Monthly Archives: July 2016

Make-Believe Make Believe is Too Damned Real

I’ve been writing this blog on no particular schedule for over five years now (I can’t believe it either). Sometimes I go dark for month after month, and when I do, I ask myself, “Snarks, what’s it gonna take for  you to post again?” And then something like this comes along, and I can’t not.

Mrs. Kristy Aldridge of Winchester (?), Kentucky says she wanted to share her adoption story and teach children about adoption. But how? Should she start a blog? Write a book? Write a press release? Set up an interview? No, none of those.

No. She opened a fake hospital-cum-baby store for little girls. (So her “adoption story” is yet another one told from the POV of the AP. What a surprise.)

Two weeks ago, Kristy Aldridge decided to start Choosing To Love Babies, a baby doll adoption program in an infant nursery room at the Kids’ Discovery Center.

And, being an a’mom, surely Mrs. Aldridge knows the importance of telling the truth about adoption. She isn’t just doing this to be cute. She’s there to “educat[e] them on adoption.” Sure she is. The education these little girls are getting from her is that adoption is a rainbow of perfect newborns put on earth for their benefit, their amusement, their selection, and their *purchase.

Interested children and parents can schedule an appointment to meet at the Kids’ Discovery Center at 9 S. Bloomfield Road in Winchester, which has been transformed into a mock hospital wing.

That’s right. Adopted children Come From The Hospital (not out of a woman’s body), just like your little brother did. They’re never not newborn. They’re never special needs. You don’t have to wait for them. You just pick your favorite one:

“So basically what it is the girls get to come in and they get to choose a baby that they want,” Aldridge said. “We have different races and different genders for them to choose from.

Pet peeve alert: Genders? Really? Why are we so afraid of the word “sex”? (Or can you really tell an epicine baby doll from an agender version one baby doll? cause I can’t.) You don’t have different genders of baby dolls, you have dolls that represent babies of two sexes.

[“]And we’re educating them on adoption and they have to make the promise of taking care of the baby. That’s a big part of it.”

Little girls don’t know babies need care if they aren’t told so by Mrs. Aldridge. And promising to take care of the baby is “a big part of” adoption, but it’s not the most important part. If it were, it would probably be discussed first. The most important part is customizing your fresh new baby, just like real adoptive parents get to do!–Only not so much. Not anymore. Not if they aren’t filthy stinking rich. Settling for a child who really needs you sucks.

 “We convert one of our infant rooms into the nursery and all of us have scrubs on,” she said. “I mean we really try to make this feel like an adoption.

Again, this is nothing like an adoption, unless it’s one of the ones done by rich, coercive people who don’t care who they hurt as  long as they get a newborn. Why not require the girls to take the doll from the arms of its dolly mother? Why not give the dolls fake umbilical cords for the little mommies to cut? (Why not just sit at home and watch reruns of Adoption Stories?)

These little girls come with their baby carriers and we have babies in another room, so when we re-stock and bring them in we act like they’re just born.”

Straight from the baby store to you!

Part of the adoption process after a baby is chosen is a 15-20 minute medical routine. Aldridge and her team of volunteer doctors teach the children proper care of their baby, such as how to hold the baby and how to change a diaper.

And that’s all adoptive mommies really need to know, isn’t it?

[…]

The program quickly became much more than Aldridge imagined. Part of the program was to raise awareness about adoption, but it has become educational in other ways as well.

“Another thing that is kind of awakening that we didn’t expect is that the children don’t see color.

Again with this color blind horseshit. Of course children see skin color. Before a certain age, they don’t realize it means anything, but they certainly see it. And so do lying grown-ups who want to deny systemic racism.

While they are going through and picking their baby I get to educate them on the true meaning of adoption is just loving the baby.

Wait, didn’t you just say kids are devoid of racism due to their tragic, somehow-universal optical impairments?  Then why do they need you to lean over their shoulders crooning “It’s about luuuuurve, so annny color you want is juuust fiiine” when they literally can’t tell the difference? They don’t, but I bet doing that makes you feel good, Ms. Aldridge.

[“]I have an Asian daughter from adoption and that’s what I bring up that it doesn’t matter. A white family doesn’t have to have a white baby.”

Certainly not. A white family can have pretty much any child it can pay for, sue for, or otherwise acquire, whether they’re in the legal right or not.

[“]Pets are also available for adoption and include a lesson on proper pet care and responsibility.

“The pets we also put in the cribs.

(I originally thought they meant real live pets. They mean stuffed animals, which is bad enough.)

[“]It’s about teaching them responsibility and not just ‘Let’s go to Walmart and get a pet,’” Aldridge said. 

Let’s go to the fake maternity ward and get a baby–or maybe a sea turtle!

Although, of course, “adopted” pets and adopted children do have some things in common: Some people will judge them for being adopted even though it was no fault of their own; and, if you get bored with one, you can easily discard it. I know you promised to take care of Baby, but grownups break their promises to pets and children all the time. It’s fine. You did your best. Your dolly or pet had RAD, or was otherwise simply unlovable. This currently happens to 25% of adopted children in the USA, but I’m sure Mrs. Aldridge doesn’t mention that at these events.

[…]

Adoptions are made through the week by appointment. The adoption experience includes a baby blanket, diaper, bottle, birth certificate, adoption certificate, baby and mom matching medical bands, a medical exam with the doctor and ends with the adoption promise for the baby or pet. Pricing and other information can be found on the Choosing To Love Babies Facebook page.

Ho lee shit. Holy shit, it IS like a real adoption! You, adopting little girl, are somehow both the adopting mommy and the doll’s only mommy ever. You have a birth certificate that says so and a hospital bracelet to back it up. Yet you also have adoption papers. If I were a little girl, I would be incredibly confused about all this, whether I already knew Where Babies Come From or not. In fact, as a little girl, I was confused about all this. I thought for a brief time that everyone was adopted. I also thought I had been brought home from a sort of combination supermarket and auction house. You know, kinda like this-here educational setup.

My cold and prickly heart is very sad for any little adopted girl who gets roped into this charade. Becuase you know it’s going to happen (if it hasn’t already).

I think if you want to give little girls dolls and impress on them the Whateverwhatever of Motherhood, that’s…OK, as long as it’s OK with the girls. I also think calling it adoption, and claiming to educate children about actual adoptions by saying this is what they are like, is preposterous and evil.

Now here’s the worst part: Mrs. Aldridge, who is busily teaching little girls (and, no doubt, her own adoptee) that adoption is a funsie wunsie visit to a hospital vending machine, is…well, you guessed it:

The Aldridges run Choosing to Love Ministries, where they help families during the adoption process. A portion of every Choosing to Love Babies adoption helps fund the ministry for those families. 

She’s grooming little children into future consumers at the expense of reality and of other little children (and their mothers). I can’t help but suspect her adult clients expect the same experience.

PS–How do I know it’s adopting families her ministry helps rather than relinquishing ones? Silly girls, adoptees don’t have families! Not until you pick them out and put them in your baby carrier!

*Fees aren’t quite mentioned in the article, but I think they’re strongly implied.

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