Why did so many Christian heterosexuals think they would be better recipients than those I preferred? Aside from my other suspicions (discussed in an earlier article below) there was one final reason people who did not meet our recipient criteria claimed they were contacting us:
A SENSE OF PERSECUTION
Since we specified we would only donate to a lesbian couple due to the bias we face in adoption, we received a lot of requests from straight Christians claiming that they had themselves been targets of discrimination.
We found their conception of "discrimination" to be questionable.
For example, one single woman said she was discriminated against because she "also lives an alternative lifestyle". Despite the ellipses, the quote below is unedited except for email address.
I'm a creative, single woman, who makes her living in that field & live what conventional people would describe as an
alternative lifestyle. Though, i'm a straight, divorced woman i'm
a natural-born adopter - when i was 3 a cat followed me home, after this i adopted a succession of other animals,
then friends, "outsiders", etc...until
i've created a lovely community of all races, genders, ethnicities, that i consider my "spiritual" family & support team. I have a Masters Degree & have travelled extensively & worked as Humanitarian post-war
w/traumatized children & teens...
I am highly spirited & independent, yet
loving & nurturing & am eager to have
a child at this point in my life. I feel
there's blatant discrimination against
single, independent women who lead positive yet "alternative" lifestyles
(ie. creative & open)...& would love to
talk w/u more in detail. If you're interested in starting a dialogue to get
to know me better, please feel free to contact me at this email:
Thanks, but we do not live "an alternative lifestyle". That alientated my as quickly as the woman who wrote saying "I am not a gay". Our "lifestyle" is that we are parents of toddlers. We go to sleep by 11pm and wake up when our baby does, at 6am. We rarely go out to eat or see a show: my wife stays home to raise our children so our budget is pretty tight. Out-of-town travel is limited by the prodigious amounts of baby gear needed on such outings. We attend religious services with the children each week. When we entertain it's usually by way of a dinner party.
And the whole cat-following-her-home thing didn't speak much to me about her suitability as a parent. In fact, her whole email just made her come across as, well, nuts.
But, OK, at least my interest was piqued. What did this woman -- who was in every way the opposite of what I said I wanted in a recipient -- mean when she said she lived "an alternative lifestyle" as she supposed I did.
I wrote to her to find out. Perhaps she was a Pagan or a internationally famous touring musician. Maybe she lived in a tree house. Or she could be a survivalist who are only what she herself grew or shot. I was really eager to hear about her professed alternative lifestyle.
Disappointingly, it turned out that what she meant was:
i practice meditation
& other forms of spirituality & believe in the tolerant
belief system that buddhism offers. I also have a circle
of my chosen "family" that consists of gay couples,
singles & lesbian friends (& some who are not quite
yet sure what their sexual preference is yet) who are sensitive,
socially responsible, highly supportive & nurturing & mainly work
in the creative or new media arts, as do i. My friends are of
all ages, ethnicities & we share in common a sense of humour,
integrity, tolerance & respect for everyone's lifestyle choices.
This seemed to me to fall into the category of trying too hard. This woman claimed she suffered "blatant discrimination" for her "lifestyle" which apparently consists of having only gay friends, some who are not sure of their "sexual preference" (yet they're gay?). Even we have straight couples as friends, unlike this woman. If they're still unsure about their sexuality in their 30's and 40's I hope they figure things out before they hit retirement age.
Look, I want to give the embryos to Jewish dykes. Weird single women or Christian straight couples didn't win any points with me by pretending to be oppressed. Quite the opposite.
If you decide to contact someone whose recipient criteria rule you out from the get-go, reconsider. It's intrusive. If you just can't stop yourself, don't patronize that person by making up some new form of discrimination that doesn't exist. In fact, the woman with five kids who wanted a sixth appealed to me the most of anyone who had contacted me so far. Even though she already had five kids I actually considered her, if very briefly. In another column I'll tell you why.