Expectations. When couples adopt, they have certain expectations of the child. They expect the child to be something that maybe the child is not. It is way too common. Today I read – “Anyone just want to look at their adoptive mom as scream I love you but I’m not your daughter!!” This really touched a nerve as it brought over 100 comments. I’ll share only a few.
The very first comment came from an adoptive mother (no surprise). I would ask myself whether she did any of the things mentioned below… If so, she’s taken on the role of mother and you’ve taken on the role of her daughter.
1. bring up (a child) with care and affection.
2. look after (someone) kindly and protectively, sometimes excessively so.
You mentioned above that you love her and I’m sure you also appreciate her. But what does her not being your birth/first mother have to do with the situation? Is she trying to help you in a difficult situation and you don’t want her help? Is she being nosey into an area that you prefer she stay out of??? I’d say that’s how most moms are. And it’s because they care.
Another adoptive mother responded to the above – I’m horrified that you would invalidate this adoptee’s feelings. It is not her job to make her adoptive mother feel like a mother.
And yet another adoptive mother said – Your comment was tone-deaf and demeaning. It’s unsurprising yet somehow still bizarre that you would try to introduce the perspective of an adoptive parent over the voice of an actual adoptee. It feels like projection and it’s so yuck.
Finally, an adoptee responds – your comment just made me feel gross and burdened just like everyone else does. It’s always about how it’s my job to be gentle on my adoptive mom and all adoptive mother’s feelings. It’s my job to make her feel better about not being my mother. All at the expense of my own feelings. You basically said Oh hush now you mean ol’ adoptee…don’t ever hurt your adoptive mother, she is fearful and she just loves you and cares about losing you. That is why you should never say how you feel as an adoptee. The cardinal rule in my life as an adoptee has been that my (or any) adoptive mothers feelings matter more than mine. Adoptive mothers are the victims and it’s my job to worship them and never ever hurt their feelings by saying being adopted hurts. I feel this damaging belief is what keeps adoptees in the fog and from getting the support they need.
Another adoptee shares her experience – My adoptive dad acted like I was committing a crime against my adoptive mom when I found and initiated a relationship with my birth mother. I was over 30 years old. They’d never offered to help me find or contact her. I did it myself and he spoke to me as if I were a naughty child disregarding her feelings.
From the original commenter – this is not just “I’m upset with her”. I also don’t need advice on what to do. She is NOT my. Mother period. I didn’t choose to be adopted. I will not be gentle. I’m tired of having to cater to others over something I had no choice in. I will not be quiet.
This morning I was reminded of this song by Karen Drucker which I have always loved.