Tuesday, August 21, 2007

I don’t know

Is there any more often repeated phrase in adoptionville than “I don’t know”?

I don’t know. But I don’t think so.

So what’s my next step?

I don’t know. I’ve got one final letter to her all ready. I’m thinking of sending it. (Registered mail this time) But I don’t know. Do I want to go through the wait again? I don’t know. Do I want to set myself up for having another unanswered letter? Or even worse, having the response this time be a restraining order? Don’t laugh. These things happen. How much do I want to chase after someone who has twice shut me down? I don’t know.

I have one natural aunt who lives far away from her. Do I just want to give up on mom and maybe try to contact my aunt? I don’t know.

I don’t know how I feel right now. I know I can pick some words:








But they don’t really touch the surface. So how do I feel? I don’t know.

All my life people were dubious of me when I said I was never mad at her. I was mad at everything under the sun, but never her. To do so felt unloyal. In therapy I touched on being angry with her and worked some of it through, but my anger with her was always so tiny compared with my anger at everything surrounding adoption. I think I can say this: I am mad that she chose not to talk to me or answer my letter. But now people tell me not to be! Go figure: little adoptee – you have no right to your own emotions no matter how old you are.

People say this is abandonment speaking. Get angry but get angry with adoption, with the system, with the church, with 1963. Cut this off at the pass before you get bitter.

I’m sick of people telling me how to feel. If I want to be angry at her behavior right now, it doesn’t mean I don’t love her. It doesn’t mean I don’t understand her fear. It doesn’t mean I don’t sympathize with her circumstances. It means I’m mad and I’m fucking entitled to it, thank you very much. And I’m not going to get un-mad unless I get honest about my emotions and work through them.

And I do feel rejected too. Now, there’s not an adoption therapist around who won’t tell you that you can’t be rejected in this. And they are right. Seriously, someone who does not know me cannot possible reject me.

But oooooooo nelly, the feeling is something entirely different.

I’m jealous and scared. I’m jealous and scared of my half siblings. Do they know about me? Do they not care? I don’t know.

Or what if… what if it wasn’t even her on the phone? I don’t know. Two people have brought that up already. What if she and her husband broke up a while back? What if that was another woman in the house? What if what if what if? I don’t know.

But I don’t think so. I think it was her. If it wasn’t, man will I be embarrassed. Ha-ha silly me. But still, I think it was.

Finally - what about her. No matter what, I love her. I. Love. Her. And I always will. And you know, love to me means accepting someone even if you don’t like what they do or did. So, what if she’s someone who seriously had no interest or feelings for me whatsoever, from day one? All my life people have been speaking for her. Oh she loved you so much, she put you up for adoption. She wanted you to have a better life, blah blah. And now here again there are those who will speak for her. Telling me she loves me. Telling me she wants to talk to me. And god, I eat that up, I do, I want to believe it so much, but isn’t it the flip side of the same coin? People again speaking for her.

When you know, she’s spoken twice already.

I don’t know.

How much of what I’m feeling is real and how much is abandoned baby head? 20/80? 40/60? 50/50?

I don’t know.

I know I’ve got to get better, and working through my emotions no matter how ugly they are is necessary for me.

I know I can say is this right now: Nothing makes you feel more alive than staring into the one thing that terrifies you the most, and living to tell the tale. No matter how badly you stutter and stammer when you’re in it.

I can also say this: I have my name. I have my genealogy. I have the names, addresses and phone numbers of living relatives whom I may decide to contact in the future. For 58 seconds last week, I spoke to my mother on the phone. I have hope that someday I will speak with her again.

There are millions of adoptees now, in the past, and in the future, who will never have that.

And for that I’m grateful.

And I have friends who would never, ever, ever in a million years tell me how I should feel 1 week after denial.

For that I'm really grateful.

I need to run. I'm off on the road again. Thank you again.

16 complaints from ingrates:

suz August 21, 2007 at 9:23 AM  

you are so wise and insightful and healthy. seriously. your thought process and feels seem dead on to me. be mad. be angry. i think you are spot on to be mad at her behavior, her treatement of you, her reactions, etc. i would be freaking pissed (hell, half the time I am). i am often in simmilar situations with my daughter. i am not angry at HER - I dont even know her really. but I am angry at how her behavior makes me feel.

as a mom, i can say that i would be proud to call you my daughter and she really is losing out. she is blinded by her fear and anxiety and shame and guilt and more but she is losing regardless.


Anonymous,  August 21, 2007 at 11:22 AM  


Yes, yes, yes.


The Stiltwalker August 21, 2007 at 11:49 AM  

I've been reading your blog a while...some things you said were exactly words I'd spoken before. the worst thing about all of this is that you're so damn confused about your feelings you get scared to even talk to yourself about it. that's heavy. and I honestly don't know how to deal with it. but reading blogs like yours certainly helps.



Anonymous,  August 21, 2007 at 4:57 PM  

I don't know if this is any consolation - but an adoptee I know asked me if she should contact other members of her family after being rejected by the mother.

After much consideration, I said that she should.


Because what right does one human being have to deny another human being from associating with others?


My friend went ahead and contacted some of the other family members, starting with an aunt. The aunt knew about the situation.

The aunt also welcomed her with open arms.

Although my friend was rejected by her mother, the rest of the family have all now welcomed her. They hope that by doing this, the mother may change her mind.

And even if she doesn't, at least everyone else does want her to be part of their family.

Anonymous,  August 21, 2007 at 5:10 PM  

You are right that no one has the right to tell you what you should feel.

You have the right to feel whatever you want to feel - and to feel a mixture of those as well.

If you are angry, then you are angry - period. You are hurting - what right has anyone else to tell you otherwise.

(some of these so-called experts try to tell you how to feel, without walking a mile in your shoes. Those people haven't got a clue!!)


abebech August 22, 2007 at 12:18 AM  

Theresa, I cannot imagine the pain, sadness, anger, disappointment, frustration . . . rejection (doubled) you are feeling. I'm sad that anyone would compound those feelings and even add feelings of isolation by telling you how to feel.
It isn't okay that this has happened to you. It just isn't.

Anonymous,  August 22, 2007 at 1:14 PM  

You are so brave. I'm sorry for all that you're going through. I remember feeling so raw when I was at this stage. Wish I had some magic words to make your load go away...

elizabeth August 22, 2007 at 8:43 PM  

Very brave T. I heart you.

Anonymous,  August 23, 2007 at 6:07 PM  

When you send it take it to the PO and have them send it with a reciept for when it's delivered at least then you will know that someone got it! Newly

Anonymous,  August 23, 2007 at 11:46 PM  

T, it's me, younevergetoverit....

I love you and I am thinking of you. You are entitled to your feelings and your thoughts, you don't deserve to be ignored. You don't deserve to be pushed aside.

Thinking so much of you.

Anonymous,  August 24, 2007 at 12:24 AM  

Of course you're entitled to every single one of your feelings. And we do get angriest at those that we love the most. It's OK.

I'm sorry that you're hurting so much. It sucks. There's nothing else that can be said about it right now, other than it really and truly bites.

I wish it were so different for you, and I hope she comes around, for her sake and for yours. She just doesn't know what she's missing.

~ Judy

Unknown August 24, 2007 at 2:31 AM  

sometimes when your feeling like this its best to do nothing.

time is a valuable healer.

and things have a way of happening like out of frikkin no where - that includes good things too.



Unknown August 24, 2007 at 2:36 AM  

I know my situation is slightly reveresed from yours, but i am being kept away from my own daughter for no good reason either.

it's hard to not take it personally when its your mom or child.

then knowing that her b-father is getting to actually speak to her makes me go nuts.

and then a close friend pointed out to me. if shes spoken to him, then she must assume that im out there.by talking to him they had to tell her something,anything about me.

the point is the door opened where it was closed. i still cant be with her, but she knows i exist.

it's a start. it might be an even longer agonizing wait. as i send my gifts and wonder.

you have to look at it like you've opened a door. for better or worse you did something huge.

joyceregina August 24, 2007 at 12:45 PM  

You are an absolutely amazing person. All that I have read here you have so much heart. I would be proud to know you and be a part of your life. I wonder sometimes, How does this girl function?

What must she be feeling? Everyone feels something.

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