Why didn’t you adopt?

When Kirsty and I told everyone we wanted to start a family together, many people asked us – ‘Will you be adopting?’

That question never really seemed to bother me that much in the past, however, now we have our son, it is really starting to play on my mind. Especially as the question has now changed to ‘Why didn’t you adopt?!’ & ‘Will you adopt the next baby?’

Our answer, sadly, is no, we will not be adopting. I have the upmost respect for those who adopt and foster. There are so many children out there who need a supportive and loving home and I think it takes the right sort of person to take that path. I feel we have the space in our hearts to love a child as if they were our own but I have always wanted to give birth to my own children, as many of us do. I don’t feel I should have to justify the reason why we chose to conceive our own child. Would these people ask that question to a straight couple? Honestly, I’m not so sure.

It’s not the idea of adopting which frustrates me about those questions, it’s the assumption. The assumption that because we are ‘Lesbians’, we must be infertile or should give up our rights to give birth to our own children. It’s the same when people judge my wife for her choice not to carry our children. Next time we get a lecture about adoption I am going to ask why they chose to conceive naturally.

I have been asked so many personal questions over the years, and most of the time we are happy to answer but sometimes they can be quite hurtful.

Questions like –

‘Why didn’t you both try for a baby at the same time to double your chances?’

‘Why didn’t you both breast feed your son if you had trouble?’

‘Did you use a turkey baster?’

‘There are so many children in the world who need homes, so why didn’t you adopt?

‘Who’s the man and who’s the woman?’

‘How do you sleep together?’

Etc. . . Etc. . . Etc. . .

I often wonder why there is a need to ask such questions? Maybe they don’t think before they speak, I’m not sure. We have always responded by saying that’s awfully personal and we don’t wish to answer. Then comes that awkward silence in the conversation which feels like time has stood still. Then the person will lose interest and seek out another person to interrogate.

Kirsty and I are very open and honest people and we enjoy sharing our life through our blog, we’ve met some amazing people and formed some amazing friendships. We love answering questions about our life together and our family, including the legal aspects. Through questions asked, we have found answers to things we didn’t even know about.

When we neared the end of our pregnancy someone asked us if we were both able to be on M’s birth certificate. At the time we didn’t have a clue but through research we discovered that as we are a married couple, we both had the right to be on it.

I guess there is always going to be that person who over steps the mark and we’re extremely lucky that we haven’t experienced many bad comments or remarks via the blog. We were prepared for a lot lot more. Every cloud I guess.

This Post Has 18 Comments

  1. NewMumOnline Reply

    You are an amazing couple who have an amazing son. I guess it is distinguishing between the genuine naive curiosity and those who quite simply overstep the mark. But just by being here, and blogging you are dispelling so much ignorance, and making something that some people wouldn’t encounter, so easy for them to understand. You’re both commendable and awesome x

  2. Downs Side Up Reply

    This is why I love you both.
    You take the same attitude to insensitivity that I do; draw people and in, gently change their minds and leave them educated.
    That said I am so sorry you have had to endure such ignorance, but I am not surprised. Where babies and reproducing are concerned everyone thinks its public domain and they have a right to comment, on testing, screening, adopting, trying again, disability, sex of baby and so on and on…
    Daddy Downs Side Up (who is rather less gentle of spirit than I) always says ‘Opinions are like @rseh@les. Everyone has one and some of them stink.’
    (Sorry to lower the tone on your blog).

    Much love

  3. Nicky the Expat Reply

    Having quite a few LGBT friends and being bisexual myself I’ve always been shocked at the sheer audacity some people have in asking these sorts of questions. No one, after all, goes up to any straight couple and asks how they “do” it.

    You two ladies are beautiful and inspiring. <3

  4. LittleRascalReviews Reply

    I think you’re very kind to take the time to help to educate people (even the daft insensitive ones!). You’re clearly both far more patient than I 😉

  5. Matt Reply

    I’ve always found hurtful the fact that people are getting involved in private life like this. My husband and I are asked about our couple, life and child very often. I am always happy to answer most of the questions as we are open minded and easy going people. However, there is still one question that is really hurting me: “Who’s the man? Who’s the woman?”. What on earth has LGBT community done to endure such bad words ! Would people ask such private questions like this to straight couple? – Anyway, I wish you best of luck with you blog. It’s much appreciated to see that mums like you and your wife are promoting family awareness and acceptance. X

  6. Super Busy Mum Reply

    The human race is flawed. Closed minded, ignorant people roam our streets and just never think before they speak. As if a same sex couple is wrong to conceive a child of their own, well I say crap to that! You both are amazing & you both have this darling little guy that’s a complete credit to the both of you. x

  7. Alice Harold Reply

    It baffles me that adults can be so close-minded, judgemental and rude to ask you such things! As a pregnant 24 year old I was often asked if it was planned (I was married, yes it was) and though I laughed it off the first time around it was actually very hurtful. Like others have said, it’s great you’re taking the time to promote family awareness and acceptance x

  8. Harriet J Reply

    Super post Clara. Some people are so insensitive it’s unbelievable. As you said , I doubt those questions would be asked to a straight couple. It’s terrible. As Nathan and I hadn’t been together for too long when I fell pregnant, I was actually asked if I was going to keep the baby by someone I vaguely know. I was shocked!x

  9. Steph (I'm Counting UFOs) Reply

    Humans are curious, no getting around that. But there are questions and there are questions. I never can understand why people feel it’s okay to ask about anyone’s personal life, especially if there is any kind of judgement there. Like Alice, I was considered a young mother (23) and I wasn’t married. I had a lot of people ask if my daughter was planned, and once if I was still with the father. Rude, and worse, from another mother. I’m sorry people can’t be more open minded (or just mind their own business)

  10. Mama Syder Reply

    It always shocks me that people will be so rude. When we got married, we were teenagers (18 & 19) and I was pregnant and some people blatantly asked was he only marrying me because I was pregnant! Twenty four years later I think I can safely answer no, he was not marrying me just because I was pregnant. We used to get lots of judgemental comments and I think it was mainly from people who were unhappy in their own lives x

  11. Caroline Reply

    My partner and I live in a little town full of very nosey and narrow minded people. We are pregnant with our first baby together and oh boy have I had some things thrown at me! Me more that Jody as I don’t ‘look’ like a lesbian apparently!   And the usual ‘was a turkey baster involved’?!I have however acquired a task in always answering in a way that makes them think hard about how rude they have just been and then smile nicely! It always makes for good conversation at home… 🙂

  12. Lucy Reply

    It amazes how ignorant and just damn nosey some people are! It definitely seems like all things to do with babies somehow become public property and there is no line some people won’t cross when it comes to questions. Be it asking people when they are going to have them, people assuming that families should only have a certain amount of children, or that families should only be made in a certain way. You’d think people would understand that families are diverse.
    I think your blog is doing a lot to help the ignorance. And I think one the reasons you don’t get bad comments slung at you on this blog, is because you do such a good job of sharing, explaining, normalising and telling people when to bugger off because it’s not their business. x

  13. Sarah @apartyofseven Reply

    i think people can just be insensitive regardless of what your family make up is. Anything seems to be fair game in my experience. I get a LOT of hurtful and annoying comments about the make up of our family..and yes sometimes i am left open mouthed and almost want to say ‘you do realise those words are actually coming out of your mouth don’t you?’…:)

  14. sabrina montagnoli Reply

    I can’t imagine having to field some of those questions. It sounds like you are both there for each other and have figured ways to manage when others are so insensitive (even though some of those questions go far beyond insensitivity!)

  15. Lauren Reply

    It’s taken me a while to comment on this because it wound me up so much (not the post, the things people say) and I thought I should calm down before I went into a full on rant.
    I can understand why people would have questions about how same sex parenting works, I have/had a few myself BUT I can’t understand why people would be so flippin rude about it and how they feel that they can be so personal.
    I’m sure you wouldn’t dream about asking people which position they were in when they concieved so why people feel it necessary to ask how you you concieved is beyond me.

    The adoption question really makes me angry.

    I’m sorry you have to go through this. I agree with Lucy, I think your blog and your vlogs helps people to understand that you are just like any other couple and any other family xx

  16. astri1a Reply

    Me and my partner have had a lot of comments that have upset us. We choose to go through a clinic and I sadly had a few losses so it took us 3 years of trying to have our twins. In that time I had a lot of friends telling me that I should just find a sperm donor online as it would save time and money. I know that they wouldn’t dare say that to a hetro couple. I’ve also found that I get asked “and they’re yours?’ emphasis on the “yours” because Ali carried our oldest boy.

  17. Innocent Charms Chats Reply

    This post should never need to be written, it angers me a little, it always makes me very proud to call you both friends as you take every nasty or stupid act with such dignity, more than I can as a sibling to a gay person.
    When I told people I did not want to have children naturally I was questioned, can you not have them then ? In fact I found out a couple years later that it would be near impossible for me to conceive but that was not the reason I had chose, I really didn’t like the idea of having my own children, funny considering I now have 3.
    Of course there are things that intrigue me about you both, but I know I would never ask as I am sure in reverse people think the same of Ash and I.

    Be strong my sweethearts xxx

  18. Mrs TeePot Reply

    *hugs* Some people are so insensitive and many just don’t think. I’m sorry you’ve had to deal with these questions and I think you would be totally right to fire back at someone asking why you didn’t adopt with “why didn’t you adopt?”.

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