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~生まれた町で夢見てきた...~
"In the city of my birth, I had a dream..."
The Kid by Dan Savage 
20th-Mar-2006 10:53 pm
Candybar Doll
Maybe I'm reading these things 'cause, being adopted myself, I get a vicarious little thrill from reading it from the other side.

::start idle, potentially offensive maundering:: One of the things I simply don't "get," though, is all this grieving about infertility. Gimme a break. Even if the child doesn't issue from your loins, that doesn't mean the child won't grow in your heart. Not to mention that overzealous devotion to "blood" meant nothing but a lifetime of subtle exclusion to me, and I simply don't approve of people who manifest that mentality. On principle. Especially at the cost of tens of thousands of dollars at fertility clinics when that money would be much better spent on a child who needs you RIGHT NOW. And, as for myself, I don't even know whether, if I decided I wanted a child someday, I'd want to give birth to a child of my own. I suspect I might be MORE inclined to adopt. I LIKE the fact that no one in my world is at all like me. I LIKE being unique. But maybe that's a result of being adopted, as well. ::end maundering::

Savage, Dan. The Kid (What Happened after My Boyfriend and I Decided to Go Get Pregnant): An Adoption Story. New York: Dutton, 1999.
Summary: Syndicated sex-advice columnist Dan Savage recounts the story of the adoption of his and his boyfriend Terry's son Daryl Jude (D.J.).
Comments: I've not the slightest clue why I'm on an adoption narrative shtick lately, but that's what it is, so here I am. Unlike the later The Martian Child, this is not about a gentle, middle-aged, single gay guy opening his heart to a troubled young boy. This is about two of the "wrong sort" of gay men trying to have it all and getting it, in the form of what Savage calls The Great White Infant. (And not just that--their adoptee ends up being blond-haired, blue-eyed, male, and, at least according to Savage, wonderfully good-natured.) Anyway, this book is surely invaluable to anyone who is interested in pursuing an open adoption, but even for people who have no intention whatsoever to adopt, it's well-worth the time to read. A lot of people will see something of themselves in these two men, and the various dilemmas they face on the road of life, while often framed in a way that makes them sound as if they are problems exclusive to gay men, are actually applicable to us all. His fears of fatness and of being forgotten, his Irish Catholic guilt, his petty arguments, strike poignant chords. Savage makes you love him and his friends, and that's no small thing for a fiction writer and an even more monumental task when writing about oneself, a fundamentally vainglorious endeavor. Plus, I almost died laughing, especially during the first 5th, where the author lays out for the reader the details of his mentality and his daily life.
Notes: hardcover, 1st edition, out-of-print; trade paperback edition available
Rating: 9/10 - Both hilarious and hard-won. One of the best memoirs I've read in a long time.
Comments 
21st-Mar-2006 10:26 am (UTC)
I would like to adopt - but I run into that "OMG BLOOD" brick wall you mention if I even think about bringing it up. Gheh - the thought of being pregnant give me the screaming meemies.
21st-Mar-2006 12:24 pm (UTC)
I run into that "OMG BLOOD" brick wall you mention if I even think about bringing it up.

From whom? Your family?
21st-Mar-2006 07:16 pm (UTC)
Nope, Erik - and I think it relates to the fact that his father isn't his blood father. Also, that Boys Are Wierd.
21st-Mar-2006 09:00 pm (UTC)
Well, I hope for your sake that he's not overeager to start his own dynasty... ^^;
21st-Mar-2006 12:27 pm (UTC)
I LIKE the fact that no one in my world is at all like me. I LIKE being unique.

No worries there ^_~

I'm with you though, for some reason I think I'd actually prefer to adopt.. There's countless kids like my nephew after all, and the people who spend vast sums on fertility treatments actually strike me as rather selfish ^^
21st-Mar-2006 12:32 pm (UTC)
No worries there ^_~

Why do I feel that could be construed as an insult? :P

I figure one of me in the world is enough. That's why I'd never clone myself, either.

the people who spend vast sums on fertility treatments actually strike me as rather selfish

Not to mention mostly white and (upper) middle class. You tell me you're going to a fertility clinic, and I'll tell you your demographic. *sighs*

21st-Mar-2006 12:47 pm (UTC)
I figure one of me in the world is enough

I'll just leave that one alone ^__^

Not to mention mostly white and (upper) middle class.

Well who else can afford to throw away money like that? I don't really understand that drive to produce offspring, but I think a lot of it is just to keep up appearances.. On the other hand, I'd be afraid to visit an orphanage in an underdeveloped country, because I'd probably be coming home with two or three in tow ^_^;;;

Some of my extended family don't really accept my nephew.. One aunt was just mortified when my mom suggested that her daughter (apparently can't have kids) could adopt like my sister did >_< I think it's the very idea of adopting, plus the race thing...
21st-Mar-2006 01:10 pm (UTC)
I don't really understand that drive to produce offspring, but I think a lot of it is just to keep up appearances..

I dunno...all the sobbing and moaning and weeping--a lot of people really DO want kids more than anything. It's why they have to have their very own is what I don't understand. Unless they're reading Freakonomics, which tells you that adopted children will be stupid screwups like their birth parents...

I think it's the very idea of adopting, plus the race thing...

The odd thing is that my father's family in particular has a LONG history of adoption in it, but if you scratch him even a little, you'll find out that they're second class family members. Even my grandparents, who excluded me unintentionally, have more tact.
21st-Mar-2006 02:05 pm (UTC)
Unless they're reading Freakonomics, which tells you that adopted children will be stupid screwups like their birth parents...

That's truly one of the more stupid things I've heard >_<

I think a lot of it is just people being trained to want kids, at any cost, the perfect American family... I doubt most of them really think about what they're getting themselves into...

My mom's family has a history of unofficial adoption, just taking in the kids of relatives or friends who have died or whatever.. They all like my nephew.. It's part of my dad's family that has problems with adoption and apparently prefer racial purity (not that they'd ever put it that way)......
21st-Mar-2006 03:32 pm (UTC)
That's truly one of the more stupid things I've heard >_<

Adopted children's IQs resemble their birth parents in degree, their adopted parents in kind. It's something that writers writing for scientists point out readily but that writers writing for the LCD fail to find provocative.

My mother's family, AFAIK, has never adopted anyone, and they're not big on blood (though being WASPs undoubtedly counts for something). My father's family cheerfully excludes me and thinks blood is thicker than water...but they're the ones with the history of adoption. It's strange, really.
21st-Mar-2006 05:17 pm (UTC)
Maybe you're lucky your parents didn't have any biological kids along with you, probably bad enough that everyone favored your cousins ^^;
21st-Mar-2006 08:58 pm (UTC)
My mother couldn't get pregnant--that's why they adopted me in the first place. As it is, both of them (not just my father, interestingly) prefer my cousins, anyway.
21st-Mar-2006 10:31 pm (UTC)
I'm sure I'd find your cousins very tedious ^_~
21st-Mar-2006 10:33 pm (UTC)
Most people like them more than they like me. I wouldn't be so quick to prejudge. :P
21st-Mar-2006 10:41 pm (UTC)
Yeah, but they're probably, err, normal? ^^;;; That just gets old....
21st-Mar-2006 10:43 pm (UTC)
They're both relatively charismatic, talkative, and Michael in particular is funny (at least to his family--he'll never make a living from it).

If you were meeting us all in person at once, chances are you wouldn't even notice or remember me.
21st-Mar-2006 10:49 pm (UTC)
Well, for whatever reason, my attention always tends to go towards the quiet one who's generally ignored.. Those who remind me of myself I guess ^^;;
21st-Mar-2006 10:59 pm (UTC)
It would depend upon what kind of family gather it is. If it's the usual suspects, then, yeah, I'm ignored totally, and if I say more than five sentence the entire evening, it's a miracle...but you wouldn't even BE there in the first place if I myself didn't bring you. ^^; Larger gatherings with extended family often inflicts attention on me--but there's the larger question of whether or not I'd actually BE there in the first place. :P
21st-Mar-2006 11:28 pm (UTC)
Well if you invited me I guess I had better pay attention to you! Not polite to ignore your date, so to speak ^_^
22nd-Mar-2006 12:37 am (UTC)
*rolls eyes* Just inviting a guy to a family gathering would generate a lot of (unwanted) attention in both my and the hypothetical guy's direction. Naturally. ^^;
22nd-Mar-2006 12:44 am (UTC)
*nods*

Same with my family, the assumption of a pending wedding or something ^_^;; Okay, tell them you're sick and have to stay home, and we'll go out book shopping and then for lunch ^__^
22nd-Mar-2006 12:45 am (UTC)
We ARE going to be in Florida in the beginning of April, you know. ^_~
22nd-Mar-2006 01:10 am (UTC)
Going to Disney World? ^_^
22nd-Mar-2006 01:31 am (UTC)
Yup. :P
1st-Apr-2006 01:25 pm (UTC)
Review archived.
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