need to protect my family, including Baby J and her family of origin.”
Adoptive mom Lavonne at Eyes Wide Open: “To keep everything to ourselves creates more suspicion and mystery about adoption than needed. And as it is, there are already too many adoption related myths that we need to work to debunk.”
Adoptive mom Heather at Production, Not Reproduction: “Even though I hide my blog away, I’ve always written with the assumption that everyone I know will one day read it.”
Prospective adoptive parent Linda at Karlinda: “If we continue to write any form of ‘open’ open adoption blog, you may well find you don’t recognise us.”
Prospective adoptive parent Thorn at Mother Issues: “So am I blogging from the closet? Are we out here? I guess my answer would be that we’re out as much as we need to be. “