Adoptee Rage! This blog is written exclusively for the 38% of Abused and Neglected Adopted Children. The U.S. HHSA Identifies #1 Risk: Maltreatment, Child Abuse and Risk for Death In Adopted children. Childhood domination, Coping compensation. Research in Adoption Psychology, Developmental Trauma"The Adoption Paradox". By Rainstorm Red-Smith
About Adoptee Rage
Statistics Identify large populations of Adoptees in prisons, mental hospitals and committed suicide.
Fifty years of scientific studies on child adoption resulting in psychological harm to the child and
poor outcomes for a child's future.
Medical and psychological attempts to heal the broken bonds of adoption, promote reunions of biological parents and adult children. The other half of attempting to repair a severed Identity is counselling therapy to rebuild the self.
ADOPTEE RAGE! Adoption Reunion, The Psychology Behind Rejecting Mothers __________________________________________________________
Copyright Heather Carlini, C.M.Ht.2005
Having worked in post-adoption counseling for twenty –five years now, I have seen both adoptees and natural mothers experience rejection at the end of a long search (for each other).
Nothing is more devastating … it is like a vexation of the Soul. I believe that the mother and child have a Soul Contract on a spiritual level, a subconscious yearning to meet each other so they can heal the pain of separation.
Unfortunately, these healing journeys are not always done together, in which case, both adoptee and natural mother must then finish their healing journeys alone.
However, if an adoptee does find his or her natural mother, she is not always prepared for this happening and may go into shock, followed by a state of fear. This reaction on her part will come across as "rejection" to the adoptee. What has happened is that for that moment, the younger fragmented self that was buried deep inside her has reawakened. This is the part of her that holds the fear.
As a young woman she may have been coerced into adoption by past cultural attitudes towards children born to unwed mothers. Since there was no support system such as we have today, she believed she had to do what others insisted was best for her baby. She relinquished the child in spite of her misgivings and need to nurture it.
To live with this decision of separation and cope with the emotional pain in her psyche, she buried the pain within herself and fragmented this part of her from her outward personality. To hide the truth from both herself and those around her, she took on a facade. For example, she may have maintained a personality as a people-pleaser, which would gain her acceptance and approval from others.
However, convinced she was unworthy of keeping her child and never having known where her child was, the fragmented side of her personality remained in a state of fear, anger, sadness, unworthiness, guilt and shame. These feelings can remain locked up in the subconscious mind and on a cellular level for years, unless she finds some way to heal.
In many such cases, the natural mother feels this psychosomatic body pain on anniversary dates such as her child's birthday. Sadness, depression and anger rise into her conscious mind, but it is unlikely she knows what is causing these emotions unless she is consciously able to acknowledge her hidden pain.
If her relinquished child suddenly calls her years later, the fragmented self within her brings all the cellular memories to the surface. Unexpectedly, she is reliving the surrender of her baby. Hearing the adoptee's voice suddenly reawakens this alternate reality. Every cell in her body is recognizing that familiar emotional chemistry from the past trauma. As each emotion has its own chemistry code, those same emotions she experienced at the time of relinquishment are now surfacing and the pain and fear are overwhelming her.
The emotions of sadness, anger, unworthiness, guilt and shame are all awake and she goes into momentary turmoil. In some natural mothers the first emotion to awaken is fear and this is what the adoptee sees as rejection. Unfortunately, he/she does not understand that the natural mother is re-experiencing the abstract feelings that are left over from the disenfranchised grief that she was never permitted to handle in the past. For that moment she feels like that young woman of years ago when she felt herself unworthy of being able to respond to a call from her child.
She may also fear that the adoptee is going to be very angry with her for the relinquishing him or her as a baby when it was at their most vulnerable stage in life.
She searches her memory banks for a reference point that will tell her how to handle this situation in the present, but she can't find one. As a result she may experience one of three types of symptoms. The first may be hyperarousal in which the lower emotions of anger, fear, guilt and shame are felt to the extreme. These are the emotions she experienced when she had to surrender her baby, that were locked into her body cells and are now reawakened.
She may then go through a stage of intrusive symptoms in which she needs to tell the story over and over to anyone who will listen, looking for validation and support. The truth is finally out and it has become "real". The third symptom is constriction which makes her feel powerless so that she goes into a state of surrender, shutting down all her emotions. These three stages are classic symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
Most natural mothers experience them to some degree when faced with reunions. These symptoms will oscillate from one to the other until she finds a way to heal her inner pain.
Consequently, rejection isn't always what is seems. It is really about the fear the natural mother is experiencing along with the other hidden emotions from the past that she was never given permission to heal. In some cases the natural mother may regress to a state in which she is living out of the emotions of the fragmented younger self.
If you wonder why some natural mothers react so harshly while others are delighted with the idea of a reunion, the source of the problem lies in the ways she coped over the years with her loss and whether or not she was able to talk about it with others. If she allowed herself to discuss the past and had read books on adoption issues she will be delighted with the idea of a reunion. But if she locked away the pain so deeply within herself, she may have created a mental block that parallels amnesia. When the memories of the relinquishment resurface, she begins to experience the symptoms of post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Her outward behavior now represents a negative overreaction to what should have been a joyous event.
The adoptee should be prepared not to judge her for her initial reaction, which appears as a rejection. The natural mother needs time to find support and validation for her trauma. To accomplish this she may require counseling that will help her manage her feelings towards a reunion before it is attempted. It would be advisable for her to copy down the adoptee's phone number and/or address, enabling her to contact him/her once she has regained her composure and knows how she wants to handle the reunion.
The natural mother's initial reaction to reunion is an abstract of mixed messages clouded by fear. She should be encouraged not to turn away from her child. The pain and insecurity she feels will disappear with time and acknowledgement of the grief. If the reunion cannot be accomplished successfully, she must at least go on heal to her own trauma that the adoption has caused her over the years.
I believe we need to heal adoption issues on four levels, mental, emotional, spiritual and physical, with the guidance of a qualified counselor. Once these issues are healed, the final process of forgiveness for herself and others will take her out of the past and into the present moment. If both mother and child can reach the point of forgiving the past, they can develop a healthy relationship and leave the past behind. Trying to intellectualize and make sense of what happened to them in the past is counterproductive to their growth in the moment. It is better that they let go of the pain and allow compassion to enter their hearts, leaving the lower emotions in the past.
ADOPTEE RAGE! The Young adopted child ___________________________________________________________
The adopted child adopted in infancy knows nothing about adoption, then they are told the terrible news that they were adopted. That there is another woman out there that is their mother that does not fully register and does not make sense to them. That they are on temporary loan so they better mind their manners or they could be sent back. No matter how hard the adopted child tries they do not fit in, they continue to aggravate the adoptive mother that believes the adopted child is annoying her on purpose. The young adopted child has no one on their side, no one to listen to them and no one to confide in. The child feels lonely and prefers to isolate themselves away from the biological group because they only get into trouble when trying to be with the group. We learn to occupy ourselves quietly, play by ourselves and are silent like we are not there. This makes our family not annoyed with us, we don't get into trouble and we learn to be happy by ourselves. We still have no real idea what adoption means, only that is is bad and we are shamed for it.
Mid childhood is the time where we are learning how the outside world works, that is different from the way our family works. We are forced to develop the false-self "adopted child role" that makes our parents tolerate our presence. We are aware of what makes them mad and avoid this, ignore our emotions and needs to avoid being punished. Yet we are still frequently punished, shamed for who we are and treated differently from the biological offspring of the adoptive parents. No one in our family understands us, or knows who we are inside. We are ignored and treated like outsiders, and punished for things we have not done. We are told that we are a problem, and educational failure and called names. "Spoiled Rotten Brat", selfish, stupid, dumb and "haven't a clue" about life. We believe what they tell us that we are incompetent, selfish and liars. That we have no worth, that we are hopeless, that we are a financial burden and that we are a complete disappointment. The adopted child walks through school, home and life hating themselves and feeling responsible.
ADOPTEE RAGE! Did You Know Jane Is adopting? _________________________________________________ This is an ignorant social trap, Why the hell do these people tell me this kind of shit? As I watch the narrative unfold everybody's happy input makes me want to vomit. The congratulations, and "the child will be so fortunate to have you as a mother all makes me want to beat my head against a wall. Nothing it seems has changed regarding all of the hard work we adoptee writers bleed on public spaces for. The social networks we use to being information about adoption into the public knowledge seems to fall on death ears. The response is always the same. My husband's relatives keep making the adoption announcements as the socially naive always respond predictably. Their responses are not only hurtful to me but completely humiliating, as the joke about it in their family way. Adoption is a joke to me as the definition of comedy is "tragedy plus time. When I hear my spouses relatives talk about their adoption plan, they are quick to fault the child adoption process, especially the screening and psychological testing that can be easily gone around if a potential adopting parent fails the psych test. The social problem of adoption is in the public denial of the adoption consumers. They discount any teaching in the adoption education that gives a realistic image of future problem that they will experience and encounter with their adopted child. The social position is one that sees the adoption process as lame and unnecessary. They joke about how impersonal the adoption process related questions like preference for a particular race or age like they were going to the grocery store to buy bread. The potential adoptive parent's believe they are saving a child, that that child has no parents and have no idea what a paper orphan is. The new parents have picked out new names months into the adoption process that says they have no regard for the child's current and future identity as long as they get to pick it out. There is no mention of the real parents as if they don't exist and never will. Many adoptive parents I have talked to recently have no idea what the baby scoop era is, nor are they aware of the realities that adopted children live. The new adoptive parents only want possession to fill their own needs and the child is part of that plan. Sadly I know that the uneducated adoptive parent is as ignorant today as the baby scoop era adoptive parents in their demand for live babies.
ADOPTEE RAGE! The Psychology of Humiliation In of Being Adopted _________________________________________________________
Understanding the psychology and definition of humiliation provides the context that supports the adoptee's feelings and emotions of humiliation as an attack on his dignity as a human being. Adoptee's don't want to talk about adoption because it separates out and ostracizes us as legal orphans in need of saving. Adoption singles us out as different from our adoptive family, different from other kids and society, that points out our flaws and inability to fit in.
Society sees us the same as the books written about us and the scientists that studied us, reporting that we are generally lacking as an individuals in relation to normal kept children that constitute humanity. Which is all true to us adoptees we have read the adoption related literature, articles, books and scientific and psychological studies that pathologize our existence that we experience in our adoptee perceptions, but none of these so-called adoption experts ever experienced being adopted and all the trauma and fall-out that incorporates it. When an adoptee authors a book on how we experience adoption they are ridiculed, banned and verbally blasted by adoptive parents for telling our truth that they refuse to see. As we adoptees fail in school, ruin our adoptive family and social relationships, we tread water throughout life instead of swimming because we don't know who we are or where were from and we are shunned for seeking answers.
The excessive psychological and physical problems that are all caused by being adopted.. ..Were intentionally FORCED on us to live handicapped throughout life. The adoptive parents and society label us "special" and create medical and psychological therapies to fix us and alter our natural responses to the distress that was intentionally caused. The adoptive parents, the psychological community and social efforts all focus on "taking the adoption out of the child" but they can't erase what they have intentionally done to us in our best interests.
Adopted adolescents don't want to talk about adoption with their adoptive parents. Because we live in fear, we fear we will be punished if we say the wrong thing, to not say what is expected of us, the adoptive parent's unwritten script of what the good-adopted child can say. As our adoptive mothers have a specific perspective of gratefullness toward adoption because the adoption industry satisfied her demand for a human infant, that fulfilled her emotional needs at the time when she was desperate to possess a baby. The adoptive mother can never tolerate the adopted child's true feelings toward adoption as the adoptees feelings, emotions and lived adoption experience give the adoptee the opposite perspective. This opposite perspective from the adoptive mother causes her such extreme ambiguity and indifference that she can't reconcile, for if she did it would unravel her entire experience, attitude and fantasy that adoption gave her, would be replace by guilt, indifference and suspicion of the adoption industry.
Common in the the adoption situation is the adopted child's embarrassment, shame, guilt, and humiliation that all imply the existence of value systems, the adoption industry's philosophy. Shame and guiltare primarily the outcome of self-appraisal, embarrassment and humiliation are primarily the outcome of appraisal by one or several others, even if only in thought or imagination.
One important respect in which humiliation differs from embarrassment is that, whereas we bring embarrassment upon ourselves, Adoptee's experiencing humiliation is something that is brought upon us by others. Adoptive parents, adoptive extended family and society.
Fundamentally, humiliation involves abasement of pride and dignity, and with it loss of status and standing. The biological child's pride is their family's pride and dignity. The adoptee's pride and dignity have been removed, erased and replaced by the adoptive family's control.
when we are humiliated, our status claims cannot be recovered because, in this case, our very authority to make status claims has been called into question. People who are in the process of being humiliated are usually left stunned and speechless, and, more than that, voiceless. When criticizing people, especially adoptee's with low self-esteem always feel shame with the daily dose of adoption related humiliation.
Highly secure, self-confident biological children who believe that they are in the right rarely feel shame at their humiliation.
Humiliated adoptees carry the mark of their humiliation throughout life, and are thought of and remembered by their humiliation being adopted. In a very real sense, adoptees become their adoption related humiliation. We live this humiliation everyday of our lives, but when we are called out on being adopted, adoptive mother wants to talk about adoption, we feel the sting and ache of intense focused shame of our flawed being and feel we have no right to exist in the world other than for the benefit and amusement of others.
To intentionally humiliate an adoptee, to force the subject of his adoption, on him, in a social situation puts the adoptee at a serious, humiliating disadvantage...Is to assert power over the adoptee by denying and destroying his status claims, adopted children have no status or claim, except in connection to the adoptive parent's status and claims. To remind the adoptee of his illegitimacy and bastardly disconnection from society, you are reminding him that he as an individual is flawed and of a lower class that the adoptive family's biological family members. In reality no one needs to remind adoptees that they aren't family, they are not the same as the biological family members, we know it and live it everyday. To this day, humiliation remains a common form of punishment, abuse and oppression;
Humiliation need not involve an act of violence or coercion. Adoptee's can readily be humiliated through more passive means such as being ignored or overlooked, taken for granted, or denied certain human rights and privileges, like access to original birth records. Adopted children are also be humiliated by being rejected, abandoned, abused, betrayed, or used as a means-to-an-end rather than an end-in-himself. Philosopher Immanuel Kant argued that, by virtue of their free-will, human beings are ends-in-themselves, with a moral dimension that invests them with dignity and the right to receive ethical treatment. To humiliate an adoptee, is to treat him as anything less than an end-in-himself, is thus to deny him of his very humanity that is the basic fundamental of private adoption ownership.
When adoptees are humiliated, we can feel our heart and posture shriveling. Humiliation's shame can last months and years, we may be preoccupied or obsessed by our humiliation and its real or imagined agents or perpetrators. Adoptees may react with anger, fantasies of revenge, delinquency and others. Adoptees may also internalize the adoption related traumas causing fear and anxiety, flashbacks, nightmares, suspicion, social isolation and suicidal idealization. Severe humiliation in adoptees is a fate worse than death in that it destroys our reputation as well as our life, whereas death merely destroys our life.
The nature of humiliation that undermines the adoptee's ability to defend himself against his aggressor. In any case, anger, violence, and revenge are ineffective responses to humiliation because they do nothing to reverse or repair the damage that has been done. The adoptee has to find the strength and self-esteem to come to terms with his adoption related humiliation, when that proves too difficult, abandon the life that he has built in the hope of starting over where no one know about your adoption deficit and no one needs to know this.
ADOPTEE RAGE! Being Abandoned Is All That I Know _______________________________________________________________ Being Abandoned Is All that I know as I can take comfort in this familiar pattern of behavior that is an unfortunate consequence for the unwanted child. We learn abandonment as our first life experience, and continue to be abandoned throughout our lives. To accept this universal truth for unwanted children that become unwanted in child adoption, adolescence and adulthood.
I never bought into the "special or chosen" guilt trip designed to make the adopted parent feel better about their last-ditch-effort to be parents. I knew in adopted childhood that I was odd, an outsider and a bad impulsive "mistake" by my grieving adoptive mother. I accepted the inevitable truth that I was unwanted at birth, not wanted as an adopted child and not wanted or welcomed back in adulthood by my biological mother. My fantasy of repairing this void was revealed to me after many painful years waiting for her to have change of heart that never changed back. Looking back on my pathetic existence believing someone could rescue me from my fate. Friends boyfriends, lovers all saw the truth of my neediness, despair and desperation, that my flaws in being human were too large a burden to bear. My emotional arrest, social isolation and immaturity, the lack of self worth and reacting in anger or silence. The dysfunctional adoptive family's poor relating patterns ingrained in my adopted childhood constituted my life skills would be eventually be revealed early in relationships lead to their quick end......
To all those who have left me, that I will never see or know again, You were always special to me these people that I have loved. I can never talk to you about it, in person, or to the person gone. The pain I feel is too intense, too consuming, I feel it will kill me to let it out. I don't know how to express what I feel, each time a friend and lover is gone. This threatens my existence, my control, my dignity and to my sanity to move on.. I already know that your going to leave me the day that we have met. Intuitively knowing the moment when you question my value and worth I already knew that I am being psychologically abandoned by you. I know the moment that you have discovered my weakness, that I was a fraud and deemed unworthy of your humanity I knew it all along. The moment when you question my friendship, my love and my anger. When the silence screams loud enough to make my ears bleed, yet I say nothing. This is the millionth time that distrust of me is born. I see no purpose in discussing your reasons, or rehashing our disputes. Don't tell me be good bye. Don't think that I need or deserve explanation or the summary of excuses for the many reasons I've failed you. I am usually worthy of all my desertions, deserving of your hatred and loathe. ....Just leave me, go and say nothing to me....As this is all I know.
Words are my enemy and also my life, but your words of truth will forever torment me. All of the rationalizations in the world will never make sense As I make no sense to myself. I was born and reared and purposed to be alone, this is all I know how to do. If I dared to utter my pain, the pain that I have caused others and you... The ocean of despair that I hold inside would burst out and destroy my world. I have to remain stoic in my intuitive knowing the universal truths of why. Holding back my ocean of pain protects you from my drowning. As I can take being abandoned again, the only stable truth in my life that is worth knowing.
ADOPTEE RAGE! Therapist's Rationalization of the Adolescent Adoptee Wants to Live With Biological Mother __________________________________________________________ The title of this article is a dream come true for most adopted children. The fortunate adoptee (open adoption) actually knew his mother's name, he knows what his mother looks like and knows who his mother is as a person. This adoptee experienced mirroring in every visit with his mother, her face and his face are intuitively mirrored each other as their heartbeats were synchronized in utero. All of these precious experiences that most adoptees do not receive, proves that they are forever alone in this world. The adoptee that experienced open adoption, Which is the key contribution of the adopted adolescent's ability to know who he is, as himself. The therapist reduces the adolescent adoptee to a six year old mentality by using the analogy of wanting to live with the biological mother so he can "Eat all of the ice cream he desires".The adolescent adoptee is strictly motivated by the illusion that his real mother will let him live with her without any rules or consequences. This is a false assumption of adolescent adoptee's lack of intelligence. The psychologist blames the adoptee for "agitating for contact" with his mother. How is asking for contact with his mother, that is guaranteed him by open adoption "AGITATING"? The therapist assumes the boy is "attracted to the opportunity to take part in a social drama" I believe this already exists in the form of open adoption. Next blamed on the "kids of today" that every senior citizen complains of today's generation being a fault generalization...Lastly he blames the biological mother for "engineering this from behind the curtain" great analogy but not for adoption's cause. As the man behind the curtain is the false fantasy that adoption portrays it, changing the truth to fit the fantasy of the adoptive parents. In reality every adopted child longs for their 18 birthday where they can freely search for their lost mother, father, family and their lost self, their lost childhood. Most times these are unrealistic hopes, but in adolescence the adoptee and his mother might be able to salvage the past and forge a new beginning to bridge both of their traumas that are still quite fresh. __________________________________________________________ LINK:www.seniorcorrespondent.com/articles/2017/02/20/helping-your-discontent-child.2475206 Our 14-year-old son, who was adopted by open adoption, now wants to go live with his birth-mother. She was completely out of the picture until a couple of years ago when she suddenly showed up, telling us that she’d completely changed her life and wanted to re-establish contact with “her” son. At first, it was just phone calls. Then she asked for daytime visits, then overnights. Then he wanted to go on vacation with her last summer. In the meantime, he’s become more and more difficult to live with – moody and disrespectful, mostly, and his grades have taken a nose dive. He’s told us he doesn’t want to live with us anymore. I think he believes there will be no rules with her and he’ll be able to eat ice cream all day long, figuratively speaking. What should we do? A: Unfortunately, I’ve heard variations on this same story many, many times. It’s why I’ve been opposed to open adoptions from the beginning. This is an example of how this seemingly “fair” arrangement can turn into a nightmare for adoptive parents when the child enters adolescence and begins agitating for contact with the birth mom. It’s also a major reason why so many American parents, instead of adopting American children and risk having to deal with courts and social services agencies that have seemingly low regard for their emotional investment, go outside the country to adopt.
Today’s young teens, male and female, seem highly attracted to any opportunity to produce and take part in social drama. This is fueled, in large part, by the fact that what I call “psychological parenting” – the expert-driven parenting paradigm America embraced in the late 1960s – fails miserably at teaching children to put their emotions under the control of rational thinking. Emotional control is incompatible with children having a supposed right to express their feelings freely, one of the most powerful of the post-1960s parenting memes. Public schools that no longer teach critical thinking skills don’t help the situation.
In danger of being forgotten is that American teenagers were once generally respectful, trustworthy, rational, hard-working, and the like. What was not so long ago the norm has become the exception to the teen whose feelings rule. The upshot of this is a dramatic rise in teen mental health problems since the 1960s. Some researchers estimate that today’s children, compared with 1960s kids, are ten times more likely to experience a major emotional setback by age 16.
Put this all together with open adoption and you have a potential “I want to go live with my birth mother because she really understands me” soap opera when the adopted child hits adolescence. The fact is, your son doesn’t know what is best for him. His birth mother doesn’t know what’s best for him, either. If she did, she wouldn’t be engineering this from behind the curtain. Of the players, only the two of you truly know him and have his best interests in mind.
The further tragedy is that judges sometimes treat these situations as they would treat a custody dispute following divorce. Furthermore, the agreements you signed at the time of adoption put you in a legal bind here. Therefore, the best thing for you to do is get yourselves a family attorney who has had a good amount of experience in such matters.
In the meantime, continue to love your son, understanding that he’s captive to his feelings. That’s not a good thing at any age.