A Separate Reality

An adoptee may “know” they belong with their adoptive family but there is this “other element”, this feeling that they ALSO belong somewhere else. A need to know, to be complete inside. Otherwise, never whole. So the adopted person doesn’t actually feel like they belong with the natural parent(s) either – if they end up reunited.

Like one is a broken circle. Like they have this person somewhere inside of them that they have not been allowed to be. Like walking on a fence that one can fall off of at any moment.

Adoptive parents have a certain insecurity. They live in fear that someone is going to take their child away. That is their deepest darkest fear. At the same time, the adoptee always feels like they are going to be rejected.

It is entirely not a “normal” situation and there is no getting around that.

Dear Mommy, come and get me

Even though an adoptee has no conscious memory of their natural mother, because the adoptee was there, because they did experience being “left” by their biological mother and handed over to strangers, it is becoming increasingly understood that there are wounds caused by what has happened to this child in separating them from their natural mother.

It makes no difference whether the child was a few minutes, a few days or even a few months old but still so young that they are pre-verbal.

An adoptee is always unconsciously aware that they were adopted.  An adoptee may feel as though they never belonged in their family, that they were never truly understood.  An adoptee may know they do not fit in but may not understand why.

Keeping an adoption secret does little to foster trust.  There is a subtle sense of unreality and dishonesty in the relationship.  Children are primarily creatures of intuition and sensation.

My mom always knew she had been adopted.  When I look at those last photos of her natural mother’s last visit with her, I see how happy she was to be reunited with her mother all over again (she had been left in temporary care at an orphanage in Memphis, while her mother tried to get on her feet financially).

Her adoptive mother admitted after the long train trip from Memphis Tennessee to Nogales Arizona that it “upset” my mother.  When she said the doctor had gotten my mom calmed down, I suspected she had been drugged with phenobarbital.