First Meeting With My Birth Family

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First Meeting With My Birth Family

Postby sunny02 » Tue Sep 02, 2014 11:46 am

This is my first posting on here, a few times I've started to type something as I've been going on my journey, but then changed my mind and just relied on reading other posts. So here goes....WOW.....well, I've dont it!! I've actually met my birth mother and my 1/2 brother this last weekend (I spent virtually the whole weekend with them) and have just got to tell you all, I've had the most amazing, wonderful time. I'm 48 years old, have always known I was adopted (which was fine, no problem), but I had never really bothered about wanting to find my birth mum, although if I'm honest I have to say that yes, I did from time to time wonder why I'd been given for adoption or if I looked like her. Well, this is a brief outline of how my journey has gone.....I received a letter at the beginning of June from After Adoption saying a family relative was looking for me....this totally blew me away, at my age this wasn't ever going to happen, not to me! 'Shock' is an understatement!! Yes, I will confess, I cursed and was somewhat a bit mad, but after I calmed down, took a very deep breath I then began to wonder who it was and why? So a few days later I made the call to After Adoption & learned it was my birth mother looking for me..... I'm in shock again! Obviously I had many questions, some of which could be answered by After Adoption on the phone, but I also learned that I had an adoption file...well, this was news to me! ...... this I just had to have. So I began to source it, I contacted my local adoption team at my local council (which I never knew existed), the lady there very kindly pointed me in the right direction (she was just simply lovely), completed the forms, etc and began the work for me to get my file. It took a few weeks (cos of holidays,etc) but eventually I got it. It was scary but interesting at the same time; it really helped me to understand (best I could) how things were back on the 60's and some of what my birth mother had gone through. My birth mother was very patient waiting for me to do this and as much as she wanted contact, she was allowing me to be comfortable with things. So eventually after I'd got my file and read it all (knowing it word for word I read it so many times!) we spoke on the phone....this has to be one of the most scary things I think I've ever done (& probably for her too), we were quite clearly both nervous but an hour & half later we'd had a few laughs and our nerves had calmed. We arranged for another call and things went from there. We learned a bit about each other and the lives we lived every call we had and decided that I would travel to see her....this was great for me, I wanted to go and see where I came from. So, I arrived in my birth town very late on Friday night, checked into the hotel, got a little bit of sleep (well more of a very restless lay down!!) and on the Saturday morning @10am we did it...we met (both shacking and so nervous)! I laugh now when I think about it, but it really was just as you see on the TV; my hubby left me by the hotel entance which was literally only a very short walk to our arranged meeting place, he said "right, so this is where I now leave you now, if you'd like to walk straight up there, you'll see your birth mother she's sitting on the bench waiting for you"...it did help a little and made me smile although my legs were like jelly! The very short distance did feel like an hour, but in real time it was only two minutes, if that...again, just as you see on TV, as I walked towards her, she got up from the bench and started walking towards me, we smiled, and both continued to walk...we literaly met body to body, we hugged and cried and shook with nerves and then sat down incase we fell down....after 5 mintes of sitting staring at each other (I couldn't get over how much like her I looked even though I'd got a photo of her) we walked over to a little nearby cafe, had some coffee, calmed down and the weekend began......just simply brilliant. I'm not sure it would have been so successful if this had happened for me earlier in my life (obviously I will never know that), but I'm so happy that she came looking for me (even though I've had a fantastic life & adopted family), I feel like I've been home for the weekend, all my worries have gone, I'm just so looking forward to staying in touch and I can't wait to see her again (even though we spoke yesterday and probably will tomorrow, if we don't later!)...although next time we meet neither of us will be staying in a hotel, we're very comfortable in each others company and for me it does feel like 'family'.
I wish everyone who is a bit unsure about contact with birth relatives to have the experience I've had.....it's most certainly changed my life, but for me that's not a bad thing, it's wonderful :-) xx
sunny02
 
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Re: First Meeting With My Birth Family

Postby sylvie » Tue Sep 02, 2014 6:42 pm

Hello Sunny 02.

Thank you for sharing your lovely story. I am in reunion with my son, and we clicked immediately too. His presence in my life brings me more joy than anything thing else on earth, I just love him to bits.

Here's wishing you a lifetime of happiness to both of you.
Reunited with my beloved son after decades of separation which began when I was a young teenager and he was newly born, and finally ended a few years ago when we met again as fully-grown adults.
sylvie
 
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Re: First Meeting With My Birth Family

Postby cleo » Tue Sep 02, 2014 8:25 pm

Hi there,

wishing you all the best in this new venture, i too had my son contact me after nearly 30 years, we hit it off really well, as did the next 4 months after that...but then for some reason it went down hill and after not even a yera my son cut all contact with me...its been nearly 3 years now and i am still in limbo.

I honestly hope that everything continues to work out for you and deep down i hope that one dya my son ill re-contact me
cleo
 
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Re: First Meeting With My Birth Family

Postby sylvie » Tue Sep 02, 2014 9:35 pm

Cleo, I hope he will too one day x
Reunited with my beloved son after decades of separation which began when I was a young teenager and he was newly born, and finally ended a few years ago when we met again as fully-grown adults.
sylvie
 
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Re: First Meeting With My Birth Family

Postby cleo » Fri Sep 05, 2014 10:56 am

Hi sylvie,

Thankyou, at the moment i have found him on twitter, and now and again he puts up a photo on his porfile page, so i copy it and put it away in a folder, i know it may sound sad, but at least i can have a little glimpse now and again on he is looking, i love it when he smiles, i love him with all my heart but i guess i was too much for him too handle with my feelings, i don't know, but i am slowly getting back into my life routine, taking a corner and looking behind to catch a glimpse of him somewhere.

I too hope he will get in contact again when he feels he's ready...but when and if that will ever happen....who knows.

Give an extra hug to your son when you see him x

I'm just so glad that you were both able to overcome all the emotional side of things even though i know its not easy and everyday is another challenge but at least your working together to sort things out which i think is just fabulous.

With heartfelt joy for you sylvie, i hope one day i will feel the same again as i did 3 years ago Take care x
cleo
 
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Re: First Meeting With My Birth Family

Postby sylvie » Sat Sep 06, 2014 9:11 am

Hi Cleo

You know, I don't think the emotional sides are always overcome. Sometimes I'm knocked out by the effects of adoption, sometimes he is.
Although we do talk about it, sometimes we each need some time to ourselves to find a way to understand and live with what we feel.
Sometimes we misunderstand each other because we hear things from an already hurt position, and one where we both have low self-esteem as a result of the adoption (me because I was told I wasn't good enough to keep my baby, my son because he believed that adoption meant I didn't want him - both were wrong).

The reality is that it is a colossal thing for a mother and child to be separated. Nature and evolution never intended us to be.
In many cases like yours and mine - where our only 'crime' was that we were mothers who were young and unsupported - we and our babies should never have been separated from each other. We should never have lost each other. A little support - which all new parents need - would've changed everything.
That is hard for us to bear, and hard for our sons to understand - society is unrecognizably different now, and it is impossible for them to see how disempowered a pregnant teenager was in the 1970s.

I understand your pain Cleo. I really really feel for you.
But you are doing the right thing by looking after yourself. Sadly, you can't change the actions of your son, but you can be compassionate to yourself, and recognise that you need and deserve kindness and love to soothe the great hurt adoption has caused you.
Reunited with my beloved son after decades of separation which began when I was a young teenager and he was newly born, and finally ended a few years ago when we met again as fully-grown adults.
sylvie
 
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Re: First Meeting With My Birth Family

Postby ladyarcher70 » Sat Sep 06, 2014 9:34 pm

I wonder how many girl adoptees do not truly understand the loss to their birth mothers until they have children themselves ........ I have spoken about this before on here, but will repeat it as there are quite a few newcomers.....' I am an adoptee' ........sometimes this feels how it must feel to say 'I am an alcoholic'..... it is saying 'I am damaged'........ and we are....... but of course so are our birth mothers.....

As a child, and growing up, I had been totally 'sold' the adoption myth......'' you are the chosen one '' ......... but at the same time you gradually realise that you have been chosen in order to make a pair of grownups happy ......... quite a responsibility actually ....... small wonder that so many of us fail ..... we fail to live up to the responsibility put upon us ....... no child should be made to feel that an adult's happiness depends on their achievement .......

What I regret very greatly is that at the time I was still believing that adoption was a wonderful thing I was put in a position where I met, and worked with a number of girls who were waiting to give birth and have their babies adopted......I was seventeen and had a live-in summer holiday job in what used to be called a 'residential hotel'. This was run by the wife of a retired Baptist Minister. In those days 'good works' were important to people and this lady, I think for purely altruistic reasons, employed girls from The Haven. This was a 'home' for unmarried mothers run by the Baptist Union. I have no idea why my a.mother thought it a good idea to send me there for my holiday job.......I never asked her ........however while I was there I learned a lot of things not taught at my private girls' day school...

,,,,,,,,.. but the bad thing I did myself was to preach to these girls how wonderful adoption was......... I can only plead ignorance as my defence ......... having not, at that stage, had my own children, I had absolutely no idea of the effect on these girls that losing their babies would have.............I also did not, at that time, have enough self knowledge to understand the effect that being adopted had had on me ........... I can only apologise, ..........and hope very much that those mothers were eventually reunited with the babies they had in 1961.......

.. as Sylvie says........'The reality is that it is a colossal thing for a mother and child to be separated. Nature and evolution never intended us to be ............'

LA70
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Re: First Meeting With My Birth Family

Postby sylvie » Mon Sep 08, 2014 4:22 pm

Dear LadyArcher, don't berate yourself for anything. Especially not you, with all the kindness and insights you've shared on here. You have helped me immensely, and I know others will feel the same.

The thing is we were all duped by the adoption myth, even those of us personally caught up in it. But denial only lasts so long. Awareness and reality begin to wake us up, bit by bit.

Adoption was always presented as a wonderful thing, happy to all, entirely problem-free.
Many of us on here now know that that simply was not true, and that both mothers and babies suffered, often for life, for being separated from each other.

PS. At some point just before or just after my son's birth, my social worker suggested that it would be a good thing if I accompanied her to talk to other pregnant young women to persuade them that relinquishing their babies would be a good thing. I'm glad I never did that, but my reasons for not would've been something unrelated (perhaps I had a cold or something like that) as - back then - I didn't see how wrong her suggestion was. What a nasty system that was.
Reunited with my beloved son after decades of separation which began when I was a young teenager and he was newly born, and finally ended a few years ago when we met again as fully-grown adults.
sylvie
 
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Re: First Meeting With My Birth Family

Postby sunny02 » Fri Sep 12, 2014 2:43 pm

Dear sylvie, I'm so happy for you & your son, I also wish you many many many years of contact & happiness xxx
sunny02
 
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Re: First Meeting With My Birth Family

Postby sunny02 » Fri Sep 12, 2014 3:07 pm

Dear cleo, I'm thinking about you and your son, I wish that one day (hopefully soon) you will meet again, connect and stay connected forever.
I don't know if this will help or not and I don't know if my recent meeting & happiness will last (I hope it does, but who knows), I'm just taking things a day at a time..it is hard to know for sure how my birth mother actually really feels (it's tricky as I don't know her properly yet! - I hope she's as happy as I am), it's difficult to know if I'm being 'too pushy' or 'too distant'.....just hoping that I get it right, but I guess only time will tell (suppose she may feel the same!). Gosh, this adoption/meeting etc. actually is very difficult....it really is a emotional rollercoaster ride....but, I for one am not giving up...albeit I have been very very happy with my adopted life (and I really have had wonderful adopted parents), I made my choice to meet my birth mother once she started the ball rolling and so far I'm over the moon with that, it's brill....I hope & wish that everyone can have a 'happy ending' or think I should actually say 'happy re-union' xxx
sunny02
 
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Re: First Meeting With My Birth Family

Postby cleo » Thu Sep 18, 2014 7:49 am

Dear Sunny, Sylvie, and LA,

Sylvie you are so right about thinking we were doing the best thing for our babies, but now after all of these years, it simply was'nt true, i realise i have been in cuckoo land for the past 30+ years.......

And that has had a solid blow on me and my emotions, just so hard to explain what i know realise is "trauma"...what we have 'hidden' all these years thinking we did the right thing, only to be woken up to the harse reality of what adoption is really all about, my heart is broken.

And the fact my son still has made no contact only puts more salt on my wounds, like i said we got on so well i really thought he was happy with having me back in his life, and like you say Sunny, yes its difficult to know if your being too pushy or too distant, or perhaps in my case showing and telling my son all my emotions i was going through, perhaps he could'nt handle it..;i just don't know and probably will never know the 'real' reason why he suddenly 'dis-connected' from me.

But one thing is for sure, the hurt i feel even more strongly now, will never go away, i have been literally heart-broken by the system and by my son, and the sadness i feel is overwhelming. I do stay strong, because for the moment i have to.

LA we were all dubbed by the system wether it be in the 60,s 70,s or 80,s, i watched the film philomena, i was sad she did'nt get to meet her son, thats a thing that always worried me, and i can now find 'a little' peace of mind that i know he's doing well in life and has a lovely family of his own and that his A.parents were very good to him, and that they were always honest with him about the adoption.

Sunny i like how you said that your not going to give up, i too have not given up on my son, but there is nothing i can do, i only wish i knew what i did or said wrong if anything.....he promised me at the beginning that we'd always stay in touch....sadly that was'nt true.

Some days i feel angry with him because he could'nt be 'man-enough' to tell me what wet wrong, but then i think maybe he was just trying to fill a hole after his A.dad dying and had no intention of staying in contact with me once he knew our story...i just don't know, i've been going round in circles in my head for the last nearly 3 years and still hit a brick wall and end up with a splitting headache.

At the end of it all, i then think he doe'snt caare about my feelings or how broken i am, he has hs family and friends to turn too, where as i just have my husband, who now i don't say anything to him, i keep it all bottled up...or i come and talk on here to try and release some of my pain.

Like i've said to Sylvie a few times, all i ever wanted was to get to know my son and my Grandson, and just love them like a normal person....why doe's it have to be so hard, why the brick walls in my life?

Sorry :-(
cleo
 
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Re: First Meeting With My Birth Family

Postby maisie » Fri Sep 19, 2014 8:58 pm

Thanks to all for the posts.
I know now that it was the cruelest thing to separate a mother from her baby. Just because I was eighteen and unmarried. Such a sin in the 1960s. I was reunited with my son on his 45th birthday, four years ago, and as others have said, it went really well and we were both happy. However, since then we have only had phone contact from time to time. Long phone calls that mostly consist of me listening to him and supporting him in his life. I don't think he has a clue how devastating the whole separation has been and still is for me. I am glad we are in touch. But I find the relationship painful, as what I hoped for was my baby back, instead of which I am trying to meet this grown man who still feels like a stranger. Without a shared history it is difficult to fill the emotional hole left in both our lives. He doesn't talk to me about his childhood, just says he was unhappy growing up and didn't get on with his adoptive parents. (Both now deceased.) He gets on with his older (adoptee) brother's family and also has two (adoptee) sisters. Also has a partner with siblings and a mother, so quite a large support group around him. Which is good. He is doing fine. But I feel very lonely, as I have no other children or family. I have seen mothers in a similar situation on Long Lost Families and do so identify with the sense of loss and grief that never seems to let up. Like others, I haven't given up on making some sort of future together, but at the moment it just seems the best I can hope for is to carry on being a background mother in his life. I'm saying all this because I feel this is a place where people might understand the agonising loneliness and grief birth mothers carry and live with day after day. Every time I see a little boy out there in the world, I am reminded of the loss and what should have been mine by right. It seems to be more painful since being in touch with my son. I think there should be more support available, perhaps a group, for birth families and adoptees to meet up.
maisie
 
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Re: First Meeting With My Birth Family

Postby sylvie » Wed Oct 01, 2014 10:20 pm

Maisie, I understand and have shared the very feelings you describe. Much of it is grief-based - there is actually a name for this kind of grief: disenfranchised grief. It is grief that is deeply felt but not recognised by society so that the person grieving recieves no comforting or acknowledment of their profound loss.

Counselling has really helped me (but it has to be with someone who is experienced in adoption related issues, and particularly with the experiences of first mothers).

Have you broached the idea of meeting up again with your son? Might it be a good thing?
Reunited with my beloved son after decades of separation which began when I was a young teenager and he was newly born, and finally ended a few years ago when we met again as fully-grown adults.
sylvie
 
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Re: First Meeting With My Birth Family

Postby maisie » Tue Oct 07, 2014 4:42 pm

Thanks, Sylvie.
I have suggested meeting up again with my son, several times. But so far he remains evasive, keeps putting it off for some time in the future. I don't like getting my hopes up and then having them dashed, so I'm leaving it up to him now, when he's ready. His partner agrees that is the best way. But like you say, it is hard when society does not acknowledge the grief involved in this sort of relationship. It helps to write my feelings here. And I do go to a therapy group, though no one there is in a similar situation. In the meantime I just get on with my life and hope things with my son will one day change and we will become able to meet up and share our life experiences. I appreciate your support.
maisie
 
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Re: First Meeting With My Birth Family

Postby cleo » Tue Oct 07, 2014 7:31 pm

Evening Maisie,

I know exactly how you feel, although yous till ahve abit of contact with your son i have none at all. I greif i feel is way beyound anything i can describe, i just wish that my son can understand the pain i have been through and still going through, like you also said and i have said in the past, it hurt not knowing anything about him, but since he came looking for me and then left without a word of explination, i am hurt so badly that i sometimes wish he never came looking for me, and on top on that i am a grandmother, that can have no contact or watch my grandson grow up, be a part of his life.......although i do get glimpes (very rarely) off the internet of my son mistakenly posts public.
My life has been in turmoil as most of the members know, but this past year has hit me hard as i have now Fallen out with my parents, not through my son finding me, as they are not aware (to my knowledge) but the way they have reacted to me over the past year, their attitude towards me seems to have changed and its got to the point where i feel as though i have no place in thier lives, i do wonder now if they do know but like 33 years ago, never talked to me about my son, as if he never existed.
I feel as though i have been living in another time zone all these years, and perhaps my parents knew all along, i just don't know what the truth is anymore, i thought we were close, well i guess i have been so naive about everything........

I am keeping my head above water so to speak, and don't get so upset like i used to, i have some many things going through my head, like whwt was the real reason my son came looking for me, just simple curiosty? Come into my life just to let go as soon as he knew about what happened. Sometimes i feel angry at him for doing this to me, especially that he said at the beginning that he would never hurt me in any way, and that we'd always be in contact!!! Sometimes i think if he did come back into my life how now would i react, would i keep my distance this time, could i ever trust what he says to me. After all of this at the end of the day i just sit back and tell myself...he will never come back, he found me, found out his story, and thats it, for him his life can carry on.

Leaving me in the same dilema 33 years ago, wondering where he lives what he likes, what he's doing today, how my Grandson may look and his interests.

There is no easy way out of these feelings we have, they will saty with us till the day we die, and nothing, no nothing can change the regret i feel for thinking all those years ago i was doing the right thing.

Dearest Maisie again like you my only place to come is on here to express my feelings, i trust nobody anymore, because at the end of the day, unless that person is in the same boat as us, they cannot truly understand the pain and heartache we go through day in and day out.

Thanks to everyone on this forum for their support, i do not where i will end up, but i just hope deep down that my son will one day get in contact,ut i doubt it very much.

Take care everyone x
cleo
 
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