Tell the Truth

If the truth sets us free, would you still tell it if it means upsetting someone?

Several years ago, I was on a crowded train and the two women standing next to me were talking about drinking and pregnancy.

One of them said she knows doctors who’ve said it is ok to drink during pregnancy and the other woman agreed with her.

I was horrified, because by that time, I was living the reality of parenting a child who was prenatally exposed to alcohol and had a prognosis of at-risk FASD.

I could not muster up the nerve to speak up, as I did not want to offend them.

I often think about that moment with a tinge of regret, because what if I could’ve saved a future child from a lifelong disability.

This past Saturday, I had a do-over of sorts when the hubby and I had a Zoom call with the in-laws of a family friend who were looking to adopt and wanted to hear about our experience.

I was very mindful that for heterosexual couples, adoption is often – not always – a last resort after trying to naturally conceive.

So the hubby and I wanted to be compassionate, encouraging and informative but to also not sugarcoat important details.

We walked through the adoption process, including the lengthy forms and home study interviews, and we were upfront that it is not a first-come, first-serve process. It could be quick, it could take many years (like ours) or it could never happen at all.

We spoke fondly of the many happy memories and we were frank about the challenges, including dealing with issues of loss and trauma.

We were upfront about FASD and shared our daily challenges.

It was interesting watching them nod their heads, smiling at times, looking pensive at others.

I felt we provided a balanced and truthful picture of what lies ahead and I hope it will help them make an informed decision.

We ended off on a positive note: I told them it was ultimately a rewarding experience, despite the challenges.

For me, the conversation was also a wonderful walk down memory lane, stirring up many happy memories, like our first camping trip when T was just 1 year old, pictured on this post.

The past few weeks have been so challenging and the difficult moments seem to continue to pile on top of one another.

Having this opportunity to share our journey with others – and to take a step back and see how much the hubby, T and I have grown and travelled together in this crazy journey called life – reminded me what it is that we get up everyday for and to never give up on it.

So yes, the truth does set us free.

20 thoughts on “Tell the Truth

  1. I’m sure it meant the world for that couple to receive honest, valuable insight. I don’t know much about the adoption process, but I’ve heard it can be daunting and overwhelming, and therefore knowledge = power !

    And on a sad note, I don’t understand what kind of terrible doctors would say its ok to drink during pregnancy. ☹️ They should not be practicing medicine.

    1. Thank you, Lizi! Knowledge is power indeed. 😊 Except if you’re a doctor that dispenses awful damaging advice that is! 😆

  2. Thank you for this very valuable, honest, important post. Lies seems to be the norm nowadays and to discover truth and honesty still matters is like needle in a hay stack kind of joy and triumph. To speak the truth and stand for our principles are never easy. It can damage relationships. It can be painful and lonely. But it is a needed step to be free. Thank you for being brave and for being a source of light in our Blog Community. All the best blessings and happiness to you and your family always.

    1. Thank you. I try to keep it real even if it’s get uncomfortable sometimes. Life is too short to beat around the bush. 🙏 And thanks for doing the same with your posts and stories!

      It’s a blessed sunny day over here and hope you have a great Friday on your part of the world too!

  3. I’m glad they came to you and you, and your husband were able to give them real life perspective. I think these kinds of conversations can serve as a good (and honest) roadmap of what to expect. It’s easy in all the excitement to overlook reality and having a frame of reference is such a good thing.

  4. Good for you both for being honest. Don’t you think most people would say “Well it won’t be like that for us”? I’m glad you didn’t sugar coat it. How gratifying it had to have been looking back and remembering how far you have all come.

    1. Thanks Diane. 😊 Agreed that when it comes to adoption, best not to sugarcoat it. At the end of the day, it’s really about finding the best fit for the child.

  5. I like that you’re able to look at the big picture and recognize that there are many ups and downs and that it’s a marathon and not a sprint. I’m sure they appreciated your honesty and that you didn’t sugar coat anything, especially around the process. Telling the truth can be hard, but not telling the truth can sometimes be harder.

    1. Thanks Linda. Honesty is always the best policy.😊 And honestly speaking, I want a break from this marathon. 😆 Maybe this weekend!

      Hope you have a nice weekend. It’s a balmy and wet one day. Hard to believe it’s 14 today. What weird Canadian weather we have!

      1. I know! I’m kind of bummed that all our snow is gone. I still need to put up my Christmas lights outside though, so I plan on doing that today. Enjoy the rest of your weekend and hopefully you manage to get some rest and relaxation!

  6. What a beautiful post! I love the camping trip pictures – wow, you have come a long way. I think of the challenging times I’ve had when something one of the kids was going through was kicking my butt — and then one day we’d finally be past that (and onto the next thing). But sometimes all that we’ve gone through doesn’t show itself until we look back.

    And I can imagine how much amazing info you were able to share with your friends about adoption. I was too intimated by the process to try it as a single person. I can only imagine how helpful it was for them to talk to you all.

    Sending my best to you all! – Wynne

    1. Thanks Wynne. I agree that you just need to take a step back sometimes to see what may not be apparent when you are in the thick of things.

      I do hope we were helpful to the couple but I was at peace with the info we shared. 😊

      Enjoy your weekend as well!

  7. Lovely post Ab! Although the truth can be a bit harsh at times, it’s the best method of course depending on delivery with love compassion and empathy. When sharing our lived, candid experiences I’d like to believe it provides hope an encouragement for those with an open mind.

    1. Thank you, Tammy. I try not to be harsh but it can sometimes come across as such, but the intentions are always from a place of empathy. I’m glad you get it. 🙂 Happy Friday!

      1. I surely do my friend. People used to tell me I’m “mean”, but once they realized the truth helped they would later come back to thank me, wishing that others in their circle would have “kept it real” so to speak, lol.

Leave a Reply