Friday, April 27, 2007

Gimme a break

Okay this shirt over at Urban Outfitters is ridiculous. I cannot imagine what the person was thinking who came up with this--obviously, they weren't. I guess they're trying to be funny (the other one available reads "Rehab Is the New Black". Lovely, adopting an orphan and rehab).

Personally I find the shirt utterly offensive and if I see someone wearing it I might have to let them know. How might this make adoptees feel? As if they don't have enough to process already. I guess one reason this ticks me off is, for someone to imply that my sons' adoption is trendy and cool, well obviously they don't know my kids' story. I can assure you there's nothing trendy about your mother having HIV and not being able to take care of you. There's nothing trendy about spending the first six months of your life in an orphanage overflowing with AIDS patients. Nothing cool about your first adoptive family deciding they can't care for you either.

I think a lot about how my sons will process their past, how I will share with them and when the time will be right to share the harder stuff--truth be told I'm scared about it. None of us wants our kids to feel pain, or sadness, or have to deal with difficult stuff. But for adoptive parents this just comes with the territory. So yes I do take offense when it is implied, whether tongue-in-cheek or not, that this is just a fad I'm into like neon colors in the 80's. These are my KIDS for goodness sake!

I'm emailing Urban Outfitters today to let them know what I think about their dorky shirt. I'd encourage anyone else with strong feelings about this to do the same! (Also, check out Mary's post on this topic--that's where I learned about the shirt, thanks for the heads up Mary!) Oh and apparently they're not selling any more online, but it's still in the stores.


Allison Brown said...

Wow, you have every right to feel the way you do; definitely let them know! What a sad thing. Thanks for spreading the word.

dillyweed said...

When I went over there to look at the shirt via your link, it said that the shirt is currently not available. Maybe your letter did something. :)

Lara said...

Oh, That makes me sick to my stomach. Trend? I was excited that we were finally waking up to the needs of children across the globe. Why in the world would they make fun of something so good. Why would they discourage caring for people? I could go on...
I'm amazed at how controlled you were in your post. Thanks for passing that on.
Big hugs to your sweet boys.

lisa said...

I think they are playing off brad & angelina's adoptions. i think they forgot that these are actually precious little PEOPLE with hearts and souls. What's next?

Brianna Heldt said...

I agree, they're going off of the celebrity adoptions. There are also a lot of people out there opposed to ALL transracial/international adoptions and applies that to everyone, not just celebrities. (I'd imagine many of these people would buy this shirt.) Some argue that white couples (like ourselves) adopting black children only do it because we're liberal and feel guilty, and want some sort of trendy, "I'm not a racist" accessory. Like a status symbol among liberals. Yuck.

I understand that not everyone thinks white couples should be raising black children. They're entitled--it's a complex issue. I also can honestly say that I wish that the orphan situation in Ethiopia was different, that so many children didn't have to leave. It's a sad thing all the way around.

But the bottom line, Yosef and Biniam needed a family. (So do the other millions of children around the world). We love our boys to pieces!!!!!

Life in Fitzville said...

I had blogged about this as well, and emailed the company...good to see our voices were heard!

Kristen Borland said...

i read your blog earlier today but thought it best to let myself calm down before i blogged about it myself or posted a comment or emailed the company. i can let me feelings get a little too heated about things like this! i did just email the company. that shirt was just so tasteless and disrespectful. i don't care if some one makes fun of me for being a christian, a mom, a republican, or whatever. but these innocent children alone! they have been through more than we could ever comprehend. it's sick, it's stupid, and it's unacceptable.

the good news is, unless you click on the old link you posted, you can't find the shirt on the site any more. looks like they pulled it.

Jeannett Gibson said...

That's awful. But I guess for people who aren't connected to adoption (either personally or someone they know) and if they're only real exposure to it is the recent Hollywood "trend" does seem like the "thing" to do. It's too bad that instead of people being humbled by the beauty of adoption, they find something bad in something so good.


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