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Showing posts from June, 2017

Some Days

Some days I can pretend to be ok. I think everyone can tell that the smile is fake, but I can pretend nonetheless.
Some days I can't pretend I'm not exhausted. Care worn. Some days I can't pretend that I don't feel disappointed and alone. There are days that I feel the weight of the code of silence we are taught from infancy in the guilt I feel for talking at all. The threat I will be rejected by those I love when they learn the truth.
And those I've loved, for the most part, don't want to know the truth. It's too ugly, too unpleasant, too real. Focusing on the positive and looking ahead are a big theme.
I'm sorry that I don't have a sunshine and roses history to share with you. I'm sorry that it wasn't Disney world and puppies. But it is what it was and I thought you wanted to know me. My cynicism and meanness surprises you. If you knew me better, it wouldn't surprise you.
So mostly I don't talk about it, I know you don't want to kn…

Let It Go? Really?

I can't even be angry about this one. I don't want be. 

I was recently lucky enough, I'm sure some of you already know, to reconnect with my biological father and half brother and sister. My bfather... well best leave that for now. My sister has been a tough nut to crack, and every time I get close she jumps back five feet. It's all good, she just started a new job and her living situation recently became more crowded. Plus there's some unresolved stuff there that I figure will hit me like a ton of bricks one day. That's also good, I'm ready for that shit storm and whatever destruction it brings. Reunion is not new to me. I know there are feelings to be addressed and conflicts to resolve. I love them enough withstand all that and hopefully come out on the bright side. 

My first reunion was 23 years ago. It didn't go well, but it wasn't all bad as long as I didn't look too hard. I'm looking too hard now, and I see a bunch of stuff boiling under…

The Things We Say (to ourselves)

I suffered recently what can only be to an adoptee a blow. Plans made with biological family that was cancelled last-minute. 

I'm not going to lay any blame at anyone's door. Sometimes things do happen, and sometimes things just don't go the way you plan. This isn't about blame, it's really more about the bullshit that adoptees tell themselves when these things happen. Trying to help sort out what it is that makes us torture ourselves.

Because we do. We tear ourselves apart for things that we can in no way claim responsibility for. None of these things are true, and intellectually we know it. Someone needs to tell it to our hearts, however.

We feel insufficient. Like we aren't enough. I've been gone so long, you aren't really missing anything without me anyway. I'm not important enough to deserve your undivided attention, or to be at the top of your list for once. I wasn't enough as a baby for you to want to keep me, was I? 

We feel alone. That'…

Attitude

Over the last several weeks, I've been attacked in what I can only describe as a cruel manner. Nothing that really touches me, mind you... there's nothing anyone can really say in the way of common insults that are going to phaze me. But to some of my more sensitive, softer-hearted cohorts on this road to recovery, this stuff, any of it, could be devastating if it hit an unexpected trigger. I almost feel that I would like to stand between you guys and the assholes who say this shit, like one of those Spartan dudes with my giant brass word-shield.

I'm not saying don't share your story or be afraid to stand up for yourself. Just be prepared for some of the nasty stuff that will come out of people's mouths. 

Granted, because of the manner in which I express myself, I'm certain I hear some of the most vile stuff. I say some of the most shocking, vile stuff that I know can pass through anyone's head, especially an angry adoptee, that most people are too polite to …

Child Trafficking

Hear me out.

There is a maternity home in Wichita, KS (and I know for documented fact they aren't the only ones) that coerces young women into giving away their babies, then sells them, or "adopts them out", for approximately $40,000 a head.

There is a law firm advertising expectant mothers on Facebook. Listed like used cars. "Expectant mother, Caucasian baby, sex unknown, no warranties. Sold as-is." I called them. If I wanted the little mix race baby with the sealed adoption, sex unknown, it was going run me seventeen grand. If I wanted the pure Caucasian, guaranteed girl (sonogram included in the file!) Open adoption, that one was gonna run me a cool forty grand.

I heard a prospective adopter say just last week, "I hope they haven't sold our baby to someone else."

This is true. It's legal. It's happening right now.

Weren't we always taught that slavery is wrong? And is not being taken from our mothers, sold into a family, told a bun…

The Fog

It's hard to explain to people that don't already know. Honestly, it pisses off any adoptee you mention it to if they still believe the lies.

It's not just the lies we're told about who we are and where we come from, as if that wasn't enough to be "grateful for". It's  the lies we're told about adoption itself. If we contradict these lies, we're "ungrateful", "just angry", "crazy", "need therapy". (That's just from conversations with the brainwashed TODAY.) Oh right, we "have chip(s) on our shoulder(s)" and are "contradicting everyone else's experience".

We are taught from infancy by adopters, agencies, social services, society, and our parents that adoption is a "blessing", a "beautiful thing". We are "chosen". Adoption "saves lives", "gives children better homes", helps couples "build families". Saves babies from abor…

Are We Related?

You don't have ask yourself that if you're not adopted.

You don't see a man at the coffee shop twenty years older than you and wonder, are you my father? Your eyes and cheeks kind of resemble mine. 

You don't meet a guy and feel that spark, and then think dreadfully, "dear god I hope you're not my brother."

You don't wonder if that older woman who comes into the store once a week for a carton of cigarettes is your mother.

When you're adopted, you wonder all these things. You spend your life, consciously or not, searching people's faces for your own. Wondering who you are, where you came from.

Even if you are told the truth (and many are not), that doesn't negate the wondering. The longing need to know where you came from, and thereby something of who you are.

And if you're lied to about where you came from... let's just say That's a whole nother blog post.

Why should I be happy I lived my life with these questions? It's not "…

A Note To A Prospective Adopter

Let's take a moment to examine your motives. Why do you want to adopt a child? 

A) If it's because you're infertile, I have a whole post just for you. Re: I Am Not A Treatment For Your Infertility. You go read that.

B) "We feel as though god has called on us to open our home and adopt a child."

Bullshit. God never called on anyone to pay tens of thousands of dollars for someone else's child. I recall god saying, "Go forth, be fruitful and multiply." Nowhere, in any of the hundreds of religious texts I've read in my life, have I ever seen god quoted as saying, "Go forth, be shady and coerce strangers into selling you their babies." The word adoption isn't even mentioned in most of them that I recall. Never have I  read, "And lo, Abraham and Sara did adopt a baby." In fact, when Sara couldn't produce a child, Abraham slept with her handmaiden and knocked her up. When Sara later got pregnant, she didn't adopt the handma…

I Am Not A Treatment For Your Infertility

You can't just take me away from my biological mother and call me yours. I am not yours, nor will I ever be. I do not belong with you. I do not belong to you. I am not a kitten in the pound free a good home. I am not a bag of flour on a grocery store shelf, available for purchase. You didn't make me. You don't deserve to raise me. You aren't mine. 

Did you ever think maybe there's a reason you can't get pregnant? I don't care how much it hurts. You have no idea how much being adopted hurts. You don't know how much it hurts to be torn from your mother's breast. All you can think about is your own pain, your own selfish needs. You need a baby. You can't have one. Well, then, I'll just take someone else's. That will solve your problem and ease your pain. But what about mine? Do you care about that? Do you even think about it?

No. Because I an a cute little infant who can't speak. I have no voice. I can't tell you I miss my mother. I c…

A Note To A Birth Mother

From the perspective of an unwanted relinquished child

I know a couple of birth mothers. Not saying this is you. But if this makes you feel guilty, I won't take responsibility for that. Maybe you have something to feel guilty about.

I am not just an adopted child. I am a relinquished child. Take a moment to let that sink in. A relinquished child.

Doesn't sound as nice as adopted, does it? Adoption is the smoke screen, the soft, furry cover of the truth. Relinquishment.

You gave me away, birth mother. Take another moment there. You relinquished me. You walked into an office or a hospital or wherever, handed me to a stranger. "Here. I don't want this anymore. You take care of it."

Or you went to a pregnancy center and planned your escape, carefully mapped out and plotted like a prison break. Shh. Don't make a sound. The CO baby might hear you on your way out of the bars.

They told you that you are an angel. You're not. They told you were giving someone the…

Ad Hoc, Ergo Proctor Hoc

(After it, therefore because of it)
It's a phrase thrown around in intellectual circles to indicate the idea: we as humans often assume, in retrospect, that one event was naturally caused by the preceding event. Most of the time the assumption is incorrect.  As in:
Little Johnny is eating a banana and throws the peel on the floor. Daddy comes walking through the kitchen with his nose buried in the newspaper, slips on the peel, and busts his ass on the linoleum. He blames Johnny for throwing the peel on the floor, grounded kid. When, in reality, if daddy had taken his face out of the paper, he wouldn't have fallen. He didn't fall because there was a banana peel on the floor, he fell because he failed pay attention were he was walking. 
Most of the time, the premise is flawed. But ad hoc, ergo proctor hoc is quite applicable to the life of an adoptee. 
Everything that happens, all the issues have, can usually be traced back to one source: losing our mothers when we are very…

I Am J M Gray

I am not C J H. I never was. C J H was a girl who could never be born because her mother couldn't have children. I borrowed her name forty years ago and tried to live her life, to love her family, to be who she was supposed to be. She was nothing but a mirror of her mother, expected to do all the things mom never got do. Have all the fun mom never got have. Be the person mom never got to be. Be the lovely, slender, popular, successful wife of a doctor or a lawyer. That was who C J H was supposed to be.

You made it clear me that I didn't belong. I wasn't one of you. I was different than everyone else. Where my cousins were "born" I was "brought home". "You're not one of us." Once when being introduced to a cousin at about age six:

"So you're the one that's adopted?"
"Yes."
"So we're not related by blood?"
"No."
"So, you're not REALLY my cousin then."
"I guess not. I thought I w…

Be Grateful You Weren't Aborted

Are you grateful you weren't aborted? Why should I have to be?

There's this thing that people do, all the time. When I say it sucks be adopted, they say, "well, at least you weren't aborted".

Worse are the people who think I should be grateful I wasn't aborted.

"You should be thankful that that you were given the chance to exist."

"You should thank god he spared your life."

"You should be grateful your birth mother decided not to kill you."

And the piéce de resistánce: "It could have been worse, you could have ended up a trash can."

Ok firstly, who thinks it's ok to talk people this way??? Am I not standing in front of you with eyes and a face and feelings? Do I not deserve basic human decency? Because I'm adopted, does make it ok for you to talk to me like second-class citizen?

And secondly, who exactly do you think you are? What makes you think you even have the right to have an opinion about what I should be …

Don't Defend Adoption To Me

Don't defend adoption to me.

I acknowledge your positive experiences, adoptees. I acknowledge that your family was beautiful. I'm glad your mother loved you. I'm glad your father was present. I'm happy for you that you were adopted by emotionally well people who gave you a well adjusted life. Congratulations.

But don't defend adoption to me. Defend your family, yes. Defend your quality of life, I accept that. Defend your familial bond, by all means. But don't defend the institution of adoption because you got lucky in that system. Adoption did you no favors. The people who adopted you did you the favors. Adoption isn't responsible for your happy life, your family is.

Why are you giving the institution of adoption the credit for your good life? Your family are the people who gave you that life. All the institution of adoption did was hand you over to some people and count its cash, assuming the people it gave you to would do a good job raising you. Those peo…

I Am Adopted

I was adopted. I was also bought. My parents paid an exorbitant amount of money for me, and to ensure that they got specifically the child they wanted. (I.e. red hair, blue eyes, girl, chunky.) 

My birth certificate was amended. Which means they changed it. Yes, that's legal. They erased J M Gray and replaced her with C J H. They deleted my parents, my siblings, place and time of birth, and replaced it with what would fit into the charade that I was actually born to them. They even had the option of replacing my birthday with a new day, thus deleting the day I was born. I'm not sure if that happened or not. My amother said no, My biomother said yes. My biodad doesn't remember my birth date. So I have no way to know if the birthday I've celebrated my whole life is actually the day I was born. 

For years I lived under the illusion that I was just like all other members of my family. I knew there something different. I knew something was off. For a while I was told, "t…