Posted by: jenn11970 | February 6, 2008

This hurt me

On Sunday we had our BIG Super Bowl Party!!!!!! My Giants won, YEAH, GO BLUE!!!!

Anyway, one of our friends has a girlfriend that is a First Mom. We have been friends for about 4 years now, and talk about adoption sometimes. Neither of us really lets the pain of our relinquishments consume us daily, and when we are together it is usually for something fun, so the topic of adoption isn’t always in the forefront of our minds. This Sunday however, we did talk adoption for a while before the rest of my guests arrived. We did so for a few big reasons. One, which isn’t the most important one, but was a big deal to me, was to walk her around my house and show off all of the awesome pictures L’s parents gave me. I had to brag about how beautiful my daughter is and how happy I am to have her pictures in my home…hee hee. The other two reasons were a bit more serious.

My friend’s Mother recently passed away after a long and painful time with cancer. S (my friend) hadn’t seen her daughter in 4 YEARS and this was an OPEN ADOPTION. She didn’t have their phone number, didn’t know their last name, didn’t have an address. She communicated with them through the adad’s email, and sent gifts to a PO Box. THIS WAS SUPPOSED TO BE AN OPEN ADOPTION. Well her sister, after being very frustrated by the situation, wrote a very stern letter the the aparents basically ripping them up about what they did to S. She told them about her Mom’s illness, and berated them for not keeping their promises to S. She also told them that is S had known that they were going to be this way, she would have chosen another family. They called the day after receiving the letter to arrange a visit the following day. It was great for S and for her Mother, especially since her Mom ended up passing away 10 days later. I am glad they reestablished contact, I only wish it had been when the young girl’s grandmother had been healthy enough to enjoy the visit. Selfish is the only word I can really think of to describe their actions.

While talking about whether she was going to get to have more visits, it occurred to me that this was my chance to really find out how another First Mom feels about open adoptions. I asked her if she had given up on being able to see her daughter, and I also asked her what it was like to see your child as she grows up. S knows my adoption was closed and that I just entered reunion. so she wasn’t insulted by my asking which was good, I definitely didn’t want to hurt her, I wanted some insight into LO’s mom if I could. She said it was hard. During the first 4 years she saw her daughter a few times. (The Afamily lives about 4 hours from us, so as many visits as I have was not an option.) She said it was hard and that my analogy of having a sore reopen over and over again was an accurate one for her. She said in the last 4 years she has honestly stopped thinking about her EVERY day, and that bothers her a lot. It isn’t because she doesn’t love her and miss her, it was just easier to let it go sometimes rather than dwell on the “what ifs”.

The part of our conversation that really hurt, and shocked me, was when we talked about prebirth matches. She would not have had it any other way. She said she wanted to know the people first, although she did admit this was the ONLY couple she actually met face to face. She read over at least 40 profiles, but only met with the one couple. After meeting them, and knowing they were the ones, she said she actually started to think of herself as a surrogate for them. Oh my God, how my heart broke as I heard her say it. Rationally, I can understand, but…… but…… I can’t. I know she did that to protect herself from feeling the loss. She wanted to protect her heart, protect her mind, maintain her sanity, but……but…..man. It hit me very hard, and I really can’t put my finger on why, but it did. I know she saw my reaction, I tried not to react, but it was like I got kicked in the gut, I mean really, I was like, “whooof”. It is one thing to read someone say it in a forum setting, it is totally different to see a person say it in real life. She quickly said to me that she didn’t stop loving her baby while pregnant, but she knew she had to disconnect in order to stay with her decision to place. She loved her daughter so much she had the lawyers rewrite all the documents to take out all of the negative terminology so they wouldn’t sound so cold when she was finally old enough to read them. She REFUSED to sign anything that labeled her daughter a Baby X. She made them put what she named the child in the documents. She never wanted her daughter to think she just gave her away. She is a very strong person, that much I have seen in the 4 years I have known her. I can’t imagine how strong she had to be to disconnect while still pregnant in order to place .

You are amazing, S. I admire your strength, character, and honesty. I hope your daughter’s parents will see these qualities in your daughter and know they come from you. I also hope they see them in you now, and allow you to have some contact. It is truly an honor and a blessing to have you as a friend. I am so thankful to have someone like you in my life to understand what I feel, and never judge. You are in my prayers.

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Responses

  1. wow reallt powerful…and protecting the heart always seems to be the first thing we do…S is a srtong person and I would be proud to know her too Jenn.

  2. woman…I am beggin’ ya…update me would ya…I may just have to call you for an update

  3. Sorry Deb, been a little tied up. I will try to update today. DD’s First mom is coming over today and bringing Her sister and niece.
    Been a bit rough here for non-adoption reasons. Thanks for touching base with me!! : )

  4. Jenn no pressure…let me know if you need an ear…I am here to hear

  5. Jenn,

    Thanks for sharing. All of these stories really do help to give me a bit of insight into what K (Liam’s Mom) might be going through.

  6. I’m not sure how I missed your blog, but I’m glad I have found it.

    This breaks my heart:

    “After meeting them, and knowing they were the ones, she said she actually started to think of herself as a surrogate for them.”

    How incredibly sad that the experience of adoption can lead a woman to this perspective. I also hope your friend is able to have a relationship with her child.


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