Advice needed

Moderator: AfterAdoption

Advice needed

Postby Ashling » Wed Oct 12, 2005 12:40 pm

My names Ashling and im 17, and im basically writing this because i need some outside perspective on my situation, what to do kind of thing.
I was adopted at birth and have always known this, it kind of became a reality and more of an issue if you like when i became a teenager. I had the obvious wondering about my birth parents, questions etc. My adopted parents always told me i knew all they did, which was just that my birth mum came from ireland. A few months back i found some documents relating to my adoption which told me alot more, my parents had been lying to me about what they knew. It was not much information, but just the background info on the parents that the adoption service had given.
Anyways I was very annoyed at my parents, and went to a friends where i joked that using the info id find my birth mum, so i started mucking about online ringing some numbers in ireland, and long story short, i actually did find my birth mum within an hour or so of doing this. Im sure you can imagine what a shock it was to the both of us really, her getting a phone call out of the blue from her daughter, and me actually finding her when i had honestly just been having a joke.
So, i know this isnt obviously the proper way to go about things, i know i should be 18 and it should have been done through the adoption service etc, but that is not how things have worked out.
We talked on the phone once or twice, but both found it too hard and tense, so we agreed to email once a week, which gradually progressed to include txt and msn.
Things have hardly gone great, and we are currently taking a month break from contact because things have just gone so downhill. and i know alot of that is my fault, which is why im choosing now to seek an outsiders view/help, because i know if i dont change my attitude in this its not going to work.
The problem is i seem to be doing all the work, if i bent over backwards anymore to accomadate her id break my back! But she doesnt see that im doing all this. She has a family now, her husband knows of me, but her sons dont, and she always seems to be putting it right into my face how precious her children are, how they cant find out, how she doesnt want to hurt them etc. I understand that, but is there a need for her to say it to me? Ive said this to her and she doesnt think anything of it.
When things seem to be going alrite, I always seem to say something that will start an argument, and Ill always say mallicous and hurtful stuff about my adoption, which i dont really mean but i feel like i just want to get back at her or something. But its not me and i dont get why i do it or how to stop it.
Also she is very sparing in telling me anything about my past. It took a massive argument for her to tell me that my birthfather was dead, he killed himself, she didnt think to mention this before when i had been talking of looking for him sometime. Shes only said she couldnt keep me as she had very little, well i personally think theres more to it, yet apparently its not my right to know.
I dont know this whole thing hasnt been as id imagine, she is cold and emotionless, and i know that these reunions often dont work and i should be grateful she even talks to me etc.
She makes all the descions, there is no comprimise or anything. its her way or nothing, and i cant be doing with that as i dont like to be dictated to about when ill feel a certain emotion or what i will or wont say. Its not humanly possible in my opinion to do that anyway.
She also tells me how im an unnessecry burden in her life, how im messing it up etc, which really hurts but she doesnt seem to care when i tell her so, which i dont know may be a reason why i say the hurtful things i do.
I dont think Ive made much sense here, or really got to what i was trying to say, but id be grateful to hear any opinions, advice, help you could offer.
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Joined: Wed Oct 12, 2005 12:38 pm

Postby elly » Wed Oct 12, 2005 5:09 pm

Hi Ashlyn

That's quite a story

With modern technology it's so much easier these days to find relatives, my mum was listed on a web site & everthing happened very fast, like yours.

I have to admit your mum does sound a bit cold, but you have to remember it's been a shock for her too. Like she says, she has a life, and as hard as is it to accept, your not part of it.

My advise would be to keep in touch by e-mail. Let each other know how you are, what your up to etc... If you loose touch now it could be harder to re-establish a relationship later on. You also need time to develop a relationship.

Regarding your a/mum, don't be too hard on her, she was obviously trying to protect you - talk to her, you may find she's more understanding than you think.

Hope everything works out for you

Re-United with Natural Mum 23rd Oct 2004
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Joined: Sun Feb 06, 2005 7:55 pm

Postby Montravia » Wed Oct 12, 2005 6:04 pm

Hi Ashlyn,

I agree with Elly and there could be many reasons why your bmum is behaving like this but it would be unfair off me to speculate. I'm a biological mother whose been in reunion for over a year now. In my situation I wasn't actually searching as I didn't know how but found my son accidentally. Incidently that was through the internet as well but I found out he had been searching for me for 5 years.

At the beginning I found it hard as I went through so many fears including rejection. Although I gave my son all the information he wanted it took me a while to be completely open about my feelings towards him. Now we have a good reunion.

Keep up contact with your bmum though even if it is only by email. The situation could change in the future so having some contact now is better than nothing.

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Joined: Sat Sep 24, 2005 10:02 pm

Postby Guest » Thu Oct 13, 2005 8:05 am

hi ,,, i think you need to speek to a councillor in the adoption circle adfet adoption is very good ,,, they can act as a mediate for you and your mum and if your mum feels she cant speek to you on how she is feeling she may be able to speek to the mediate who can then speek with you ,, it may ( may not) give you peace of mind and enable you to talk through your feeling ,,

i would deffo keep up with the emails even if its just 1 a month just to say hi how yeh doin just simple things like that and things may progress from there ,,,

i really do hope things sort out for you ,,, there is always someone on here to chat to if yeh need anyone ,,,
luv julie xxx

Postby me_and_mine » Thu Oct 13, 2005 12:44 pm

Hi Ashling,
Oh my goodness what a rollercoaster of emotions you and your birth and adoptive parents must be going through.

I am an adoptive mum, all of my adopted children have complex disabilities and I find it very hard to judge what they do or don't understand. Their stories are all very different and very complex in their own rights too so how much I can or should or do share with them and their siblings here is always a struggle. Please try and both talk to and listen to your adoptive Mum. It may be there were very good reasons in her heart why she did not share those papers with you. Not necesarily right reasons or good enough reasons in your mind but in her heart I am sure she was doing what felt right at the time.

If you have always had a good and loving relationship with her before then really consider if this is a good reason to thbrow that away.

Also bear in mind that very very many 16-19 year olds come into a very stormy relationship with parents! It is very natural and normal to fall out over things that in the grand scheme of life are not really worth it!

On that note the same really does apply to your thoughts feelings and conversations with your birth Mum. Not only do you have the strangeness and suddeness of being thrown into this very odd relationship, you have the normal teenage/young adult hormonal type of issues to deal with too.
( by odd I mean that the relationship between your birth Mum and you does not fall into any boundaries that we would have a frame for),

Your birth Mum must have always had a scenario or several playing in her mind about the possibiltiy of you finding her! I doubt very much when she picked up the phone that day she had the slightest inclination it would be you! The shock of that would probably have completely wiped out any planned meeting and greeting images she ever had!
There has been no time for her to even consider how she explains you to her existing family, human nature is such that we never think "it" will happen to us and so she may have always lived an ostrich kind of life hoping that she would never have to explain...and this could well have run along hand in hand with wanting desperately for you to want to search and find her! These sorts of emotions and thoughts never really make sense do they?

How long has it been since that first phone call? I would think it could take a good year for her to really accept that you have found her in this way and that you are really wanting the whole thing to work. I am sure she has lived with guilt, fear, and anger as well as grief over giving you up. Part of her subconscious has probably been telling ehr that you will have all those emotions too and she may be feeling very defensive waiting for you to blame her be angry with her etc. So when your voice rattles on with all those things you say you don't really mean, she is having terrible difficulty not taking them totally to heart and not understanding exactly what you do is hard to not expect her to be able to read your mind!!!!!

I think you need to take a little while to really think about all of your thoughts and feelings, writing it all down helps me! Try to put your life onto paper from your earliest memories, take time out from each day to really allow yourself to be honest with you. Until you can be honest with yourself it is impossible to speak out with honesty. If you can summarise your life in a wayb you would be willing to share, putting all the good things as well as sad/bad/angry into a letter, sharing that with both your Birth and adoptive Mums may help to explain what you want from the reunion. This is not something you are going to achieve in a week! So for now agree with your Birth Mum that you will keep in touch by email just a few lines a few times a week. Explain to her that you want to take time to really understand your own feelings to enable you to understand hers and her to understand you.

Then allow yourself time to grieve too!

I know you said you have always known you were adopted, however the birth Mum that lived in your imagination was not the one you have found! It is similar to a pregnant lady giving birth to a disabled baby, they need to grieve the baby they imagined they would have to allow them to accept and love the baby they actually have now! The same applies to you, you need to grieve for the Birth Mum you held in your thougths growing up, and accept the birth Mum you have found. Then you can beging to move forward and make decisions you want to live with. HYou may decide that you do not want or need to keep up close regular contact, you may decide that close regular contact is the right thing. Only you can decide but it is not a decision to rush or to make out of anger or frustration.

Keeping options open allows you to know you have made the right decision!

We have just adopted a baby who was born with multiple disabilities, her parents decided after many months that they could not met her needs and keeping her at home was not the right thing for her, them or her sister. However they did want to keep in touch and we have agreed an adoption that allows them as much contact as they feel happy with and we can all accomodate. You are now in the reverse situation, and you have the right to negotiate with Birth Mum what your contact will entail. First you need to know what you want it to achieve!

I hope this does not read too much like a lecture! I really hope you can allow yourself to work it through and to work through the whole grieving process! Anger grief disbelief sadness is all a part of that.

Much love to you and please let us know how it goes if you fell comfortable with that.
Mum of 5 great kids on earth and 3 in heaven
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Joined: Fri Sep 30, 2005 7:19 pm

Postby Ashling » Thu Oct 13, 2005 1:55 pm

hey, thanx to you all for your views, they are much appreciated.
I think I will use the month break we are having in contact to focous on what i actually want from this, because ive never considered that.
Im going to try sort out some counselling with the adoption society, as I realise now I cant come to terms/deal with this just by playing it over and over in my head! Also thinking about it, I wish I had just had the patience and waited a year or so longer, cuz I dont think Im mature enough to deal with it, or at least not in the way its happened.
I think also Ive been taking out the death of Martin (my bdad) on her as well, which isnt fair she had enough heartache with him killing himself, then on the day of his funeral her dad(who had disapproved of martin) tried to kill himself, but just blew away half his stomach! Its just how do you i dont know grieve? for someone you didnt know yet always thought you would? y'know am i meant to grieve be upset about it what?
I guess only time will tell what will happen, and talking about it can only but help so thanks alot for listening!!
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Joined: Wed Oct 12, 2005 12:38 pm

Postby me_and_mine » Thu Oct 13, 2005 6:45 pm

Of course you can still grieve for your birth Dad, there are no rights and wrongs in grief what you are feeling is right for you! Grief is not a fixed road you walk along and reach the end of. I think it is more like a maze, sometimes you can think you have found the exit only to turn around and find you are heading back for th emiddle.

Grieving is just as painful and important and worthy of recognition when you are grieving for lost opportunities and chances....such as the opportunity to talk with your dad, as when you are grieving for a much loved person. I hope you find some counseling that is relevant to your circumstances.

You really need to allow yourself to acknowledge all the hurt and dissapointment and also to acknowledge the good that has happened.
If you don't feel able to write it down how about a recording oin a cassette, or drawing pictures. Art therapy can be really helpful and there may be an art therapist near where you could be worth asking at your local Citizen advice beauro.

Can someone on th eafter adoption helplines help you?

Thinking of you
much love
Mum of 5 great kids on earth and 3 in heaven
Posts: 11
Joined: Fri Sep 30, 2005 7:19 pm

Postby jimi » Fri Oct 14, 2005 6:59 pm

hello Aisling,

I wrote along similar lines to 'Jonathan' basically saying that it is important that you try to get as much support and advice as possible through this difficult process. You have so much going on, but it is clear that you do not feel you have the full story. You may never get this, but maybe going to the adoption agency for your records will help you a little. You need someone to be there for you and to help you work through your feelings, maybe a counsellor or an adoption worker. Take your time and look after yourself.
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Location: Orig. West Mids, now SE England.

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