Saturday, October 04, 2008

Ugh.

Dear Readers,
Well, I'm getting another round of hate mail (or, I guess I should say "hate comments") on my "Adoption Stuff" post below. Often when I'm writing posts that aren't just 'this-is-what-we-did-today'-posts I fret in my heart as I click "publish" on Blogger... because I just know those anonymous hateful hurtful comments will probably come pouring in. Folks, I've gotta say: I do sometimes wonder why we make this blog public. I think about just stopping it all together. But then I think about the hundreds of people out there who have found some kind of solace/inspiration/interest in our stories --and I think about people and families who have inspired us along our own journey-- and I keep plugging away. I don't know how long we'll keep doing it though, it is hard to stay strong to put ourselves out there like this. As for the post below.... I'm rejecting the anonymous hate mail and not publishing the anonymous hurtful comments. They are just too nasty to validate them by clicking "publish." I just need to say, though, for the record: we know a lot about the details of our sons' births. We do not share these details. Until K & O are old enough to handle all the information, Braydon and I will remain the only people outside of Haiti who know the whole story of our boys. Trust me when I say: our boys were not breastfed. On another note: we're trying hard to teach our four-year-olds that age-old golden rule: do unto others as you would have done unto you. To all of you Hate Mail Writers out there-- please try to remember this golden rule yourselves as you're reading our blog.
Thanks, Heather

54 comments:

heutehiermorgendort said...

I am so sorry to hear that. Please do stick around and keep on writing. You inspire me and a lot of your other readers on a daily basis.
Sending lots of love and hope and positive thoughts and encouragement from Germany!
Katja

Kristine said...

I've been reading your blog for a few months now (found it though AfAm Dad) and it has been a joy. I know being transparent opens yourself up to abuse but it also helps those of us who contemplating adoption, marriage, children, trampolines to see the complexities of those life choices. I like your blog...I like seeing K&O and now Miss M growing up happy, healthy and loved. Reading your blog is a welcome respite in the early AM when I need a break from graduate studies. While I hope you don't stop transparent blogging I totally understand the need to keep your family life safe from ignorant drive-by comments. Perhaps you can set up your blog to prevent anonymous comments.

Welp...back to my studies...

Karen said...

Sorry, Heather! I really hope you keep your blog public and do not let those negative comments get to you at all. There are always insensitive people out there, and unfortunately too many of them feel a need to voice their opinion...

Heza Hekele said...

If you ever do go private, I would love an invite...I am one of those hundreds that finds inspiration in your stories.

I have had a similar experience, on a much smaller scale, recently. One of my videos on youtube has received a lot of traffic and thus a lot of comments...for someone not used to attracting comments of any kind, this was new. I have never thought of removing the video, but do delete any negative comments and block that specific "viewer" so that they cannot comment again. I was semi-surprised at how fast I came to this method of dealing with negative comments and I truly wonder how I would have reacted differently if there were not a surplus of positive and/or neutral comments to counter balance the ignorant ones.

*hugs* to you and your beautiful family!

Anonymous said...

Sorry to hear you are receiving nasty comments. Its perplexing why others feel like attacking others. I am an adoptive mom to a 15 mo. son and I agree with you that until your children are old enough to hear the details you are the only ones that know the full story, and you know what is best to share and/or not share with your children. They are your children.

I really enjoy your blog; keep up the good work!

Jessica
Minnesota

Mark and Sarah said...

I'm so sorry to hear that people have the audacity to send you hate mail, when you have voluntarily put yourself out there to share your life, with the intention of helping and inspiring people. And the idea that people would think that they know better than you how to parent your boys, without any adequate information (or with, for that matter!) is utterly ridiculous. I am saddened by the anonymo's of this world. Keep up the amazing work, Heather. I for one have been incredibly blessed by your willingness to keep up this blog and shudder to think you might shut it down someday due to the mean minority of people of in this world. Remember, for every one hate comment you get, there are probably a hundred people who were inspired, but never wrote anything.

glamah16 said...

I just red the post below. Im sorry you have to deal with all this hate as you provide your family a beautiful home. You share so much, and a lot is personal.Its your choice, but it would be a crime to give it up because of a few narrow minded bigots out there.This a great record for the boys on their early history.

Christina said...

I'm a relatively new reader of your blog, I came across it when I was googling about loc maintenance, of all things. :-)

I certainly understand why you would feel hurt by hateful comments, and I would understand, though deeply regret, if you decided just to keep things to yourself. I don't know why, when it comes to child-rearing, EVERYONE seems to think it's their duty to tell you the "best" way to do things, or to tell you what you're doing is wrong. It's got to be incredibly frustrating.

If you do decide to go private, though, I wouldn't want to have missed the opportunity to let you know how much I just enjoy reading this blog -- your whole family is just adorable, and your stories bring a smile to my face. There's love on every page. And, I'd like to think that there are many more people like me out there, than idiots who feel compelled to hurl drive-by insults. It's easy for me to say that you should let it roll off your back -- they don't know you. But I don't know what I would do if I were in the same position. Regardless, I do just want to send out my support to you and your family.

Kristi said...

Wow! I'm extremely sorry to hear that you are getting hurtful comments. I absolutely love your blog I think it is going to be so helpful when our son makes it home - come on IBESR! I hope you don't ever EVER stop blogging :-)

I guess when I'm reading a blog and don't agree with what the writer says I just stop reading -- I don't leave hurtful comments.

So let me be only one in probably many to say thank you for keeping your blog - your point of view is greatly appreciated.

honor22 said...

Sheesh, that stinks! I am waiting for my adoption to go through. Reading your posts everyday makes me feel connected to Haiti. I like reading reminders everyday that there is life on the other side!

I regularly listen to a running podcast called, Phedippidations. The host, Steve Runner, is the nicest, most genuine person. He talked about hate mail in his most recent podcast. It makes me sad to hear that there are people with nothing better to do than to make hateful comments to others who are doing such wonderful "work".

THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU for sharing your lives with us.

Erin

Asiaha said...

It's sad when people leave rude and disrespectful comments like that! They ruin everything for everybody. I hope you dont quit blogging :(

Claudia and John said...

I am sorry to hear about the hateful things. Please keep up all you and Braydon do. You are both an inspiration to many of us and I so look forward to your insite.

We love seeing your bambinos grow into lovely youngings.

Keep up all you do.

Love and Hugs to all,
Claudia

mmc said...

I just found your blog about a week ago, and I wanted to say hi and show some love to counteract the current nastiness that you are dealing with. So hi! and hugs! It always bothers me when cowards hide behind an anonymous comment.I very much agree, keep the golden rule in mind folks... and if you don't have anything nice to say then why comment? It makes me sad that there are people out there who are in such a low place that they must bring others down to try to lift themselves up

HUGS!

Molly

mmc said...

I just found your blog about a week ago, and I wanted to say hi and show some love to counteract the current nastiness that you are dealing with. So hi! and hugs! It always bothers me when cowards hide behind an anonymous comment.I very much agree, keep the golden rule in mind folks... and if you don't have anything nice to say then why comment? It makes me sad that there are people out there who are in such a low place that they must bring others down to try to lift themselves up

HUGS!

Molly

Mrs. Baker said...

Dear Heather –

I want to come out and tell you how much I absolutely love, love, love your blog.

I am an avid reader. I applaud what you do. I have looked up to you as an adoptive mom (just mom really) long before my son (4 yrs from ET) came home six months ago. I think you are doing an absolute perfect job at mothering those amazing little guys of yours.

You put yourself out there. There is a real story here. A love story between a family and I come back to your blog everyday to check on you and the boys.

I don’t know where those hateful comments are stemming from. I don’t know how someone who has proved herself to be so open-minded, open about adoption in general, such an advocate for adoption, and a strong & courageous mother could possible be twisted into someone who has unresolved selfish fears – well it is totally off base. That is not the way that post or you have ever come off to me…..AT ALL!!!!

You don’t need to explain yourself to anyone. No one. Gone are the days of the shameful adoptive stories with parents not being truthful and hiding the parts of adoption that are not pretty. And adoption is hard. Its hard for everyone involved.

There are plenty parents of adopted children who will agree that our kids totally make up things about what happened in their past. We know them. We are their parents. We know when they are having a memory and when they are expressing pain in the form of a tall tale. We know how to handle this best within our own families. You are their mother. You are amazing at it.

I think you are already fully aware and educated as to why this happens. I don’t think you need any lessons on how to deal with your adopted child’s unresolved feelings or how to mother. Especially on how to be more thoughtful, mindful, and sensitive to your own children. Anyone who thinks that they have the right to tell you how to handle YOUR family, and YOUR children differently needs to sign off your blog….really they need to mind their own business. We don’t pick up autobiography novels to pick the persons story apart. This has happened to me in the past. It is very, very hurtful and more than anything else it really pisses me off.

And to the Anonymous commenter’s –

It seems like some of YOU have some unresolved feelings that you need to deal with. There was nothing kind or helpful in the tone of those comments. They were filled with anger. They were also very condescending. If you are going to be nasty do not do it anonymously. And to the one who said…”hopefully they can be reunited with their mother sooner or later”….WOW! Let me make it clear that Heather is their MOTHER. If you were referring to the woman who gave birth to the boys the term for that is “birthmother.” And to the person who said: “Imagine yourself waking up in a foreign country where no one in your immediate household looked anything like you!” – do you really think any adoptive parent could go one day without imagining this? Does Heather EVER come across as someone who does not?...and in response to this… “Sounds to me like instead of researching in books, you need some counseling to help YOU deal with your fears of dealing with these very deep issues.” It is clear that you are being very judgmental without really having the facts. You are not God. Only those without sin can cast the first stone. I would urge you to step down from your high horse. For someone with so much advice on how Heather is coming across too “cold” and how to be sensitive to emotions…I am baffled at how you can attack someone you have never met.

Ok…off my soap box. Keep Writing Heather!!!

SC said...

Please don't let others spoil your joy, as it relates to your blog, daily life or how you parent your children. You've been an incredible help to so many. We all learn from everyone we are surrounded by, and I've chosen to include you in that mix, because there are so many things I can learn from you, about being a parent. (I can learn from everone, you happen to be an example here) Isn't that what this is supposed to be about? Please keep going. To heck with all the judgements...

Czarnecki Family said...

I also really appreciate you blogging about these sorts of things. We're still waiting for a referral and these are things I need to anticipate and really think, as we go through this process, what the best way to talk about these things will be. Thank you for being willing to share!
-Meghan

T and T Livesay said...

Heather-
Troy and I got sick of mean comments - always from anonymous (read: spineless) people. WE just removed the anonymous option and that has reduced mean/rude commentary by 98% ... people can make up a fake name, but most don't seem to take the time to do that ... something you might consider. People suck sometimes. I am sorry that you were on the receiving end of that suckiness.

tara

Malia'sMama said...

If you do go private, just please send me an invitation. That one nasty comment "adoptauthor" was enough to have sent me into blog anonymity!

Anonymous said...

I am a kindergarten teacher who enjoys reading your blog. I am in total agreement with your choice to give age appropriate honest answers to your boys when they have questions. When young children ask questions they are not necessarily seeking all the information you have on the subject; age appropriate responses with only minimal information is what they are seeking and in need of. I applaud the way you are raising these two spectacular children and they will surely be amazing adults because of the love, honesty, and security that they are being given as children. There are many children who are growing up without what K & O are getting from you each day. I only wish that all of the children that I teach were as lucky as K & O.

Anonymous said...

OR!!! Here's a thought...How about they just not read the blog!
YOU GUYS ROCK so Keep on Keepin On :)!

Maggie said...

Heather,

You don't have to publish this--I just wanted to tell you that some of the comments that are visible to me under the "Adoption Stuff" post are, as you said, hurtful, and as I would say, hurtful and *highly* offensive. Did you mean to publish them or was that a mistake? There is one in particular that is just astonishing. Anyway, I just wanted to let you know in case the computer spazzed out...maybe you intentionally left that one on there, but goddamn. People are seriously f-ed up.

I miss you.
You are wonderful.
Your family is wonderful.
:) Stay strong!

Love, Maggie

Robyn said...

Please keep blogging publicly!!! We love your blog, your insights, and your humor. What would we do without a daily dose of K&O?

maggie b. said...

oh, i am so, so sorry for the hate mail. please know that for every one of those mean souls reading your blog, there are probably a hundred who just think the world of you (like i do). press on!

stephanie garcia said...

I am sorry to hear this and hope that the positive comments from so many who have been encouraged by your blog will far outweigh the naysayers!

jlp said...

Hi Heather,
I have been reading your blog for several months. I happened upon it when I googled "transracial adoption" and "Baltimore". (Your family had just taken a trip to Baltimore.) My husband and I plan on adopting in the next few years and our family will most likely be interracial. We live in Baltimore and I was searching to see if there was a local group or family I could connect with. I started to read your blog and quickly realized you live in Bucks County, which is where I grew up! (south of you in Newtown)
I wanted to leave on a comment on this entry because it breaks my heart that people are leaving negative comments in response to your last post. As I was reading it, I thought your approach to the boys' questions made perfect sense (even without knowing the history).
My selfish reason for being upset about the negative comments is that posts like that one are so informative to me as a (hopefully) future adoptive mother, and hurtful feedback will understandably discourage you from writing similar posts in the future.
So, I want to let you know that I really enjoy and appreciate your blog, and that I am surprised and disappointed that any readers would leave hurtful feedback. From what I see and read, you and Braydon are wonderful parents who deserve nothing but support and appreciation from anyone who reads your blog.

Wishing you and your lovely family all the best,
Jillian

madmac2706 said...

I've been reading your blog for over a year. I'm sorry that people are leaving bad comments. I would just like you to know that reading your blog opened me up to the idea of adoption. Thank you very much and hope that you keep sharing

Mary said...

I, too, would like to thank you for blogging from the heart. Our son is not even home yet and I find myself in the presence of some very ignorant and judgemental comments. I don't know why people think they know the whole story and why they should have a say in anyone's parenting. It is obvious that your children are loved and cared for abundantly. Thank you again for sharing how you have chosen to handle the "tuff" times. It is very helpful in putting together our own family plan. Blessings...

The Jabber said...

I've long thought that people mostly don't publish commentary on the interwebs unless they have something to complain about. Trust that there are 100 inspired, loyal readers who are truly moved by who you are for every one hate commenter. We don't comment much but we are many in number.

As far as the hate mailers? What I have to say about them starts with "F" and ends with "them". ;-) Really, I'm glad you haven't given them press time by publishing their commentary here.

Barbara (Canada) said...

I am sad to hear that some people feel the need to be so rude. Personally, I thank you for your blog. As an adoptive mom-in-waiting, I really appreciate your blog- for all the day-to-day stories and for your musings about life, adoption, etc. I am also an identical twin, which makes me love your blog even more. My twin sister is a few months ahead of me in the adoption process (waiting to go pick up her son), and we both are daily readers of "Party of Five". We would be sad to see it end. You have a beautiful family, and we only wish you the very best. Thanks for sharing a piece of your life with us.

M and M said...

Heather, I admire your courage and your honesty. Of course, protecting the health of your family comes before sharing your experience with this world of cyber eyeballs. I found your post on adoption stuff so amazing and helpful - as I anticipate my little Ethiopian son will have many many questions about his birthmom, his country, and the permanence of us in his life. Thank you for opening your life so I can live my own in a better way.

Ani said...

Heather - I've just caught up reading the blog, and wanted to thank you for your candor and honesty in sharing these kinds of stories (in addition to the everyday adventures, which I love!).

my son, was adopted domestically as a newborn, is 3, and he is not yet verbalizing his thoughts about his adoption. reading posts like your previous one give me an inkling as to what could/is going through his beautiful little head, and helps me "prep" to open conversation and answer potential questions.

i'm so sorry that some folks feel the need to voice hateful, hurtful comments. one golden rule in our home is "if you don't have something constructive or nice to say,then don't say anything!"

thanks for hanging in there!

laurafingerson said...

Oh Heather, I am so sorry to hear about the hurtful comments. Some people just don't think. You bear an unfair burden by being the one to have to read those comments and choose not to publish them. I know that is hard.

But, you are getting SO much support and thanks from adoptive families! What you write really strikes a chord with other adoptive families, which is SO IMPORTANT.

I want to add that what you write is also so important for families like mine that are not adoptive. I am learning so much about adoptive, transracial adoptive, and multiracial families from reading your writing that is helping me in my interactions with others. There are many adoptive and transracial adoptive families that I see and speak with. I am less ignorant, more aware and, hopefully, more sensitive and considerate because of your blog. Small steps make big change.

It's not much solace in the short term, but in the long term, we can reduce the hurtful comments stemming from ignorance by speaking/writing honestly. Again, it is a burden on you, which is not fair. But, you are reaching so many people in the here and now, plus all the people (including your boys) that you will reach as time passes and people look back through your blog.

I hope and know that you will get a lot of support for your writing and your blog. Know that for every supportive comment you read, there are at least five more supportive people out there who aren't commenting.

Thank you, Heather and Braydon!

Patricia said...

I'm catching up on a week's worth of blogging today. Gosh, there is so much there. Just want you to know that I love and support you and have no doubt about what good parents you are. Hang in there!!!
xo,
Patricia

Alison said...

Hello Heather,

I came across your blog on accident...I was searching haircuts and your blog came up. It was the day you first cut Kyle and Owen's dreadlocks. I have been reading ever since! I have a good friend living in Haiti and other friends who have adopted. Reading your blog makes me want to be a parent, it makes me feel more knowledgeable, confident and passionate about adopting in the future, and it gives me a better understanding of Haiti.

I am sorry you received hateful comments, and I understand that you may want to keep your blog private. I truly hope that you continue posting, though, because it brings me a lot of inspiration and insight.

Thank you for sharing.

Alison
Chicago, IL

“The world is full of people who have never, since childhood, met an open doorway with an open mind.”

“Prejudice is a great time saver. You can form opinions without having to get the facts.”

-E.B. White

Anonymous said...

It is amazing to me that people feel the need to leave hurtful comments. I truly do not understand it. I appreciate so much this blog and your perspective on adoption and parenting. I know you will do whatever is best for your family with this blog, but please know it brings so much joy to so many and thank you for everything you have shared with us. Selfishly I say, don't give up! :)

Mary

Heather said...

That stinks. I really enjoyed your heartfelt post yesterday, it actually brought tears to my eyes. All of your sincerity was just beautiful.

Leslie said...

Hi Heather & Braydon,

I just want to encourage you to keep blogging. I daily check to see what's up with you guys because I can connect with you in so many ways.

My husband and I are missionaries in Haiti and in February we welcomed our daughter into our lives and are starting the paperwork for her adoption. Like you we chose to start our family through adoption, transracial adoption no less. And, like you, we plan on the next one being a biological child if thats what God has for us. If not, adoption here we come again!

I appreciate your blog because there are so many things I can connect with. How do you talk to your kids about adoption? How do you deal with the fact that their skin color isn't the same as yours and vice versa and all the questions that do come with that? How do you raise strong black kids in a white parented family? So many questions, and I appreciate how honest you guys are about your experiences. It's a big resource for me to come to.

There will always be people that will be critical, but their criticism often comes from a lack of understanding or life experience. For them I feel sad and hope that they have opportunities to be challenged about those issues, or to learn from others experiences.

~Leslie

Anonymous said...

i'm so sorry this is happening to you guys! i'm not sure WHY people who have issues KEEP READING your blog. why don't they STOP READING if they don't have anything positive to say?????

i know first hand how fanstastic your family is -- beyond the blog!!! god bless you both for being such wonderful parents (& friends!)

we love you,
l,s,& z

rhea jill said...

Is there any way to block those users? Reject anonymous comments? I imagine it must be very frustrating / upsetting to get hateful comments, even if they are not published. . .however, I've learned so much, grown so much from reading your blog, and I'm sure others have as well. Although I would definitely understand it you made the blog private, I think so many people would miss out.

Theresa said...

Hi Heather,
There are a lot of people out there in pain/fear and it translates into anger/hate. A lot of people aren't interested in understanding but would rather bash. And why they would want to read your blog is beyond me. Don't spend a lot of energy on it. I just feel sorry for their ignorance and their need to try to either devalue/deny your story or spew negativity. Some day may they find their center and not spend energy on trying to hurt. Keep blogging and don't let 'em get you down. Best to all. -Theresa

Malgorzata Lach said...

I have never left a comment before here but now I feel like I should. I have been reading your blog for more than a year now, cant remember how I found it. I am a Polish doing my degree in England ( BSc in Aviation Management, thats why I love pictures of boys and all this small and big planes that they have)
Every day before my lectures I am checking your blog. I just love it and find it inspiring. To be honest I started to think that maybe someday I will adopt just like you. So just keep doing what you do if thats make you happy :D
If someone is not brave enough to leave his/her name below the comment that speaks for itself.
Love you and your Family

Gosia

Katie said...

I am a regular reader even though I rarely leave a comment, and I love your blog. I don't understand why people feel compelled to say hurtful things to you for sharing an intimate part of your lives with the Internet world. I wish my 'support' could outweigh the hate mail, but I don't think it works that way. I was personally moved by your last post while I tried to imagine how I would react if I were in your situation. As my husband and I contemplate adoption, I am grateful for blogs like yours that talk about various adoption related issues. Thanks.

Amy said...

Oh, please keep blogging. I don't agree with everything that you say/do but I'm sure you wouldn't agree with everything I say/do either. It boils down to you are raising your kids, your way. You have to do what you feel in your heart is the right thing for them. I would really miss you if you weren't in bloggy land. Just be a duck and let it roll off your back.

I'm not sure what people would be hateful about in the last post. They're just being jerks or something. Like you said, you know what the truth is, not them. People are going to believe what they want to believe.

Please hang in there and just turn the comments off on posts that you think might generate anonymous hate mail.

Amy

Amy said...

Ok, I read the other post's comments after leaving my last comment on this post. Now I know what you're talking about somewhat. I still stand by my first comment and would really miss you if you weren't here.
Amy

Anonymous said...

Heather,
Press on! You guys are doing a great job.
Love
Cheryl

Lonesome Dreamer said...

I agree. There are options in the comment tab where you can allow only registered users to comment. Pleas do it. It's worth it.

Anonymous said...

Pease continue to blog publicly. Checking your blog has become a part of my daily routine. Reading a story about Kyle and Owen or seeing pictures of your beautiful family has been known to lift me out of some of the most awful funks. I love your candor and the fact that you are so honest in your parenting. I have never taken tot ime ot register but if being blocked from your site is what it takes then that is what I will do!

Cate said...

Some people are just lousy. Sorry you're having to put up with it.

sarah. said...

I am sorry, too, that you have received negative comments. I have been reading your blog for a long time and I LOVE it! From what I can tell, you and your husband are wise and loving parents and are doing a wonderful job raising (and sharing!) your children.
Thank-you.

Anonymous said...

What those hateful comments tell me is that even if the writers are adoptive parents, they've either not yet rec'd those type of ?'s from their children or they are uninformed.

You both are doing the right thing for the right reasons. You are their parents - you know what is best for them

And as any well-versed adoptive parent knows, the truth is what our children deserve. The truth is what you are giving your children.

Best - Nancy

kenzsethia said...

Please don't stop blogging! I love hearing what is coming down the pike for us. I'm sorry that you are getting negative comments.

Aimee

Mary said...

I am a regular lurker on your site. It's fabulous and your family is beautiful. As a soon-to-be adoptive mom, I truly value all of your stories. Thank you for your vulnerability, for being willing to write those, "not just what we did today" posts.
Grace & Peace,
Mary

Anonymous said...

dear friends,

i am so saddened to hear that you are receiving negative responses. it's hard to comprehend. all i see when i read your blog is your generosity and selflessness in sharing your lives with people you owe nothing to. your blog stands out because of your humor, intelligence, kindness and honesty. i would understand if you went private, but i want you to know i'm thankful for every post you've allowed me to see.