Assembling Self

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Adoptee Tales from the Darkest Side

Over Cast

A gloomy gray surrounds my soul and covers hope from which life grows.
With murky tints in hues of black and darkened tones where colors lack.
I know no sun or sky of blue eternal night my only view.
In shades of doubt my heart beats on where I exist but don't belong.
Lost chances and unrealized dreams paint the landscape that I see.
Defeating endeavors to escape the desolate hours that are my fate.
Upon the surface all is well most never see my private hell.
I struggle daily to survive and squelch the anger deep inside.
I try before it is too late to douse these fires of raging hate.
That burn eternal flames that kill my hope, my prayers, my very will.
Can't seem to win or too succeed exiled from life that others lead.
I wrestle with the endless doubt that I will find my way back out.
Where one day I will hope to find a peaceful and unburdened mind.

I wrote this a little over ten years ago when I was rejected by my biological parents, found out my adoptive parents had been withholding pertinent information to help me obtain crucial current family medical history for doctors (and had been for years), battling multiple health issues, single mother struggling to take care of her children alone, lost, and depressed.  I am not suicidal, although I have been at points in time in my life.  I look back now and how far I have come a long way from the lost, hurt, angry person I was.  However, adoption "stuff" can hit you when you least expect it, out of the blue, and slam you down to the ground so hard you think you'll never get back up.  The above poem cries out with the depths of despair adoption issues can bring you to.

I've spent a lot more time than I'd like to reflect on living in very dark places.  Feeling like a huge cosmic mistake born to one set of parents who gave me away and now want no contact with me let alone to release their names or to tell my siblings I even exist.  Adopted by two parents who obviously couldn't bond with who I was our genetics so extremely opposite, abused, and rejected.  Existing for my children but going through the motions in life and numbing out when and where I could.  Languishing ill in and out of doctors and hospitals battling for my very life and still, no one there to really care.  A good majority of my life has been a nightmare a black hole sucking the very energy and will to live right out of me.

Fortunately in part due to a counselor well versed in adoption issues and largely to so many adoptees who are supportive and understand I am a different person today.  I bounce back a lot more quickly when struck by the pain and loss adoption brings to my life table.  I write, I support other adoptees in the search and healing, I work in adoption reform and education when and where I can and implement coping tools shown to me by other adoptees.  I've become more stubborn and hell bent not to allow my adoption situation to destroy me, or any other adoptee, and continue on as a survivor.  I strive to be everything my adoptive and biological parents are not.  I refuse to be a person that continues to bury their head in the sand and ignore the truth.

People are quick to judge and label adoptees when they have no comprehension of the depth of what has happened to them, nor do they seem to want to, because of adoption.  They believe adoption is a wonderful solution to a "bad" situation.  You just take a baby whose parents are in a difficult situation i.e. young, uneducated, impoverished, and you transplant them into a family who wants a child right?  WRONG!!!

It is complicated for all parties involved, but mostly for the children who are separated from their biological families.  And when these difficult issues for adoptees are ignored and shoved under the rug all kinds of problems can occur.  It is well known and has been widely published that adoptees are over represented in psychological settings and rehabilitation centers.  This is unacceptable.  It must be changed and more importantly PREVENTED.  You don't "get over" being adopted.  Adoption is not a one time transaction it is a lifetime event.

I truly believe that it's not what happens to you it's how you deal with it.  But, for far too long adoptees have not been able to voice their pain and angst over the issues adoption brings them.  Or worse, their voices are stifled and quieted by a society and industry that dismisses them or worse, shames and blames them for simply feeling what they feel.  Adoptees are now speaking out, writing, and joining the effort for reform and education in adoption to end the silencing of these voices of reason.  The days of hiding in the dark, in fear, afraid to speak out well that time, is now over.

"When I stand before thee at the day's end, thou shalt see my scars and know that I had my wounds and also my healing." - Rabindranath Tagore

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