Wednesday, December 14

Very important! Please read this!

This is Emma. She was home from China just 8 months when she died.

Her adoptive mother is charged in her death. This is the 2nd China adopted child in recent months to die or suffer horrible injury (blindness, permanent brain damage) because she was shaken by her mother.

Please remember as you look at my blog (and everyone else's) that life with baby is not always as rosey we depict it here on these pages. Gwen has her moments and I'm not embarrassed to say that she's really made me angry more than once. When those things happen, you have to get your emotions under control. If that means that you have to put your baby in her crib or playpen while you go into the backyard and breathe into a paper bag, then do it! Don't shake your baby. Don't hurt her, please. When the moment is over, you'll be so sorry you did this and even if you don't kill or seriously injure her, you'll teach her a horrible lesson about how to deal with frustration!

If you don't already have your baby, please keep in mind that things will not be "happily ever after" when you come back from China. Everyone around you will continue with their life as usual but you won't. Your life will look NOTHING like it did when you started this journey. In most ways, it'll be amazingly better but in some ways you'll be shocked to realize that it's miserable. If you already have your baby, you can probably confirm this. Eventually, your new child will fit perfectly into your family but don't expect it to be smooth for several months. Some people say it takes one month for each month the child was not in your care. So if you adopt your child at age 13 months, it could take another 13 months to have her blend in and bond to your family like she would if she was born to you. Please give the process the time it needs and please seek help if you feel overwhelmed. Consider putting your baby in day care for a few hours each week (or longer) if being a stay at home mom is hard for you. There's no shame in that! If you're really pulling out your hair and just need someone to talk to, email me and we'll chat. I'll even call you on the phone if you need that support! Just count to ten before you react with violence to your child. You waited so long to get her, 10 seconds of cooling off time should be easy to give her now.

Please don't shake your baby.


Blogger Colleen said...

OMG...I am without words! Where did you hear of this? I am totally sickened by anyone who could fathom hurting an innocent little baby! This is bad all by itself, but even worse for the China officials to see. Its just discusting. I'm glad you posted it though...really needs to be said.

December 14, 2005 5:35 PM  
Blogger Ed and Lisa said...

Well said Donna... well said.


December 14, 2005 7:24 PM  
Blogger Stephanie said...

As a stay-at-home mom to 2 bio boys I can so relate to everything that you said. When you feel like you are going to lose it-put the baby in their crib so they can not hurt themselves and WALK AWAY for a couple of minutes. I done this with my oldest different times as he had the 'colic' for the first 3 months of his life for about 5 hours every single night. If more people would do this then maybe these types of horrible accidents would not happen.

December 14, 2005 9:07 PM  
Blogger Jana said...

How terribly sad that is! No, its not easy being a mom sometimes, but to harm a little baby like that is just so so sad!

December 15, 2005 7:34 AM  
Blogger PeiLien said...

Wow Donna...I can't believe's so sad. After all the waiting for a child to resort to this...I hope that those who need help and guidance will seek it.

Great post.


December 15, 2005 6:55 PM  
Blogger Milinda & Edward said...

Donna, I'm so glad you wrote this. Especially after waiting for so long for our babies (both adoptive and biological parents!), sometimes we have a fantasy image of what parenthood will be like, and are often not prepared for the bad days. Thank you for pointing out that our blogs do not always mention the moments of tear-your-hair-out frustration that we all experience. I think just knowing that other China moms have felt the same way is helpful to someone who might be feeling "Did I do the right thing by adopting this child? Am I cut out to be a mom?"

December 15, 2005 11:05 PM  
Blogger Andrea and/or Jeff said...

Okay, that settles it, your blog is going on my toolbar. Thanks so much for putting this out there. I had heard about it of course--so very, very sad for all involved, but the little girl most of all.
Your blog says it just right. The best parents in the best of circumstances reach their wits' end sometimes. I actually hit my daughter once just a tiny bit. She had just hit me really hard and it was just automatic. And then I felt just devastated immediately. But it really can happen to the best of us, so we need to tell parents over and over that they are not alone and that they have options other than hurting their child. Also, a lot of people don't know you can kill a baby or toddler by shaking them. We need billboards or something.

So very saddened,

December 15, 2005 11:13 PM  
Blogger Michelle said...

Amen, and thanks for posting that. So tragic, and a reminder that we all have moments where we are pushed to the limit. It's how we react in those moments that can make all the difference.

December 17, 2005 7:13 AM  
Blogger Andie & Scott G. said...

My DH and I know things will change when we get our little one. We have started to talk about how to handle the times we may feel loss of control. We also plan on talking about it with anyone who cares for our child. We want them to know they are not alone and call us if they are frustrated.

December 17, 2005 2:06 PM  
Blogger CindyB said...

Donna, this is an important post. It is great to see all the wonderful moments in China adoption, but I think its also important to remind ourselves to seek help if the adjustment is harder or longer than we expect. so sad. I'm sad for them all.

Becoming Amelia's Mom

December 27, 2005 9:26 AM  

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