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Reunion and anger…

24 Sep

By TAO

My siblings reacted very badly when they found out I existed. I told myself it was their choice not to know me, and we all have free choice, and even though I was deeply hurt and couldn’t understand why they wouldn’t want to know a sibling, I thought I had accepted it for what it was.  I was used to accepting and moving on – that’s what adoption teaches you – this was no different from accepting any of the other parts of being adopted.  Put it out of your mind and carry on.

Over the years one sibling changed their mind and wanted to know me.  I was thrilled, or so I thought.  To know my siblings had always been a dream  – as far back as I can remember I had always wanted to know if I had siblings, one of the few precious questions I got to ask as a teen was – did I have siblings?.  That question and answer that I did made me so happy, and that even though I knew I would never know them – I had siblings.  That knowledge stayed with me and I would day-dream about meeting them, knowing them, being their sibling.

Yet despite being thrilled with the turn around by my sibling and starting off good, soon I started holding back, not being able to talk, not wanting to talk, shutting down.  It made no sense and it took a long time of self-reflection to admit that my holding back – was in fact anger at how all of my siblings reacted to me, and my inability to trust it wouldn’t happen again.

Right now we have an uneasy truce, and I don’t know if that will ever change, if I can change. Deeply ingrained in me is keep the peace at any cost, and I don’t know how to be honest about my deepest feelings of being rejected by them – and how that made me feel.  That I don’t trust my sibling not to do it again.  Trust makes me vulnerable to being rejected again.

Adoption – the gift that keeps on giving.

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23 Comments

Posted by on September 24, 2012 in Adoption

 

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23 responses to “Reunion and anger…

  1. kellie3

    September 24, 2012 at 2:55 pm

    I’m sorry for what adoption has done to you. I can understand COMPLETLY about not wanting to put yourself out there to be hurt again. I keep people away for exactly that reason. I don’t know if it’s “healthy”, but it keeps me sane.

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    • TAO

      September 25, 2012 at 2:10 pm

      Kelly – I think healthy has to be whatever works for you at the time (of course there are exceptions).

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  2. momsomniac

    September 24, 2012 at 3:11 pm

    This is so painful to read.
    I am so sorry.

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    • TAO

      September 25, 2012 at 2:12 pm

      Mom – it is what it is but based on the replies – it is a reality to many in this area so I’m glad I took the risk of putting this out there. Never fear – I will always be okay – I am a survivor always.

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      • momsomniac

        September 25, 2012 at 3:36 pm

        *hugs*

        Can’t talk on the internet about how this could effect my family. It seems this would hurt more than a b-parent not being responsive. Siblings are more integral to one’s sense of “family” – on an emotional level – than parents, especially once we’re grown.

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  3. veggiemom

    September 24, 2012 at 5:49 pm

    I’m sorry.

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    • TAO

      September 25, 2012 at 2:14 pm

      Veggiemom – thanks – hopefully this is never a reality for your kids, and truthfully one of the reasons I got off the fence regarding open adoptions because a big part of the problem is the secrets, and the lack of shared history – even if the history was minimal.

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  4. eagoodlifen

    September 24, 2012 at 11:26 pm

    So understand your feelings.I have 5 half-siblings, one born 5 months after I was. When they were found by my cousin who handled it badly, two didn’t want to know including my only brother.I was contacted by two and eventually contacted the other with whom I got on best.She turned out to be a racist, the others a user and an abuser.I thought perhaps I’d left it too late in life to learn to be a sister, then I realised they too were so damaged, by a father who had been raised by christian brothers. The damage and abuse in the family has made me pull away and drop contact, trust is a big issue although I have no regrets.

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    • TAO

      September 25, 2012 at 2:15 pm

      So sorry Von that you experienced this too – it really all boils down to trust that once removed is hard to regain or give.

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      • eagoodlifen

        September 25, 2012 at 6:56 pm

        I think many of us do TAO, although the myth is that reunion is wonderful and we all have happy endings.Trust, yes, that illusive but essential component in relationships.I trusted and tried to do it right but in the end my siblings were just not people I could be close to or wanted to know. Biological connection isn’t always a prime consideration.

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        • TAO

          September 25, 2012 at 10:46 pm

          I agree Von – there are times it is best to cut the ties.

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  5. iwishiwasadopted

    September 25, 2012 at 2:42 am

    My brother, who is 17 (I’m 49) told me my family was the one that raised me and I would never be part of his immediate family. Dad said he agreed, so that’s that. Dad married a woman 4 years younger than me and had 2 kids. They started “dating” when she was 14 and he was 40. He likes knocking up young girls. It hurts like hell, I must confess. I just hope my dipshit brother needs a kidney someday, or I win the mega millions. Then I’d be family, I’ll bet.

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    • TAO

      September 25, 2012 at 2:16 pm

      i wish – wow that is quite the familial story line – so far beyond my ability to even comprehend. I am sorry you are having to live that reality.

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  6. shannon2818

    September 25, 2012 at 3:35 am

    I can’t believe they didn’t want to know you. I don’t blame you for being hurt.

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    • TAO

      September 25, 2012 at 2:19 pm

      Shannon – It hurt and it did hurt my ego because I “think” I am a nice person. I also had a problem understanding simply because I am sure they would have no issue striking up a conversation with a complete stranger in a check-out line, but yet freak out at the thought of having another sibling. Oh well – life likes to throw rocks sometimes.

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  7. Valentine Logar

    September 25, 2012 at 11:43 am

    My biological parents married after I was born, they had 5 more children. My biological father also had at least 2 more children, one 10 months younger than me before he married my mother and another during his marriage to my mother, this one has contacted me just this year. My biological parents divorced and my dad remarried, adopted his next wife’s two daughters and had two more daughters.

    I met them all when I was in my twenties. I have had a on again off again relationship with them. Well the two youngest are literally 25 and 27 years younger than I am so those relationships were controlled by their mother for many years. Most of my siblings knew about me all their lives, I wasn’t a surprise. The early years of our relationship were difficult, most of them were still teenagers when we met, that was nearly 25 years ago. We spent nearly a decade of no contact after my father passed in 2001.

    Now many of us are coming back together, it is a slow negotiation of learning to trust each other again. The key is I trust myself and set no expectations, make no demands.

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    • TAO

      September 25, 2012 at 2:23 pm

      Oh my goodness – you do have a HUGE amount of siblings – I can’t even begin to imagine what that would be like and the age spread is a complete generation difference. I need to learn how not to have expectations – that would be helpful – I don’t have a problem as I am not demanding by nature – but expectations I do fail. Thanks for the comment – it may help me and will mull.

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      • Valentine Logar

        September 26, 2012 at 12:16 am

        I think the thing I always remember is we are each of us individuals, we all have some baggage and none of it necessarily matches. Some of our hurts are our own, some because of our shared parents and some because of life that we lived outside of our shared DNA. As the eldest, I have a great deal of life that they will never know and that I might never share with them. But they grew up with some history also.

        My mother, father and I are the same generation. They were very young when I was born. While they did the right thing giving me up, they also used my birth as a hammer against each other. One of my sisters once said to me she spent her life in my shadow, yet didn’t meet me till she was 17 and I was 24.

        Now, well we are all older, maybe wiser and more able to sort through both our feelings. I have just begun to speak with my mother again, with a gentle heart and more compassion. Same with my siblings. With the babies, I have always loved them.

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  8. shadowtheadoptee

    September 25, 2012 at 2:01 pm

    If my birthfather’s raised daughter ever decides she wants to get to know me, I really don’t know what I would do. It would be so hard, after being ignored for so long. I’m still so very angry at the whole situation, I just don’t know if I could get over it, or will get over it.

    I haven’t heard a word from my birthmother’s raised children in months, but you know that story. I’m so disappointed in them right now, I just can’t be the “big sister” they want me to be, or, really, the mother they need, but don’t have, even at their ages. I’m tired of trying, tired of hurting, and tired of being angry, but what else can I be?

    Trust? What’s that? I’m not sure I know the meaning of the word.

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    • TAO

      September 25, 2012 at 2:26 pm

      Hey Shadow – it does get to the point where enough is enough and you are beating your head against a wall. If I had been in reunion as long as you have I wouldn’t just be angry if contact was made I would be enraged. Too little, far too late.

      Trust does seem to be an ongoing theme doesn’t it.

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  9. zoozig

    September 25, 2012 at 9:58 pm

    Oh, such a sad sad post. I can understand your anger but hate that it has to be. The power of the secret–of their being left out of the truth of their mother’s (or father’s) life and then taking their negative feelings, their hurt and anger, out on you. Would it be possible to just call up the sibling who does want to have a relationship and tell her why you have been feeling the way you do, and ask if you can start all over again?

    What you describe is what we mothers who are open fervently pray does not happen. I never had other children for my daughter to have a sibs, but her father did. It is unclear they knew about Jane–but that seems absurd as soon as I write it, considering I wrote that book so long ago and I know that some in the family knew about it, but none of them contacted my daughter, and considering her father’s refusal to meet her, she did not attempt to contact them. I did not encourage it because I thought she might get rejected all over again.

    Another reason for mothers NOT TO KEEP THE SECRET. I say, adoption, the pain that goes on givign.

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    • TAO

      September 25, 2012 at 10:45 pm

      Awe thanks – I think my sibling would be open to it but first I have to change and perhaps why I wrote this post. A way of starting – time will tell. I am the ultimate at keeping the peace personality despite how I am feeling.

      I still (years later) have a problem speaking on the phone because it isn’t a conversation I can pre-script. Verbal communication I need visual cues that my awkward un-thought-out sentences work – writing is better long distance due to my expressive aphasia as I need to be able to edit and rearrange. The downside is that written word lacks emotion and can be taken wrong. Expressive aphasia sucks – sometimes more than other times – this is one.

      This response had to be reworked 4 times and am sure it still is not perfect. 🙂

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  10. b.

    September 26, 2012 at 2:05 pm

    I am so sorry you had to make this experience.

    Like

     

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