Reading this post about cruel words said to or about adopted children made me think of my friend D who is adopted too. She has shared a lot of heartbreaking stories about her childhood - similarly insensitive. These come from regular people who in other circumstances may not be devoid of sensitivity - certainly nothing like these heartless remarks would indicate. Makes you wonder what about an adopted child specially from a different culture or disabilities could trigger such behavior. Maybe the generosity of spirit it takes for a person to adopt such a child is well beyond the ability of the average person to comprehend.
So they may recourse to one of two ways to deal with the information - accept that the other person is a superior human being deserving their respect and leave it at that. The other way may be deny superiority and therefore question why they would do what they did - there is a presumption of naivete if not outright stupidity. One of my former clients and his wife had adopted two kids from across the world and also had a child of their own. B once told me that some people were uncomfortable with the composition of this family - something he and his wife were unprepared to deal with when made the choice to adopt. I learned quickly that how you well you accepted that choice determined your working relationship with B - I am sure that extends well beyond the workplace too.