I placed my son for adoption almost 20 years ago. I was only 17 and did not feel like I was capable of providing for a child. The hardest thing I have EVER done. I died a little on the inside. My heart literally hurt and I felt sadness like I had never imagined. A few days after his birth, I changed my mind. I couldn’t take it anymore. “It’s too late” is what I was told. My hearthas not felt whole since. I thought when I had my own children the hurt would get better. I was wrong. I thought about him more and realized what I had missed out on with him. I thought when we finally reunited the hole in my heart would go away. No luck. I am now struggling with how I fit into his life. We have met a few times, and OMG he is the greatest kid ever. He is almost 20 now and has a lot going on in his life. He seems eager to have a relationship with his brothers. I just don’t really know how he feels about me. I text him a lot and sometimes I get a reply and sometimes I don’t ( he is after all a teenager) I am trying not to smother him, to give him space. The trouble is now I have something to hold on to I can’t let go. I think about him all the time, every minute of the day. I resent so many things that surrounded his adoption, namely my mother. I just wish I could feel peace. To feel whole and not broken. Is this possible??
Thanks in advance,
Anonymous Birth Mother
Dear Anonymous Birth Mother,
Your voice speaks for many! I am so glad that you found your way to Birth moms Today! Please know that you are not alone. Everything that you just described is felt by so many other birth mothers of yesterday who placed their child in a time when adoptions were mostly closed and extra emotional support for birth mothers was a need yet to be discovered.
Though your son can now ADD much to your life the reason that you still feel broken and not whole even after reuniting with your son is because that “empty feeling” condition exists apart from your son and he himself cannot make you feel healed and complete. While he can certainly aid in the healing process it is you that must step back and get YOU whole first. That glorious transformation takes place from within you. It is a raw and painful process that produces the most amazing blessings in your everyday life and feelings of well being.
Begin by journaling your feelings as you work through them tracing back the place where you first associated the feeling of having no worth/value.It is quite possible that this intense need to feel loved and needed contributed to you looking for that answer in the man with whom you had your son with. It is there that you will be able to speak truth into the experience that you have come to carry through life as a measuring stick to that and many other latter experiences that you concluded must confirm that you are incomplete in some way. As you start to speak todays truths and intentions for a better future into those places you will find strength and healing.
If some of this is wrapped up in the relationship that you have with your mother than as hard as it might be to hear it’s crucial to your health that you consider finding a way to forgive her, even if just privately with yourself. If she is still a negative presence in your life today establish boundaries around your relationship with her and protect them.
For many birth mothers, some of that empty, needy feeling stemmed from prior experiences such as the lack of relationship that they had with their own father, mother and those who were supposed to be the nurturers for them at a young and vulnerable age. While today we would not blame those experience for our deficiencies and needs today, we do recognize that those experiences greatly contributed to the lack of value, self esteem and wholeness that we grew up to feel and to try and to navigate through the rest of life with.
As we grow in understanding we can then allow God , ones self and other healthy relationships to add to our wholeness and to meet our personal needs.
The topic of self love can often be one of the hardest concept to open up to for birth mothers as many have carried with them the idea that to think of oneself is selfish and wrong. Loving oneself is the key to being able to truly love another. Before one can see the need in another it is often felt in ourself. Once able to gain balance and speak truth into that area of their life, healing in that tender delicate place can begin and this healing overspills to benefit all those special people that they love as well.
I believe that your son’s interest and ability to frequently interact with his siblings is a beautiful thing. Step back and let it unfold. Do not see it as a personal rejection of you. It is natural for your son to want to explore his family roots in a safe and non emotional experience. His siblings still ” young” kids like he is and
they are not associated with any innate feelings of initial rejection or confusion. They, like he, are here today with the same parents and siblings based on divine order and fate. As you heal and remain available and open to him and as your son matures, heals his personal pain and begins to feel welcomed and comfortable around the family, I believe a relationship will develop into something so beautiful that you could of never even hoped so big for!
Currently, I am writing a book about the birth mothers journey to wholeness. As soon as it is complete I will remember to send you a copy.
In the meantime I am here if you need any further resources. Sometime next week we will be opening a private Facebook group so birth mothers can interact in a safe and private space without other family and friends viewing their comments. I truly hope that you can be apart of that and use your life experiences to be a benefit to others still on the beginning of the trail.
Even if our paths never cross again, find someone that you can trust your heart with and share your feelings. It is so very important to find healing in your life or it will hold you back in many ways. You made the choice to place your son for adoption based on the circumstances as they were back then. Things changed over time, but you must remember that at that time you made the best choice. You now have the added joy of being reunited with your son. You are a strong and brave woman, I know this because you are her today looking for wholeness and seeking respite. May you find it and live a truly beautiful life..