Apparently Abby thinks adoption agencies just hand out babies for free? It just proves that people who haven't been forced to walk down this path will just never understand. Ugh!
Oh man... I can't believe that she would even go there! I second the opinion that we (as a community) need to respond, but I think it would be best coming from someone who is in the process of adoption (to explain just how much that 'option' costs) or from someone who has done fundraising successfully for their treatments.
I really hate it when people try to make it seem like adoption is a "quick fix" for couples who are unable to get pregnant. Adoption is far from easy, quick, or inexpensive, and no one suggests to fertile couples that they should "just adopt." Grrr.Though I disagree with her suggestion that the writer explore other options, including adoption, I don't totally disagree with the first part of her answer. As difficult and painful as infertility is, it's not life-threatening. I myself would not contemplate holding a fundraiser to raise money for fertility treatments, but I wouldn't be averse to the idea of approaching family or close friends privately to ask for their financial support, if I thought they would be able and willing to give it.
Dear Abby should not have pissed me off on the hottest damn day of the year, is all I can say. Here's what I wrote (and thanks for the link!):I am writing to express my frustration and disagreement with your response to "Contemplating in Canada," who wrote to ask your opinion about a fundraiser for fertility medications. As someone who has been struggling with infertility for four years, I am saddened and angered when I read the dismissive word to "consider adoption" because infertility is "not life-threatening." Whether it is in good taste to ask family and friends to help pay for any medication is a worthwhile question, and your negative reaction to that can be explained perfectly well without the patronizing suggestion that adoption would be a better choice. For one thing, adoption is not exactly free. In many cases, adoption costs more than fertility medication. For another, though infertility is not life-threatening, it is deeply painful and a threat to one's quality of life; it is worth remembering that the health-care system does not exist only for the sake of saving lives, but in order to improve their quality. What opinion would you give if "Contemplating in Canada" asked your advice about a fundraiser for the up-to-$40,000 cost of adoption? (In this case, I am basing my costs on the U.S. system.) Infertility is a medical problem, not unlike diabetes or cancer. It is not the fault of the person who suffers from it. It is is widely dismissed and misunderstood, and those who suffer from it are made to feel shame and guilt for the normal human desire and longing for a child. Infertile men and women are not responsible for adopting children - adoption is a calling in life, and should be considered by all those who wish to parent, regardless of fertility status. Your dismissive and uninformed words only serve to create more misunderstanding. I hope you will consider an apology.(Sorry about the World's Longest Comment...)
Wow, babyinterrupted! Your response is spot-on. Very eloquently stated.
Great response, babyinterrupted.
Thanks, Sunflowerchilde, for bringing Abby's ignorance to our attention, and for your amazing response, babyinterrupted. I got all angry and then I felt better after reading the letter! ;-)
Shit like that makes me so mad. I bet she never forked out thousands on thousands to try to have a child. UGH!!!!!
Well said, BabyInterrupted. So obvious that Dear Abby has never been touched by IF.
BabyInterrupted - Awesome!
Thanks for sharing your thoughts!