I Heard from My Daughter [Not Good]

On today of all days my daughter writes to me. Its been what, over two years?

I wish I could say it was good news. In fact, it is distressing news.  I have no other word.

Someone, allegedly someone connected to me has been harassing my daughter via her formspring. Due to the egregious nature of this harassment I am going to do something I have never, ever done. I am going to paste my daughters exact words to me. I am also going to include an image attachment that she refers to her in her email.

Before I do so, I am going to state that I have indeed shared her formspring with three people. Three decent, honest compassionate people who care for me. I am confident they would NEVER ever do this.  However, there are many other people (mostly those in the ehbabes.com group and other) that do know my daughter’s name and where she went to college.  It would be easy to put two and two together.

I am simultaneously enraged and disgusted by this. I am enraged that I am the one she suspects (but then again, don’t mothers get blamed for everything?).  I don’t know if she wrote her father as well. She may have forgotten that her father, and his wife, and her half sisters could also be responsible. It could also be  coincidence (at least some of them). Surely she had friends in school and adopted family members that know she is adopted. I am not going to deny that she draws an obvious conclusion yet I am not going to go on a witch hunt asking everyone I know if they have been harassing her. The tone of these messages, honestly, sound partially like an adoptee.

Regardless, if this is you, or you know who it is, please stop or ask them stop. I can appreciate that person may feel they are protecting or defending me, in some distorted way at least.   I don’t need protecting or defending. I can do it well enough on my own these days.  The days of needing someone to defend my relationship with my child are long gone.  I needed that in 1986, not today.

This was her email to me:


Please see attached.

This is maybe about 10% of the harassment I have been receiving over the past months, and while in general I understand that the internet breeds ignorance, rudeness, and assholes-at-large, this is all so specific that I do not think it out of line to presume that it is in some way connected to you.

This level of targeted harassment is completely unnecessary, and if you are in any way responsible, I would please ask you to refrain from it in the future.  If not, please accept my apologies, but given the subject matter at hand here, I do not think I am leaping to any outrageous conclusions to assume that these comments are coming, if not from you, from someone close to you or from someone directed to me through your retweets/links to my blog/etc. I am at a loss for any other explanation.

I have requested that you protect the identity and anonymity of both myself and those close to me before; the fact that I am receiving this level of aggressive and overly negative adoption-related spam and trolling suggests to me that this has not been the case. I understand that we have a difference of opinion and very different needs, and I wish to respect your emotional needs as much as possible given the circumstances, but the extent to which this has opened me up to such direct hate is distressing. If possible, I would appreciate it if you could be sensitive to this in the future.

Thank you for your understanding.”

Image to the left. Click for a larger version.

After cooling myself off, I did respond to her with one sentence and let her know her apology was accepted.


33 Thoughts.

  1. Gosh babe, again I find her passive/aggressiveness to be very odd, on the one hand she puts up with the trolls and such that visit her blog & formspring, then she in her own way lashes out at you but she’s all over the board in her response to you, very disengenuous IMHO.
    For me I guess it comes down to the WWW is kinda like the wild, wild, west, it goes with the territory so to speak in terms of trolls & such, delete their comments or put up with them, I just find her inconsistency very irksome.
    As always, bravo to you for maintaining emotional equanimity in your response to her.

  2. Oh my. Jeez Suz, I wish I had the words to help but a hug from me will have to do. {{Suz}}

  3. Oh god, Suz, that makes me physically ill. I’m angry that anyone would betray your trust this way. I don’t know why anyone might think harassment would *help* your relationship with her. I’m also upset on your behalf that she could possibly think that you would have anything to do with this. It’s just all kinds of wrong and I’m sorry.

    • Thanks Dawn. I agree on all points. However, having witnessed some really crazy things in adoptoland, I can actually see someone thinking they were “helping” in some twisted way. Additionally, I have had other adoptees that are in reunions with mothers who want nothing to do with them, feel outrage (transference) at my daughter for wanting nothing to do with me. I find it all wrong but oddly, can understand the trauma and pain that is behind such actions.

  4. Really? I don’t think it sounds like an adoptee at all- but thanks. I actually think it sounds like someone who actually loves adoption, like an adoptive family member. Im sorry your daughter is going through this.

    • Thanks? Did I miss where I said Linda the adoptee? I must reread. And yes, based on my conversations with other adoptees who have said some things nearly verbatim to me that the troll said there, it sounds like an adoptee. See my reply to Dawn. Why would an adoptive mother care if she denied her first family? Why would anyone call her mother (me) the whore who abandoned her? (Oh, I guess adoptive mothers would say that) Regardless, yes, it sounds like adoptees I have known. Yet I also know I see things through my lens, my experience, as you see things through yours, the adoptee.

      • Im sorry, I must have missed where I said you were referring to me, Suz. I thought I would give you my gut instinct, and THAT is my gut instinct. Yes, I take it personally, because I am an adoptee, and cannot EVER imagine another adoptee behaving that way towards one of their own- not even a so-called “happy adoptee”. There are some things you just do not say to a member of your tribe. Ever.

        As an adoptee, I have heard the most vile comments about my Mother and other members of my first family. I have heard these things from my adopters, as well as other members of my adoptive family. And yes, they are thrilled that my Mother has rejected me. For the record, my adoptive Mother has always called my f Mother either a “whore” or “that woman”, and even called me “a whore like my Mother” when I became pregnant at the age of 17. And if you read my comment, I said “an adoptive family member”- NOT adoptive “Mother”.

        I guess I am lucky that I do not know adoptees who would intentionally hurt another adoptee that way. Not ever, regardless of how that adoptee feels about his/her Mother.

        • “I guess I am lucky that I do not know adoptees who would intentionally hurt another adoptee that way”

          Yes, I suppose you are lucky in that regard. In the same way that I dont know any mothers, personally, that would reject their child. I cannot wrap my brain around it.

  5. If trolls and cyberstalkers could just put all that time and energy towards something truly productive…sigh.

    Suz, I’m so sorry about the unfair accusation. Today of all days.

  6. 🙁 This is truly awful and I am so sorry this is the way you had to hear from your daughter. I hope whoever is doing this stops immediately. There is no good in it. Hugs to you, my friend.

  7. Wow, I can’t believe this. I cannot believe this, how awful. I can’t imagine what would inspire anyone to talk like this to anyone.

    If it was an adoptee to an adoptee? That feels like a personal crime. I am so sorry

    • I agree Joy. As for adoptee to adoptee, I dont know of course. It could be anyone. My daughter has some nasty nasty trolls on her formspring. I have been shocked many times at the things she is asked and she answers. I find nothing good comes from feeding trolls. These things were never answered on her formspring as she does not “do adoption” as evidence by her request to me to make this stop. Awful all around and so very unsettling.

  8. Suz, I cannot believe what was said. This is so awful and I am sadden that she would blame you. Someone who helps so many people. I don’t have any other words except to send you a cyber (((HUG)). Summer

  9. First – I’m sorry she (and you) is dealing with this. Trolls suck.

    Second – it sounds like several (or at least two) different people to me. One or more who are slagging her off for not having a relationship with you, and one or more who are slagging you off for being a first mother.

    And most of it, honestly, isn’t as specific as she is reading it. People who want to troll say the worst things they can think of about a given situation – all someone would have to know is that she was adopted, and the “your mother’s a whore”; “your parents turned you gay”; etc. would naturally follow for a troll.

    The “only child” ones & the ones specifically criticizing her for not wanting to get to know you probably come from someone you know, but pinning the rest of them on you/someone you know is a real reach for her & I’m sorry she is so quick to blame you that way.

    And I’m sorry someone is doing this to you both – I know you are trying to give the benefit of the doubt, but I can’t see how *anyone* would think calling your daughter a bitch for not having a relationship with you is “helpful.” xo

  10. Meghann – I agree with your thoughts. I have spent too much time reading them and thinking what they mean, who would send, the voice, tone, etc. I am moving on. Beyond posting it here, there really is nothing I can do.

  11. wow, I can’t believe anyone would write such disgusting things to anyone else. And I can’t believe you get the blame. So sorry!!! Could it be someone she confided in that has now turned on her?

  12. Who does this kind of thing? Honestly, who has time? Or that kind of a maturity level? Good God.
    I agree with Linda, we adoptees do tend to protect our own. Even to those “happy” “fogged up” adoptees.
    I’m so sorry this happened. It’s horrible.
    Could it be someone she had a falling out with?
    Hugs to you dear Suz <3

    • I have no idea Allson. Anything I say would be conjecture and/or in violation of the gag order she has asked me to observe. I will state that I think Formspring is the devil. My goddaughter has one as well and the nasty comments people send defy explanation. I did once comment to my daughter via hers and asked her why she tolerated the trolls. She gets nasty nasty questions and she answers them. Maybe its maturity, generational, I dont know. I just dont feed trolls.

  13. Sometimes I wish I had a magic wand and could make all the hurt and the damage go away for everybody. Naive I know, but still I do wish.

    I am really sorry this happened.

  14. How awful. I’m sorry this happened to both of you.

    JMO, this sounds like more than one person. The attacks are all over the place.

    I feel for you being accused of something you didn’t do.

    • Thanks Elizabeth. I tend to agree. They are indeed all over the place and seem like more than one voice.

    • LOL Sandy. Too funny. Sadly, you would be shocked to see some of the things that are said and done in adoption circles. Such a contentious issue that causes so much emotional agony to people. Tends to bring out the absolute worst in some. So many have such a low emotional IQ.

  15. i know this is a messed up situation (it is adoption related, so what else can it be?) but when i was reading through her email, i just kept thinking how much she “sounds” like you suz. the way she organizes her thoughts and expresses herself. so similar to your own style. (kinda like . . . i am sooo totally pissed off about this crap, but i know losing my temper is only gonna make her think i’m crazy, so let me just distance myself emotionally and try to solve this problem) just another one of those “nature vs. nurture” observations.
    as to those trolls . . . some people are so wrapped up in their own pain, i guess they feel like they have to share it with everyone.

    • Didda – Fascinating that you note, mention that. Others have said the same about previous correspondence. I tended to share her earlier emails (circa 2005-2006) with my family or close group of friends and they would often say the same thing. I never knew if it was true or if they were saying that becuase they wanted it to be true. She is absolutely emotionally distant with me in her writing. Its all business, matter of fact, cool and collected. She reminds me alot of myself in that regard, certainly of my younger self when I was totally okay, peachy, fine, wonderful with all things adoption related. Even today, I am known by my fiance as a cool cucumber under fire. I am not a screamer, crier, emotional timebomb. I attack things logically, with cool emotion (believing meeting fire with fire only makes an inferno)

  16. You are better at controlling your emotions babe, but as I’ve learned in our almost three years together, for us, it tends to cultivate a healthier/better relationship since I am more emotional and such, IMHO we balance each other out very well in that regard. As I’ve also learned however your being a ‘cool cucumber’ doesn’t mean you don’t care, aren’t passionate and fiery in your own way.

  17. Yuck. What a horrible thing for anyone to do/say to anyone. I don’t get how she could think it was you. Or anyone you know. This is really triggering and congrats on responding as you did. (((HUGS)))

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  19. You should respect her privacy. Even posting this is disrespectful and an invasion of her privacy.

    You have beautiful sons, why not just focus on them and leave her be. Do you really need to be blogging about your daughter every day for years and years on end?

    The reason that she has been targeted is directly to do with your constant blogging about her. It doesn’t matter who wrote those comments, they never would have found her if you had been more respectful of her privacy.

    If you really loved her you would let her go.

    • X – Really? Are you the person that is also trolling her? I pondered responding in depth to you but have decided you are a troll. Had you posted with real name, email, or even shown some understanding of the complex soul wound known as adoption, I might have done so. I have opted not to. However, I am going to spike your comment out in a post to let others know (and perhaps even my daughter, should she ever read here) of your views and existence. As you were referred by adoption.alltop.com there is a chance you are trolling others.

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  21. OMG, I never saw this. Were these all supposed to be from one person? 🙁 They screwed things up even more for you. I bet you wanted to scream. Seriously, is there any way that someone who was mad at her for some other reason could have known about you, because this seems to attack her personally and with knowledge about her. I don’t actually think it was anyone from this site. The writer referred to you in a seriously derogatory manner, which none of your readers would ever do. They wrote like a teen. Did your daughter, ever by chance mention your site in her own blogs or maybe even to a “friend”, who later became mad at her? The motive here was not supportive of either of you. Someone on this site would have slanted that in your favor. So what was the motive?

    • Darla – I opted to not make myself crazy about this. It is very upsetting yet accusing every person I know, going on a witch hunt seemed equally upsetting. I have my ideas, unfounded of course. There are a many people this could be. Many could be known to me, Many only to her. She has a world that is larger than she realizes, complete with teenage half siblings, cousins, etc. She also gets regularly attacked (in very nasty ways) on her blog about her sexuality, her looks, etc. Some serious haters out there. I can comment more on this to you privately.

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