Hi, I’m Tara.

What started out as a private blog to document our adoption journey has evolved into my journey through therapy, spiritual awakening and whatever I feel like writing. Without our struggles to build a family, I’m not sure I’d be waking up, and for that I’m grateful.

The Ad that Makes Me See Red

I'm going to be lazy and link to Mel's site so that you can peruse this new tv ad by Kay Jewelers.  go ahead, I can wait.

dumm...dummdedummm....lalalalaala....ok, you done yet?

At best, this is a lame commercial that tells guys that they aren't doing it right unless they hand their wife/mom-to-be something shiny and sparkly before the baby comes.  Full disclosure, I find the idea of a so-called "push present" distasteful.  So, yes, there are giant eye rolls from me whenever it's implied or mentioned.

At worst, this is a poorly researched commercial that only serves to reinforce adoption stereotypes when there are so many of us trying to fight against said stereotypes.  Let's break it down:
  • A white older couple is sitting in a hospital room(adoption agency?), nervously waiting for the arrival of their baby.
    • Ok, first of all, I'm quite sure, after reading a myriad of other stories, and having gone through two fairly textbook placements (one successful, one not successful), that the PAP are never just hanging out in a office or room waiting for the baby.
    • I will say, that depicting a white older couple is probably accurate.  So, a quarter point there Kay Jewelers.
    • Why couldn't they take 5-10 seconds to show adoption applications, negative pregnancy tests, a doctor sadly informing the couple that they are infertile?  I know that not everyone who adopts is infertile, but acknowledging that there is a journey somehow wouldn't be that hard. 
  • The caseworker leaves the room to get the baby
    • Where is the baby hanging out, in the nursery?  Who is taking care of the baby?
    • WHERE ARE THE PARENTS?  Until the placement takes place, they are still the legal parents.  In fact, they are the legal parents until the TPR is signed and goes through the court system.  They are the parents even after TPR is signed.  They are always there, whether there is contact or not.  They are part of the child's life.  They are not erased.
  • The caseworker returns with a white baby
    • Uh, guess those PAPs have been waiting a while.  The majority of children placed in a domestic private adoption are not white.  That's a fact.  It's something that as adoptive parents, we have to work through.  We have to face our own racism in order to decide whether we can effectively parent someone of a different race.  We stare our own racism square in the face when we tell the agency the percentages of different races we are comfortable with (not even kidding). 
    • The origins of this baby are not important?  Again, WHERE ARE THE PARENTS?  Why didn't the commercial depict a placement ceremony?  That would have been so much more real and tasteful.  There has to be an acknowledgement of all the parents.  Adoption is not wresting a baby from one family,placing it in another and washing your hands of the other family.  It doesn't work that way. 
The biggest problem with this ad is that it implies that the first-parents don't matter, that they don't count.  It reinforces the idea that you can take a baby from one family, place it in another family and pretend like the other family never existed.  Time and time again, we learn that it doesn't work that way.  Multitudes of adult adoptees are sharing their stories from the era of baby snatching and closed adoptions.  It didn't work, and it's not how adoption should be approached today.  Adoption should be approached with openness, not just toward the child, but toward the child's family, and the child's relationship with their family. 

This ad serves to reinforce the notion that there can only be 2 parents in a child's life.  In adoption, it's not true, and it's not how it should be.

I would love to look at the marketing director who green-lighted entire team who made this ad, and say these words "I will never shop at Kay Jewelers."  (see lesson courtesy of awomanmyage in comments)

(and I thank my lucky stars that when we looked for a gift for C, we did not find it at this particular store)

Number 14

Parenting While Working