Monday, August 22, 2011

Stumbling through the first mother/adoptee maze

I'm trying to be on vacation with my family who are visiting from Michigan, and so I'm posting as a fresh blog post a comment from an adoptee, Tamara, and my response. 
Lorraine

Lorraine,

Let me begin by saying I have the utmost respect for you, for your truth and your courage and your writing. I have gained unfathomable insights from your blog, and from your writings and insights. As an adoptee who found her mother too late (she had already passed) you and Jane and your contributors have helped me "know" my mother.


However, I again, recoil, from your trying to explain how the adoptee feels, and the affects that adoption has had on us. Frankly, I resent it. I resent the hostility that Megan has been attacked with, I resent your telling the blog world how I feel, because you don't know. You just don't. I resent that you would assume and attempt to express my feelings accurately. Not because I don't think you are positive to our cause or our healing, but because you just don't have that experience. I would never dream of trying to present your experience in writing, to anyone. I accept your experience, as is.

ASK AN ADOPTEE
My "input" would be.... the next time you want to showcase an adoptee's experience, you would ask an adoptee to contribute, to write, to express it as is. Not to rely on what you have studied, or observed, because it's not the same. Just as I could study and observe mother's who have suffered this tragedy, I could never relate or communicate the true nature of the pain or the reality. I ask the you refrain from the same. While there may be a gross and skewed truth in the facts you quote, there is not a true "adoptee" experience, the disenfranchisement, the subtle suppression that exists even in your supportive comments, really offends at a basic level. If you want your blog to have an adoptee perspective, please please, ask one to contribute. Ms. Marginalia would be an awesome start....

Again, it's hard to face the rejection of any "Mom" and speak how we really feel, but I really wish you would stick to your experience, and let me have mine...

Respectfully,

Tamara
--------------------------------------
TAMARA AND ALL:

WE have tried really really hard here not to speak for adoptees, or say how they "feel," or interpret their own actions in terms of their feelings--but instead talk about how this affects us.

However, in trying to fathom how why react to us in ways that seem odd or unfathomable, we can only imagine what must be going on--we react to what happens to us, as we try to build a relationship.

I don't know where we crossed the line in saying how the adoptee feels; we understand that we cannot know. What we have published here is how we feel about what they do, how we react to their push and pull that we feel after reunion, and look sometimes at studies of adoptees. I do think it is valid to report on them, as we are the mothers who created "adoptees," and I believe we have done that with respect.

And let us repeat again that when Jane began blogging about about her daughter, she thought that their relationship had come to an end. If nothing else, this blog has reopened communication between them and when Jane returns I know she will read all of Megan's comments, which I do not believe she has yet, including one that surprised me :).

However, everyone has the right to explore and write about their own experiences. Once we did post a blog contributed by an adoptee in search (it's now a permenent page), and I do appreciate the comments from all the adoptees (and I'm glad to see you back!) who come with their own experiences to relate, but first and foremost, we are First Mother Forum.

BLOG SUBMISSIONS CONSIDERED

That does not mean I would not entertain submissions for blog posts on relevant topics--especially now when I am looking for a little break. It does seems to us that the people who comment are at least half adoptees. I can be reached through the email address at my info page, and I look forward to hearing from some of you. But the posts would have to be fresh one for this blog alone, not repeats of what is at your blog. Understand I will retain editorial control and while the posts may be perfectly good ones, I will always be considering the post from the viewpoint of a first mother, writing for others who relinquished.

And now--I'm off on a bicycle ride with my brother who is visiting from Michigan with his wife. They dropped off their youngest daughter yesterday at the Fashion Institute of Technology where she is starting school. Everybody have a good day.  --lorraine

Jane here: Since there is lingering confusion about whether I had a relationship with Megan when I began blogging. I will lay out the facts, I hope, for the last time.  In April, 2008, Megan wrote a letter to the Bloomington, Illinois paper,-without copying me--opposing adoptee access to original birth certificates. This came on the heels of other major disagreements. Megan knew that I supported adoptee access. I learned of Megan's letter from a comment on the CUB list. I sent a letter to the Bloomington paper supporting adoptee access and copied Megan.  We had a couple of short telephone conversations in which she informed me that she believed all unmarried mothers should place their children for adoption. I sent her several emails inviting her to our family reunion in July in Chicago (100 miles from where she lived). She declined to come.  On August 20, she emailed me, asking me to stop sending her children birthday presents.

Lorraine began First Mother Forum in July, 2008 and asked me to join her. I did not post anything until  August 23, when I wrote about Megan's request to stop sending birthday presents concluding that she wished to extinguish our relationship. We had virtually no communication until early this year when Megan came upon FMF.

83 comments :

  1. Lorraine, you’re full of hot air on this post.

    Lorraine on 8/22
    "WE have tried really really hard here not to speak for adoptees, or say how they "feel," or interpret their own actions in terms of their feelings--but instead talk about how this affects us."

    Lorraine on 8/15
    "Adoptees have no control over their adoption, and they grow up with the sense that this powerless situation will never end….Here is what the adoptee internalizes: Your mother couldn't keep you (what is wrong with me?)…. Don't you love your adoptive parents who have done so much for you? What is wrong with you that you don't find this situation agreeable?

    Jane on 8/19
    "In effect Megan suppressed her own adoption experience and adopted the myths of the baby scope era..."

    ReplyDelete
  2. "I don't know where we crossed the line in saying how the adoptee feels; we understand that we cannot know. What we have published here is how we feel about what they do, how we react to their push and pull that we feel after reunion, and look sometimes at studies of adoptees. I do think it is valid to report on them, as we are the mothers who created "adoptees," and I believe we have done that with respect."



    I feel the same way; and also feel that FIRST MOTHER FORUM is being hijacked by people who, for whatever reason, want to attempt to control how we relate OUR experiences in losing our children to adoption. I am at an extreme loss as to WHY this is taking place and why there is this double standard in blog land and the subsequent comments. We can't speak our truths but others can?

    I, for one, stopped allowing myself to be controlled (especially in regards to adoption) a long time ago and don't appreciate anyone's attempt to manipulate what is said here; to suit how it makes THEM feel.

    That goes for adoptees, fellow natural mothers and adopters alike.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Lorraine, I get it. I often wonder why it is that empathy is often treated as affront in today's society and realized that it is because everyone seems to think that their experience is totally uniquely theirs... which, sad to say, is not true. There are and will always be things that are common to everyone....

    Tamara, With all due respect, you just stated that mother's can't possibly know how an adoptee feels, which is true, but then got angry because an adoptee was ugly to the mothers.... HUH? If you think that we are insensitive, consider that this adoptee was being insensitive to mothers - and her own in particular.... How is that fair or better?

    As for wanting adoptees to speak up, I, for one, have asked my daughter repeatedly to post an entry on my blog - to which she replies NO and gets pissed off... Or, in the alternative pulls a disappearing act. So, unless and until an adoptee wants to write something, maybe they should respect the forum?

    Thank you, however, I do appreciate the insight.

    ReplyDelete
  4. In re-reading my post from last night, I realize it sounds harsh, perhaps harsher than I would have liked. I was reeling from the comments to Megan, and had some high emotions going. I appreciate your willingness to hear us out Lorraine. Truly.

    Tamara

    ReplyDelete
  5. @ Anonymous, I fully understand your feelings and frustrations. I share them from my vantage point also. I have no desire to control you, or anyone else. I guess I could have said it better.

    There is a difference between experiencing an adoptee, and having the experience of being an adoptee. That's all.

    I definitely don't want to hijack anyone's site where they find healing. I will refrain from future posts.

    Tamara

    ReplyDelete
  6. I know some adoptees feel this way, I don't. While Megan certainly has a right to her opinion, she is part of an organization that definetly believes they have the right to inflict their beliefs on others--the Mormon church. I don't believe for a second she is concerned with others having a right to their opinions.

    Plus, she came here deliberately to stir things up. She complains that her mother "wrote her story" well, yeah, she is the baby Jane had, we can hardly write any of our stories without involving other people. None of us live in a vacuum. You may have your books and your poetry to protect you, but you are not a rock, not an island, Paul Simon was pulling your leg.

    Even though Jane "wrote her story" In all honesty, I have no idea who Megan is, Megan is a perfectly common name, there are lots of Megans in the world. Even though Megan herself chose to post her own pic. as her avatar I still doubt I would recognize her if she bit me---Judging from the wall-paper behind her, the pic. is at least 20 years old, probably more.

    There are birth-mothers, and I will call them that as that is the name they self-identify with who comment here, who very much try to control the adoptee experience, their are adoptoraptors who do the same, and I am not calling them adoptoraptors because they self-identify that way, just because it is fun. Yes, there are both who think that they have the right to speak for adoptees, that they understand the forces at work on us and have read an article by a mid-last-century ding-bat and that gives them the right to speak on our behalf.

    I haven't seen you that way. Just my opinion. Yes we adoptees are a sensitive lot, much to our own detriment.

    ReplyDelete
  7. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Let adoptees speak for themselves and let the mothers speak for themselves and we won't be upsetting anyone.

    Tamara wrote very gently and very respectfully with a lot of trouble to word things elegantly. I am glad she has the courage to speak her mind. I hope she will continue to do so.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Since there is lingering confusion about whether I had a relationship with Megan when I began blogging. I will lay out the facts, I hope, for the last time. In April, 2008, Megan wrote a letter to the Bloomington, Illinois paper, without copying me opposing, adoptee access to original birth certificates. This came on the heels of other major disagreements. Megan knew that I supported adoptee access. I learned of Megan's letter from a comment on the CUB list. I sent a letter to the Bloomington paper supporting adoptee access and copied Megan. We had a couple of short telephone conversations in which she informed me that she believed all unmarried mothers should place their children for adoption. I sent her several emails inviting her to our family reunion in July in Chicago (100 miles from where she lived). She declined to come. On August 20, she emailed me, asking me to stop sending her children birthday presents.

    Lorraine began First Mother Forum in July, 2008 and asked me to join her. I did not post anything until August 23, when I wrote about Megan's request to stop sending birthday presents concluding that she wished to extinguish our relationship. We had virtually no communication until early this year when Megan came upon FMF.

    ReplyDelete
  10. While I respect Tamara's opinion, I have to say that my reaction to FMF has been different. I have always felt welcome at FMF and appreciate how you try to understand the effect of adoption on the adoptee. Only on a very small number of occasions have I felt that a first mother crossed the line and was speaking too much for adoptees.

    Also, one of the primary purposes of FMF is to stress the importance of the bio-family remaining intact. It is only natural that you would address how adoptees are affected by the separation as well as first mothers. It is beneficial to the pro-adoption side if you would only mention the pain a first mother feels from relinquishment while leaving the assumption that adoption is still in the best interest of the child untouched.

    Megan has a right to her opinions and should be treated with respect. However, I feel some of her positions are harmful and thought that one of the purposes of FMF is to take strong stand on the issues.

    Megan is not a privileged person who should be able to find her first parents (which she obviously felt the need to do) while actively working to deny other adoptees the same opportunity by supporting OBC access with the names redacted.

    Also, married parents are not necessarily better for a child. My APs were married and it turned out that my natural mother and maternal family were warmer, kinder and more loving people. I would have been better off with them. Spouses do die and with the 50% divorce rate in the U.S. many adopted kids will end up in single parent homes anyway.

    Obviously, Megan and I are far apart ideologically. Everyone deserves respect for their opinion but I thought FMF was a not so much an open forum for all viewpoints but a place where the importance of maintaining the natural family connection is paramount.

    ReplyDelete
  11. This is sad and stunning that another adoptee would work AGAINST us who want our OBCs...

    While I understand some adoptees do not want their OBC or to find anything about their heritage, I do NOT understand how they could work against other adoptees who DO want their OBC. If you don't want it, don't get it -- but why try to stop everyone else from getting theirs???

    As far as the label thing, it's complicated. I change what labels I use depending on who I'm speaking to. I try very hard not to use the b-mom word, but I have slipped at times. Also, if I'm speaking to someone who is not involved in adopto-land, I tend to use 'biological'. They tend to understand that term and the conversation doesn't go all over the place with defining mother -- I have a biological mother, an adoptive mother, two stepmothers (actually stepmother 1 and stepmother 2 - no joking) and a mother-in-law. I do say step sister, but don't say adopted sister. For me, I need a distinction between them all.

    When I talk to legislators, I use whatever term is used in the legislation. If you use a different term, it goes far off-track.

    ReplyDelete
  12. "...we can hardly write any of our stories without involving other people. None of us live in a vacuum." Joy

    I struggled with this issue and then concluded that I cannot tell my own truth if I am constantly worrying about my son, my parents, his aparents, his father, his father's family, etc. etc.. After giving it much thought I decided it was my life and I had a right to write about it and, as Joy says, you can't do that without referring to other people. It doesn't mean I throw caution to the winds but I cannot let it silence me. I think all of us mothers have born the burden of the big silence way too long.

    ReplyDelete
  13. I have always seen this blog as one of the few written by mothers where adoptee opinion was, if not welcomed, at least treated with respect.As an adult adoptee at a guess older than either Jane or Lorraine, I take any issues I have with what is said about adoptee experience and behaviour to my own blog were I occasionally write at length about it in the interests of extending understanding.
    There is a gap, in Australia a large gap, in the understanding of the adoptee experience. It appears that efforts to close that gap have been in vain.
    I have no interest whatsoever in hijacking or controlling the experience of mothers..heaven forbid adoptees have enough of their own to process! I wish mothers would speak their whole truth,including the unpalatable, the taboo and the unspeakable just as adoptees are trying to do in order to cut through the myths, misunderstandings and the differences in experiences, trauma and beliefs.
    No adoptee should feel obliged to educate, post on blogs or comment if they do not wish to, just because a mother invites or asks or thinks it useful. Please respect our experiences just as most of us who post here have tried to respect your experiences as mothers, there is little in common other than loss and that is a different loss.
    There is no 'fair' or 'better' in adoption, it is what it is, complex,difficult and a life sentence.
    For those who post anonymously without leaving a name, perhaps you will one day be courageous enough to stand by what you say or even start your own blog!

    ReplyDelete
  14. While I am immensely flattered that Tamara finds useful things in what I've had to say, I could just as easily turn the tables and say the very same of her! We ALL have important things to say. (((Tam)))

    Adoption journeys are alike in some ways, but usually very different. We need to have compassion for differences, and not judge or say "THIS is how it's done," or "You'd only be happy if you did it like ME/US." Compassion is difficult to come by, though. It means letting go of your own shit and not pointing fingers, while loving yourself enough to say enough. Hard. It's a fine balance.

    I've been trying to do that with adoptees, mothers, and APs, and to a lesser extent with PAPs wearing the rose-colored glasses who hurl the "bitter/bad childhood" crap at me. The positive energy it takes to engage those is beyond me right now, to be honest.

    I love this blog. It's a very safe place for me. I can come here, feel loved by mothers who are not my own, and engage in meaningful conversation about very difficult subjects.

    I hope Megan and Jane can work things out. Adoption makes us strangers in such awkward ways.

    ReplyDelete
  15. r"For those who post anonymously without leaving a name, perhaps you will one day be courageous enough to stand by what you say or even start your own blog!"

    @Von~

    Perhaps people post anonymously for their own reasons; one of which may be to protect their identity from a child or mother that may stumble across this blog and jeopardize a reunion or potential reunion. I hardly think that is anyone's business, or right to demand that someone post their name if someone chooses not to do so, for whatever reasons.

    If the blog owner has a problem with anonymous postings, I would anticipate that they would eliminate the option upon posting a comment, altogether.

    And we were speaking about 'control', correct?

    THANKS.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Megan: I speak about how we birth/natural mothers have tried to interpret what and how adoptees act towards us after reunion. In the comment of mine in which I write about what adoptees hear, that is certainly what I have been told repeatedly by literally hundreds of adoptees since I first got involved in adoptee-rights (which you may or may not favor, or favor marginally) in the Seventies, at ALMA meetings, at other adoptee meetings, in the hundreds of letters and emails I have received over the years, in the poetry written that has been given to me in books. It did not refer to the thinking of any specific adoptee, as you seem to be indicating. If you thought it was about You, let me assure you that it was not.

    Apparently your adoption, into the faith (Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter-day Saints) that is the most adoption-centric one that I am aware of--was vastly different. From your posts it is hard to tell whether your are a joyfuladoptee, as you used to post, or a conflictedadoptee, as sometimes comes out in your comments. People who are adopted can love their adoptive parents deeply and still be conflicted about being adopted. We get that.

    I don't know what to say to you anymore. When Jane posted a piece about reunions, you told us about the wonderful reunion at your adoptive father's funeral, and I posted that. That seemed to be just rubbing our (all first/birth/natural mothers noses) into how great it was to be adopted.

    When I asked how it was at Jane's family reunion, you skirted the issue of talking about how it was at least okay or fine to be adopted to a vulnerable pregnant and unmarried teenager. And when criticized about that, you just came back with some variation of "I just had to be me."

    That "me" is someone who had to know what she said--her raised religion's gospel on adoption--would get back to her natural mother and be hurtful to her. If not, well, then perhaps you are not to blame, or merely oblivious to how words affect people. As far as I can tell, you claim never to have understood that.

    So yeah, I am at a loss.

    On another note:

    Thank you Joy and Tamara for speaking your minds. I never thought that Tamara was anything but kind, along with honest, and I do hope she will post her again and again. If I thought that Tamara's comment had been a nasty rant, I would not have made it the subject of this blog.

    ReplyDelete
  17. I am a firstmom who reunited with my daughter less than 3 years ago (after 32 years) and must say it has been quite confusing for me to attempt to understand and empathize with what she is feeling or has felt. I realize she has suffered much trauma, as have I. For 5 weeks we communicated at length and she said 'all the right things'. When we met, the adopters were also there, she was very cold, and I left feeling her sole intent for finding me (yes, she looked for me) was to 'get back at me' , make me suffer, 'reject me before I rejected her again' (a quote from her adopter mom).

    It bothers me to no end to come here and see Megan treating Jane so similar. Do you want a relationship with her or do you wish to see her suffer all the more by your callous comments?

    I just don't understand and hoping you may give me some insight.

    ReplyDelete
  18. "Perhaps people post anonymously for their own reasons; one of which may be to protect their identity from a child or mother that may stumble across this blog and jeopardize a reunion or potential reunion. I hardly think that is anyone's business, or right to demand that someone post their name if someone chooses not to do so, for whatever reasons." ~~Anonymous, 9:11 pm

    Is it really that terribly difficult to come up with a screen name to use on this blog? You certainly don't have to use your real name, but a fake name would go a long way in helping us keep track of who is saying what. I fail to understand how a screen name will compromise anyone's confidentiality or privacy.

    I normally don't even bother responding to comments posted under the name "Anonymous." How do I know that if "Anonymous" responds to my comments that it's the same "Anonymous" my comment was directed to in the first place?

    I'd much rather be posting comments about what "Mickey Mouse" is saying, rather than what "Anonymous at 9:11 pm" is saying.

    ReplyDelete
  19. I'd much rather be posting comments about what "Mickey Mouse" is saying, rather than what "Anonymous at 9:11 pm" is saying.

    Raven,
    One thing I have heard others saying here over and over again is that they do not want their feelings dismissed.

    By comparing someone who chooses to remain anonymous to "Mickey Mouse" is doing just that.

    We are not cartoon characters.
    We are living, breathing human beings.
    We are all attempting to heal and find peace with this unjust world that caused us to loose our precious children.

    If you are uninterested with what someone here has to offer unless you know who they are, Shame on you Raven!

    How can you say that you are more interested in

    ReplyDelete
  20. @ anon:

    I am sure Raven didn't mean the M.mouse comment the way you took it but as in a name that is obviously fake makes the conversation easier to follow. It is truly, I am even willing to bet her driver's license doesn't have the word Raven on it, but we get of sense of her and who she is by sticking to a name

    @Elaine:

    Well said, I don't know what to make of an adoptee who believes they should be discriminated against. I know every marginalized group has them the proverbial "Uncle Tom" but they do make me scratch my head.

    Some of the negatives that can impact adoptees like internalized rejection, personalizing relinquishment and poor self-esteem I was lucky enough to escape.

    ReplyDelete
  21. Anonymous, you have to understand that it is NOT the concept of anonimity that is confusing, it is the lack of any identifying designation.

    Nameless Surfer, Mom Without A Name, My-Name-Is-Classified, Anonymous13... Such names are all anonymous and sufficient, and if you only sign it, at the end of your text, it cannot compromise your anonimity, really if a nice discussion in the comments with over a hundred posts has more than one Anonymous involved, it becomes a frustrating mess. Some posters may ignore anonymous, but others will show their irritation, so be a good anonymous and give yourself a handle.

    ReplyDelete
  22. "One thing I have heard others saying here over and over again is that they do not want their feelings dismissed. By comparing someone who chooses to remain anonymous to "Mickey Mouse" is doing just that. ~~Anonymous, 2:01 a.m., Aug 23

    You obviously missed the entire point of my comment. I certainly was not comparing "Anonymous" to "Mickey Mouse." I was merely saying that it would be very helpful for us to at least be able to identify you with a screen name, so we can keep track of who is saying what. It's very confusing to read anonymous comments because I can't keep track of people's different stories if you're all hiding under the name of "Anonymous." There is no way to tell you guys apart, and I don't have the time or energy to try and figure out which story belongs to which person.

    Do you always go around trying to shame people? If anything, the shame is on you... I haven't suggested anything that Lorraine herself hasn't brought up, namely to come up with some sort of screen name for yourself, so we don't have to keep asking you to repeat your story.

    Your comment to me is offensive. For your information, I've been dealing with the feelings and trauma of natural mothers for many years now...and I've done so with a great deal of sensitivity. So before you judge me when you don't even know the first thing about me, go look in the mirror and fix your own flaws.

    ReplyDelete
  23. MINNIE MOUSE says:

    So now we are going to have a back and forth about Anonymous postings? And this has what to do with mothers experiences in losing their children to adoption or this particular blog post?

    If it is not one thing it's another. Folks will find any little think to pick at, bicker over and berate someone for and quite frankly, I have grown tired of it. ..

    ReplyDelete
  24. "If you thought it was about You, let me assure you that it was not"

    But Megan is an adopted person. You are talking about her, you're talking about me, and every other adopted person who reads here. We don't all think and feel the same way. I see mothers reacting in protest to what's written on their behalf all the time on many different kinds of forums. That's not a bad thing, it's how people learn about each other, learn about the vast array of perspectives on all kinds of subjects.

    I too thought it seemed like Tamara took great care in wording her comment and agreed with much of it. The first comment that appeared (yesterday) was an anonymous comment that came across as critical and was not counterbalanced with anything from Lorraine or Jane to say they hadn't found it offensive. Although I didn't dig through the blog to make certain, I feel pretty sure FMF has used "nasty rants" as subject for blogs posts in the past so I'm not so sure that can be taken as an indication Tamara's comment was found by FMF to be kind. I am glad to read Lorraine's endorsement of it now however, better late than never.

    ReplyDelete
  25. Campbell and everyone: We simply cannot respond to every single comment. There are those we might like to--if that is all we did in our lives--but we let a lot of them go. There re too many comments at this blog to respond to each and every one.

    ReplyDelete
  26. Oh yes, I do remember using one angry adoptive mother's comment abut how she was not going to tell the census taker whether her children were adopted or not as a post. She was angry, and other adoptive moms as I recall also posted that they were not going to answer that question truthfully either.

    ReplyDelete
  27. Yes, it is easier if people invent a handle for themselves, but let's dial back the comments directed at those who don't want to bother. You can say anon@6:20 etc.

    What is helpful though is identifying whether you are a natural or nurture (adoptive) mother, and adoptee or someone who just came in for a landing. It's mostly adoptive parents who do not tell us who they are.

    ReplyDelete
  28. "Anon" is as good a pseudonym as any other, especially when some of those who are courageous (or naive) enough to comment under their proper names on one blog have been viciously savaged on another blog, in places where their family and friends can easily find and read the awful things that have been said about them.
    In view of what has been going on in adoption blog-land recently, it would be foolhardy, not brave, for anyone to make a controversial comment under their own name.

    It is also a fact that some of those who do have their own blogs frequently post in other places under various pseudonyms.
    Some of these, when the going gets too hot for their comfort, even delete whole posts or go private.

    StpdIsAsStpdDoes

    ReplyDelete
  29. "It's mostly adoptive parents who do not tell us who they are."

    If you do not know who they are, how do you know they are adoptive parents? Or are all critical posts that are anon just assumed to be adoptive parents?

    To someone just looking in here, it would appear that many mothers who post here are disappointed in adoptees who are close to their adoptive parents have had a good life, and are happy. Is the preference for finding adoptees who are miserable, abused, and have suffered and are eager to repudiate their adoptive families in favor of biological parents? That does not seem very motherly.

    ReplyDelete
  30. @ Tamara,

    I am so sorry you were not able to meet your mother.

    I so hope you will continue to post here.

    Mary (adoptee)

    ReplyDelete
  31. @ Anon:

    ""Anon" is as good a pseudonym as any other, especially when some of those who are courageous (or naive) enough to comment under their proper names on one blog have been viciously savaged on another blog, in places where their family and friends can easily find and read the awful things that have been said about them."


    Are they upset about the awful things said about them or perhaps their adopted child finding out the awful things they say about adoptees?

    If people want to post highly insulting comments about adoptees on the internet they can expect to be called-out on it, which is a might different than being "savaged" as you would like to make them innocent victims of a crime compared to rape.

    Personally, I have been the target of too many blog posts to count, I am too pro-adoption, and in fact have been accused of helping people troll for babies, that is my fav. plus it has a song http://www.pagan.com/Filks/JoysOurAdmin/

    Baby Love Child has made more than one post attempting to humiliate me, one was full of lies claiming that I had a "meltdown" which is kind of funny because who hasn't in their lives, and I will admit to having them, but not at the time she accuses me of. She and Marley have attacked the protest unfairly and actually in a quite silly manner. Then there was Petunia who spent nearly every day posting about me for a while.

    So while you might find Mickey Mouse too identifying, I think the real reason for your comment was to hold yourself or your friend up as a martyred victim when my guess would be your friend played a huge part.

    If you get down on the field you are going to end up with mud on you. To expect otherwise is truly folly. Esp. if as I suspect you and your friends expect to treat adoptees poorly and be indulged for it.

    ReplyDelete
  32. "So now we are going to have a back and forth about Anonymous postings? And this has what to do with mothers experiences in losing their children to adoption or this particular blog post?"

    It doesn't... except that there *are* various people commenting as Anonymous.

    That's all fine and well for *those* people, but for those of us responding to you, like I am now, I don't want to mistake the first Anonymous with the second Anonymous. I can't read typing patterns. I can't read your minds, either.

    If you are the same Anon, great. We'll end up responding to the Anonymous signage as if you're all the same person.

    Don't want that? Well, neither do we. We'd like to respond to Anonymous under the assumption that it isn't the same person commenting every single time.

    -Iggy

    See? I just did it.

    (a.k.a Mei-Ling)

    ReplyDelete
  33. ""Anon" is as good a pseudonym as any other, especially when some of those who are courageous (or naive) enough to comment under their proper names on one blog have been viciously savaged on another blog, in places where their family and friends can easily find and read the awful things that have been said about them."

    Except when you have multiple Anons.

    - Anonymouse

    ReplyDelete
  34. "Some of these, when the going gets too hot for their comfort, even delete whole posts or go private."
    As well as editing posts after they have been posted and comments have been published, removing links, etc, etc.

    If a person needs to have their own blog to be able to say what they think, why even bother with comments at all, unless comments are elicited solely for the purpose of confirming the blogger's own feelings and opinions?

    Like this, Jane on 8/19
    "In effect Megan suppressed her own adoption experience and adopted the myths of the baby scope era..." That's not just Jane writing her own story. It's her feeling and opinion, stated as fact. I'm not surprised Megan took exception to it.

    "In all honesty, I have no idea who Megan is, Megan is a perfectly common name, there are lots of Megans in the world. "
    Megan's surname has been published on this blog.

    StpdIsAsStpdDoes

    ReplyDelete
  35. Anonymous @ 11:20am posted (respectfully snipped...):
    To someone just looking in here, it would appear that many mothers who post here are disappointed in adoptees who are close to their adoptive parents have had a good life, and are happy. Is the preference for finding adoptees who are miserable, abused, and have suffered and are eager to repudiate their adoptive families in favor of biological parents? That does not seem very motherly.

    I might be 'one' of those bmoms that 'might' have sounded like I was disappointed that my daughter didn't want to meet up with me... but I am NOT disappointed that she DID have the 'good' life that I couldn't give her at the time of her birth. I'm truly glad that she did grow in a loving home and loves her aparents! Just disappointed that she says she has loved me throughout her life, but doesn't want to have anything to do with me since I found her. It just seems to not make sense if she says she has loved me, but doesn't want a reunion.

    Can you explain 'why' that would be??

    ReplyDelete
  36. One adoptee experience is just that. There is no universal "adoptee experience." And perceptions change constantly.

    Why are family relationships even up for public discussion? They should remain in the realm of the personal. I'm sick of the blabbering confessional narcissistic culture that lets people think it's socially acceptable to spread your business around town, and that people actually care about your personal soap opera. Technology has made this time-wasting blabbering easier. Hire a therapist if you want to talk.

    Families are the root of all oppression. Without the family,the state cannot exist. Reject the family as a viable relational asset. They might be OK to socialize with, but do you really want to live a life of self-inflicted slavery. You can't smash the state, but you can live free as much as possible.

    The problem isn't adoption. That's only part of it. The problem is the family model and self-inflicted slavery.

    ReplyDelete
  37. I received an e-mail this morning suggesting that I come on over to FMBM – I had stopped reading after the last “Jane hurt me” post by Lorraine. I have to agree with Tamara and Megan – you need to let Adoptees speak about what their actions or words could mean (and you need to keep in mind that each one of us (Adoptees) is different in our experience and our interpretation of that experience); and, you are full of hot air, Lorraine. It seems to me that you are always talking about Your less than satisfactory reunion, You disappointment, Your hurt… Jane always came back around – she wanted you in her life, she needed you, but both of you (it seems to me) failed to communicate. She said something and you walked out, she changed her phone number and didn’t give it to you, she did something and you did something; but, did You ever ask her what she meant or why she did what she did? Did you ever tell her why you were angry/hurt? Every time you write about Jane it seems what “happy” statement you make then swings back to change the happy into disappointment. It just gripes me because I see how much she wanted you to love her and I know how she (probably) always thought she heard “the other shoe drop”.
    We (Adoptees) are your children BUT we were raised by strangers (who were in all probability nothing like you or our fathers or our grandparents), and even if we had the most wonderful adoptive family in the Universe… they were NOT to only people who spoke at us about adoption, our natural mothers, or what being adopted *means*. We are not damaged goods because we are adopted, we become damaged by adoption.

    ReplyDelete
  38. @ anonymous 11:20am

    "To someone just looking in here, it would appear that many mothers who post here are disappointed in adoptees who are close to their adoptive parents have had a good life, and are happy. Is the preference for finding adoptees who are miserable, abused, and have suffered and are eager to repudiate their adoptive families in favor of biological parents? That does not seem very motherly."

    And to many adopters who manipulate and monopolize everything in their favor, so a child WON'T WANT TO be in the lives of their natural families, (because of the lies deceit and brainwashing), that sure does NOT seem very "motherly" either (you know, to be jealous, possessive and threatened of the biological bond that you will never have); so you sabotage a reunion or make it all about YOU and your families...

    That goes both ways, most definitely, don't you think?

    ReplyDelete
  39. Hi:
    I wonder if I might ask a question. I've learned a lot from this forum, but I am somewhat fearful of asking as I have seen some pretty vicious responses in the comments section. I'm asking because I feel that the writers and comenters know more than I do about these topics. Please just try to consider my question as evidence of deference to your authority on these matters.

    If a mother had full physical custody of her child for 3 months and AFTER that 3 months she still wanted to go to an adoption agency to relinquish her child, would you still consider the adoption unethical? I have been convinced that newborn adoption in generally (though not always) unethical, but what about a case of a mother having 3 full months to come to this decision?

    Please don't attack me. I'm not an evil person. It's a sincere question for which I value your input. I'm looking for your very honest response.

    Thanks.

    ReplyDelete
  40. " which is a might different than being "savaged" as you would like to make them innocent victims of a crime compared to rape."

    Who made a comparison with rape? Not me.
    To "savage" something means to attack it fiercely or brutally.

    StpdIsAsStpdDoes

    ReplyDelete
  41. Dear Thanks,

    I am wondering here, WHO IS ASKING?
    Are you a potential adopter?
    Are you that mother, or a good friend or kin of her? Are you that child, perhaps?

    Considering the robbing a child of its real mother it does not seem to matter much. The horrible act remains as disgusting, stealing a baby's mother. In case the child is still alive'and healthy after three moths in her care, it's hard to make a convincing case that she needs to be replaced in the interest of the baby. That's my personal opinion, which has no strong factual grounds,
    I know for certain, however,that quite some women who had three months to think it over felt very sorry about it afterwards, and to be honest, the reality of actual separation can cause a change of mind...

    ReplyDelete
  42. Anon 11:20 wrote:"To someone just looking in here, it would appear that many mothers who post here are disappointed in adoptees who are close to their adoptive parents have had a good life, and are happy. Is the preference for finding adoptees who are miserable, abused, and have suffered and are eager to repudiate their adoptive families in favor of biological parents? That does not seem very motherly.

    Anon,
    I think you have missed the point in a lot of the first mother's comments. I have never felt that mean spiritedness you describe that n-mothers are happy to have found that there child did not have the wonderful life they were promised. I think the issue is that the first mother is hurt when she feels that her relinquished son or daughter is saying that s/he would much rather have been with the a-family than been raised by the n-mother. That would be like an adoptee hearing her/his first mother say , "I'm so glad I gave you up, I like my kept children so much better". Now that would sting.

    I notice that some of these comments are turning nasty and many are coming from adoptees. I do not understand where this is coming from. I have always felt that both Lorraine and Jane have been very supportive to adoptees and have tried to understand our POV while acknowledging that they can never understand it completely.

    ReplyDelete
  43. Dear Cully-Ray, please consider the description of this website:

    "A place where first/birth/natural/real mothers share news and opinions. And vent."

    We "others", should respect THAT.

    ReplyDelete
  44. I have been posting as one of the anonymouses. From here on in,I will stop being anonymous and try to come up with an original name Jen

    ReplyDelete
  45. @Lorraine - you said "All the anger at this blog currently is coming from adoptees. It does make me reconsider why I bother lobbying for open records. "

    Now you know how I feel - and why I won't make plans to be supportive by attending a rally. Not because I don't love my daughter, but because I am done being a target.

    I think that your story includes things like assumptions made where communication is negligent - so if you want to rip mothers for "speaking" for you - maybe you need to actually talk to the mothers. I believe that was why this particular post came about - to hear from an adoptee that spoke respectfully and with understanding....

    People, give me a break, please! good grief.....

    ReplyDelete
  46. Cully can you expound on this?

    We are not damaged goods because we are adopted, we become damaged by adoption.

    Suzy

    ReplyDelete
  47. There is so much anger, which is just really hurt in a different wrapper.

    From what I see, it's what all of this boils down to -- hurt. Nitpicking each others words, twisting things around, looking at precise wording instead of intent.

    Lorraine -- I don't remember what post it was, but I think you really nailed it exactly when you had said (and I'm paraphrasing) that your daughter may never have forgiven you for committing the biggest sin a mother could. While those are words to wince by, you may be totally correct.

    Even the most politically correct, forgiving adoptee may have one point in their life thought, "How could she?" It's a hard-core feeling that sometimes, some of us adoptees have to fight it and we don't always win.

    In the darkness, stillness and silence of the night, to some of us, these thoughts do creep in. We don't want them there. We want to be above thinking like that. We want to be more evolved that we don't hold any angry residue, but sometimes it does happen.

    I am not even close speaking for all adoptees, I'm just saying that when you said those words, they RANG loud, true and clear to me.

    This very basic concept can be where some of this adoptee anger is coming from. Not saying for sure, just saying 'maybe'.

    ReplyDelete
  48. Now that this has gotten so out of hand and people are just flinging mud about, it seems that this is doing way more harm than good.

    Not all comments are being published. They are simply too angry.

    As Theodore noted, this was supposedly a safe place for first mothers to share their feelings and opinions. I am going to keep it that way, even if some nasty comments were already posted.

    Good night.

    ReplyDelete
  49. Anon asked if a mother kept her child for three months and then decided to place the child for adoption would we still consider that unethical.

    To clarify, what we at FMF consider unethical is the exploitation of vulnerable parents or parents-to-be though coercion, deceit, and so on.

    If a mother is unable to nurture her child and places her child for adoption at three months, she is to be commended for doing her best for her child

    ReplyDelete
  50. I think that occasionally some people forget that when there is a reunion in adoption, it is between two ADULTS....the most important word being ADULT. As one adult to another, there is a measure of respect and compassion owed. Jane, Lorraine, I and most mothers only surrendered one (some sad women more than that) and the reunion is between those two adult people....not between ALL adoptees or ALL natural mothers. We share blood and DNA, and we also share a common experience of the loss of each other. No one's pain or trauma is superior.

    The adoptee may or may not feel the "abandonment" that Verrier wrote about and some adoptees profess. They were infants, it was a free-floating, pre-verbal feeling. They may still not be able to identify or express it. They may have grown up with wonderful adoptive parents, or they may have been raised by wolves, it sometime seems. For some, their abandonment issues are still overwhelming. They don't recall the event, but in their guts they recall the feeling and react accordingly.

    Mothers, on the other hand, do not have a free-floating feeling of anxiety. Mothers don't have to imagine. They remember, in excruciating, exquisitely painful detail telling their boyfriends, telling their parents, their friends reactions, their journey "away", the clothes they wore, the humiliating visits to the doctor, the lies and the shame. They remember the events that led to it, they remember the events during it and they remember the trip home, without their babies. Mothers don't have to imagine or project....we know. Adoptees feel abandoned; mothers actually WERE. We were abandoned by everyone who would or could help us to save ourselves and our babies.

    My point is that there are two hurt individuals in reunion. No one party has a lock on pain. I am sorry but I don't feel that the adult adoptee's pain trumps the pain of the mother. However old the adoptee is, that's how long the mothers have had to suck it up! Consciously, purposefully, one foot in front of the other suck it up.

    Further, I believe that often, when mothers are talking about the way an adoptee acts or how they react to whatever stimuli, more than anything we are NOT trying to speak FOR them...we are trying to understand what the Hell our adult children are doing! It is difficult to ask a silent phone what we did wrong. It is hard to apologize to an empty mailbox, virtual or snailmail, for being insensitive or uncomprehending. it is all but impossible to get an answer from the thin air when we ask in the midst of an endless string of "pullbacks" what we did wrong this time.

    Continues in next post...

    ReplyDelete
  51. continues....

    Sometimes it seems that when some adult adoptees get upset, they strike out at mothers in general. We are NOT your mothers. Unless I am mistaken, there is one mother/daughter pair here, and that is Jane and her daughter, Megan. I gave birth to ONE adoptee, and we have been reunited for 22 years. If an adoptee has a problem wih their mothers, I am sorry. I will talk to you, I will try and talk to your mother, I will listen, I will try in every way possible to help, but I will not take abuse for her.

    When we realize that often what is happening in these blogs and in real life reunion, as well, is an attempt for one adult to try to understand the behavior of another adult human being. Some people learn from seeing, some from thinking and working things out, some from writing them down and some from talking them out. Instead of getting upset and striking out at each other, if we remember that there is a human being on the other end of the post we are writing, one that has been hurt JUST AS MUCH AS YOU HAVE, perhaps it will be easier to work things out.

    One mother I know who has a blog posts that her blog is her home, and she would not invite someone to come into her living room and abuse her and feels the same way about her blog. I don't necessarily agree with her on that, but respect her right to make it so. Jane and Lorraine, however, allow others to come in and exchange thoughts and ideas and I have to say that I have from time to time been surprised at some of the exchanges that they have permitted, always with respect and kindness and a great deal more patience than I. There has been a tremendous amount of learning done here and a tremendous amount of growth. I like to recall that I am here as a guest, and behave accordingly. Jane and Lorraine owe me nothing. They owe no one anything except their own families and each other.

    Just my own thoughts on what has been a very interesting and emotional discussion.

    ReplyDelete
  52. Wow. I'm not even sure what to say. High emotion. The same thing that caused my original post on a different thread. At least I am not alone in it, small solace sometimes, but I'll take it.

    However, if my emotional turbulence hurts others, is it still an accurate response to what I perceive? And is it one to be shared? Possibly, and possibly not. I believe it depends on the "atmosphere" of where the sharing takes place. What is the balance between being honest and being kind? I have no idea. Should I be true to me, true to you, true to us, when sharing in a forum that has encouraged both, and tonight reflected one (honest PAIN)and at this point, has exhibited a lack of the other, kindness. Although, interspersed through out an abundance of honest pain,I have witnessed and experienced extreme kindness and understanding (both in this blog and via email)

    I came here for the first time because I wanted to know my mom. She's not coming back. @ Sandy, while I KNOW you aren't my mother (I am a 47 year old gramma, who has seen her mothers grave, if not her mother). However, what you and the other mothers here have given me is the only picture or reality I have of her. I am grateful for that, and will include your input into the mosaic that represents her. Even when it hurts, it's a gift.

    Lorraine told me to not apologize for sticking up for myself (regarding my original post). I happen to admire her a lot, because she has guts, and she can write like I wish I could. I also feel a separate connection with her... and that is the irrevocable and final loss that death creates. She is a mother who has lost a daughter to death, and I am a daughter who has lost her mother to the same. So I gotta admit, it really breaks my heart, and yes, pisses me off to see anyone take her to task about what she may or may not have done. Unless you are "there"... you still have a shot at the prize. I'm happy for you. But to chastise someone for what they may or may have not done correctly in a situation that is an emotional minefield, when they have no opportunity to change it, and every, daily opportunity to regret it, is neither kind, nor honest. It's just kinda shitty.

    I'm glad to be welcome here, to lose this site would be a big hit. Thanks. Really.

    Tamara

    ReplyDelete
  53. Thanks Everyone.

    I post the snarky comments because they are an indication of how much pain is really out there in the ether over adoption, and I always knew that doing reform work would ruffle the minds of a great many people, adoptive parents mostly. The angry blowback from adoptees, I admit, was surprising but ultimately found it understandable. I feel like the blog became a punching bag for how many adoptees feel about their natural parents. Even if you now write and say, You're full of hot air, that's how many of the comments made me feel.

    So many people think that the problem to infertility is: "Why don't you adopt?" Maybe the discussions here--if they are read by prospective adopters--will help stop some of the mindless adoptions, and thus put less pressure on the market to produce babies.

    In the last couple of weeks, a ring of baby producers has been found. Their scam was to buy eggs and sperm, and implant the embryos in women in the Ukraine, and then advertise the babies for sale as being planned by couple who changed their minds. There are already a number of such children who have been so manufactured and sold. No comment necessary.

    ReplyDelete
  54. @ Lorraine and Jane,

    Thank you for allowing adoptees to continue to share in your forum. I know for myself, it has been an awaking of spirit.

    I know that for mothers, it must be so hard to have their children vacillate back and forth between connection and disappearance. I also understand as an adoptee why that might happen.

    I think that maybe when we reach out for one other, mothers and their adult children are thrown back in time. I know many of the mothers on the site have described having to remember all the pain that they suffered; during, after and for all the years they were and have been separated from their children. My heart goes out to all of you. I can’t speak for other adoptee’s, only to say that what they feel is personal to each of them—and we should all respect and have compassion for one another.

    @ Tamara

    I have read many of your posts here and on other sites. I admire and respect you.

    I know your mother would be very proud of the woman you have become.

    ReplyDelete
  55. I too have to say THANKS to Lorraine and Jane for having this forum/blog! To be able (FINALLY!) to tell my story and get advice and vent when I want to! I've learned quite a LOT from this place and hope you will continue.
    And I totally agree with what Sandy Young says in her posts...

    I've learned a lot from the adoptees that post here too, to try and understand from where my daughter is coming from!

    Thank you for this blog/forum!!

    ReplyDelete
  56. Lee wrote:"Just disappointed that she says she has loved me throughout her life, but doesn't want to have anything to do with me since I found her. It just seems to not make sense if she says she has loved me, but doesn't want a reunion."

    I think there is a kind of sentimental love an adoptee has for her first mother for giving her life but that doesn't necessarily translate into wanting a relationship. Telling you she has always loved you yet doesn't want any contact sounds like a hollow love to me.

    ReplyDelete
  57. Why is my daughter is "retreat" again? Nothing was different when we were last in touch, but then she met her father and now it's either very stilted when I talk to her, or she doesn't answer my email. I am trying to step back and leave her alone but why do I feel so blue, even after all the reading and learning I have done here?

    ReplyDelete
  58. I haven't noticed any presumptions of feelings by Lorraine or Jane without the voice of compassion and understanding going along with it. People usually don't try to relate unless they care, and while we can't completely cross the bridge to another person's experience, we can take those few steps and hope to meet in the middle.

    ReplyDelete
  59. http://adoptiveparentsspeak.wordpress.com

    ReplyDelete
  60. In having a moment to read all the comments at once, I recognize the tone of a rather nasty/angry/sniping adoptee/adoptive parent who refuses to post using her real name. She has posted here previously under two different names, K and G.

    So it goes. I guess she finds us amusing.

    ReplyDelete
  61. "Eventually she recognized that she had been doing this, and we were able to briefly talk about it in the last few months before she died."
    (sigh) Why is this so common? Not just in reunions but in the adoptive family relationship as well... My Mom (adoptive) started a discussion with me 6 months before she died - it was awkward and sparse and difficult to say the least. I hope that she was listening to me as I was listening to her. I gained some insight but too much time had passed were silence had ruled. I am sorry for you and Jane, and for my Mom and I.
    As I read about you and Jane, I could see my Mom and I. My Mom knew what triggers to push to make me cry or to make me shut up. I am guessing so did Jane's a-Mom... BUT, You did not. I have to wonder if I had been blessed to find my Mother before she died, what would our dance been like. I think that the triggers can become tripwires. Thank you for your reply and the insight it brought me.

    ReplyDelete
  62. *Dear Cully-Ray, please consider the description of this website:
    "A place where first/birth/natural/real mothers share news and opinions. And vent."
    We "others", should respect THAT.*
    Absolutely, Theodore... Also please note that the word "share" is used and that neither Lorraine or Jane has said, "Commenters must agree with what we say and echo back our feelings". Lorraine and Jane have (for better or worse) not only opened the door to communication between Mothers, but also between Mothers and adult Adoptees. THAT is a great thing.
    I have know of Lorraine for many years - she is a fisty woman, a brave woman.
    To Respect the opportunity of this blog and Lorraine's sharing, I feel I must/should explaine my feelings. Not just say that I agree with something, like we choosing sides. We Are Not Choosing Sides. It is not Mothers v Adoptees. We are one group. IMHO. Communication is the key - imagine if once a day, when someone said/wrote something that made us go, "What!!!" we stepped back, took a breath, and asked why they said/felt that way, and then listened. I am 64 years old, it was not until I was 50 and my Mom had died that I ever signed anything I wrote about adoption and being adopted with my actual name. I've been active since the mid-80s.
    Sometimes when we speak our Truth it is not rainbows and unicorns, it's not just rough around the edges but jagged and sharp. Our Truth is what scares people (like that adoptor that told Lo she was his (the adoptor's) worst nightmare)... it's not meant to be disrespectful (at least not by me).

    ReplyDelete
  63. Suzy,
    this is not as long as one of my usual rants but if you'd like more (LOL)you can find me on yahoo.com :-)
    The illusion that the adoption industry (and religions) promotes and their actions are what damages perfectly normal, healthy, loving people.
    Natural families are not given the same opportunities to keep babies in their families of origin that strangers are to take them. This results in the baby being taken from, and cut off from, people with whom they would feel a natural connection.
    Adoptees were not born with Attachment/Emotional Disorders any more so than non-adopted individuals who suffer from these same disorders are. And, Natural Mothers are not morally or socially inferior to other women or mothers. These are lies told and promoted by false morality and the industry to justify the denial of support to Mothers and/or families who want to keep their children, grandchildren, and/or nieces and nephews (even cousins) within The Family.
    For the most part, prospective adoptive parents are Not informed/educated in an honest and open way, and once their checks are cashed by the agencies there is very little to no follow up or support.
    Not every adopted person was an “orphan” and to foster the idea that to adopt is somehow an act of kindness to an un-wanted orphaned baby is cruel – not only to the child’s self-image but to the relationship of that child with its adoptive unit. It takes the “family” out of adoption and makes it a self-promoting drama.

    ReplyDelete
  64. Cully Ray,

    I am sad for all of us those who were adopted
    and never got to meet their mom. I am so thankful
    that I got to meet one special female adoptee who
    Was escorted out of an Alma meeting the first time
    I has decided to go after putting it off fir over a month.
    She had presence of mind to give her phone number
    to all present and tell those at the meeting she would be
    at local pizza place. I didn't have a clue but think if I hadn't
    got her number that night no telling how long it would have took me to find my son. I was talking to him within two weeks called him on a day he was celebrating his bday. He came to me that night what were the chances of all those factors lining up.
    My mother and u have never spoke about my son's adoption she is 82 and I am 62.
    Sadly those closest to us don't want to talk especially if it's
    Unpleasant.

    ReplyDelete
  65. Robin said...
    I think there is a kind of sentimental love an adoptee has for her first mother for giving her life but that doesn't necessarily translate into wanting a relationship. Telling you she has always loved you yet doesn't want any contact sounds like a hollow love to me.

    Yes, you could be right, Robin; in every letter/email that I have received from her, she has always thanked me for 'giving her life'. Thanks for your response.

    ReplyDelete
  66. Lee,
    Your welcome. I wanted to add something else to that and I am in no way saying this to hurt you. I think it is actually meaner to add that she loves you if she doesn't want a relationship because it is only human nature to have false hope for a reunion after hearing that you are loved. If my first mother had repeatedly told me that she loved me but didn't want anything to do with me I would consider her declarations of love to be disingenuous and meaningless.

    Again, not meaning to hurt you... just my take on the matter.

    ReplyDelete
  67. @Katie~

    LOVE your quote there! Well said..

    ReplyDelete
  68. Viktoria, maybe this can help...
    http://daughterslost.blogspot.com/2011/07/guest-post-when-lightning-strikes.html

    ReplyDelete
  69. Thank you, Cully Ray. It's very hard on this end when the person goes into "retreat." I keep going over in my mind what I said, what I could have possibly said that made her go away again. Or what he might have said to her about me. Or what I did wrong.

    ReplyDelete
  70. Robin: You are so right--if someone says they "love" you, that needs to be backed up with some real action. As in, actions speak louder than words.

    I suppose that is why when the adoptee vanishes it is hard to know how to relate to them when she or he returns. Actions do speak louder than words.

    ReplyDelete
  71. Actions do speak louder than words.

    As an adoptee, who was raised in an abusive adoptive home, I do want to ask the mothers on this site one thing- did your actions and love for your children surround and protect the children you walked away from?

    ReplyDelete
  72. @Mary... you have no idea how much that means. Thank you, with all my heart.

    xo~ Tamara

    ReplyDelete
  73. Mary, to answer your question,
    no, they did not, to my eternal shame and sorrow. I did not learn until years later what my child had to live with. From either side of the fence, love is not always enough, and agencies placed children with some people who should never have been parents. That is part of the tragedy of adoption.

    ReplyDelete
  74. Mary,
    Adoption has put alot of us through hell. Your comment is one scenario that I couldn't get out of my mind for 36 years until reunion put it to rest.
    While we may have physically walked away from you for what ever the reasons we have never mentally walked away. I'm sorry for what you have endured because of adoption.

    ReplyDelete
  75. Thanks Robin - no, not hurt at all - it is what it is!!
    Yes, Lorraine, actions speak louder than words.
    I believe I'm just going to 'give-up' in any contact - and just take it as it - and IF she ever changes her mind - I WILL always be here for her!

    ReplyDelete
  76. Viktoria,
    you didn't do anything "wrong". There is a lot of fear and apprehension - what if's, so to speak. There are the adoptive parents... fear of hurting them, of making them angry, of being abandoned/disowned by them. And, the same fears apply to you, just as you are wondering what you did wrong.
    Keep the light of love in your heart and leave the door open.

    ReplyDelete
  77. What CullyRay said is spot on! It's a minefield... I am in reunion with my little sister, and it's the same for both of us, always wondering if we said the wrong thing, always walking on eggshells, always projecting our "stuff" on each other... but with care and compassion, and just a little bit of "trying to walk in each other's shoes"... we progress, we grow, we take back a tiny bit of what we lost. I am our mothers doppelganger... I have no idea how that must feel, to have your mom reappear in "sister-form" but damnit, she has had more grace and courage than our brother in dealing with that. He ran. She stayed. I can offer her compassion if she inadvertently says something that gives me that ol' adoptee knee-jerk, run and hide reaction. She has patience with me, and my knee. :) It's not about actions speak louder than words... it's about trying to understand the actions, and giving each other a break. I see so many Moms being patient and loving, and baffled too... but hang in there, please. Sometimes we (adoptees)hate our "hardwiring" too, and really want to just be accepted, knee jerks and all. There is so much pressure from the adopters. Stockholm Syndrome is a real and accepted diagnosis..and we have it. We have bonded with our captors, and it is a frightening and almost "disfiguring" process to rebel against it. I'm not a brave person for saying that, my ADad is gone and my abusive adoptress has Alzheimers...I'm somewhat free now, but that evil guilt and shame kept me from my true mother, and I was too late. It's on me. Or them. I haven't quite integrated that particular guilt yet... there are so many guilts to sort through when you are adopted.

    Never give up hope, Moms or daughters and sons.... there is some form of reunion on the horizon.. your's just might not look like someone else's. Believe. I do.

    Much love,

    Tamara

    ReplyDelete
  78. Thanks for your words, Tamera. Very helpful for stressed out moms, worrying about what they did or should have done.

    It's easy to underestimate the influence of the adopters.

    ReplyDelete
  79. Tamara wrote:" We have bonded with our captors"

    Adoptive parents are not captors. I was not kidnapped. My original parents did in fact give me up. I think it is important for first parents to be careful and not expect their relinquished children to come right back into the family as if they've never been gone. That is unrealistic. Adoptees do have other families. It's the sad truth.

    I can understand how an adoptee would be reluctant to threaten his/her relationship with the adoptive family before the relationship with the n-mother is on solid ground. This insecurity comes from being adopted in the first place. And look at how many adoptees get rejected or only a partial acceptance (i.e. I can only see you once because my husband and kept children don't know about you).

    I agree with Nancy Verriers' theory that there is a difference between attachment and bonding. However, attaching to the a-family rather than bonding (that takes place in a bio-family) and not looking like family members is the adoptee's norm.

    After my inital phone call to my first mother we were always in touch so I can't really understand this advance and retreat behaviour. Although I can see how any adoptee would be ambivalent about possibly jeopardizing the relationship with his or her APs.

    @Tamara,

    You should not feel guilty. You are not responsible for being adopted and as a result having to walk this fine line between loyalty to one's a-family and one's n-family. I am sad that you missed the chance to know you first mother but she could have looked for you, too.

    ReplyDelete
  80. @ Anonymous and Janet,

    Thank you for answering my question so openly and honestly, and thank you so much for sharing your feelings and insight with me.

    I am so glad you have reunited with your children. I would also like to express to you both, that I am truly sorry for the pain and suffering you have experienced.

    ReplyDelete
  81. @ CullyRay,

    “What if’s” That’s it exactly.

    @ Tamara,

    “We have bonded with our captors”

    I thought when they were gone that I would be free of it, but it still remains.

    ReplyDelete
  82. I used to imagine my daughter was in an institution rather than in a home. As I've written here before, when I did find her, her adoptive parents had tried to reach me when she had her first epileptic seizure at five.

    At the same time, I had this sense of her needing me, and I was writing Northaven Terrace (the name of the agency in Rochester, NY) asking if she needed anything. Our letters should have crossed in a file, but they did not. By the time the agency did write to them, it was years later.

    Closed adoptions are so fucking! terrible.

    ReplyDelete
  83. In reading many of these comments i am seeing the total hurt that adoption has caused the mothers and adoptees. Even when an adoptee claims to be just fine with their adoption i can't help but think there has to be some genetic confusion, questions and plain ole curosity. I use to be one of "those" adoptees. I would admit to being a little curious but never knew never mind admit that there really was more. Then i grew up.

    Started reading some of the first mothers comments and was so relieved when some would attempt to "get it", angry at others who think i needed "educating" on my feelings regarding my bmother, hurt at some of the nasty comments thrown at adoptees, more then angry when some bmothers would get angry at an adoptee viewpoint and it happens. I think many mothers do try to understand but they can't. How could they when the adoptees have trouble figuring it for themselves? I believe we need time to figure it out, we need to be able to be confident that those who love us will attempt to understand and love unconditionally(don't mean taking abuse) and REALLY try to get what has actually happened to a person that is removed from their biology, made to be someone else, live someonelses idea of family and assimulate and cope with it all...and ya ...be grateful for it all. Doesn't matter whether it was the best of circumstances or the worst...there is still HUGE amounts of changing, coping., growing, adjusting happening for a little, tiny human being..we start out lives as being adopted...no matter what the resons, no matter how good or bad the biofamilies are..the fact is are adopted...period. WE do all the adjusting JUST to survive....not just deal with emotions from an aleready established life...but from a brand new live. Our first experiances are ones of confusion, adjusting, readjusting then dealing with whatever comes our way. So that when reunion comes about we may not even recognize or understand what the feelings are and why!
    When my mothers made MY life about them, about there losses gains, hurt ....JUST BECAUSE I EXISTED...its very confusing and just may make someone run , get angry, ect.

    If my feeling is I have loyality towards my afamily i don't expect to be moked or degraded, if i state i have feelings for biofamily i don't want to feel guilty or ashamed...or judged because its not what one or the other mother wants from me.

    So it took a LONG time for me to figure out that I will not be controlled by the mothers who expect me to feel or act a certian way. I will respect the bmothers experiance, i will respect the amoms experiance but being that I WAS the adoption, i will respect my feelings and my needs also...and those of my children...the children of an adoptee.

    Nobody is trying to control anyones feelings about themselves...namly on this blog..first mothers feelings....but your feelings are a DIRECT result of having the adoptee...the adoptee is responsible for those feelings...just because we exist. Think that how so much hurt and pain is communicated.

    I so wish there could be more understanding on everyones part.

    Lorriane, I remember your strory from a.....c0m I respected you then and still do.

    ReplyDelete

We welcome comments from all, and appreciate letting us know how you relate to adoption when you leave your first comment.

COMMENTS ARE MODERATED. Our blog, our decision whether to publish or not. We are trying to find a way to end the endless anonymous comments, which drive many of us crazy. Pick a name! Any name. Choose the NAME/URL selection. You do not need a URL. Your name does not have to be your name IRL though we appreciate those who do, and we understand due to the sensitive nature of our subject, many will prefer to use a nom de plume. Okay with us, but the endless Anons are tiresome for everyone. If you post as "anonymous" you run the risk of not being posted.

We try to be timely but we do have other lives.

For those coming here from Networked Blogs on Facebook, if it does not allow you to make a comment, click the "x" on the gray "Networked Blogs" tool bar to exit out of that frame and it should then let you comment.