Me as Revelator

"Through my self-disclosure, I let other know my soul. They can know it, really know it, only as I make it known. In fact, I am beginning to suspect that I can’t even know my own soul except as I disclose it. I suspect that I will know myself "for real" at the exact moment that I have succeeded in making it known through my disclosure to another person."  – From: The Many Me’s of the Self-Monitor, by Sidney Jourard

It feels to me as though I am writing the same material over and over again. I don’t want to do this. If it’s true, I know why it is.

I am avoiding certain topics. 

There is much more to the story of losing my daughter to the American adoption industry.  I intentionally withhold a great deal for her sake, for her fathers sake, even for my family’s sake. I don’t want to violate their privacy or speak about them in any way that may be perceived to be negative.  I believe, being the writer I am, I can avoid this. I can discuss my feelings, my actions, without inferring or implicating them. Right?  I like to think so yet I still struggle with protecting them.

My daughter was very angry to find out about this blog and told me it violated her privacy and I had no right to write this stuff since it was about her. I subsequently adjusted my approach and began to highly filter what I wrote. I further adjusted it when she and I discovered her adoptive parents were also randomly stalking me.

However, as my therapist so astutely notes, every time I protect someone else’s feelings I dismiss and minimize my own. I am working hard to change that. I matter. I always do.

Not only do I want to tell more of my story for me, but I want to tell it for the benefit of others. I have received so many emails and comments from other moms, from adoptive moms and from adoptees thanking me for my honesty, my truth, my sharing.  Equally important, perhaps even more so, is that I feel it is critically important that the public, the policy makers, etc. hear the truth. They must hear and fully absorb the fact that adoption causes a life long wound to mothers.   As long as we mothers stay quiet and in the closet, they will assume that silence is golden. They will believe we are happy with adoption. That we got over it just like they said we would.

We do not get over it. We do not recover. We do not get on with our lives – at least not the lives we originally had. We adapt. We find ways to manage the pain and many of us don’t do that in the healthiest ways possible. Many of us push it away, deep away, into a dark scary place. A place so frightening that when our children find us, we cannot bear to pull that pain out and we reject our children.

So, for me, putting out more of my story will help me, will help others, and hopefully, maybe, just maybe, help us all to minimize the horror that continues to happen in the American adoption industry.

The first topic I am prepared to begin writing about is my recent divorce and how my adoption trauma contributed to that.  Mothers currently in challenging marriages may find some validation.  Expectant mothers need to know that losing your child can, and very well may, affect all future relationships you have in your life.

Stay tuned.

3 Thoughts.

  1. This reminds me of how I have avoided “certain topics” since my son and I reunited. In the beginning, when things were great, I talked and wrote non-stop about him, our relationship, my feelings, etc. When things weren’t good, I went back into my pre-reunion hole, avoided the whole subject, became quite good at manipulated conversations. Ugh! A few people have called me on it. Now I call myself on it. I’m trying to be more honest, certainly with the most important people in my life.
    As for blogging, my son doesn’t know about mine. He says he’s not a reader, and lord knows I’ve tried to get him to read books and articles that would help him better understand his issues (and mine). But if he knew, he might go and take a lot of things out of context. Hence his soon-to-be ex-wife doesn’t know about it either — she would really not get it. Also a few family members, who have expressed chagrin that I write about adoption for print media and that I’m trying to get a book published.
    I believe that since you (and I) don’t broadcast full names and locations of those we write about, that there is no privacy issue. We are putting OUR stuff our there, which is our right.

  2. Yeah, I get what you are saying especially about the divorce. You THINK That you have it made until you are reunion, then you are like “what the hell did I stay this long?”
    I did because I didn’t feel that I had this birthmother thing, and nobody else would want to deal with me.

  3. For those of us who read you every day, it was transparent that you were holding back. While you felt the need to protect your daughter and family none of us would know who they are. It must be hard to write from the heart and yet have these boundaries.
    What I get from this is, I am not the only one who relinquished a child. And that it is a life of anger and pain, but that even in reunion there is a disconnect and not every story ends up in Alice in Wonderland.
    You are a strong woman, you have a lot to say and feelings to be validated. This is your blog station! And you are a writer, so write. You should not be a victim for those who do not want to listen or understand.

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