April 10th is Always Mother’s Day to Me…

UM

It is now 26 years since I met my son on April 10th, 1987.  I have written and celebrated that day many times.  If you would like to read a couple of those posts that reflect on that day,  here they are. 2011 is complete with photographs.

2011, 2012.

Meeting my son  changed my life for the better. I still celebrate it even though for the last eight years things have not been going so well. For the last four years they haven’t been going period.  I have made a few attempts to reach out to him. I never wrote about them here because I don’t really believe in giving a blow by blow description of everything that’s going on.  Let’s just say, things remain the same.

I heard on the news today some one has decided  this is International Anti-Bullying Day. Perhaps you have seen the Wear Pink Campaign. It is rather ironic that it International Anti-Bullying Day should fall on April 10th because I feel that it was my son’s attempts to bully me (and his father) that put the  distance between us.  The last time he communicated with me, from what  I could tell, if there was going to be a relationship, my role in it  was supposed to be that of whipping girl.  When I  refused to play it, he tried to embarrass and hurt me.

He wrote to friends saying nasty things about me.  And then he went on Twitter. I said to my husband, I think I’m getting cyber-bullied by my own son.  Definitely not a trust inducing exercise.  I wrote about what happened here a few months later with some help from Eddie Money.

The events that I describe in that post  occurred right around this time of year. There was often trouble around anniversaries, like his birthday, with my son.  Of course I have some sympathy for that because I used to get  troubled around his birthday every year too until I figured it out.  Many people, adoptees and mothers, have written about the triggering anniversaries can cause so I won’t say any more about that here.

But I do want to say a bit more about mothers and bullying.  We don’t respond to it well.  I don’t know that many birth/first/natural mothers IRL, as they say, but I do know quite a few of them on line. Most of these women seem quite strong to me. I suspect most (all?) of them would say that they are strong women too. And, in the next breath they will admit, they can’t believe they were so stupid as to have lost their children to adoption.  There may not be a lot of guilt but there certainly is a lot of regret.  Where was all that strength then?  But back then, when we lost our children, we were the women/girls people told us we were. Most of us have vowed that we will never let something like that happen again.

Bullying can consists of one or more types of abuse – emotional, verbal, and physical. It typically involves subtle methods of coercion.  For most of us that coercion involved destroying our confidence in our ability to raise our own child. Most of us know now that was ridiculous. We weren’t lacking in ability or potential, we were lacking in support. And that is why, when someone, anyone, tries to tell us who we are, we don’t buy into it.

I think when an adoptee attempts to bully it often has its basis in growing up with the birth/first/natural mother myths that abound in adoption.  The myth that the adoptive family was always better than.  The original family lesser than. The myth that mothers are troubled or drug addicted or worse. When I first contacted my son, his adoptive father told him to be careful if that woman asks you for money.  It’s laughable but then really it’s not.  That kind of attitude enters your brain by osmosis.

But enough about bullying. Even though the irony of the juxtaposition of Anti-Bullying Day and our reunion day was too strange to ignore, I have strayed farther afield than I intended to do.

It’s the anniversary of meeting my son. I am remembering and smiling.  I remember the wonderful visit I had with him. It was at this time of year too. Ten years ago this week. I hope my son is doing well. I hope he is happy. I hope he has found someone who loves him and who he loves back.  And although we may remain apart, I think of him often. I hope he has found peace. I will always be grateful that we were able to meet.

Peace

UM

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5 Responses to April 10th is Always Mother’s Day to Me…

  1. Aaynne says:

    Like your son, I am an adoptee who has reunited with my birth mother. I am also an adopting mother who’s son has found and reconnected with his birthmother (although there’s been no physical meeting). I was also born on Apil 10th. And Leonard Cohen is my # 1 all time favorite musician, song writer, poet extraordinaire. His “Came So Far for Beauty” lyrics you posted…is something I used to sing to and about myself. Hence….I am feeling some sort of an unreal connection to you.

    I count you as a sister….in the adoption triad community.

    Thank you for your postings.

    Heart Hugs to you, dear one.

    Aaynne

  2. Denise says:

    Sending you big cyber-hugs and wishing I could give them in person. As you know, I’ve been there and done that with my son. The bad times we’ve gone through will never take away the happiness of having found and met him. I totally get that you can smile when you remember. Regrets? Only that I lost him in the first place. Oh, and that I put up with his bullying for way too long. In the end (or who knows? always thinking another shoe might drop), our relationship is better now for the battles we went through. It’s hard to fully trust again, but I’m doing my best and I believe he is too. Thank you for sharing your story and feelings so honestly.

    • Unsigned Masterpiece says:

      I will take that cyber hug. And send one back in return. I agree it is hard to trust again once you have been attacked. I wish my son and I could sit down and talk through some of the issues but for now that doesn’t seem possible. But I agree nothing will take away the happiness of having found and met him.

      I think some adoptees have difficulty deciding whether they want to have a relationship with their parents or not. If you want to have a relationship, I believe you work things through. If you don’t, or you can’t even answer the question, then you probably don’t.

      Pleased to see Second Chance Mother is doing so well.

  3. Sharon Pedersen says:

    My heart goes out to you on your anniversay and your loss of your son. Since reunion with my daughter in 2008 I have been on a roller coaster of emotions. Now, sadly, we are estranged, like you and your son. It’s only a month ago that she said she wants to end our relationship.
    I’ve been in shock, I think, that bullying would occur, but it has. Not from her so much as from her eldest son and her husband! And from that she feels our relationship is too stressful for her. I wait. I’m here if she needs me. I don’t know what else to do. I’m glad we met. I hope we meet again.
    I’ve been called a “strong” woman. I believe I am. Good thing, too, all things considered. Coercion changed me to my core, but some part of that strong inner part remained … so that I have survived, but just barely. Mostly I’m often numb when it comes to emotion — good or bad.
    Today, Anti-bullying Day, and all the media attention to the two young Canadian teenage girls who committed suicide due to bullying (after an unpleasant sexual experience) brings to my mind how men/boys are not called to account for their part in our suffering. I wasn’t raped. I loved, was besotted. But, I was rejected and abandoned by my family for over 40 years because of my pregnancy. I had no support whatsoever either. My daughter’s father still feels there is nothing he can or should do.
    I haven’t ever considered suicide, but I’m convinced no one will care when I pass. Just another mother. Some know my story. Most don’t care, most don’t want to know details.
    It’s nearly 50 years ago now that I experienced all the trauma of being unwed and pregnant. It’s for life. Hardly ever gets better.
    I’m glad for your blogs and for the support of other mothers.

    • Unsigned Masterpiece says:

      Thank you for your comment Sharon. I am sorry that you are going through this. And I feel sorry for your daughter too. I think adoptees already have enough conflict regarding their adoptive parents and reunion. It’s too bad when they get pressure from others. I think people often don’t understand the intensity of the emotions that reunion brings out. It’s too bad people get jealous. I have seen it happen on both sides, the adoptee’s family and the mother’s family. I know it’s rough when things fall apart, particularly when you don’t know what you can do to make it better. I think the system that was in place when we had our kids was set up so that our boyfriends did not have to take responsibility. Shaming us into silence was part of it.

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