shunning

All posts tagged shunning

How I Came to Be

Published December 31, 2019 by maryleesdream
baby holding human finger

Photo by Wayne Evans on Pexels.com

 

Everyone has an origin story.  All the superheros do. Even supervillans do.  I have a few.

According to Mom  (I consider my mother to be my natural mother)

Mom was a tortured soul.  She was sexually abused from before she could speak.  Her first memory was of her mother, holding a shotgun on her grandfather, after catching him molesting Mom while he held Mom on his lap.  Later on, when she was 5, Grandma sent Mom to live with her father.  He put her in informal foster care, with a pedophile who molested her for the 6 years Mom lived with him.

Mom returned home to her mother. Grandma had had a bunch of other kids while Mom was away, and their care often fell to Mom.  Mom was poor and ragged.  She was ashamed to go to school. Dad was a rich guy from the neighborhood. Grandma told Mom to “go for him”. Grandma thought he would be a good catch. She didn’t sleep with him right away, and this kept him interested.  Eventually she did, and she became pregnant.  

Dad arranged for an abortion, using the same abortionist Grandma used.  Mom was 16, and abortion was still illegal.  It was another traumatizing experience for Mom.  Mom and Dad continued to bang.  Mom got pregnant again.  This time, Dad offered to marry her.  They got married, and were going to live in an apartment off his parents big house, when something happened.  

Mom saw a sign outside a church, offering help with unexpected pregnancies.  She went in and asked about it, and was introduced to the idea of adoption.  She went home and told Dad, thinking he would reject the idea, but instead he embraced it.  They moved a few towns away, and Mom waited out her pregnancy away from the family.  Dad worked on her every day as her belly grew, telling her I would have a terrible life if they kept me.  A life even worse than hers.  She didn’t want to give me up, but she began to believe him, and agreed to the adoption. 

I was born. No one was told.  Mom took care of me in the hospital and held me on the ride to the agency.  I stared at her the whole way.  She cried at the agency.  She cried for days afterward.  She cried everyday for 10 years.  It would overtake her suddenly.  While on line at the bank, when buying groceries.  Then she stopped crying.  She waited for me to find her. She didn’t want to look for me, because she thought my adoption might be a secret to me, and she didn’t want to be the one to tell me.  

According to Dad

Mom got pregnant.  They had relationship problems.  They liked group sex and drugs, and Mom wouldn’t give those things up, so Dad decided the only solution was to give me away, so I could have a better life.  

According to A-Mom

My parents were too poor to keep me.  Mom had to raise her younger siblings and didn’t want to raise any more kids.  My parents told their parents that I died at birth. My parents were married, and A-mom could not understand how a married woman could give her baby away.  No one held a gun to her head.  She was a cold heartless woman who did not want me. A-mom knew my name at birth, but would only tell me the first name.  A-mom lived in terror that I would be taken away.  

 

The Holidays

Published December 7, 2019 by maryleesdream
christmas tree with decors under the staircase

 

The holidays are upon us again.  It’s a time of joy, but also a time for sadness for many.  All of the positive images of family and love can make people long for what they don’t have.  I’m one of those people.

I have a wonderful family.  Husband and 4 grown children.  My eldest daughter is expecting a daughter in April.  This makes me so happy!  I cannot wait to meet the little one.  K, my daughter is 32, and not married to the father.  In fact, she only knew him for 4 moths before she fell pregnant.  In the old days, she’d be a great candidate for adoption.  Not in my house though.  Never, never ever. We will love that baby, and my daughter and do everything we can to help and support them.  Granddaughter! What a beautiful word.

I was born November 13, and relinquished on November 18.  This is always a trying time of year for me.  I was in a foster home, somewhere for my first Thanksgiving.  I don’t know who I was with, or what name they called me.  Was I Marylee, what my mother named me, or did they just call me another name they made up?

 

I arrived at my adoptive parents house on December 13.  Just in time for my first, terrifying Christmas.  Why terrifying?  I didn’t know these people, and my A-mom was always rather terrifying to me.

I have no idea what my natural family does for the holidays.  Do they still gather as a large group, or do my aunts and uncles celebrate with their own growing families of children and grandchildren?  I will never know, because I will never be allowed into that family.  They say it’s because of the way I behave, but I think it’s because I was relinquished.  I think they can forgive one of their own, if they behave badly, but I must be shunned if I do.  And, the extent of my bad behavior has been my anguish over my adoption.

Every holiday, I still foolishly hope I’ll get something from my family.  I never do.  I never will.

 

 

 

 

 

The Past

Published August 5, 2018 by maryleesdream

lonely

 

Last night, I woke in the middle of the night, and I felt such fear and dread.  I sought the root of the feeling, and could not find it.  I remembered that I have always felt this, and that the feeling has no name.  I also remembered that it will pass.  It will return, and it will go away again.  I think we all have these feelings.  It’s the human condition.

When I think back on my childhood, I cannot find any happy memories.  None.  The whole thing is colored a dark grey, by my adoption.  Losing my mother, and never being allowed to even speak of it, colored my life.

No family. No one. Nothing. Every day, all day.

I could not wait to escape from my adoptive parents house.  I met my husband when I was 16.  Someone who could save me, and make me whole.

“But, your adoptive parents loved you.  They did not abuse you! They raised you!”.

I know. I was there.  They tried, but I was so hurt.  I could not feel their love.  Their love was spoiled for me, because it came at the expense of my real family.  I should not have been put in such an impossible position.  I could not accept the love of the ones who I felt were responsible for my loss.

Did they really love me?  I suppose so.  I was a good enough child.  But, I was not, and could never be their child.  They had to maintain the illusion that I was.  They did not tell anyone that I was adopted.  It was a hidden family secret, one that I dared not speak of.

How I hated the phrase, “when we got you”.  Got me? I wanted “when you were born”.  I wanted my mother to tell the story, of my birth, not the story of these  strangers who somehow, “got me”.

Even as a young child, I felt this way.

It was a lost cause, from the start.  I was broken, unable to be fixed.  On my own, from the start.  I had to turn my heart to stone.

I remember, being at my Auntie Irene’s house, during the long hot summers when I was 6 & 7.  There were 4 older kids there, my adoptive cousins.  They did not like me much.  The feeling was mutual, but I was at a disadvantage.  I was all alone, and they had each other, as well as their real parents, and I was an unwelcome guest in their home.  My adoptive parents sent me there so they could both work full time during the summer.

I used to lie awake in my borrowed bed, listening to my adoptive uncle’s snores and will my heart to be hard, like a stone so I would not feel the pain of being left alone, again.  I locked my self in the bathroom, and said every curse word I knew.

I went home on weekends, and never told my adoptive mother any of it.  I never told her the sex games my cousins would play either.  I finally told her when I was an adult, and she said, “why didn’t you tell me”.  Sigh.

Would I have sadness if I hadn’t been adopted?  I’m sure.  My real mother had issues.  I still loved and needed her.

Warts and All

Published June 5, 2018 by maryleesdream

warts

 

Another early morning.  I couldn’t sleep again.  This time it’s OK, because I’m on vacation this week!  I can catch up on my sleep anytime this week.

I have been upset about something bio Aunt S said to me recently.  It really steamed my clams, and I’m trying to analyze my feelings, as usual.  I always wonder, why does it hurt so much?  Am I being unreasonable?

Bio Aunt S and I made contact when she did 23 and me DNA, and we connected as relatives.  I reached out to her, and we had a brief email exchange.  I have not had much communication with my bio family.  It’s been years since I spoke to Aunt S.

Aunt S said this in her email “I do see your dad a couple of times per year.  I love him, “warts and all”, and I cannot speak for him or comment on his choices.”.  This is what has been bothering me.

I have not seen my father since Christmas 2012.  He has chosen to have no contact with me, or my 4 children.  His kept daughter recently had a baby, who I think lives with him.  The fact that Aunt S, dad’s sister loves and accepts my father’s decision to exile me hurts me deeply.

I do not feel any love, kindness or acceptance towards me in the statement my aunt made.  I know siblings love each other, and are loyal, but is putting family members on a pedestal doing the right thing?  Dad is loved, “warts and all”, but I am still shunned.  It hurts so much.  I will shove it down into my psyche, and get over it, but it will never stop hurting.  The pain will just subside over time to a dull ache, which will flare up from time to time, when I am reminded of my losses.

Maybe I’ve Got it All Wrong

Published January 14, 2018 by maryleesdream

 

Family-gallery-for-clip-art-pictures-of-families-clipartcow

 

I think my birth parents are my parents, not my adoptive parents.

I do not think I’m related to my adoptive parents at all.  I can’t understand how I can be expected to believe unrelated strangers are my family.  I was raised by, and around my adoptive family, but I never,ever thought, or wished that I was related to any of them.

They’re OK people.  Not too bright, actually.  My mother was much smarter.  More damaged, for sure, but quick, in a way the adopters are not.  Mom & I both have large vocabularies.  A-mom, not so much.

It’s not a popular point of view, but it’s one I just cannot shake.

No one likes it.  My adoptive family think it’s wrong, because my A-parents raised me, and I should see them as my parents.  My birth family doesn’t like it.  I’m not sure how they feel about it, but it seems they don’t consider me a relative, and wish I would just vanish.  Which I have.  I have little contact with my natural family, 7 years after reunion.

We may have no contact, but they are still my relatives.  No matter what everyone else believes.

Are there any others out there like me, who do not understand how we’re supposed to believe strangers are our families?  Please let me know how it is for you.

She Should Have Been Proud

Published November 16, 2017 by maryleesdream

Mothers_and_children_II

 

My dear departed mother should have been proud of me.

I’m getting ready to go to work this morning.  I’m a supervisor in a busy government office.  I’ve raised 4 wonderful people into adulthood.  I own my own home and have been married to my sweetie for 34 years.

But she hated me.  My family shuns me.  It breaks my heart.  No matter what I do, it is never good enough.  I am tainted.  I am tainted by their rejection.

I’m 55 now

Published November 14, 2017 by maryleesdream

 

father

 

I can hardly believe how old I am.  I was young yesterday, now I’m middle aged.  Oh well, what choice do we have?  I still feel good.  My kids are grown, and life is a bit easier.  I’m enjoying this time of life, but still fearing the end.

My father did not wish me Happy Birthday.  He sent me a card once, and a check for $100.  This was when I turned 49.  Since then, nothing at all.  So, in total, he gave me $100, and bought me 2 glasses of wine, and a BLT sandwich.  And he gave me a ride to the adoption agency in his car.  That is all I got from my father.

Can I really have done something so bad to deserve this treatment?  I don’t think it’s possible.  I’m sure Dad would not shun his kept children.  But I was not kept, so I am not his child?  I guess that’s how it’s supposed to go.

The only problem is, I am his child.  He is my father.  His siblings are my aunts and uncles, their children my cousins.  His parents my grandparents, and so on.  Everyone can agree that this is not the case, but I cannot be convinced.  I have DNA proof.

Another birthday goes by.  A very hard day for some of us adoptees.  I felt, and still feel that my birthday is something to be ashamed of.  I should not have been born.  It was a mistake.  My adoptive mother was not there.  My birthday reminds her that she could never give birth.  My birthday ties me to another woman, and that’s painful for A-mom.  So, my birthday is bad.

It’s also the day my sorrow began.  The day I met my mother.  We were together for 5 days in the hospital.  Then we were discharged, and Dear old Dad picked us up and drove us to Spence-Chapin adoption agency, where they left me forever.

And, that’s why he’s not my father anymore.  Get it?  Well, I never will……