Recent Letter to the ElderWisdomCircle™
FAMILY: Having Trouble Accepting That I'm Adopted
I'm adopted. I just found out last summer and it's been hard to believe it. I've always had a feeling but anyways i want to see my birth mother but it's impossible because she's in a different country and we're now in different country. I have this sadness in me not knowing why she left me or if she cared about me. I just wanted to say this to somebody because I didn't tell my friends and I don't want to hurt my parents but I wanna know how to get out over that feeling.. thanks
As soon as I saw your letter, Fahmida, I knew I had to answer it. I am the adoptive parent of two wonderful young people, a son and a daughter, so I experience adoption from a different viewpoint than yours. However, my kids and I have talked about the adoption issue many times, so I have some idea of what your feelings are.
It is perfectly normal and natural for you to want to know about your birth mother. No matter how great your adoptive parents are, and how good your relationship with them may be, you still feel that tug to learn more about your origins. My daughter felt the same way, and did take some steps to learn more about her birth mother. And her dad and I supported her every way we could.
I don't think that your adoptive parents would be hurt by your wanting to know about your birth mother. As long as they know that you love them, that you regard them as your "real" parents, they are likely to understand your desire to know more about her. My advice would be to tell them exactly how you feel. They love you, they want the best for you, and they want you to be happy.
As for why your birth mother let you go, I had to address that issue with my kids. What I told them, and what I truly believe, is that their birth mother wasn't in a position to give them the kind of home and family that would be best for them, and so she let them go so they could find that kind of family. And it worked -- they grew up with two loving parents who could care for them and love them. Their birth mothers, and yours as well, made the biggest sacrifice a mom can make: she gave up her child so that child could have a better life.
So, Fahmida, don't try to "get over" the feeling of wanting to know about your birth mother. Instead, let it be with you, right next to a feeling of gratitude and compassion for her, for what she had to go through in giving up her child. She did love you and care for you, so much that she gave you up. It was the best and only gift that she could give you.
Thanks for writing to us, my dear, and do write back any time you feel like it. I would love to hear from you again.