Well. That Sucked.

Dear Ms. Feverfew –

After “coming out” on FB yesterday about being a mother who has lost a child to adoption, I knew the ward Christmas party this evening would be hard, *especially* since my Relief Society president is an adoptive mother, the bishop has two adopted siblings, and one of my friends is an adoptive mother of three girls, all of whom live in the ward. We are all friends on FB and I know they all read what I wrote about how adoption has affected my family and me. One of her daughters, I’ll call her Jane, was in charge of the Christmas party tonight. Jane is also married to the 1st counselor in the Bishopric and the daughter-in-law of the Stake President (so her husband in the Stake president’s son).

Anywhoooo, I was tempted not to go but I had made a commitment and I was going to follow through with it. And really – what had I done other than told the truth about my life? Is that such a crime? I fully intended to go and have a good time with my children. I had already practiced what I would say to anyone who wanted to talk to me or ask me questions. I thought I was ready to handle “it.” But I guess I wasn’t.

I was the first one to show up to help in the kitchen. There had been some others there but they had all left to go caroling so all of my stuff was already inside. I had cooked a 16 lb turkey, made two 9×13 pans of sausage & cherry dressing, four dozen Lion House rolls, 100 homemade marshmallows, had brought seven dessert/cake stands, five gravy boats, and 15 cloth napkins to line all of the roll baskets. Obviously, I was committed to helping out with this party in any way I could. I was waiting outside the doors when she and her husband pulled up. I said, “Hi Jane! What can I do to help? Put me to work.” Both her and her husband (the 1st counselor in the Bishopric) looked straight at me and then walked right past me into the church, never even acknowledging me. I might as well have been a breeze blowing through the parking lot.

I went into the bathroom, cried all my mascara off, tried to calm myself enough to drive home without crashing, and then left.

I knew this would happen when I told people about you. It’s why I haven’t said anything to most people at church for nearly 20 years.

I am not sure I am going to make it to church tomorrow. Maybe I will go to the beach instead. At least people won’t judge me there. Well, they might judge me if I were to wear a really skimpy bikini because I haven’t seen the inside of a gym in about three years but at least they won’t judge me because of what I did 19 1/2 years ago.

Much love,


24 thoughts on “Well. That Sucked.

  1. Hugs to you Melynda – their reaction to you is inexcusable! I am so sorry that you had to face that kind of rejection just simply for speaking the truth of your life. I wish you peace in your heart and spirit!!!

    Sara B.

  2. Darling, darling M, people who would do this to a person such as you do not deserve you in their life. You are such a corageous woman, and so very, very strong. I love you with all my heart, keep speaking the truth, even if your voice breaks.

  3. I am so very sorry and angry all in one breath. I am truly sorry that members of your church and those who professed friendship have treated you like this. That is not grace, that is hypocrisy. I am sorry that this has been done to you. I really have no words that could possibly make it better but know that I care.

  4. And this is a church? With “Christian” people? Oh, honey, I am so, so, sorry these shallow people have treated you this way. You are such an inspiration, and I am so proud of you. These “Christians” are not good enough to lick your boots.

  5. So much for spreading God’s love, huh? I am so sorry Melynda. You are such a better person than I would have been. I probably would have invented new swear words right there on the spot. I love you.

  6. What awful people! I would have made a scene. They honestly don’t even deserve your kindness and generosity. I hope he beach is soothing tomorrow. Much love.

  7. Oh Melynda… I had SO hoped that it wouldn’t be as bad as you had feared. I am so very sorry, I can’t begin to imagine how you are feeling. Sending you lots of love…

  8. They behaved very badly but you already know that. It makes me sick how they treated you. I really haven’t been going to church lately but I found a lot of comfort in the fact that the church people didn’t judge me or act like I didn’t suffer a loss or that it was okay what my Mom did to me. I remember how excited and scared I was to tell them that we had plans to meet but I went in there sad as hell cause I just knew it was falling apart but they treated me very well and the rest is history.

  9. Oh My Gosh. I can’t believe ppl can be so rude. Am actually speechless. Wish you had come to my church and helped me instead (((hugs)))

  10. I’m so very sorry that people who think they are good people can be so very judgemental and so very hurtful in their actions.Where is the compassion and kindness in that? Plenty of food for thought now hey?

  11. Melynda, I’m so sorry that they were so cruel to you. Like others, I was hoping that humanity and compassion would rule the day. I’m sorry that their cold hearts chased you away. Thinking of you….

  12. Oh Mel,

    I am so sorry. You did not deserve to be treated in such a horrible way. You are so brave and strong and those who are treating you with such judgment would only be lucky to hold in their pinky finger the greatness you hold inside your heart. Love you, Mel. So many of us do. I hope you will always remember that when faced with such jerks in your life!

  13. I’m so sorry! People really suck sometimes. Sounds to me like you might need to find a new church… I’m so angry on your behalf. Sending hugs your way!!!

  14. Once again, I am encouraged and inspired by the strength of your conviction Melynda. Those who turn away from you are doing so because of their own discomfort with the truth. And not only must they now face the reality of adoption, they have to face the reality of their church’s role in adoption. You have rattled their pretty little world. As an adoptee, I want you to know that seeing you stand up for yourself as a mother is so meaningful and powerful. Because in doing so, you are also standing up for your daughter. My own mother won’t do this for herself or for me–because she is still so afraid of people finding out that she is not the “good Catholic woman” she appears to be. Different churches but similar approaches when it comes to adoption. Stand tall mama! They are the ones with the problem. Gotta love those totally un-Christian Christians.

  15. Thank you all so very much for your kindness and your support. These last couple of days have been pretty hard on me, I won’t lie. I am grateful to have the support of the broader adoption community and I am so grateful to have found all of you. Without the love and example of courageous adoptees, first moms, and enlightened church members (they do exist!), I wouldn’t have been able to do what I have done.

    So thank you, from both me and my husband. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

    • Heather, you wouldn’t believe how all of the sudden, my life, my story becomes something for every else to tell me how I should feel or what I should do. It’s pretty incredible. Actually, maybe you can understand it a bit. I know that you get a lot of unsolicited “advice” in regards to your health issues. It’s kind of the same thing, but with a little “Hester Prynne treatment” tossed in for good measure.

      I would move back to the ‘burg in a heart beat. We fell in love with that place and can hardly wait for the chance to move back. While I living there, I discovered I am a direct line descendant of the man who donated the land on which Bruton Parish is built, the man who built Bacon’s Castle, the guy who founded Elizabeth City, at least five people who survived the starving time at Jamestown, John Savage who settled Savage’s Neck (Gloucester), the Custis family. http://www.sostinkinhappy.com/search/label/who%20do%20you%20think%20you%20are It’s been a pretty amazing journey and has made me love that area even more!

  16. I am shocked, but then not all that shocked at the same time. I was really hoping that church members would surprise you and open their hearts to you and show you love and compassion. I know that so many church members can be so uncompromising on the “love” that is adoption, but I really thought/hoped that compassion would win out. I cannot believe that they wouldn’t even acknowledge you…my heart is breaking for you right now knowing that you should be able to expect so much more from your brothers and sisters in the gospel!

    • I know, Desi. We should be able to expect so much more, but as you know, that’s rarely the case. 😦 And then people wonder why so many first mom’s leave the church in the year post relinquishment.

  17. This absolutely makes me sick! Boiling mad! How can the LDS church promote adoption yet SHUN first mothers when they choose to reveal themselves? Such hypocrisy!!! I am a first-mother who, for me, adoption has been a “miracle and blessing”. My unplanned pregnancy was completely unsupported by most everyone that I know and I knew it would get no easier once the baby arrived. I just can’t imagine how you aren’t treated like a human being! My father’s side of the family is LDS (interestingly enough this was not a part of my adoption decision at all, seeing as my father left LDS when he turned 18 and married a Catholic/Christian woman, so I had no LDS influence in my life really) and I have relatives who have adopted, who appreciate and are grateful to the birth parents that placed their children. I don’t understand why you even continue to associate with these people in your ward if they treat you so badly. It reminds me of that saying, “You can’t get blood out of a turnip”. I’m not one to preach religion (and I have some very nice LDS friends so I’m not saying dump LDS either) but you deserve better than that. Especially when it comes to a faith community! With “friends” like that, really, who needs enemies!!! Hugs

    • I know, I know, I know. I have even had bishops ask me why I stay when I have been treated so badly! I have some very specific reasons and maybe I will write more about them. That being said, NONE of those reasons are dependent on the people that participate in this religion. If that was what was keeping me here, I would have left a long time ago.

      I am sorry to hear that you were not supported during your pregnancy. Every mama deserves that, regardless of how or why she is pregnant.

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