HOW DOES IT FEEL TO BE ADOPTED?
I’m writing this on the day I finally mailed off my Consent to Contact forms, notarized and completed, to the Children’s Home Society offices. I have had cold feet about finding whatever info I could for my whole adult life. It was very painful to be adopted in a broad sense for me, at least while I was growing up, because I was so radically different from my adoptive parents and sibling. I didn’t realize how deep and intense the wound is until I mailed these forms off today. IT IS A HUGE DEAL better to have finally tried to do something to resolve this question mark.
I wonder whether everyone who is an adoptee can agree wholly on one notable feeling of ‘adoptedness’. Surely each individual’s experience is going to be unique. I am grateful that I was given life. I most likely will always be needing to heal from whatever happened in my earliest hours/days/months. The story I have, which may or may not be an accurate account, is that mine was a 2-3 months premature home birth. Presumably then I was tended to in an incubator for many weeks. This being 1971, it’s a miracle I survived (I’ve been told). Being the father of a preemie myself, I understand and have witnessed the frailty of life after being brought into the world so dangerously early.
Being adopted was hard also because of the ways I disappointed these loving parents who “chose” me. This was a big issue for me during my years of alcohol and drug addiction. I likened it to being gambled on akin to buying a fairly new used car, which cosmetically was fine but turned out to be a lemon. This point of view has changed, thankfully! But I felt I should share it in response to the thread’s title.
It feels threatening and oppressive when people, trying and failing to understand, say things that are meant to remind the adoptee that they have a wonderful family, that they ARE your family. A non-adopted person doesn’t realize that something very deep and fundamental happened when a tiny infant was denied the first pheromonal comforts and nurturing of biologically familiar contact. There are the worries about whether the adoptive parents are going to be hurt if/when one does take the steps to find their birthmother. There are the worries about whether the birthmother is alive, dead, will be receptive, wants nothing to do me, et cetera. Is she a drug addict? Is she famous? It might sound like the ramblings of an adolescent here, but I am a 44 year old man. My thoughts on the subject haven’t progressed much further than when I used to ruminate on it at 8, 10, 16 years old.
Hey, other Adoptees. I’m on one side of this, where it’s still dark because of the Mystery. I will post again if (or please God, WHEN) I find what I hope to find. If I don’t get what I want, as sometimes we just simply don’t, I know that my life is of great value, and suffering is unacceptable. Hard concepts and vagaries can be dealt with. For what it’s worth:
(as far as I know)
I was born in Long Beach, California. My birthday is 6/4/71. Supposedly I was born at home. My biological mother is supposed to have had blond hair and gray eyes. She may have been around 19-21 years old. She was quoted to have been “Socially Confused” (LOL! me too).
Thanks for reading,