My Experience

Moderator: AfterAdoption

My Experience

Postby Nicole » Thu Jun 17, 2010 6:35 pm

hello everyone!

i just want to share my experience of adoption :) it gets confusing and is quite long so sorry in advance!

im 17 now, coming 18 at the end of this month. I was adopted when I was four after a couple of years in foster care. I have one brother who is a year younger than me, he is adopted too and we are biologically half brother and sister. we have the same biological mother (BM)! I have always known i was adopted but only found out why about two years ago by accident.

originally when i was 11 i came across files about my adoption, but i didnt understand much of it, big words weren't my thing! :lol: however some time in July 2008 i was online and a pop up appeared for a genealogy site. i had tried these before as the typical curious adopted kid to no success but never found anything. however this time i knew the surnames of my BM and my brothers biological dad (BD). and a result turned up with mine and my brothers date of births, and our names and other information that basically screamed us! :shock:

As soon as I seen this comment, I got my brother and we both emailed a reply, saying it was us. Long story short, we didnt tell our adoptive parents for fear of being denied access and quite simply getting in trouble. :? Things moved on quickly, we got a reply and found out we had other siblings. They are all my half brother and sisters. They have the same father as my brother. Their father and our biological mother are now married. Soon we were on msn to the family. My brother started to receive phone calls but I refused because I felt things were moving too quickly. This was all still behind my parents back. :(

A few weeks later, my brother had learned new information and family historys. Skipping forward, the BM wanted to meet us. Her and her family live about 4hours away but she was willing to make the journey. I said no. but my brother wanted to meet her, so I agreed reluctantly because I didnt want him going by himself. however she cancelled plans and asked if we would meet a biological relative who lives nearby. :? again I said no. but my brother said yes so I again agreed i would go with him. and i did. on our way the BM was ringing wonderin where we were etc and our B.grandfather was waitin on us. turns out we met B.cousins instead (small world-i half knew one of them from school) :o

Anyway, we went back to there house, did the small talk and there was a knock on the door. we expected this to be the grandfather, who we were told was at his house round the corner. Not quite! The door was answered and my brother and I sitting in the living room heard "where are my babies" cried out by a woman! and appearing in the doorway was the BM and one of the B.Brothers! :o :cry::x the shock cannot be explained. this may sound silly, but the night before i had mentally prepared myself for small talk with an old man not to be tricked into meeting the BM! :x

Cutting down the story loads...months later, changes in my brother were noticeable. he became distant from me and our parents. he was getting closer to the B.Family. he started doing things behind my back too, having phonecalls and conversations.

A short time later, we were on a family break and my brother had bought postcards to send to the B.Family. he wrote them and put them in his jacket. however my mum had lifted his jacket and found them. the cards gave away that we had met up and all hell broke lose basically! the betrayal felt by my parents is indescribable, i cant imagine the amount of hurt we had caused. :( i immediately told the whole story and after pressure my brother opened up reluctantly too. my brother and i were due to go away with friends for three weeks and our parents decided that this would be a good break from contact with B.Family and a chance for us just to enjoy ourselves. :)

At the end of the 3weeks with no contact it seemed all was fine. but through a social networking site, i noticed photos on my brothers profile with some of the B.Brothers in the place we were! he went out with them during the 3weeks and lied about it. :( We started attending meetings with a social worker from the postadoption team. the aim was to get information about why we were adopted because we were getting told conflicting stories. but the social workers were very reluctant to tell me anything because I was only 16/17. But i believe that if you are capable of looking for the answer, you are capable of receiving the answer . the BM's story was that we were 'stolen' from her for no reason, just that the government had something against her husband/my brother BD. :?

I knew otherwise. I knew that i suffered a painful babyhood, shattered leg, black eyes, grip marks and a post infection of chlamydia which had brought out thoughts of sexual abuse. :cry: no conclusion was ever drawn from who caused the injuries. excuses such as 'falling of the sofa' was used for the black eye and leg injuries. later this developed to someone falling on me to someone being pushed during an argument onto me. the chlamydia has still never been explained. :x

my brother started running away to the B.Family. he did this about 4 times and we had to collect him from Guard stations on a couple of occasions.

The police have been involved too. During a heated argument between my brother and mum, he punched our living room door, splitting it in two places. my dad grabbed him by the scruff of the collar and chucked him out and told him to come back when he calmed down and got manners. he did come back. with the police. he accused my dad of strangling him and threatened to sue him. :x after a few months this was dropped.

throughout all this my contact with my B.brothers and sisters was cut off. :( i wasnt allowed to talk to them at all because the BM felt i was a bad influence and was only going to hurt them. :( i started receiving abusive emails weekly from the BM and her husband/my brothers BD. I ended up changing my email account. due to stress i started fainting. during one phonecall with the BM the abuse was in constant flow and i dont remember alot of it but i woke up with paramedics around me. i took a seizure apparently due to the immense stress i was under. i now have a diagnosed medical condition.

another occasion involved the police. my brother was yet again arguing with my mum. he played the 'your not my real mum' card, which is extremely hurtful to my mum and i jumped in to her defence. we got into a very heated argument and we started physically fighting. both of us exchanged punches and kicks, when the fight ended i went back to my mum who was visibly upset. he came back down and another argument started, he stormed out of the house, we went after him and blocked him from leaving. the arguing continued outside and eventually he left without us knowing when we were back inside.

couple of hours later the police arrived. an 'anonymous' call from a woman saying that she drove past of house seeing a woman (matching my mums description) hitting a teenage boy with a stick and a teenage girl standing alongside laughing. the police officer took our statements and drove up and down our street and concluded that there was no way you could see any of that from just driving by because of the trees outside our house.

that is just a couple of selected dramas that occurred all because of my brother getting manipulated by the BM. the change in him made him almost unrecognizable! when we were younger we were best friends and so close, but we became so far apart because of all this, i never thought we would speak again without arguing.

more drama arrived at christmas with presents. the B.Family sent us BOTH ipod nano's, laptops (which im on currently) and other gifts. social workers wanted to take the presents because they were unauthorized. my brother point blank refused to give his presents back saying they were his and nothing to do with social services. my parents were intending on getting me a laptop for when i go to university and a compromise was made between the social workers and me. i kept the ipod and got the laptop when it was my birthday.



Things eventually calmed down. :) My brother eventually got round to arranging trips to go see his B.Family. I however still was banned from contact. :( Things have slowed down so much now that my brother hasnt been to see the B.Family in months to my knowledge.

I got in contact with the BM's parents (my grandparents) and I have been having regular contact with them and so far it is going great. it is at a pace that suits me and i don't get grief if i take a step back or think things are moving too fast. :)

I realise i have left out any information about my B.Dad. there isn't a lot to say other than, the BM put me in contact with him. However he was too sectarian to even consider getting to know me. :( He left the BM when she was still pregnant with me apparently because they couldn't decide what faith to bring me up in :? but i don't know what actually happened.


I made a lot of mistakes and maybe it was because I was only 16/17 (the law is 18 for a reason i suppose). However if I could change one thing, I would have told my parents as soon as I got involved with the biological family because things just snowballed out of control before I knew what was happening! I honestly convinced myself that my parents would not allow us to have contact but they tried every thing to get me back into contact with the biological family!

The silver lining though, is that all the hurt endured brought me and my parents even closer together as we supported each other throughout the many many dramas! :D

Thanks for reading if you got this far! :)
Nicole
 
Posts: 2
Joined: Wed Jun 09, 2010 9:59 pm
Location: Belfast

Postby ladyarcher » Thu Jun 17, 2010 10:22 pm

Hi Nicole, and welcome to the site.

A lot of difficult things for you to handle when you are actually still pretty young. It is, as you have found, usually a bad idea to have secrets. Sometimes I know it is necessary to save someone from hurt.........in your case you did not want to hurt your a.parents, and also felt you have to support your brother......so it is not surprising that everything went rather pear shaped.

Your original instinct was right, to take things a lot slower, that was a mature reaction...........it was wrong of your b.mother to spring herself on you as she did. I am assuming from you using the word 'sectarian' that your b.family is Irish........it is sad that your b.father has not accepted the idea of contact. It's not your fault whatever faith, or lack of it, you have been brought up in, but I know that these things can matter to people far more than any real God would have wanted them to matter.

The unexplained injuries that you had as a small child are worrying.......it would perhaps be useful to you to apply to see your adoption file that would be held normally by the Social Services, or possibly an Agency if the adoption was through an agency. Probably you will be able to do this when you are actually eighteen.........social workers have to abide by the rules I suppose, even though you have already found out things yourself. There may be things on there that are not on the file that you saw when you were eleven. I am assuming that this file was something that your a.parents had, and it would be unusual for them to have all the info. about you.........perhaps you have already seen it again, and been able to read and understand it more as a 17 year old, rather than an eleven year old.

It is nice that you are being able to have a relationship with your grandparents.......hopefully that will stay a safe and happy experience for you. It is quite difficult for you having been so close to your half brother, for him to suddenly have an 'extra father' and full siblings, however he still has unanswered questions too one would think.

Keep coming back here for support..........there will always be people who have useful experience to share with you.

LA
born 1944 - adopted 1946 - found b.mother 1972 - sadly missed b.father who died young, but who had told his subsequent children that they had two English sisters....so no shock when I found my half siblings....
Finally found full sister, adopted separately, last year, after searching for forty years, having found out about her when I was 25.
ladyarcher
 
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Location: Gt.Britain

Postby Nicole » Thu Jun 17, 2010 11:25 pm

Thanks Ladyarcher :) can't believe you made it the whole way through that!

I guess now I know the difference in what I thought was right for me and what actually is! My parents weren't the ones who needed protecting it was me. I hurt my parents more by trying to protect them than I would have if I was just honest from the start. But I suppose the excitement and newness of everything that was happening just got the better of me :?

Yes my b.family is Irish and so is my a.family, but my b.dad had no interest once he knew this. I had asked him for photos when he said he wanted nothing to do with me (over a year ago) and only received them a month ago through my brother who got them from our BM. It was all quite sudden, I had practically forgotten about him and didn't know if I wanted a picture to match the name and place (he lives reasonably close to me). But I knew I would look eventually so seen them...bit of an anti climax! not sure what i was expecting to be honest!

Through the postadoption team I was allowed to go through my file with a social worker. It explained countless court cases and possible explanations and the BM's 'excuses' for my injuries. I understood that I would never find out the whole truth because only one person knows what actually happened; and that is whoever done it, if it was purposeful.

I spoke to my doctor to see if the post infection of chlamydia would affect me now. I knew that chlamydia is the silent STI, and was conscious that maybe I could have had it all these years without knowing! The doctor said that i could have got the chlamydia through birth, IF i was born through birth canal. I went back to the social worker and she confirmed that I was a c-section. Dead end. :(

Yeah the file I saw when I was 11 was one my parents had and received when they adopted my brother and I. In comparison now you can see how out of date it is, as it didn't mention two of my half brothers who were born since that one was printed or several court cases. My mum and I went through it again and tried to match dates to incidences but that copy was like looking at a jigsaw compared to the social services up to date file.

My brother was offered the same services as I was. He went to the social worker for a couple of meetings but he didn't stay longer that because things weren't moving fast enough for him and what he was hearing about me wasn't what the BM had told him so he believed everyone was 'ganging' up against him and that I was the social services 'puppet' :?

The relationship with my grandparents has been going smoothly, I've met my their b.son and a.daughter and her family. My BM was adopted by them too!

Talk about a confusing family tree!! :lol:
Nicole
 
Posts: 2
Joined: Wed Jun 09, 2010 9:59 pm
Location: Belfast

Postby j-h-g-5 » Fri Jun 18, 2010 9:42 am

I too made it through the whole story, somehow!

The comment about 'where are my babies' made me wince. Something similar happened recently and it illustrates perfectly the point that some people who relinquish children never fully understand the concept of adoption.

I think we have to realise that some children are adopted as the birth family is totally unfit to have them. (I detest the whole concept of adoption so it pains me to admit it.)

What sickens me most is that years later, some people still appear not to have learnt from the error of their ways. They still believe they have rights when in reality they have none. It is down to them to prove they are worth knowing, and this whole attitude that the adopted person has to belong to the birth parents regardless seems to re-occur time & time again.

When you have a child, you have responsibilities, not rights. If you cannot meet those responsibilities toward the child then it is only right and proper that action is taken to ensure that the child's RIGHTS are catered for. There have been many cases where SS involvement has been questionable, or even without foundation - but many cases too where it is absolutely necessary :(

Your birth mother must have known about your childhood injuries for one thing, yet still you were conned into meeting her without preparation, still she thought she had the right to refer to you as her babies.... I would have thought that some sense of shame (even if she didn't directly cause the injuries herself) would have altered her reaction. She had a long time to reflect, after all. All that period of time seems to have done is to make her think that you were taken unfairly from her (reading between the lines).

It is great that you seem to be making progress despite all this. I feel for your adoptive parents - it must be a trying time for them.
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