They felt like they kidnapped me, which honestly is what I felt like from an early age, before I even knew I was adopted.
Yet emotional abuse is incredibly damaging, perhaps in part because it cannot be recognised and dealt with in the same way. Emotional abuse gets swept under the carpet because it is supported and perpetuated by society as a whole.
I knew that my father had tried to divorce my mother a year before they adopted me. I knew that I was ‘her project’. I knew that he was never around.
Agency was conspicuous by its absence in my upbringing. My adoptive mother neither trusted in me, nor in my agency and this might be regarded by many as wise. After all what can a child know about the consequences of their decisions?
As a crusader for this system, abuse was not my mother’s intent. She was an agent in an abusive system, whilst believing that it was the best thing for me.
Twenty years later those two people are now strangers and our story is one of the human condition, of love and tragedy. It was inevitable. And so I simply sigh, close the book and move on.
Coraline will give her eyes, she will sacrifice her unique perspective on the world, and lose herself to her other mother’s vision of herself.
But although I drifted aimlessly on the open seas, buffeted by the storms I conjured myself from my grief, I also found that had the tools to fashion an oar.
Maternal narcissism is not exclusive to adoptive scenarios, but maybe disproportionately more prevalent in the adoption triad.
Take responsibility for your feelings. You are in charge of them. But that’s difficult. Because we need to feel angry. We’re allowed to feel angry.
That you desire to earn money from writing out your paltry experiences is exploitative, unskilled and ultimately worth nothing. But of course you know all of this even as you try and cover it with swathes of denial.
The most useful tool I’ve discovered on our life journey is compassionate honesty. It heals so many wounds. This month has given me the chance to compassionately and honestly re-examine the relationship between my adopted Mother and I, to see whether the wound has healed between us. But my mother continues to want to play the game of ‘who-is-right-and-wrong’, and … Read More
We have each claimed our respective subjective realities to be ‘the’ one and only truth over the years, but as it turns out there is no one and only truth. We can’t change our realities, only accept that my experience is true for me as your experience is true for you. I am not trying to make you wrong. But nor will I undermine my own reality to make you right.
I discovered last week that you read my blog. This blog! Although my initial reaction was one of fear, after 5 seconds I started laughing at what I imagine your reaction to be when you read about my not-so-private sex life out there on the web.
Who would have guessed that the high achieving little girl who was–to all the outside world–a perfect privileged child, was so busy hating herself?
I recoiled at her touch and thought ‘I don’t want to put cream on them. I want them to stay there so you see every day how ugly you made me.’