I love when I stumble across a random internet post and it stirs something up inside me.
This post I linked to below resonated with me. Consider it a possible HOLY SHIT THAT MAKES SENSE AHA KIND OF MOMENT. Early in reunion my daughter permitted me to send her gifts yet would later rail against them. She would angrily lecture me on reciprocity and how me giving her a gift implied she owed me something, made her uncomfortable, etc. It always struck me as odd as I felt “No, I do not give to get, I merely wanted to give you a gift, all you have to do is say thank you”. But even expresing thank you (forced gratitude?) was hard for her. It was a real hang up for her. Eventually she began refusing my gifts, asked me never to contact her, do not send me things . The adoptee written post and in particular the paragraph I excerpted below gives me some insight into some possible reasons for her reactions. I do not know for sure of course, but I do appreciate the author giving me a new perspective. To fully understand the context of the below excerpt, you must read the entire post. It is worth the read.
“Adoption has such a huge effect on how I see gifts now. If I am given anything, and then it is taken away, I go into meltdown. If I am expected to be grateful for anything, I would rather not have it. I don’t want to feel in debt. I find it hard even to write the word grateful in an email. I feel both overly thankful for any offer, for any help, and yet extremely stressed out about having to pay it back. I want to leave no loose ends. I don’t like writing thank-you cards. I don’t like it when someone buys dinner and expects a future meal in return.” – Mathew Salesses
More on this topic at the linked post below.