Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Deal with it

I was linked recently to an adoptive parent's blog, I don't have the address handy (okay, okay, I'm just too lazy to go get it and I really don't want to create some inter-blog posting/commenting thing anyway) where the purpose of her blog, from what I can gather, was to help other adoptive parents deal with their adoptees' issues of separation, grief, loss, etc.

Well that's cool, I'm pretty down with that.

But what I hope that this parent, and the readers of that blog and all the adoptive parents out there realize, is that how I, and every adoptee "deals" with our adoptee issues is not a consistent thing. There are variables...depending on the adoptee's age (I don't think most people can truly even grasp the magnitude of what being adopted even IS until you've reached some level of maturity, say, at least into your teens); to your mood, the events that have shaped your life thus far, etc. and so on and so forth.

The post that this AP took to her blog was just a snapshot of my feelings that I happened to write about on a particular day. I was feeling a little tired of the overall societal view against adoptees reuniting, particularly my own good friend thinking it is so inappropriate, simply because, why, I am adopted? So I shouldn't miss the woman who gave birth to me, who I did bond with in utero, who I did LOSE and therefore have a right to miss and want some part of her in my life?

But at the same time, some days, I am quite surprisingly normal. Some days, I don't think about it. I don't miss her, I don't care if I talk to her ever again, or see her, or ever hear her voice. Some days, I could care less. Other days, not so much. There are days when it's all I can do to get out of bed.

But the important thing is that those days happen...in between the good days, when I seem to be not affected, when I seem to be the "normal, happy adoptee" that everyone likes to see and everyone is most comfortable with, sometimes it is there. Sometimes, I do get mad that I was abandoned, that I was given away, that I feel second-best and inadequate and like a huge failure as a human being because my own mother didn't want me.

It doesn't have to be there EVERY DAY to mean that it ISN'T THERE. I don't have to talk about it verbally or openly for it to mean that it ISN'T THERE. And, I NEVER would have told my adoptive parents, because, OMG that would have hurt her, crushed her, that would have shaken the very foundations on which our relationship was built (not that this is probably true, but as an adoptee? The LAST thing you want to do is hurt your aparents, because if your own mother could abandon you, what's to stop them from doing it too?)

But really, I didn't even begin to explore or even acknowledge a lot of these feelings until I was well into my 20's, after reunion, after I had children of my own. As a child, I was pretty satisfied with the whole "She gave you up because she couldn't take care of you" and "she was just too young and she loved you so much she wanted you to have a good life" kind of blah blah blah. But as I got older, and ESP. after having my own babies, I just realized, how could anyone give away your own child?


So, just in case anyone from that other blog ventures here and reads beyond the one post, I hope you take this to heart. If your little one doesn't seem too affected now, don't take it as a sign he or she will never be. If he or she doesn't talk about it, don't think it may not be there. Adoptees are masters at hiding our true feelings, we are pros at stuffing and masking and burying this stuff.

But don't take it from me.

I'm just one adoptee who's been doing this stuff for the last 35 years.

5 wisecracks:

Holly said...

You are SO right on! Excellent post!
I could have wrote it myself, I so get it.

a Tonggu Momma said...

Lillie ~ I might be that AP. I do lurk here as well as at many adoptee and first mother blogs. And I linked to one of your posts this week. So it might be me. I don't typically comment here because I realize I'm not the target audience, but I do gain so much from reading y'alls posts.

My blog is mostly your typical AP blog - filled with with fluff and nonsense - but I do try to help spread at least a little adoption education through my Sunday Links and the occasional thoughtful post.

As an AP, I still have a long way to go, which is one of the reasons I lurk at so many blogs. If you'd rather I not link to any of your future posts - or if anyone else reading your comments would rather I didn't - then please e-mail me at tonggumomma(at)gmail(dot)com.

And if anyone travels from my blog to yours and makes an inappropriate comment, please let me know. I'll have to stop my Sunday Links if that ever happens. I've always felt strongly that your spaces are not for APs to do anything but listen and try to absorb. And I never link to something that I don't find very important - On rare occasions I may be struggling to understand it, but even then, if I link to it, I feel it's significant.

Thanks for your patience with me.

Lillie said...

Hey that's oka tonggu momma, I don't mind at all! ;)

To be honest I was kind of surprised, I didn't think many AP's would read my blog, as much swearing and bitching and complaining as I do, lol. I'm sure I don't come across as the most pleasant of individuals.

I'm glad if I can help, that's why I do this. Feel free to comment any time!

a Tonggu Momma said...

Lillie - Thank so much. I'm guessing that a lot of APs don't read blogs written by adoptees. I have to admit that it IS really hard... but that doesn't mean that you don't have something important to say! I read lots of different blogs, then try to sift through everything so that I can share stuff that isn't so raw it scares APs away. I appreciate your willingness to let me do that!

a Tonggu Momma said...

I meant to say that reading the blogs of lots all adoptees is hard -- not specifically YOURS! ;) I reread after I posted and thought - oops!

As to the swearing and complaining... it's you and it's raw and it's real. It's good for me to read it. It's easy as an AP to want to only see the good side of adoption. But there is a lot of stuff that isn't good about adoption. And we as APs need to remember that - for our children and out of respect for our childrens' first parents.

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