Adopted in the UK

The life of a UK adoptee

Responding to positive propaganda

with 5 comments

The following post was created in response to a couple of emails I received from a bmom, who was responding to my posts on the Y!A Adoption section.

I wasn’t expecting the start of this post to explode quite so much as it did, and so I decided that I would try to make the most of this post to help get some of the things I feel about adoption out – however, as usually happens, once I’d stopped writing and gone to sleep, restarting proved problematic, as I had lost the thread of where my writing was going, and so after the first question, my answers become more abrupt, and much less involved.

I can see this going one of three ways:

#1 – It’s entirely likely that both of us could get fed up of doing what, to each of our own selves, looks like bashing our own head off a brick wall, and say to ourselves “fuck it”, and give up on this conversation.

If, however, the conversation continues, there are two remaining probabilities that could occur, each of which is merely a mirror of the other:

#2a – I manage to make you understand why I – as someone who states that I was abandoned to adoption, truly feels that way. This could not happen until I perceived you as coming out of what I view as “the adoption fog”, and so it would mean that you would have completely changed absolutely everything you’ve believed in (about adoption) up until now.

#2b – You manage to make me understand why you – as someone who states that adoption is a good thing, truly feels that way. This could not happen until you perceive me as coming out of what you view as “believing the lie”, and so it would mean that I would have completely changed absolutely everything I’ve believed in (about adoption) up until now.

Wanna play? ;)

Either way, I’m now going to answer the questions you asked, and respond to the statements made within both of your messages to me, in order to attempt to explain to you, and help you to comprehend why I feel the way I do.

I know it must have been difficult for you to be placed for adoption. But, know you were not abandoned.

Which shows exactly how little you actually know about the circumstances surrounding _my_ adoption. To answer one of your later questions/statements, yes, I have met my mom, and I’ve also met my dad. I’ve also met two of my brothers, but am having trouble mourning my brother who died at seven months old because all I can currently see his death as is karma kicking my mom’s arse for abandoning me at the same age my brother was when he died, less than a year before he died.

Yes, it _was_ abandonment. I can say this with absolute certainty because I’ve heard the “exact” details surrounding my adoption, i.e. I’ve heard the story from the perspectives of those involved – namely my four parents, as well as having read case files from Social Services.

It absolutely *was* abandonment. My mom couldn’t be arsed with putting the effort in to raise the second of the two kids she’d thus far sprouted, to the point that Social Services were looking at stepping in and putting me into foster care. I was going to be put into care on the Wednesday, had someone not already taken me away the situation. Fortunately for me, the aparents that I grew up with turned up to see if they wanted me on the Saturday, after finding out that I was up for grabs.

How they found out is interesting, and again helps to clarify my explanation of why I see it as abandonment.

Despite any and all appearances to the contrary, my bmom actually *is* human. With this enchantment called humanity, comes the ever popular model most commonly called “flawed”. This is something I accept and understand and comprehend completely. That my heroes will contain “flaws” is a something that I have long since accepted, and long ago deemed as unimportant in relation to my feelings towards them; thus I have no issue with accepting that my mom is flawed.

Another part of the whole being human stuff involves talking to people, and – as people do – my mom discussed her desire to get rid of me with the people that surrounded her – e.g. those she considered to be friends. Luckily for me, the couple whose next-door neighbour went around to tell them that her sister had telephoned because her mate had a mate who wanted to know if anyone wanted her 7 month old baby that she didn’t want, were damn good people. Not perfect, admittedly, but damn good.

I was utterly and deeply lucky, because it could have been anyone who walked through that door in order to look at the 7 month old baby that was going spare. The only “lucky” part to my adoption was that I was “lucky” not to have been palmed off on to someone considerably worse.

A massive number of adoptees experience abuse from one or more adoptive parent, which means that those adoptees given away by their mothers just because their mothers think that material goods are more important in life than their child getting its own mother’s love and its own mother’s protection have suffered abuse *because* they’ve been adopted.

Adoptive parents are just as likely to suffer from the same problems and issues as are faced by biological families. The western culture is rife with divorce, and given the number of times the world economy has crashed in recent decades, pretty much every adoptee can be faced with growing up in a life of (relative to “the dream”) poverty, sometimes coupled with single parenthood, and sometimes not.

I have no idea what percentage of the general population are estimated to be alcoholics, but I have – as of yet – found no reason yet to explain why the number of adoptive parents within that percentage wouldn’t be proportional to their percentage within the general population.

Shit happens to everyone, and being adopted no more guarantees that you will live the dream life that all adoptees are supposed to get, than you would have lived if you had stayed with the mother who didn’t give you away.

I have – for an adoptee – led an exceedingly charmed life. My aparents sprout from relatively sane and functional families, who pretty much all possess a genuine and caring work and moral ethic, and so – like an adoptee living the dream, I have grown up with a fantastic amount of scaffolding upon which I have been able to build myself upon. My afamily (aunts, cousins, granddads, etc.) are what families are *supposed* to be. The vast majority are in happy, life-long relationships with people they love and trust and care about enough to have *chosen* to have and raise kids with, and those who aren’t seem to be on at least friendly terms with those they have separated from.

In other words, I have grown up seeing all of the people around me NOT being abandoned, and I have seen how so much more solid their lives and relationships have been. I have seen how families are meant to work, instead of the experience I had, of being abandoned so that someone else could do all the hard work.

I know it is difficult growing up and not having that piece of your idenity.

Do you? Do you *really* have any clue what it is like to have to grow up in a world with no familiarity to help guide your path? Do you *really* know what it is like to grow up in a world where every time you fill in a medical questionnaire, you have to write “unknown” for every single answer? Do you *really* have the vaguest clue about what it is like not to know ANYTHING about your own history, or identity, or even your own ‘race’?

Maybe its time you find it in other things. Hobbies?

Oh yes, because having a hobby TRULY makes up for not having lost your own family and not having your own identity! Besides which, I have plenty in my life to keep me occupied, thanks very much. I don’t need any more time-sinks.

It is time you stop beating yourself up about what happened to you thirty some years ago and start living.

I’m not beating myself up about what happened to me thirty some years ago, what I’m doing is living with the consequences of what happened to me thirty some years ago. This does not mean that I’m not living, as you suggest, it instead means that I’m still – even now – trying to learn and understand how the world works because up until September 2009, I had no way of seeing what I might become, or of seeing how people I comprehend react to the world.

If I wasn’t living, then I would not be able to type this reply out to you because, well, I’d be not alive.

Find a counselor who cares and can begin to move you more forward into using this experience to catupult you rather than bring you down.

I would *love* to be able to find a counsellor who can help me begin to “get over” this experience, however, counsellors that understand the issues of adoptees are few and far between, and sadly, we can’t usually get such help free of charge, despite this being a result of something that was done to us, rather than as a result of anything we did to ourselves.

Also, you presume too much if you think that abandonment can be in any way mitigated by counselling. Being abandoned cuts to the core of the being, and since (in my case at least) I was too young (at seven months old) to even begin to comprehend anything other than abject misery at the loss of everything I’d ever known and ever loved, it is not something that can be rationalised away. Rationally, I understand that I did grow up in what was probably a safer and more caring environment compared to my maternal biological siblings, but I most certainly did NOT grow up in a safer and more caring environment than my paternal siblings – in fact, my paternal siblings grew up living the life that I spent my childhood wanting to lead.

If you never find satisfaction in life, then what is the hope in living?

I don’t need to hope to live, thanks, sadly, it just comes naturally – and satisfaction has bugger all to do with life, unless you’re very lucky.

Life is about taking challenges as they come and takeing responsibility for your life.

You’re presuming that I don’t take responsibility for my life, which is entirely incorrect. I take complete responsibility for everything I do or say as an adult who can comprehend the psychology behind the things that I do and say – what I refuse to take responsibility for, however, is the abandonment that I suffered, because that abandonment was not by my own doing. Abandonment is what happened to me, not what I did.

As for taking the challenges as they come; do you think I would still be here and alive if I hadn’t taken them as they came?

Sorry you had a tough life.

Why, when it wasn’t you who abandoned me, should you be sorry?

I didn’t have a tough life, relatively; I had a different life.

But when are you going to grow up.

LOL. According to my closest friends, never. Apparently I’m Peter Pan’s evil twin.

The rest of the world has problems too.

You don’t say?! That is so shocking, and deeply condescending. Do you think that as an adoptee, my adoption is the only issue I am faced with in my life? Do you think that because I am adopted, that everything else in my life runs perfectly? Of course it doesn’t. Being adopted doesn’t help pay the bills (yet), nor do is provide structure and love and care for my daughter – all that being adopted has done is given me insight into how traumatic it is to be adopted, so that I can hope – in the future – to be able to help challenge and change the rules that govern the care of children who need to be removed from their own families for their own safety.

I am a birthmother and adoption is not this horrible thing. Stop spreading negative propanganda in something you know little about.

Aaah, so you’re an abandoner, well that answers everything. Speaking as the one who got abandoned, yes, adoption IS horrible. Adoption hurts kids, and adoption separates families.

As for knowing little about adoption – bwahahaaaa! Sorry, but just no. I am the one who has had to live through this, and so I am the one who CAN spread the negative propaganda, because I am the one who has had no choice but to live through it.

How about you stop joining in with the positive adoption propaganda instead, since you’re not the one who has had to grow up living this, and so you have no clue what-so-ever what living with this is like. How about you come out of the rainbow-farting unicorn fog and admit that losing your child, and your child losing her family hurts, instead of convincing other women to also abandon their kids? Why not, instead of buying into the positive adoption party line, you instead help women who are considering adoption find resources so that they can keep their kids, so that their kids can grow up without having to experience the bewilderment of having to grow up in an unrecognisable world that has no familiarity to it.

My daughter had a better life because of me.

Did she, did she really? Or did she just have a different life?

Speaks four languages and lived in a nice home.

Yes, because being able to speak four languages and having material possessions really does make up for a lack of genetic mirroring, and a lack of genetic history, and a lack of known medical knowledge in which one can protect oneself from potential medical difficulties. Of course being able to speak four languages and living in a nice home makes up for not having your own mom there, someone that you can recognise and understand intuitively.

She would have grown up dirt poor if she would have grown up with me.

My daughter has grown up dirt poor, and she’s turned out ok. I grew up relatively well off, but that hasn’t helped in the slightest, since material objects are of little consequence. Yes, having nice things is, well, nice, but it’s entirely possible to live without the nice things, and I would much rather have grown up with my own self being reflected back at me than have grown up with as many toys and gadgets as money can buy.

Material objects can not, and do not, give love.

I did not abandon her. I made a responsible decision.

No, you abandoned her. You brought her into the world, and then palmed her off on to someone else to raise just because you think material objects are worth more than a mother’s love.

The responsible decision would have been to either abort, or to raise her yourself – the irresponsible decision was to palm her off on to someone else to raise.

Don’t ruin your life with this lie.

I don’t need to ruin my life with this – my life was long ago (at the age of seven months old) ruined by this. It is not a choice that I have.

Stand up and take responsiblity.

See, I did, unlike you. I took the responsibility of raising my own child, instead of abandoning her. I took on the responsibility of educating and guiding the daughter that I gave birth to, instead of palming her off on to someone else – unlike you.

At every moment, we have the chance to stand up and begin again in life.

Actually, no we don’t. It’s impossible (currently) to turn back time – all we can do from this point on is continue to live until we don’t.

My daughter and I have made contact and are close. Have you and your mother reunited? I hope this will bring closure for you.

Sorry, no, meeting my biological family has not – and is almost certain never likely to – “bring closure”. Meeting my biological family has helped massively in filling in some of the gaps in my life, but now I’ve got four families that I don’t quite fit into, instead of just two families.

Praying for you.

Please don’t, otherwise I might get tempted to pray for you too, and I sincerely doubt that you would enjoy having my god take notice of your life, because he’s not a very nice person at all.

Written by 7rin

Sun, 8 August, 2010 at 3:52 pm

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5 Responses

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  1. Stopping by to say hi, and you crack me up.


    Sun, 8 August, 2010 at 4:18 pm

  2. Yeah. To be honest, it took me almost exactly a year from the day I stepped back onto Canadian soil to realize that I hadn’t gotten “closure” from reunion. Sadly, I don’t know if I ever will.


    Sun, 29 August, 2010 at 2:46 am

    • @ Mei-Ling: I’m not sure that absolute closure is even possible tbh, probably because there’s just too much missing in-between.

      I wish you well in finding some kind of peace though.


      Sun, 29 August, 2010 at 8:44 pm

  3. Peace, maybe. Closure? I seriously doubt it.


    Mon, 30 August, 2010 at 2:29 am

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