Should Married Couples Who Are Able Be the Only Ones to Have Rights to a Biological Child?

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seoulsearch

OutWrite Trouble
May 23, 2009
14,991
4,608
113
#1
Hey Everyone,

I didn't want to distract from the very interesting thread that's already going on regarding sperm donation and resulting possible single motherhood, so I thought I'd start a separate thread.

I was particularly interested in the talk about the uniqueness that God puts into every human being's DNA.

I am all too familiar with the issue of DNA in my own way.

Many know my story. I was adopted from Korea to Caucasian parents -- the story goes that I was found in a cardboard box in front of a theater when I was a few days old -- but just a few years ago, I read an article saying that at the time I was born, this was often the fairy tale social workers were instructed to tell prospective parents to soften any unknowns or realities that might have been much harsher (for instance, babies who are literally found in trash dumps because someone has literally thrown them away.)

I can only speak from my own experience, but I grew up with a huge hole in my heart, all due to the subject of DNA. "No, but really, who are your REAL parents?" I am asked constantly, even as an adult. My parents adopted because they were told they could not have biological children, and to many, all the focus seems to be on the missing biological component.

I grew up watching and hearing family members say things about my other relatives like, "Oh, he's tall like Uncle Don was," "She must take after her dad," or "Those kids look exactly like their mother," but when they got to me, they would shrug awkwardly and tell me, "My, how much you've grown!" I haven't gotten any taller since I was probably 13. It's just all they can think of.

And I do understand. But it doesn't make it sting any less.

Now I know this seems like a very simple, everyday thing, but for me, it was a constant source of grief and heartache. Every encounter was always a reminder that I did not belong or fit in, all because I did not have this thing called shared DNA. Fortunately, my parents are wonderful and have always emphasized that I am THEIR child, and that's probably why I didn't fall off the rails completely.

But I always feel like I'm on the outside looking in when I am around biological families who talk about strong resemblances, qualities that were passed down, and similar likes or dislikes. Now of course I know that DNA is no guarantee, and many children turn out to be nothing like their families.

But I have always wondered -- do I look like anyone? Am I am the way I am partially because the people responsible for me being here are, or were that way? Because I am very different from my family. As interesting as the debate of Nature vs. Nurture in developing who we are, I only have one half of the formula. And as the years ticked by and I felt my own window to have at least one child fade into the sunset, it started to hit me that I will never have a biological relative this side of heaven.

I know that DNA isn't everything. But we all long for what we don't have.

I have known two other Korean adoptees who were adopted by single moms (no fathers) and they turned out just fine. In one case, the mother had no interest in sex (I don't know if it was due to abuse or what -- I only know what her daughter, my friend, told me.) Therefore, this woman didn't feel it was right for her to marry (because she didn't want to entrap a man into a situation in which she knew she wouldn't be interested in sex,) and so she decided to adopt a child on her own.

The other thing about adoption is that in almost all cases, even among Christian circles, it is almost always seen as second best. I have known some adoptees who grew up to loathe adoption (because they grew to hate being seen as second best, or a last resort,) and would only accept having biological children themselves as an option. They believed that going on to have their "own" children would provide the missing DNA link they had been searching for all their lives.

I also remember a member we had on the site some time ago who preached that "real Christians" shouldn't adopt, because unless they were your own biological offspring, they were "fake children." (At least, those were the words he used.)

I do feel a hole in my heart knowing I will never a DNA connection. And again, I know it's no guarantee. I know plenty of people with biological relatives they can't stand or don't get along with. But like I said, we all wonder about what we don't have. And now all I can do is know and trust that God is moving me on. (For medical reasons, I know that my window is fully closed.)

And this brings me to a very interesting series of questions on the other side of the sperm donation thread we already have going on.

If masturbation is sinful (which is what I've always been taught, but we've had many here on the site over the years who disagree,) and the only way to produce sperm, I understand why people would believe collections for sperm banks would be wrong.

But then does this mean:

1. That the only people who have a right to biological children are those who can produce them naturally?

2. If a couple is married and one partner can't have children biologically, does that mean this couple has to forfeit the rights to a biological child? If the husband has a low sperm count, or if the wife can't produce viable eggs, does this mean that their only option for children should strictly be adoption and nothing else?

3. And as a flipside to the question about sperm donation, what about the other choices we now have?

4. What if a woman who can't produce eggs herself uses another woman's egg but her husband's sperm? What if her husband's sperm won't create a child, but it could be placed within another woman mechanically? What if the wife just couldn't carry, but their egg and sperm could be placed into the womb of a surrogate mother who was able to carry their child to term?

DNA is undoubtedly one of the most unique things God has created.

But in today's world, who has the rights, or not, to propagate it?
 

jennymae

Well-known member
Feb 28, 2020
1,477
609
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#2
I think we have to take a closer look at what the Bible actually says about, or rather not say about masturbation. To my best knowledge the Bible is not clear on whether it is a sin or not. People tend to bring in Genesis 38.

Onan knew that the child would not be his; so whenever he slept with his brother’s wife, he spilled his semen on the ground to keep from providing offspring for his brother. What he did was wicked in the Lord’s sight, so the Lord put him to death.

Onan didn’t masturbate. He didn’t want to provide offspring for his brother. Therefore it’s not obvious that the Bible contains a scriptural rule saying that masturbation is a sin. I’m aware that other passages from the Bible can be interpreted into saying it is, but in my opinion there’s no clear condemnation of it in the Bible.

Onan spilled his semen on the ground so there would be no offspring to his brother’s name. That was what the Lord found wicked. Maybe it’s not necessarily wicked when the reason is to actually provide an offspring, because in this situation one can’t say that the semen is spilled on the ground?
 

seoulsearch

OutWrite Trouble
May 23, 2009
14,991
4,608
113
#3
I think we have to take a closer look at what the Bible actually says about, or rather not say about masturbation. To my best knowledge the Bible is not clear on whether it is a sin or not. People tend to bring in Genesis 38.

Onan knew that the child would not be his; so whenever he slept with his brother’s wife, he spilled his semen on the ground to keep from providing offspring for his brother. What he did was wicked in the Lord’s sight, so the Lord put him to death.

Onan didn’t masturbate. He didn’t want to provide offspring for his brother. Therefore it’s not obvious that the Bible contains a scriptural rule saying that masturbation is a sin. I’m aware that other passages from the Bible can be interpreted into saying it is, but in my opinion there’s no clear condemnation of it in the Bible.

Onan spilled his semen on the ground so there would be no offspring to his brother’s name. That was what the Lord found wicked. Maybe it’s not necessarily wicked when the reason is to actually provide an offspring because in this situation one can’t say that the semen is spilled on the ground?
Thank you so much for taking the time to point this out, Jenny.

Maybe I was misunderstanding, but I was perceiving that this was one of the major moral issues with sperm donation.

It had me wondering what people would say about a woman donating an egg.

I am wondering if people feel donated sperm is wrong because of the harvesting process, what about if a woman donated an egg? Is that wrong too, and why?

Because obviously, women's eggs aren't harvested through masterbation.
 

TheNarrowPath

Well-known member
Jul 17, 2022
1,012
546
113
#4
Yes you do look like someone. You were created in His image :) When you mention the cardboard box I could not help but think of the basket Moses was found in:) Have you ever sent in one of those swabs to find your biological family? A whole other family tree is mind boggling when you have been adopted. I get what you mean about feeling second best but even with biological children, they can feel that same way in comparison to their siblings.
1) No I believe God sees a need and he makes a way eg orphans and people who want to be parents and cant have children naturally.
2)Many people who want children also adopt from extended family. I think adoption is the next option if you have prayed about it for a while. With artificial insemination what do you tell your child how they were conceived? How far will science go?
3) Work with children, bless them that way. I have 2 sisters who are barren. They have 11 nieces and 5 nephews to love.
4) Surrogacy is another option that is gaining more popularity. I was asked to do it for my sister but I said no. It would be hard to carry for 9 months and then give it up. Because the bonding happens in the womb.
I have to wonder is God an option for people who want little people? Can they ask God and can they accept Gods answer?

Great thread Seoulsearch!
 

jennymae

Well-known member
Feb 28, 2020
1,477
609
113
40
#5
Thank you so much for taking the time to point this out, Jenny.

Maybe I was misunderstanding, but I was perceiving that this was one of the major moral issues with sperm donation.

It had me wondering what people would say about a woman donating an egg.

I am wondering if people feel donated sperm is wrong because of the harvesting process, what about if a woman donated an egg? Is that wrong too, and why?

Because obviously, women's eggs aren't harvested through masterbation.
I don’t think the Bible addresses egg donation, but the Southern Baptist Convention most certainly do and the conclusion is a negative. Whether this position is based on Biblical facts or opinion is another matter. I have not concluded myself yet, but I don’t think I could donate eggs myself. Like @TheNarrowPath said, the bonding happens in the womb and I could never have given any of my kids away.
 

seoulsearch

OutWrite Trouble
May 23, 2009
14,991
4,608
113
#6
Yes you do look like someone. You were created in His image :) When you mention the cardboard box I could not help but think of the basket Moses was found in:) Have you ever sent in one of those swabs to find your biological family? A whole other family tree is mind boggling when you have been adopted. I get what you mean about feeling second best but even with biological children, they can feel that same way in comparison to their siblings.
1) No I believe God sees a need and he makes a way eg orphans and people who want to be parents and cant have children naturally.
2)Many people who want children also adopt from extended family. I think adoption is the next option if you have prayed about it for a while. With artificial insemination what do you tell your child how they were conceived? How far will science go?
3) Work with children, bless them that way. I have 2 sisters who are barren. They have 11 nieces and 5 nephews to love.
4) Surrogacy is another option that is gaining more popularity. I was asked to do it for my sister but I said no. It would be hard to carry for 9 months and then give it up. Because the bonding happens in the womb.
I have to wonder is God an option for people who want little people? Can they ask God and can they accept Gods answer?

Great thread Seoulsearch!
I don’t think the Bible addresses egg donation, but the Southern Baptist Convention most certainly do and the conclusion is a negative. Whether this position is based on Biblical facts or opinion is another matter. I have not concluded myself yet, but I don’t think I could donate eggs myself. Like @TheNarrowPath said, the bonding happens in the womb and I could never have given any of my kids away.

I really appreciate what you ladies are sharing.

I couldn't picture carrying a little one for so long and then having to give him or her away either. I'm pretty sure I would feel like half my soul was being torn away.

@TheNarrowPath -- Many people have compared my situation to Moses as well. Thank you for your kind words.

As for not knowing what to tell a child that was potentially grown in a lab -- I know this might seem strange, but I've never seen that as a problem. Life just isn't pretty and we have to find ways to tell the truth but pray that it won't damage us, or at least that we will trust God to get us through.

Many adoptees think that finding their birth families and answers to the past will fill up the hole they feel in their hearts, but for some, it only makes it worse. I read about one young man who found out that his birth was the result of a 25-year-old man raping a 14-year-old girl, and understandably, he was devastated. Children are usually not given up under happy or healthy circumstances, so I guess it as every child who joins just might have a not so pretty backstory that they might need to hear.

It's interesting and heartbreaking to see how much emphasis is placed on physical resemblance and DNA. I had friends who briefly warned me about a couple they knew that we would run into during the week. Said couple had adopted a child, but didn't want anyone to know he was adopted -- they told everyone he was their own, with the mother even telling "stories" of her "having him." My friend was a lawyer and had seen the records for the boy's adoption.

But people had started to ask why he didn't look anything like them. She and her husband had dark eyes and dark hair, and their little boy had white blond hair and blue eyes. And so, the mother starting bleaching her hair white blonde -- and wearing blue contact lenses. I met them in person, and the whole thing (knowing all the lies being told) really made me sad.

@TheNarrowPath, it's fascinating that you turned down being a surrogate to your sister. I completely understand why even though I don't have any kids.

When I was in my 20's, I used to lie awake at night with my hand on my stomach, thinking about how I planned to start talking, singing, and reading to my baby just as soon as I found out I was pregnant.

That never happened, and I guess maybe that's why some of us single without children gals -- meaning me -- are a little envious. Because we've never experienced, and might never experience, the very real bond that happens through the miracle of pregnancy and birth.

I have often wondered what my birth mother was thinking and felt like when she carried me.

Therefore, I was determined that my baby, from the very minute I knew he or she was there, would constantly be assured that they were loved.
 

TheNarrowPath

Well-known member
Jul 17, 2022
1,012
546
113
#7
I had an ex that was adopted. I dont know what story he was told but he was very loved by his adoptive parents and had no desire to meet his biological parents so I respected that. He was too angry to deal with whatever reason they would have for giving him up.

My sister had three daughters, then she had a son that died. So she was heartbroken and asked me. Which was surprising as I was single then 🤷‍♀️ but I was not a mum at the time. So I told her no for the reason I gave you. She then went on to have two more daughters. We all knew she was trying to get her son back but thats another story.
 

Lanolin

Well-known member
Dec 15, 2018
23,460
7,178
113
#9
hmm no I would think it depends on how well you can care for a child.
But parents dont have 'rights' to a child if they dont look after them, they just pass on genes that express themselves in unique ways (mix of both parents) so the child is not gonna be a clone of their parents anyway.

I was thinking more its gonna be harder as. single parent because you may not have the extra support that two parents have (double set of grandparents? what happens if you get sick? do you have to have eyes on the back of your head or are you rich enough to afford a full time nanny? if your child is not the same gender as you, will that be awks when they grow up and have to deal with puberty and hormmones etc? )

I dont think you can just buy a child I think there is a process though I cant say from experience. I know I do not really take after anyone in my family although mum thinks shes being derogatory when she says im like my dad haha. But shes the only one who says that.

People who dont know me arent gonna compare me to my relatives. Even people who do know me dont say that. Im just me.

I do think that it would be a bit strange to have white parents though. Ive stayed in white? caucasian? households and they just seems to be similar in many ways to asian households families the MAIN difference aside from the language being the food. You are not going to have chicken feets or stinky tofu or turnip cake in a white household and you are going to be cutting up your own food into tiny pieces with a knife on a plate.
 

Lanolin

Well-known member
Dec 15, 2018
23,460
7,178
113
#10
I still, have no idea why people say they are caucausan when nobody is from caucasia and they mean originally from Europe.

Caucasian not a culture, or a langauge, although some clueless peeps think Asian is a langauge lol
Then people say 'western' when they mean something political as well. Its confusing.

Its not so important where you are from...its where you are going (spiritually speaking) so, I never really go the whole always asking where you are from as if you are like some kind of alien. I think its kinda rude but people do it all the time. Since I lived and grew up here I just say what suburb I am from and if people cant handle where I live that is their problem.
 

Live4Him3

Jesus is Lord
May 19, 2022
1,383
639
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#11
If masturbation is sinful (which is what I've always been taught, but we've had many here on the site over the years who disagree,) and the only way to produce sperm, I understand why people would believe collections for sperm banks would be wrong.
Hey, seoul.

First of all, thanks for starting this thread and for being so honest in relation to "the hole in your heart". I have some things to say on that which might bring you some comfort, but I only have a minute before I need to get ready for work, so I'll share that later.

Regarding masturbation, I've always believed that Jesus addressed it here:

Matthew chapter 5

[27] Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery:
[28] But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart.
[29] And if thy right eye offend thee, pluck it out, and cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish, and not that thy whole body should be cast into hell.
[30] And if thy right hand offend thee, cut if off, and cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish, and not that thy whole body should be cast into hell.

When it comes to adultery or to looking on a woman to lust after her in one's heart, we can all easily understand why Jesus would mention one's "eye" in relation to the same, but why did he mention one's "hand" in the same context?

To me, Jesus was addressing masturbation here.

Someone once said on one of these threads, and it might have been you (I think that it was, but I'm not sure), that it's impossible to masturbate while obeying the following:

"Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things. " (Philippians 4:8)

In other words, when somebody masturbates, you can bet your bottom dollar that they're NOT thinking on things which are pure.

Anyhow, that's all that I have time for.

Have a blessed day.
 
Aug 2, 2009
24,584
4,271
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#15
Hey Everyone,

I didn't want to distract from the very interesting thread that's already going on regarding sperm donation and resulting possible single motherhood, so I thought I'd start a separate thread.

I was particularly interested in the talk about the uniqueness that God puts into every human being's DNA.

I am all too familiar with the issue of DNA in my own way.

Many know my story. I was adopted from Korea to Caucasian parents -- the story goes that I was found in a cardboard box in front of a theater when I was a few days old -- but just a few years ago, I read an article saying that at the time I was born, this was often the fairy tale social workers were instructed to tell prospective parents to soften any unknowns or realities that might have been much harsher (for instance, babies who are literally found in trash dumps because someone has literally thrown them away.)

I can only speak from my own experience, but I grew up with a huge hole in my heart, all due to the subject of DNA. "No, but really, who are your REAL parents?" I am asked constantly, even as an adult. My parents adopted because they were told they could not have biological children, and to many, all the focus seems to be on the missing biological component.

I grew up watching and hearing family members say things about my other relatives like, "Oh, he's tall like Uncle Don was," "She must take after her dad," or "Those kids look exactly like their mother," but when they got to me, they would shrug awkwardly and tell me, "My, how much you've grown!" I haven't gotten any taller since I was probably 13. It's just all they can think of.

And I do understand. But it doesn't make it sting any less.

Now I know this seems like a very simple, everyday thing, but for me, it was a constant source of grief and heartache. Every encounter was always a reminder that I did not belong or fit in, all because I did not have this thing called shared DNA. Fortunately, my parents are wonderful and have always emphasized that I am THEIR child, and that's probably why I didn't fall off the rails completely.

But I always feel like I'm on the outside looking in when I am around biological families who talk about strong resemblances, qualities that were passed down, and similar likes or dislikes. Now of course I know that DNA is no guarantee, and many children turn out to be nothing like their families.

But I have always wondered -- do I look like anyone? Am I am the way I am partially because the people responsible for me being here are, or were that way? Because I am very different from my family. As interesting as the debate of Nature vs. Nurture in developing who we are, I only have one half of the formula. And as the years ticked by and I felt my own window to have at least one child fade into the sunset, it started to hit me that I will never have a biological relative this side of heaven.

I know that DNA isn't everything. But we all long for what we don't have.

I have known two other Korean adoptees who were adopted by single moms (no fathers) and they turned out just fine. In one case, the mother had no interest in sex (I don't know if it was due to abuse or what -- I only know what her daughter, my friend, told me.) Therefore, this woman didn't feel it was right for her to marry (because she didn't want to entrap a man into a situation in which she knew she wouldn't be interested in sex,) and so she decided to adopt a child on her own.

The other thing about adoption is that in almost all cases, even among Christian circles, it is almost always seen as second best. I have known some adoptees who grew up to loathe adoption (because they grew to hate being seen as second best, or a last resort,) and would only accept having biological children themselves as an option. They believed that going on to have their "own" children would provide the missing DNA link they had been searching for all their lives.

I also remember a member we had on the site some time ago who preached that "real Christians" shouldn't adopt, because unless they were your own biological offspring, they were "fake children." (At least, those were the words he used.)

I do feel a hole in my heart knowing I will never a DNA connection. And again, I know it's no guarantee. I know plenty of people with biological relatives they can't stand or don't get along with. But like I said, we all wonder about what we don't have. And now all I can do is know and trust that God is moving me on. (For medical reasons, I know that my window is fully closed.)

And this brings me to a very interesting series of questions on the other side of the sperm donation thread we already have going on.

If masturbation is sinful (which is what I've always been taught, but we've had many here on the site over the years who disagree,) and the only way to produce sperm, I understand why people would believe collections for sperm banks would be wrong.

But then does this mean:

1. That the only people who have a right to biological children are those who can produce them naturally?

2. If a couple is married and one partner can't have children biologically, does that mean this couple has to forfeit the rights to a biological child? If the husband has a low sperm count, or if the wife can't produce viable eggs, does this mean that their only option for children should strictly be adoption and nothing else?

3. And as a flipside to the question about sperm donation, what about the other choices we now have?

4. What if a woman who can't produce eggs herself uses another woman's egg but her husband's sperm? What if her husband's sperm won't create a child, but it could be placed within another woman mechanically? What if the wife just couldn't carry, but their egg and sperm could be placed into the womb of a surrogate mother who was able to carry their child to term?

DNA is undoubtedly one of the most unique things God has created.

But in today's world, who has the rights, or not, to propagate it?
In my opinion it doesn't matter who your parents are as long as you are loved.

As far as technologies go, (like in vitro fertilization and sperm donations) I believe that a baby can only happen if it is indeed God's will no matter what method is used.
 

Dirtman

Well-known member
Jul 19, 2022
1,151
441
83
#16
How are you defining "rights".
 

Lynx

Folksy yet erudite
Aug 13, 2014
25,094
8,250
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#17
All I know is I have never faced, and will never face this problem, so I have no idea.

"Every man knows what to do with a kicking mule... Right up until he has one of his own."

I could throw out advice all day long, but I'm sure if I were faced with the problem myself then all the advice I blithely gave would be meaningless.

As for not knowing what to tell a child that was potentially grown in a lab -- I know this might seem strange, but I've never seen that as a problem. Life just isn't pretty and we have to find ways to tell the truth but pray that it won't damage us, or at least that we will trust God to get us through.
This is true in more ways than just what to tell an adopted child. Sometimes life just sucks and we gotta do the best we can and hope it all works out somehow. Sometimes that means living with a hole in your heart for your whole life. Sometimes that means going above and beyond to try to fill the hole.

And sometimes a person who lives with the hole doesn't understand the person who does extraordinary things to try to fill it, and sometimes the person who tries to fill the hole doesn't understand the one who just lives with it. But some holes are bigger than others.
 

seoulsearch

OutWrite Trouble
May 23, 2009
14,991
4,608
113
#18
How are you defining "rights".
I think the topic boils down to asking whether or not people who can't fully have their own biological children should be allowed to look into current technology in order to do so.

It's a discussion of how far can people go to have their own DNA offspring, whether married or single but wanting to be a parent.
 

JohnDB

Well-known member
Jan 16, 2021
5,705
2,233
113
#19
A favorite story of mine in Scripture is Caleb's of the 12 spies and the taking of Kirith Arba...AKA Hebron.

His father was adopted into the clan of Judah... and he too felt like an outsider. From a family of slaves his family lineage was "fuzzy " at best.
But he belonged to the Israelites moreso than most of them did. And before you think that he was somehow more peaceful and holy than the rest....his name given to him by Moses was the equivalent of "little yapping dog" . But he wore that name proudly because God's servant Moses gave it to him.

Families are odd....I dodge as much of mine as possible. They are annoying and expensive...and likely going to get me thrown in jail. I have a nice life without their drama.
You talk about how you don't have a biological family...trust me when I say that you really don't want them. Mine are all criminals, thugs, drunks and thieves from a long line of them.
There's a few decent people in that tree....but it's few and far in between.

I am very much out of character for most of my family.

For whatever reason God has seen fit to watch out over me and you. Dunno why...but I'm not going to argue about it with him.
There's more but I gotta get.
 

seoulsearch

OutWrite Trouble
May 23, 2009
14,991
4,608
113
#20
A favorite story of mine in Scripture is Caleb's of the 12 spies and the taking of Kirith Arba...AKA Hebron.

His father was adopted into the clan of Judah... and he too felt like an outsider. From a family of slaves his family lineage was "fuzzy " at best.
But he belonged to the Israelites moreso than most of them did. And before you think that he was somehow more peaceful and holy than the rest....his name given to him by Moses was the equivalent of "little yapping dog" . But he wore that name proudly because God's servant Moses gave it to him.

Families are odd....I dodge as much of mine as possible. They are annoying and expensive...and likely going to get me thrown in jail. I have a nice life without their drama.
You talk about how you don't have a biological family...trust me when I say that you really don't want them. Mine are all criminals, thugs, drunks and thieves from a long line of them.
There's a few decent people in that tree....but it's few and far in between.

I am very much out of character for most of my family.

For whatever reason God has seen fit to watch out over me and you. Dunno why...but I'm not going to argue about it with him.
There's more but I gotta get.
I realize that everything in life can be seen from many different sides. I often think that's exactly why I'm always in the middle of most everything, never quite fitting here or there, but that's ok. It's part of how God made me.

Everyone, in some way, longs for something they don't have.

I have known many people who have biological families but wish they had been adopted into families that they would believed were a better fit for them instead.