Four years ago, when I started this blog, it was important to me to not moderate or delete the comments left here. And, regardless of some of the accusations I have received, I have stuck firm to that belief, deleting only one comment in all these years. A comment that was one of many “drive-bys” being left by an individual to attack an adoptee. One that had absolutely nothing to do with the post it was left on.
In the beginning, I’ll admit, I allowed some of the comments to affect me. Sometimes there was anger and I’d be screaming at my monitor as if the person on the other side could actually hear me. Sometimes there were tears and I would wonder if it was all really worth it.
And sometimes there was just a much needed glass of wine to get me through.
But, never once, in that time, did I reconsider my decision to leave my comments unmoderated, to let them stand and not delete them.
Never once . . . until last week.
Until I received this from Just Another Mom on my post Danger Ahead . . .
- - “I know your story and I am saddest most about the fact that your son didn't even get a good enough birthmother to save him from abuse but got one that continues to abuse him as well.” - -
It crossed a line I wasn’t prepared to handle. Hit harder than anything that has ever been said to me or about me personally.
This went after my son, after his experience, in an attempt to hurt me. And it was so very wrong and about as low as a person could go, in my opinion.
When I first learned of my son’s abuse, there immediately became two sides to be told. One side was my own personal experience with it – how I learned of his abuse, how it affected me to know what he had gone through. I could share that side here on my blog because it was my story to tell.
But the other side to my son’s abuse – the personal experiences of exactly the kind of abuse he went through, the details of how he was treated – was not my story to tell, was not my right to share.
That side exists on my blog because of my son. Because of his belief that if his experience helps even just one adoptee know that they are no more deserving of abuse just because they were adopted . . . just one First Mom know she isn’t alone if she is dealing with the truth of what her child went through . . . then it’s worth it to share his experience, what he went through.
And yet, even with what I share here, it is not everything. It is what he feels comfortable having known. What he is okay with strangers reading about his personal life.
So to take that experience, and his belief in why it is important to share that experience, and use it as a weapon to try and shut me up, is the most disgusting thing a person could ever do. To decide it’s okay to use his abuse for your own advantage gives a clear insight to the kind of person you are, to the lack of heart, understanding or even care you have to your fellow human being.
It was a hard hit to the gut to come face to face with such cruelty and my first reaction was to completely change how my comments were handled. I struggled with the decision, sought the advice of some of the best bloggers in the world of adoption, before coming to the conclusion that I will not moderate comments but I will reserve the right to delete comments as I see fit.
Unfortunately, though, that decision brought me to another realization. As long as my son’s personal experience is shared on my blog it will always be open to those like Just Another Mom to use in whatever way they can. There will always be those out there who see nothing wrong in taking what has been shared here and using it in the worst of ways. There will always exist that extreme desperation that makes others believe they can do whatever it takes to try and hurt me in hopes of silencing me, even if it means falling to the lowest level of using my son’s abuse to make that happen.
And so from that I decided to go back through all the posts on my blog and delete anything that shared my son’s experience with abuse. I would take away anything that left him vulnerable to others being able to use him in the way they had.
But then my son reminded me what true courage really is . . .
Because he said no. Don’t do it.
He told me that removing the posts about his abuse let those like Just Another Mom win. It gave them the power to silence those who dared to share the hard stuff, the far-from-happy truths that nobody wants to admit exists in the world of adoption.
It was an eye-opening reminder of where the line is drawn between those who have the courage to speak out and those who are so cowardly they resort to low-handed tactics to try and silence them.
My son is one of the bravest men I know. He stands shoulder to shoulder with the many adoptees who face the same attacks on their personal experience, the same ugliness launched against them because they dare to share what they aren’t supposed to. Dare to stand up with the belief if it helps even just one, it’s worth it.
He, and the adoptees like him, are the heroes we should look up to, want to be like, because they are the reminders of what it truly means to face the worst in others and yet still find the strength, the ability to go on, to continue to speak out and make a difference because that is what matters. That is what it is all about.
I am proud and so honored to be blessed with such an amazing, brave man as my son. I am forever grateful that, against all odds, he is a part of my life that I will never, EVER give away again.
And I am happy that he stands in company with so many other wonderful adoptees who face the same fight, day after day, but never give in. Never allow the evil of others to take away from the courage they have to share their stories, their experiences, because it is the right thing to do.