9 Reasons Why Biology Doesn’t Matter & 1 Reason Why It Does
When you start talking adoption, it brings up a lot of discussion around the importance of biological children. This is really important to some people, but I really could care less about the biological connection. Here are my top 10 reasons why biology doesn’t matter:
- You can chose who you love. If a person chooses to be obsessed with that biological link and makes it a barrier to sharing love and being part of someone’s life, that is there choice and there problem. Should we adopt and if anyone in our lives chooses that path, I will not be dedicating my time and effort to fix or solve their selfish issue.
- I had a biological sister. She died 17 years ago when I was just 14. I loved and continue to love her. I also have a step-sister, who came into my life when she was 3 years old and I was 14 and although there is no biological link between us and I love her. She’s 11 years younger than me, we only lived together for about 4 years while I was a teenager and she was an “annoying” kid. I didn’t make the most of that time, and I haven’t done a great job of being involved now that we are both adults as we live in different cities, but even so, I adore her. She’s a great young lady and she will continue to develop into an amazing women. I am blessed to know her and fortunate to consider her part of my family. I’m in a unique position where I can easily state that I love both my biological sister and non-biological sister. I love them differently because they are different people; but, I love them equally as my sisters. I know without a doubt that love is more important than biology.
- I know my family will accept a non-biological child. My step-family accepted me without question – or at least none that I ever knew about. As, my biological family lives in different parts of the world, one of the perks of having my step family was that I got an extended family who lived right there near us. All the sudden there were family birthday parties and celebrations. They didn’t seem to care that my Dad and I were not biologically linked and for that I am forever grateful. But, what this has also taught me is that I will have no problem “paying it forward” with a non-biological child.
- There are a lot of things about myself that I’ve never loved (i.e. migraines, asthma, allergies, really bad eye sight) and if there is no biological link, then the child wont potentially get those ailments. I know that sounds a bit lame, but honestly, then the child cannot blame us for any of their biological ailments, right? (Iaugh here – this one is funny).
- We adopted our rescue dog. She’s a dog, we are human, so there’s clearly no biological link. But she is a critical part of our family and is factored into every single decision we make. She’s pretty darn cute and we love her even when she pukes on the carpet.
- A typical family starts with two non-biological people who fall in love and decide to have kids. These two people, in this case my husband and I, have decided that we will love each other until death do us part (I’m pretty sure that was said at our wedding). So, if we, and nearly every other person in the world, can dedicate themselves to a non-biological partner to love, then shouldn’t we be able to do that with a non-biological child? (We probably shouldn’t imagine a world where biologically linked people choose to procreate – my understanding of science leads me to believe that wouldn’t be a good thing).
- We’ve all seen the cute photos of animals adopting another orphan animal of a different species. It’s not just a human instinct to care and love for others, even when they are not our own.
- You chose your friends and many people spend more time with their friends then with their family. So, doesn’t it make sense to also choose your family?
- Biology doesn’t mean you will always be connected to your family. Life happens, biology or not, people might hurt and cross each other and choose not to remain close to one another. Even with a biological link, no-one says you have to stay in touch and visit them. Heck, my husband’s family is estranged from half their family and have virtually not talked to them in over 20 years except in a courtroom.
And here is the one reason, at least for us, biology may matter to us in the end:
- My husband’s parents may actually disown him (and therefore me) for choosing to adopt a non-biological child. I know, this sounds harsh, but trust me, if you knew them you’d understand and probably agree. So, how do we make a decision that will drastically change the face of our family as we know it today? Yes, it’s easy to say screw them, or we don’t need people in our lives like that, or it’s there problem; but, in reality, it is much more complicated than that and it is very much our problem. His parents may not be perfect, but they are still his parents. To make a decision which will never be supported by them, and will likely destroy at least one side of our greater family, is simply not a decision we can make lightly.
Great post! But man, you sure are in a tough spot with your own reason it does matter. I can’t even begin to give you advice on that. I hope you don’t take this the wrong way, but I almost wish we had a problem like that. Part of me just wants to give up and enjoy our life just the two of us (travel, lake house, etc). But I know my parents (who won’t get grandparents without me) and his parents would be very disappointed if we never had kids (biological or otherwise).
Thanks for sharing.
Trust me, I didn’t take that the wrong way, because part of me also wants to just give up and enjoy life childfree. Really, a large part of me is ready to move on from being consumed with death and loss. I know, with some effort, we would be rather happy without children. yes, we would have a nagging unfulfilled desire for children, but I think we’d learn to live with that in the background, while focusing on what we do have.
We are “lucky” in the sense that my brother has already produced two grandchildren. We also know that my husbands brother plans to have children, so if all goes to plan, his parents would also get to be grandparents. Isn’t it just amazing how grandparent’s factor into all these decisions in such a significant way?
Agree, that nagging unfulfilled desire for children would certainly be lifelong. But man, when everyone else is drowning in wedding & college debt, we could be jetting off to Rome for a 2 week vacation! I know holidays would be tough, but they are only a few days each year.
The grandparent thing is just so hard on me. I think that guilt would be greater than the not having kids guilt! It is truly is amazing how much that factors into the decisions!
That’s exactly what we say – like exactly – we even talk about jetting off to Italy for a few weeks every year if we don’t have kids! And, we could always make those holiday days (i.e. Christmas) easier, but jetting off to somewhere fun and adventurous.
My guilt from parents will definitely be less then the guilt of not having children, but I suspect I would always feel sad for them.
I wish you the best of luck moving forward with whatever you choose, whenever you make your decisions!
So biology doesn’t matter to you (for the most part) but have you thought about if it will matter to the child you may adopt?
Thanks for the thought provoking question. I have a few thoughts:
1. The child we would adopt would be put up for adoption regardless of us, not as a result of us wanting it. So, I see it as our responsibility to ensure the child knows that it is loved, to know that it was chosen and to know that every decision made in respect to that child has been made in its best interests and out of love.
2. If we adopt, it would be an open adoption arrangement, so the child would know there biological parents if the parents chose to be involved. We would foster that relationship so long as it was safe and healthy.
3. We would surround the child with loving people, who do not care about a biological link. We would not tolerate people being unsupportive based on biology and would not allow people in our lives who were a negative influence. It would be our job to protect our child from damaging people and encourage positive influences in its life.
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In response to #9: You do what is right for you and your husband. I spent most of my life estranged from my extended family. All but one of my and my husband’s parents are dead and every day I mourn the fact that our child(ren – hopefully) will never know them. But if they were here and they said they’d disown us or our kid(s) or we believed they would, that would not change a thing I’d do. Easy to say for me, given my context, and I’m not you. Hence my starting point: you two will do what is best for you. And maybe you start by telling them you’re looking into adoption so you have time to address their response and what you do next. Or maybe you don’t and avoid that stress. Whatever you do, it will be the right decision for the two of you and your kids (however they come to you). Sending hugs and hope.
Thanks for sharing. And, I agree, we have to do what is right for us, the problem is we don’t know what exactly that is. We know that we love our parents even with there faults. We want to have them in our lives. We also know we want children.
I should stress that we will not use his parents as an excuse to not adopt. They will factor into that decision, but ultimately it will be our decision and they will just be one component of that decision.
As for when/how to tell them, we have made the decision not to say a word to them about our miscarriages or the potential of adopting, because we know they wont be supportive. And, they live thousands of miles away, so its easy to “hide” our struggles from them. We have also learned over the years, to provide them with absolute decisions to avoid giving them a chance to express there usual hurtful opinion. So, in the interest of avoiding additional stress, we are taking our time to make our decision without there direct influence. Should we chose to adopt, we will tell them once we are officially on the waiting list. We will tell them relatively early on, so that they have the opportunity and some time to deal with there emotions and hopefully come around to being part of our family. But, this is a bridge we will cross when and if we get there.
Of course you don’t know yet. But I have every confidence that one day you will know what’s best and live with the consequences. I hope his parents surprise you pleasantly some time in all of this. Good luck with everything!
We hope his parents positively surprise us too! But, given all our past experience this is unlikely. But we will cross that bridge eventually. 🙂
It’s so hard during this journey to make parents and family members understand, but at the end of the day, this is about what you and what your husband want, and you have to make this choice based on that. It’s so hard because they will be the grandparents biological or not, but if they can’t accept adoptive children as your children and therefore their grandchildren, then it’s bound to cause problems down the road, but as spiritbabycomehome said, what is right for you and your husband is really the most important thing, and you’ll make up for love and support with any children you have adopted or not to make up for lack of understanding from your husband’s family. I find it hard to understand any reason why they would disown him and you. Praying that’s really not true. Deep down, I’m sure they want you and your husband to be happy, and they have to understand how much you want children. Hugs girl. Follow your heart on this one, not what others want.
Thank you so much for such a kind response. I agree, I would like to believe that deep down they would like us to be happy, but unfortunately, past experience indicates that we are only to be happy on there terms. They have in fact suggested another sibling break up with his long term girlfriend (and now wife) because they didn’t agree with her being accepted to medical school that required them to move! (Okay, its a little bit more complicated then that, but the point being, that I have never known any other parent to make this type of suggestion).
Anyways, it is a bridge we will cross when we get to it. But, it definitely factors into the decision.
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