I’ve come to the conclusion that I’m at a place where I need to accept this lifetime of adoptee pain. I don’t understand how on earth society doesn’t understand there is so much more to adoption that a cute little baby to complete a family.
I’ve done everything I can think of to work on healing from the pain I experience daily. I ran for 26 years because the pain was too great. I numbed myself with drugs, alcohol, sex and things that were a threat to my life and soul. I didn’t understand the depths of my pain because I spent 37 years being told to be thankful and grateful for someone taking me in when my own mother and biological family didn’t want me. It was beyond confusing to know this pain was coming from the same place I was expected to be grateful. And they wonder why I drank to cope. What else was I supposed to do? I saw counselors from the time I was 5 years old until I was an adult. Never once was my “Adoption” brought up or spoke about. The counselors swept these issues adoptees face under the rug, just like my adoptive family did. My feelings were never to exist, never to be spoken of. My history was gone just like that.
I was in and out of juvenile jail, in so many fights I can’t even begin to count, I was a teenager full of pain and no one would acknowledge my real root issue, where the trauma began. That was being separated from my biological mother at the beginning of life. I can’t help but wonder why the psychologists and counselors never acknowledged this to be a root issue or a trauma? Did they truly not know? Or were they fed the propaganda the rest of the world has been fed. Keep quiet, pretend and lies are okay, because were actually protecting the child? Little do they know that child will one day grow up and have questions and more questions? We will want answers and when we feel like we’ve been duped or like a rug has been pulled over our heads we will truly not feel like we are a part of any family. Some days I feel like I’m an alien and I don’t’ even belong on this planet. I can’t figure out where I fit in, perhaps it’s somewhere between here and there? I’ve accepted the fact that I don’t’ fit in anywhere and it will solve me a lot of heart ache and grief for the future to come.
As I have been on this healing journey, which started in 2011 so much has come to light for me. I knew I had a lot of feelings deep inside that needed to be acknowledged but as I began to write and uncover my feelings I was able to identify that my root issues to my low self-esteem, anger, rage, and feelings of abandonment and rejection stem back to being separated from my first family. The other side is my adoptive family pretending they didn’t exist and making me feel guilty for wanting to know them and love them, even if they didn’t want to know and love me. This has been heartbreaking! I started drinking at 12 years old and drank heavily my whole life because I didn’t want to face the pain. About a year into my healing journey I decided it was time to throw in the towel on my drinking habit and start a recovery program. The day before my “Birth”day (which feels like dooms day to me) I will celebrate 2 years of sobriety. This has been the hardest 2 years of my life. I keep waiting on something magical to happen. Okay, I got sober… NOW WHAT? I’ve been writing for 2 years, I’ve been mentoring and leading in a recovery ministry and I’ve been working really hard at identifying with my real adoptee feelings. I have stood up in front of approx. 100 people and read my testimony out loud which shares a lot of my adoptee experience which is a healing experience. I have worked on writing exercises and workbooks for adoptees. I help others search for their long lost family members because search and reunions will always have a special place in my heart. I have been seeing a lay pastor for over a year about my life and my adoptee issues. I read adoptee books, I reach out to other adoptees online because they are the only ones that know how I feel and can relate. I wake up and pray daily and thank God for another day on earth with my kids. I pray and ask him to help me heal, to give me strength to get through another day. I ask God to help me find my purpose in this world. I go to work and take care of the elderly for a living and I absolutely love what I do. I surround myself with positive people and I’m very active in my church. I serve on the Emergency Response team and the Social Media Team. I’m in leadership in Celebrate Recovery, which is a ministry for those overcoming hurts, habits & hang-ups of any kind. I spend every moment I can with my kids.
Yet, My heart is broken, I am so sad deep down, and I just can’t seem to shake this feeling. I keep waiting and waiting, but perhaps it’s time I just accept this fate of the life I was given. Healing may be possible for certain areas for me. For instance, I have healed and forgiven my birth mother. I’m not mad at her anymore, but in order to heal from that I needed to discover the truth. I needed to know the truth about WHY she gave me up and WHY she decided not to tell my birth father about me. With my adoptive family holding these secrets from me and the rest of the world it was IMPOSSIBLE for me to heal. Now that I have fought tooth and nail and uncovering WHO I AM, I can move forward in certain areas.
I hear other adoptees say the pain never goes away, some much older than I. I am starting to believe this. I am a believer that GOD HEALS, but maybe the pain I’m experiencing is supposed to stay so I can fight and help other adoptees make it through what I have been through? So I can keep telling my story so maybe someone somewhere will realize that there I so much more to adoption than completing YOUR family. I’m almost 40 and the pain is so great now, even after I have found everyone and been in reunion some years. Now it’s heavy on my mind at what I missed with my siblings.
EVERY SINGLE HOUR OF EVER SINGLE DAY I THINK OF MY FIRST FAMILY AND HOW I WISH I WAS CLOSER TO THEM AND WHAT I MISSED.
I’m going to write a blog post about all the reminders I experience in a given day.
Accepting this pain is here to stay is something I’m working on and praying that God takes my pain and uses it for his gain. I am so sick and tired of feeling this way. I’m extremely thankful for all the adoptees at www.facebook.com/howdoesitfeeltobeadoptedI created this Facebook like page in October 2012 and it’s been the best healing tool yet. I can see that I’m not alone, and the other adoptees can see they aren’t alone. If only more adoptive parents would read and try to understand how it feels to be adopted, maybe their kids would have a better chance at healing early on in life vs. never being given that chance like so many of us. My right to heal was stolen along with my history. This has to change. We can’t accept anything if it’s being kept a secret from us.
Thanks for reading!