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.

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

What is the worst thing that could happen to a kid?


What was the worst thing that could happen to a kid?
The long hot summer days, hanging around with the kids, watching them play in the cul-de-sac with all the neighbor kids and the one mom me who hangs out and talks to them, as each kid is so interesting, unique and the best part of being around children is their honesty, As I love asking children questions and hearing their sweet and sometimes naive answers.  One summer day sitting in the yard with a small group of kids, my own two kids were somewhere else that day, when I asked a question to these five young neighborhood children sitting in my yard with me: "what is the worst thing that could happen to a kid?".....The five neighborhood kids unanimously shouted out "being adopted", although I personally know that none of these kids were adopted. I was shocked, taken by surprise and had no idea that they would bring up such a rare or unexpected response. I thought they would say things relating to being a kid, Loosing the game controller, electricity going out watching your scary movie or cleaning out stinky garbage cans with your tooth brush. But the answer unanimously shouted out was so humble and honest 
seeing such serious looks on their faces, this is what they truly fear...or It's possibility. The threat of adoption, of being told by their parents that they were adopted. I am still astonished by the children's answer some three decades later as I write this post.
This primal fear that lives somewhere deep inside of their young minds, lingering in horror, that all that they know could be nullified or erased in an instant with the dreaded phrase "you are adopted"....    
Of which the children all had the same answer, but none of these kids were adopted, they had no adopted people in their families and did not know any adopted person or anything about being adopted, just that it is "bad". So bad that none of the kids wanted "it" (adopted) to happen to them, or have anything to do with "it" (adoption.  It is just a bad, bad thing to a child and something that children fear in the darkness between space and time that could jeopardize their lives.  This fear of being adopted that could potentially ruin or erase these kid's happy connections to their biological families.
I am still not processing the children's reaction to my question in the right way, as I am so surprised at the seriousness of their fear..of being one of those adopted children. At the time I thought it was funny, but as time has passed I think of that day and the question I asked in all silliness and how the reality of a child's truth is sometimes a powerful wisdom.

Monday, December 29, 2014

Category: Adoptee's Search and Reunion. The Biological Mother Is Only One Aspects of Several Important Biological Family Connections To Explore


Category: Adoptee's Search and reunion

The Biological Mother Is Only One Aspect Of Several Important Biological Family Connections To Explore

As the adoptee enters into the search or reunion phase of the adoption life cycle, The insight most important to the adoptee is that one person can not represent an entire tribe and (biological family).

The fact that a single person's presence, can not repair the absence of an entire family. Going blindly and solo into adoption reunion is preferred as no one can help you only interfere negatively. The adoptive parents should be excluded from initial meetings as the adoptee must make this soul searching journey on their very own. We are born alone and we die alone and if we were so unfortunate to have been adopted in the first place, this reunion experience explicitly belongs to the adoptee and the biological parent. The biological mother is not the only person to reunite with and she has no exclusive rights to your biological family as you belong to them and the entire biological family is your blood. The Maternal deprivation is not the only thing adoptee's are deprived of... we are deprived of maternal and paternal grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, most importantly sisters and brothers. The deprivation of sibling relationships are  
easier to heal and grow new relationships with. Aunts, uncles and other relatives may give us what our broken biological parents can not. It takes an entire family and a lot of time to gather our medical history,
and it takes an entire families different accounts of what, where, when, how and why to get at or near the truth of our own history. Some biological mothers as is mine are so broken and have used their lives to re-create the similarity of the adoption trauma because they never got over it and in many cases as relinquishing mothers age, the pain from adoption gains strength growing more painful each passing year. Some of these first mothers young lives were destroyed by the perpetrated adoption trauma that victimized them and rendered these young girls broken before they started to live. My own mother was so traumatized by my forced adoption that she lost decades of her life's memories. My own dear mother punished herself relentlessly, not allowing herself to care for her own children and as a senior citizen volunteer care-giver for the elderly baby's in
a local convalescent home. She is re-creating the care giving that she did not allow herself to provide at the time when her babies were young. My mother perpetually creates the cycle of care that she was deprived of through the original assault on her ability to parent. Because of the extreme psychological denial, depravity and shame the biological mother has suffered, has caused loss of memory related dementia began in her early thirties. The psychopathy of unresolved psychological trauma is now proven through psychiatric science. Unfortunately my biological mother can not be healed from her narcissistic wounding trauma that caused early onset dementia. Although I am quite lucky to have such a network of biological family that has made up for what my own mother can not give me, her sisters can. My biological father, his four brothers, my paternal grandmother and grandfather all have been waiting for me since they found out I was stolen from their family. It is the most amazing thing in my life, for an adoptee to finally come home for the first time to myself. I am getting to know who I am through my relatives, my blood and my tribe. I finally have answers to who I am, where I come from. With this information of my real and authentic family roots. I now know where I come from, A long line reaching back to the 1690's Eastern United States Bird-town. South Carolina, North Carolina, Tennessee border's The Great Smokey Mountains, Indian Territory before the United States was established My ancestors lived and moved seasonally. Those with roots have never not known who they are, and discount this privilege to unknown adoptees without identity.  
The importance of roots as people without them have no connection to the world or other people. For the first time in my 45 years of life, I now have direction, purpose and Identity. I am no longer keeping my head above water, keeping myself from sinking...I can now swim, with the aid of my entire genealogical family. Just knowing who you are makes life worth living.    

The Adoption Agency's New Child Return Policy


The Forever Family Marketing Reality of Child Returns

The fact that not all adoptions fit the false marketing phrase of "Forever Family." Some adoption agencies are now legally incorporating adoption return policies and wrongful adoption clauses in adoption paperwork to give the happy prospective adopting couple an out.   These new adopted child return policies and practices put into place by adoption agencies that accommodate the unsatisfied or unhappy placements to adopting parents,  are reflecting the realistic behavior in adopting practices. From the trending statistics that are individual and confidential to each private child placing agency, the returning of adopted children to the agencies that contracted their original adoptions, guarantee their choice of placement.
The various reasons adoptive parents decide that the placed adopted child was a bad match, the child is genetically damaged, the child's current or future healthcare needs, or the adopted child's emotional damages and challenges far exceed the expectations of the prospective adoptive parents. The fact that is and has been always ignored by adopting parents and adoption agencies...that the child is a blank slate has now been scientifically proven wrong. The adopted child's genetics are contributing factors to potential problems.  When an adopted child develops childhood
illnesses or diseases like Leukemia, they can be returned to the adoption agency and the adoptive parent's are no longer held liable for their care. 
Most adoptive parents returning adoptive children
did not anticipate, expect or tolerate a sick adopted child. As the unforeseen illness is the fault of the child and not the liability of the adoptive parent. It would be more logical for the adoptive parent to sue the adopted child for medical related financial damages, however adopted children come with no resources to pay, only their indentured servant status that can not pay it's own way. The adopting parent's are really the victims in these cases, as they went out to acquire a genetically healthy adopted child, and the child gets sick on them resulting in financial hardships, emotional cost and the adopting parent's becoming psychically and emotionally exhausted by the whole illness problem. The adopting parent's did not agree to adopt a sickly child or did not agree to the burdens of a developmentally disabled child's burden. The purpose of adoption is to fulfill the needs of the adopting mother.,The adopting mother's reason to adopt a child, in the mother's anticipation of adoption is to acquire a healthy, thriving and problem free adopted child, where the child does not meet these expectations, the adopting parents can fall back
on the adoption agency's return policy. The unfair demand on the adopting parent's expected long term commitment of a lifetime agreement caring for a special needs child far exceeds the adoption plan and is far more of an unrealistic commitment than the adoptive parents signed on for.  
The adopted child returning plan by agencies is to relieve the adoptive parent's adoption misery, from unhappy, unfulfilled and down right angry adoptive parents that are dissatisfied by the agency's child placements. Now the adoption re-homing and sending the child back, is out of the shame closet and coming into mainstream practice as a truth for all people to acknowledge, that not all adoptions work out, not all adoptions result in forever families and with the new practice of legitimate and legal child returns. 
Although adoption agencies are guaranteeing the satisfaction of adoptive parents, still no legal recourse for returned adopted children exist. Once we understand the basic premise of adopting parents motivations for adoption, we will begin understand the ugly truth of abandoning children and adopting children statistics out in the open. 

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Are You My Mother?


Are You My Father?....Are You My Mother?

As a small adopted child, I would go door to door  asking people if they knew who my mother is?
Everyday it was my driving force to find her, especially when dumped in every baby sitting service that could be found in my small town. When I was sent to babysitters far away from home, I would slip out the door and start knocking on doors, as a child the world seems so very small, surely someone knows who or where she is, although I did not know her name. The people opening the doors were horrified to 
see a small lost child, some got angry and would grab me by the arm or ear and march me back to the babysitter's house. Always looking for my mother as my adoptive parents said that one day she would come for me. So I waited, searched and knocked on doors. I always waited by the mailbox with my red jacket and red suitcase, packed with dolls and toys,
I was too young to understand another absent mother, as my adoptive mother never got out of bed in the mourning hours. She never knew of my daily trek to the road to wait and see if she might drive by
and see me waiting there ready to leave with my real mommy. My grandfather would drive from his ranch each morning and wait a block away to watch me as he could not keep me from going out to the road, and he knew my adoptive mother would beat me if she caught me out there so he never told her. She would never know or care as she never got out of bed in the am hours, sleeping off the last night's monstrous hangovers. As long as the kids didn't disturb her sleep we were free to roam and eat all the packaged foods we could find for breakfast. We kids learned early not to poke the dying from hangovers or risk being beaten with hot wheel tracks.
As I grew up, anyone that was kind or emphatic to me, could they be my parents? In grade school I had two teachers that saw through my dysfunctional home life and those two teachers were the only teachers my adoptive mom hated with a passion, remembering to this day what bad teachers they were. As all my other teachers said I was stupid, slow, special ed, lazy and had obvious problems, you see my mom needed allies in their perpetration of me, If the teacher could not see that my true nature was evil, the teacher was inept and would be the topic of mother's angry gossip forever in a child's mind. When I was growing up and difficult the shame and humiliation tactics against me would kill my free spirit, and render me black, a suppressed soul struggling to hold all emotions inside.
My opinion, emotions and crying were unacceptable and worthy of a slap in the face for being difficult, moody or dramatic. The more I would try the harder adoptive mother would ride me like a donkey. She found her purpose in life was to take this unwanted child and render my soul and spirit broken.  Then she will feel that she did her job, as a good or superior  adoptive mother as my silence and submission was a reflection of my good manners.
At this point I gave up on looking, trying to find or hoping to find my parents as all mothers must be cruel and dominating and one mean mother's memories must be enough to last my entire life.

The Second Time I was Thrown Out of My Adoptive Family and Had the Ability to Leave.


The Second Time I Was Thrown Out of My Adoptive Family, That I Was Able to Leave.

The night I was afraid to drive through the hail storm,
I spun out in my car on the way home and turned around. Calling my adoptive parents to tell them what happened, they screamed at me, calling me a liar, threatened me, they told me that the storm was a "bullshit excuse", to get my ass home...I was sixteen and a new driver, so I drove again down the mountain taking it slower than my first attempt. As I turned down the driveway they were waiting for me, descending on my car with me in the driver's seat they began to beat me up. Hitting me scratching me, knocking me on the ground outside of my car, pulling out my hair telling me that I was a Liar, a whore, a slut and many other drunken stupor behaviors that drunk parents do. The kept calling me many other unmentionable names as they struck me and kept hitting me so I couldn't get up off the ground. When they were done, I got up and ran inside the house and called the Sheriff's department. Lt. Frank Adams answered the call, and told me that he could not interfere with my parents domestic problems...because he and my adoptive father were friends. As I walked out the adoptive parent's told be to get out, never come back, so I left, horrified at being beaten up and my right nipple was detached, needing ten stitches. I went back to my boyfriend's parent's house and they took me in, as I was still in shock from almost wrecking my beater car.

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Consequences to High Stress Pregnancy Effect Offspring


Consequences of High Stress Pregnancy Effects Offspring

How domestic abuse can scar an unborn child for life

High levels of stress during pregnancy can cause an unborn child to have lifelong mental scars, according to researchers.
They believe a mother facing unnecessary crises can leave an imprint in the brains of her children, making them less able to cope as they get older.
The study team asked 25 mothers whether they had suffered extreme stress caused by abuse from boyfriends or husbands while they were pregnant, and then rated their emotional level. They then monitored the behaviour of a particular gene in their children, who were aged nine to 19.
The gene – called the glucocorticoid receptor – is involved in the brain’s response to stress.
The German researchers found that the gene was far less active in children whose mothers were victims of domestic abuse when they were pregnant. Abuse after pregnancy did not appear to affect the way the gene responded in the brains of their children.
Helen Gunter, of the University of Konstanz, said: ‘It changes the way that people respond to stress and they may have a reduced ability to respond to stress.
Past studies have shown that children who have abused parents are more prone to depression later in life.’ Dr Gunter, who reported the findings in the journal Translational Psychiatry, said the study looked only at the extreme stress caused by partner violence.
‘We did not look at the everyday stresses of working or having a family,’ she added.
‘This study is very specific to abuse.’ The researchers stressed that the study relied on the mother’s memories of abuse after a decade or two. And it doesn’t prove for certain that violence towards pregnant women causes the changes in a child’s brain – just that there  is a link.
Dr Carmine Pariante, of the Institute of Psychiatry at Kings College London, said: ‘This paper confirms that the early foundation years start at minus nine months. We have known for some time that maternal stress and depression during pregnancy induce a unique response in the offspring, by  affecting children’s behaviour well into adolescence and children’s ability to modulate their own  stress response.
‘This study shows that the glucocorticoid receptor, that is, the receptor for stress hormones, is subject to a key biological change that contributes to the organisation of this offspring response.
‘This confirms that pregnancy is uniquely sensitive to a challenging maternal psychosocial environment – much more than, for example, after the baby is born.
‘As we and others have been  advocating, addressing maternal stress and depression in pregnancy is a clinically and socially important strategy.’ 

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

The Forced Holiday Smile


The Forced On Holiday Smile

Being adopted means that where you came from, that is as unknown to yourself as is your real identity. The family that abandoned me that miserable day known as my birthday. Where I came from, my biological family has continued on with their lives uninterrupted by my long ago absence, they continue to live, grow up and grow older, and the worst part of it all to me, Is their continuity of a loving, caring and memory making family that I do not belong in. I never could imagine the depths psychological suffering or the consistency of new pains that I would discover and feel when you come to the realization that again I am an outsider, an alien and have nothing in common. Not to mention the harsh reality that my own biological family has absolutely no interested in me or my pathetic life in the least....Accept my brother's wife that invites me to contribute financially to my nephew's high school band's fundraising, If I contribute money to the kid's hobby funding then I might be allowed/forced to attend some horrific school engagement.  Gee thanks! However there is no relationship in the least attached to my giving them money for their kid's activities, as that is the only reason for my brothers wifes's emails., Never a Christmas card, bbq or bowling invite to participate  
in my own family, that is the christian material culture here in California. When I never sent her any money the fundraising requests stopped. The opposite is true for my paternal family but they are on the east coast,
and based in the racial south of a bible-thumping nature. The whole world is a disappointment when you are adopted, as no one will ever waste their time getting to know the adopted child in the slightest because they are temporary in nature and never authentically considered real kin. The adoptive parents decide who they want us to be, that is a complete contrast to who we really are although our identity is unknown to all. When I wanted to take piano lessons I got a piano for a Barbie doll! When I wanted to participate in my Baseball family's pastime "little-league", I received ballet lessons, and was forced to attend. You see I could never win, and never will be anything worth anyone's time or attention. As adoptee's are obsolete, once we have fulfilled our roles as adopted children, there is no longer a use for us. We are psychologically traumatized and this trauma grows more convincingly troubled as the years pass us by. We do not become older with more wisdom and insight, as we age the psyche damage burrows throughout our persona leaving a shell of a broken person in it's place. The horrors of adopted child abuse laying dormant in childhood's past, become the adoptee's everyday present. The enormity of the injustices suffered become forever amplified in our present day memories. There is no outlet, no release for rage held inside, although I struggle everyday to contain it, most days I want to beat someone to a bloody pulp, and maybe prison would or could contain the outrage that I keep simmering below my surface. At least in prison the law of the survival of the fittest, not the psychological mind fucks that we are forced to engage with in everyday life. The casual and meaningless manners and avoiding talking about anything that is real or concrete, the pleasant acquaintance conversations 
we engage in with the check-out girl at the grocery store, common courtesy and a wave hello to a neighbor, that could care less how your life is really going if you dare step beyond "the how are you"-"I am fine" conversations of good manners. When the adoptee looses the taste for our materialistic culture,
when there is no antedote for the bordem and melancholy that keeps adoptee's from jumping of the nearest bridge or taking one's own life for fear of living with the horible reality that our own life does not matter and never did. When we come to terms that our lives only had value when we possessed youth and the adoptee's self fulfilling prophecy that their life was not meant to be and the only real contribution to society was being that temporary adopted child puppet for the wealthy adopter that needed a child to fill their own void, lacking and in their desperation we provided the relief they sought. We were the temporary antidote, the answer to their emptiness. That our job and legal obligation to the adoption that we did not choose was fulfilled by our very existence, and the truth that we adoptee's had no more left to give.  
I always wished that there was a place for adoptees to go, to hide from the pain of the holidays. Like a rehab for adoptees to rehab our lives as each year's holiday passes more and more slowly with increasing misery, increased self awareness of brutal truths. It is no wonder that Christmas is the most popular holiday for adoptee suicides. 


Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Adoptee's Holiday Blues


The Most Miserable Holiday of the Year..........X-MAS
Adoptee Holiday Blues

Christmas is more disappointing than the adoptee's abandonment day of birth. As the whole of society participates in the material consumption and promotion of a day that has nothing to with the birth of the Christ. Christmas is for spending what you do not have, receiving things you do not want, and usually walking away from the festivities feeling cheated.... Those story book families that actually enjoy one-another's company, gather together to enjoy some kind of unity and connectedness, that I (the adopted child) have never known, never seen and never understood, As I have no connection to the world. I have a biological father, mother, and sister., I birthed two beautiful, intelligent and well nurtured Individuals that I am connected to., But the very core of my being does not understand what connecting means or what it symbolizes, how it works and what might constitute a connection. I just don't get it, feel it or see it as if a connection could be sitting infront of me and I would still be unaware. I am immune to emotions, feelings and what they constitute in connections to other people. I do not understand people that use the terms like "US" and "WE", and how they hold so important the time, to want to spend with significant others...As no real single person would ever want or has ever wanted to spend time on me.  As I am a damaged adopted child that can not fathom or understand complex emotions, body language and empathy. I am the child that dreads any family gathering to a fault. The forced touches, shaking dirty -germ ridden hands upon me and forced Infectious spreading hugs from extended family members and others that are merely going through the motions of acceptable body language during family get-togethers. Although I am petrified, fearing other people as they force themselves upon me in the spirit of holiday cheer, and I go home infected with some new virus.  The forced situations are not genuine or real as I don't hear from these people, and won't all year long, until the next holiday season where the cycle of the phony acquaintance and temporary holiday conditional friendship discussing the weather, that will last only as long as the evenings Christmas party. I do not understand why humans are forced and insist to engage in such behaviors? When a person is avoided all year long, why force them to be present on a holiday when they are not genuinely liked, accepted or tolerated? Why do we force other humans to be in situations where people they dislike are present and play the part, do the temporary dance on demand for the benefit of holiday cheer? I guess I will never understand because it is not in my human nature to be connected with another, as my own maternal depravity has made me disconnected from my own humanity...The truth that is my flaw but fortunately the intergenerational effects of child abuse stopped with my demand for psychological assistance in not repeating my own abuse upon my offspring.
As the materialistic festivity of Christmas draws near once again trying to understand the pit I feel in my stomach, the sadness without tears and the source of my most horrid pain is of being so alone in the world that I usually embrace it, but at holidays we are  supposed to experience this joy in connection with our families, that I do not experience at all. Each year I ponder this same tragic line of reasoning, searching adoptee blogs for answers to my questions on how they cope with these forced family gatherings and the many adoptee's that like myself are hold out their resistance to the group gathering retracting to the solace of seclusion as I always did know how to hide or do my disappearing act. At least I am honest to myself in reality, about my own lack of feelings toward others to understand the depths of destruction
I must keep asking the question until I find an answer that I can believe in or believe to be true.

Monday, December 22, 2014

The Depravity In Being Adopted


The Depravity In Being Adopted

The one word that describes adopted child's existence in the world of the living is Depravity. The adopted child's life that is unpleasant, the life of the adopted child's experience is discounted, and the silent voice of the forever adopted child, if their silence is broken they become invalid, ungrateful and selfish to the society that perpetuates their second class place as the puppet and second choice child in society.
Adopted infant's birth separation trauma is the key to the adopted child's peculiarity and dysfunction. As adoptees are legally sanctioned and owned by their adopters as a master and servant type of forced adoption relationship. Adopted children are the pawns of the wealthy narcissistic sadist that can make worse or brake the damaged adopted child's future, as the adoptee will never achieve full psychological potential.
The intentional psychological damaging effects to the surrendering mother is the single key to her psychological healing that will never be realized.
The adopted child product is overlooked by choice in adopted child studies as the truth from the adopted child's point of view is far too real to accept in human terms, the adopted child is not grateful, more like hateful to the facts of being abandoned, and being adopted. No child would ever choose to be adopted, No child ever wanted to be adopted and most adopted children spend their lives distancing themselves from the world of adoption, not embracing it. The public's avoidance of older adoptees who have been through the cycle of reunion have the ability to look at the larger picture of destruction that adoption paints a picturesque scene of rainbows and unicorns, behind these images are broken disengaged people hiding behind their anger, shame and frustrations. The older adoptee can identify the cost of "two broken people" for the temporary satisfaction of one childless mother.
The childless mother that engages in child adoption for the eighteen year term will eventually come to terms with her disappointment of her own biological child depravity. The biological mother and child will never heal, never become whole and never recover what was taken from them, for the purpose of satisfying the whims of the selfish childless mother's demands.  

The Abandonment Foundation of Adopted Infants


The Abandonment Foundation in Adopted Infants

The Abandonment trauma of a newborn infant begins at the severing the maternal bond in the mother-infant-dyad, when the infant is taken from the presence of the infant's mother, never to return. 
The infant's biological and chemical relationship with the infant-mother dyad has developed from from day one at conception. The dyad operates as a single unit
giving nutrients and providing a safe nurturing environment to help the fetus reach full potential in utero, and the dyad prepares the infant for birth and outside oxygen breathing, growth unencumbered by uterine space by the mother's intuitive nurturing outside of the womb. The infant will need several months to safe separation and recognition of the self emerges in time as an individual entity recognizes itself as a distinctive part but separate, still within the safety of the mother-child dyad. The process of the child's individual growth within the mother-child-dyad takes a minimum of two years for self exploration within the proximity of the mother's safety. This is a simple summary of the vast and complicated system of the mother-child dyad.
Back to the beginning, the child is born and wisked away from the mother-infant dyad. all of the essential and necessary processes of growth are ignored and the child is deprived of the necessary, natural and essential processes within the maternal bond. The child is forced prematurely into self recognition, which is non verbal and the infant can only process what has happened as a terrible trauma to the infant's psyche.
The infant's life experience foundation is now a traumatic event, the longer the infant is kept away from the infant-mother dyad the trauma perpetuates,
and continues to prolong this traumatic experience of separation. Although the adoption personnel have no plans to reunite the infant-mother-dyad, the infant holds out waiting for mother to return and she does not. The trauma of separation continues and the child's foundation in life is a traumatic feeling without words to comprehend what or why, it simply is.....Life began in trauma, all future experiences will be mentally processed against the separation trauma, the child's life experience foundation of trauma, which all things will be compared against this trauma forever. The trauma began as the first life experience and due to the non-verbal nature, the trauma is a physical and mental expression of pain, fear, depravity and suffering. All new experiences will be compared to the trauma pain the child suffered from. The trauma is the child's basic and unforgettable experience of their own life's beginning. The trauma is ingrained into every cell in the child's body to be always referred to as bad, distressing and intolerable, to never forget this life changing event forever.    

There is no psychological therapy or even shock therapy can alter this prominent pre-verbal memory   
that lies at the heart of every adopted child. No good deeds or great adoptive parents can cleanse or erase the birth separation trauma (Primal wound) from the adoptee's cellular memory. The trauma will always be there, and the antisocial behavior that is a consequence of this trauma, can not be forgotten, not will the brain and body let the trauma be erased. What happened to the abandoned infant is not supposed to be erased as mothers and their children are not supposed to be separated for any reason.
No matter how bad a person the mother is or was, separating infants from their mothers in against nature and is an abomination to the basic human instinct. Child adoption is not natural, and adopted children will never be better off, even when abuse is present. Adoption is a practice for making money, not finding homes...The adoptive parent's perpetuate the suffering of infants by their demand for human infants, without the demand for human offspring there will be no adoption. 

Saturday, December 20, 2014

The Difference Between Adoptive and Biological Parenting


The Difference In Adoptive and Biological Parenting

A different kind of love

Does a mother love a child she has adopted in the same way as she might love a birth child? And why is it such a taboo to ask? Kate Hilpern investigates
'If something tragic happened to my adopted daughter I'd be devastated, but I wouldn't die. If something happened to either of my two boys who I gave birth to, I feel I would die," says Tina Pattie. "I don't love my daughter any less, but it's a different kind of love. With my sons, my love is set in stone. It's that 'die for you love' that would never change, no matter what. With Cheri, it's a love that develops and grows. It's more of a process than an absolute."
Ask most adopters whether they think their love for their children is any different than it would be if they had their own offspring, and you can generally expect a resounding no. Very likely, they'll be offended it even crossed your mind. But in families such as Tina Pattie's - where there are both biological and non-biological children - it's a question that is put to the test. It's a question that gets to the very heart of what it means to be a parent.
"I don't care how close you are to your adopted son or beloved stepdaughter, the love you have for your non-biological child isn't the same as the love you have for your own flesh and blood," wrote Rebecca Walker in her recent book, Baby Love. "Yes, I would do anything for my first [non-biological] son, within reason. But I would do anything at all for my second [biological] child without reason, without a doubt," added the estranged daughter of the renowned author Alice Walker.
Her comment has attracted much controversy, but Tina relates to it. She had always wanted three children, so when she was told it could jeopardise her health to have a third baby naturally, she persuaded her husband to adopt. Her preference was for a baby, but there were none available and they were offered a little girl five weeks off her fourth birthday. "I was totally and absolutely shocked to find that in the early years, I felt no love at all for her," recalls Tina. "It didn't even feel right to say she was my daughter. The word 'daughter' describes a relationship, a connection - things we didn't have."
There was no one point at which Tina began to love Cheri, now 17. "It was a drip, drip, drip kind of process. Now, I love her a lot. I'm really proud of her and close to her, but it has taken time," she says.
Tina has spent a lot of time "unpacking" the disparity in her feelings for her children. "I think there are several things going on. First, she wasn't a newborn baby, like my sons had been. There's nothing quite like a newborn baby. Second, when you get a stranger in your house, you're not going to love it straight away, you're just not. Then there was the fact that Cheri was a hugely damaged and difficult child. Even now, I wonder that if she'd been sweet and easy instead of angry and violent whether it would have been different. Instead, I turned from a calm, patient mother into a monster. I'd never felt rage like that, ever. But even in the blackest moments, when there was no connection between us at all, there was never a question that I would give up."
Mary Cooper did adopt a newborn baby, but she too found it difficult to use the word "daughter" in the early days. "This was 37 years ago, when I was a psychiatric social worker and had my own three-year-old son. It was assumed I'd know it all, but I was not prepared for the difference between giving birth and adopting," she says. "You don't have nine months to prepare, you don't go through the birth and you don't breastfeed. I was completely a nurture not a nature person - I didn't think nature mattered - but I've changed my mind. I wasn't aware of the differences that I would feel or that Louise would feel as a result of us not sharing any genes. With my son, there was an instant bond. With Louise, there wasn't and every way you turned, it seemed she was different to us. If we had brown sugar, she wanted white. If I cooked something, she wanted a Pot Noodle. Even now, if my son comes to stay, the three of us have plenty to talk about. It's natural and easy. With Louise, we have much less in common. I don't love either of my children more than the other, but the nature of the relationship is poles apart."
Unfortunately, Louise did not interpret it in this way as she was growing up. "I felt like my brother was the golden boy and that I was the black sheep and I felt less loved than him because of it," she says. "In fact, it wasn't until I was 27 that I told anyone I was adopted. I was ashamed of it before then. But then I started thinking about finding my real mother, which I did, and somehow that journey made me realise that my parents didn't love me less, just differently. Now I speak to my mum every day on the phone. We're so different, it's unbelievable, but we both accept those differences now and we're very close."
With the benefit of hindsight, Louise realises she didn't make it easy for her parents to love her. "Having decided I was the black sheep, I wound up ostracising myself," she says.
Nancy Verrier, author of The Primal Wound: Understanding the Adopted Child, believes that all children who are separated from their mother suffer a trauma that will affect their bond with their new parents, regardless of the age at which they enter that new family. "I wouldn't say that I love my adopted daughter or my biological daughter differently - I would do just about anything for either of them - but I would definitely say the bond is different and I know now that is inevitable," she says. "An adopted child has had their bond with their mother broken once, so they're not going to let it happen again."
For many children, this manifests itself in testing-out behaviour, she says. Even if this kind of child is adopted as a baby, they tend to keep a psychological distance. Because they never quite fold into the new mother when she cuddles them, the phenomenon has become known as the stiff-arm baby. At the other end of the spectrum is what's known as the Velcro baby. These children react to the fear of their new mother leaving by being very clingy.
If anyone had told Nancy when she brought home her three-day-old daughter that rearing an adopted child would be different from rearing a biological child, she says she would have laughed at them. "I thought, 'Of course it won't be different! What can a tiny baby know?' Now I know it's nonsense for anyone to suggest the bond can be the same. We are tuned in hormonally to what our natural children want. Psychologically, the mother and child are still at one for some time even when the umbilical cord is cut. Genes continue to play a major part in the relationship throughout life. The way you cock an eyebrow, how you stand or walk, gestures you make - all these are things that make children feel as if they belong. But because a lot of people don't expect adoption to be different, they can feel shock, hurt and resentment when their adopted child doesn't react to them in the way they'd like them to."
Some parents try to compensate for this loss. Bill Aldridge, who has three adopted and two natural children in their 20s and 30s, says, "There was always a sense for us that our adopted children required additional love to make up for the extra challenges they'd faced. I wouldn't say we loved them more, but our feelings for them were combined with an overriding desire to make everything all right. I think we were more overt with our love for them than we were with our own kids, certainly while they were growing up."
Bella Ibik, who grew up in a family of five birth children and four adopted children, says her parents also went out of their way to make the adopted ones feel special. "We were made to feel chosen, as opposed to the others who just came along - to the point that one of their biological children grew up with a bit of a chip on her shoulder," she says.
Bella, now 41, says she still feels surprised by how much her mother loves her, and still has a need from time to time to examine the differences in her mother's feelings for all her children. "Yesterday we commemorated the 23rd anniversary of my brother's death. He was one of her blood children and I often wondered whether she'd have preferred it had it not been one of her birth children. We talk about everything, so I asked her and she answered as honestly and diplomatically as she could. She said that no mother would ever wish death on any of her children, but that when I saw her cradling his head and talking to him when he was in his coffin - a childhood image I will never forget - she was thinking of it having grown inside her and she was thinking of giving birth to him."
Bella isn't convinced that whether her siblings were adopted or not is the be-all-and-end-all in the nature of their relationship with their mother, however: "Evie, her youngest, is her absolute golden child who can do no wrong. I'm sure that's because she came along just after my mother had been very ill and she sees her as her anchor in the storm. My point is that sometimes I think it's impossible to pull out adoption as being the only reason for a parent feeling differently towards her children. There are so many other variables."
Because today's adoptions often involve older children who come from backgrounds of neglect or abuse, they require what Jonathan Pearce, the director of Adoption UK, calls therapeutic parenting. "Of course, this is different to raising a biological child, just as it is different to raising an adopted child 30 or 40 years ago. It's a parenting that I think should include ongoing training - just as you have with any other demanding job," he says. "Does that mean the feelings are any different? Yes, they are. Is the love any different? I just don't know. It will vary from one family to the next."
Carol Burniston, a consultant clinical child psychologist, believes that the requirement for adopters to parent therapeutically gives a tiny minority of them a psychological get-out clause, which again affects the nature of their relationship with their children. "I worked with one adoptive mother who was suffering from a problematic home life who said, 'If it comes to it, I'll keep my children and let my marriage go.' You would expect a parent of a biological child to say that, but for an adopter there was something very powerful about it. With a small number of adopters, there is something going on in the back of their minds that if they can't bear it any longer, they will give these children up."
Indeed, an estimated one in five adoptions in the UK breaks down before the adoption order is granted. Conversely, of course, that means that 80% last the distance - at least until after then - and for Lisa Bentley, who adopted a troubled 14-year-old when she already had four birth children, there was never a moment when she thought about giving up. "In fact, I'd say that the love I have for her is strong and powerful - more so in a way than for my birth children - because there's nothing taken-for-granted about it," she says. "It's come from getting through enormous battles and from an undying commitment," she says. Her bond with her natural children is fluid and easy; her relationship with her non-biological daughter is more intense and tested.
Angela Maddox believes that the relationship between parents and non-biological children has more chance of being positive if any birth children arrive later. "We adopted three boys, now aged 22, 20 and 19, and when we later had two birth children unexpectedly - now aged 16 and 11 - the feeling of almost knowing your child before it's born took me by surprise. But I think the fact that the boys were already in our family helped them feel more secure than if it was the other way round. They had us first."
Angela says that while her husband relates to Rebecca Walker's philosophy, she doesn't. "My love is endless for all my children. You can love any child as your own. There was the different feeling around the birth, but that's all."
A few parents even believe that giving birth is irrelevant in the bonding process. Unusually, Molly Morris - who has given birth to five children and adopted two - says, "I've never been able to make a distinction between children born to us and those we adopted. It's the nursing and handling, not the giving birth, that has given me the bond with my children. I'm not sure I really understand people that don't share that view."
Pam Hall disagrees. "There's something almost beyond words about the attachment you feel for your own baby. That's not to say you can't love another baby or child, but it's quite a different quality of love. I think parents who have given birth already are usually - although not always - better placed to work at a relationship with a non-biological child because they've been through that. They don't go through life longing for it," says Pam, who has two birth children and an adopted child in their late 30s.
Pam, who has worked with adoptive families as a psychiatric social worker and an analytical psychotherapist, explains that parents who have had birth children tend to have a different motivation for adopting than those who haven't. "They generally aren't starting the process of adoption from a position of infertility, looking for a substitute for their own baby."
That's not to say it's always an easy ride. "I've worked with adopters who have been racked with guilt that they didn't have the same feelings for their adopted child. But that's all the more reason that we should stop this pretence that adopting is the same as having your own children. I'm not suggesting anyone should outline every detail of that difference to their children. That would be dire. But they do need to own the feeling and be OK with it."
Lucy Hoole, a 25-year-old adoptee, agrees. "There is something quite taboo about suggesting that parents feel differently to non-biological children. But I'm OK with that difference, and see it as part of my life story that's made me who I am. I wish it would be talked about more openly."

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Effects of Emotional Neglect In Adopted Children


Effects of Emotional Neglect of Adopted Children

Effects of Emotional Neglect

Abuse is when something happens that is actively violating of another, but neglect is when we don’t get important things we need as children. I’m not talking about just physical things like food and shelter, but also essential emotional or developmental needs.
For example, one important developmental need for a young child is to explore the world, but if a child is too insecure (with no secure attachment to come back to) and is not encouraged, such exploration will be inhibited and the child may grow into an adult who lacks confidence and stays in a very small life.
Children who are not provided with what they need to have a good start in life are handicapped in the most serious of ways. Their sense of self, initiative, confidence, trust…so many building blocks are damaged or under-developed.
Here are some of the common problems that are the result of neglect:
1. Holes in your sense of value and self-esteem. Self-esteem grows from being valued by your family, seen and mirrored, admired and respected, guided and encouraged. When parents are troubled or overwhelmed, they often do not provide these essential nutrients.
2. Feeling undernourished and emotionally starved. When love is not communicated, it leaves a hole in one’s heart and often a consequent sense of feeling starved for love. (With healing, this can change.) Although many who are neglected feel a great need for love (if it hasn’t been repressed), there are also now barriers to taking in love and being vulnerable.
3. Feeling as if you don’t have enough support. Not having gotten much support as children leaves the under-parented with a less confident sense of self and less inner support because there wasn’t a good parent to internalize. Feeling as if there’s not enough support often shows up as insecurity and difficulty moving ahead.
4. Difficulty accepting and advocating for your needs. In general, need is a dirty word for the under-parented, because needs are associated with the painful memory of having needs that were not met. Needs are often experienced as a source of shame and something to hide. You can’t advocate for your needs unless you feel some right to have them and some expectation that others will be responsive.
5. Feeling Disempowered. Without a strong sense of self-esteem, without strong internal support, and without a healthy entitlement around needs, it’s hard to feel empowered. In addition, if you didn’t have a parent who championed you during the exploration stage and didn’t guide and praise your growing competence, your sense of efficacy can be seriously compromised.
6. Loneliness and feelings of not belonging. Feeling that you were not welcomed into the family as a child often leaves a lifelong imprint. You may long to be part of groups yet feel ambivalent about joining, or you may suffer painful feelings of alienation. Many wonder if there is a place for them in this world.
7. Not knowing how to process feelings. If feelings were not shown in your childhood home (or only by an out-of-control parent) and no one helped you learn to regulate or to name and communicate feelings, it creates a hole in an important part of life.
8. A pervasive sense of scarcity. Deprivation can be so deeply branded into your consciousness that it becomes a lens through which you experience life. You may feel as if there’s never enough money, never enough love, and never enough joy.
9. Depression. Depression has a lot to do with loss, deprivation, needs not being met, not enough love, battered self-esteem, undigested pain and disappointment, grief, and lack of support. Depression is therefore a very common outcome of childhood neglect.
10. Addictive behaviors. Addiction is a common response to childhood pain that has not been metabolized. It is also related to not being able to self-soothe and regulate one’s emotions and states of activation. With addictions, the substance or behavior is a misguided attempt at self-regulation. Food addictions seem especially common to those who were emotionally undernourished.
The effects of childhood neglect are pervasive and long lasting, so please do not think that if you weren’t actively abused, you have no cause for complaint or no reason to be struggling.

Closed Adoption Childhood Emotional Neglect


Closed Adoption Childhood Emotional Neglect

Blog Noapologiesforbeingme.blogspot.com
Experienced social worker adoptee sees through the
lies and denial of society.
Link to Full Article:noapologiesforbeingme.blogspot.com/2014/04/closed-adoption-as-form-of-emotional.html

Exerpts from Closed Adoption Emotional Child Abuse:

During the training I was required to receive, I learned about dysfunctional families, how they cope, how they form protective denial, and what "roles" are assigned to different family members.  My role in my family was "Hero" (the one who made the family look good) . I was the child who never did any wrong, who did everything that was expected of her.  My brother, in contrast, was the "scapegoat" (the one who made the family look bad).  He spent many of his teenage years getting into trouble and driving my parents crazy. (Note:  He's a great guy and upstanding citizen now)

Contrary to popular understanding, the scapegoat (the trouble maker) is actually the healthiest member of the family unit because they have a better understanding of what is "really" going on within the family.

I attribute my own family's dysfunction, in part, to the elephant in the room (mine and my brother's "unknown past").  We were placed in a situation where we were expected to deny who we really were and to  go along with the program. Whenever there is a family secret, you can expect the family to become dysfunctional on some level.   My parents lacked the proper education, training and understanding of the importance of an adopted child's emotional needs.

Here is a working definition of emotional neglect:

"Emotional neglect occurs when a parent purposefully or ignorantly overlooks the signs that a child needs comfort or attention and includes withholding love, rejecting a child, and ignoring a child’s emotional needs. 

Emotional neglect is a serious problem and has long term effects. This form of abuse has been found to inhibit a child’s emotional and physical growth. There can be many causes for emotional neglect. However, emotional neglect of a child can be prevented by increasing parents’ understanding of their children’s developmental and emotional needs." 
Read the full article at the link above..........................................

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Adopted Child Identity and Relationships


Adopted Child Identity and Relationships

Identity and Relationships

By Nancy Verrier, MFT
What is identity and what makes it so crucial when speaking of adoption? I believe it is something that makes adoptees feel a kind of alienation all their lives, beginning with their adoptive families. Adoptees call it genetic confusion.
This confusion begins when the baby is separated from the first mother and begins his life with his adoptive mother. At birth a baby knows his mother through his senses: smell, touch, sight of mother’s face, tone of voice, heartbeat, resonance. No matter how wonderful the adoptive mother, she doesn’t pass the sensory test. The baby is confused, terrified, angry; then sad, helpless, hopeless, alone. Where is mom? Although the cutting of the umbilical cord separates the mother and child physically, they are not yet separated psychologically. They are what Eric Neumann calls “the mother/baby.” The psychological separation is an intra-psychic process that happens gradually during the first year of life. So the relinquished baby feels, not only the loss of the mother, but also the loss of part of the Self.
From the moment the baby is separated from the first mom and gives up hope of connecting with her again, she begins to cope with that loss. These coping mechanisms are outlined in my first book The Primal Wound: the effects of separation trauma on her attitudes, feelings, and behavior. Those behaviors, which emanate from the child’s early experience of separation and loss, do not give an accurate picture of who the child is. Many adoptees have written to me after having read The Primal Wound and said something to the effect: “You know me better than anyone.” Yet, I don’t know them at all. What I do know is how they may have responded to being separated from their first mothers. What I know is how they coped. This coping behavior is most noticeable in the adoptive home. Sometimes others—neighbors, teachers, strangers—actually see more of the true identity of adoptees than their own families.
Why is this? It seems crucial for the adoptee to fit as well as possible into the adoptive family. Since he doesn’t have any genetic cues, he has to find all his cues from his environment. In many cases adoptees are basically so different from their adoptive parents, it is a wonder they survive in those families. However, to survive is to adapt, so every day the adoptee tries to figure out how to be in that family. But because he is basically different, he always may feel somewhat of a failure at this. First of all he failed to keep first mom, and now he is failing to truly fit into this new family. What do you suppose this does to self-esteem?
Life goes on and the adoptee is struggling on two fronts: trying to figure out how to be a part of her adoptive family without any genetic cues, and how to deal with all the feelings she has about what has happened to her, while trying very hard not to be abandoned again. Fear of abandonment is a driving force (or a paralyzing agent) in the life of every adoptee. Although not consciously remembering that devastating event, the experience is imprinted on every neuron/cell in her body. Something happened which changed her life forever and she has to make sure that it doesn’t happen again. Because she doesn’t know exactly what that event was, she has to be very, very vigilant.
The crucial event of separation happened before most adoptees achieved long-term memory, so they begin to believe that their coping mechanisms are who they are: They are “bad kids,” acting out all over the place without understanding why; or they are very good, trying not to rock the boat. Often parents define them this way and they begin to do the same thing, even though they may know that someone else dwells inside.
There are some parents who seem to understand that their children may not be like them. They support and encourage the child’s unique interests and talents. However, there are some parents who, because of their lack of understanding or interest in their child’s talents, fail to go to the track meets or the piano recitals.
Even though some biological parents are just as blind or uncaring, there are other ways in which these children know that they belong: what they look like, how they stand, how they walk, mannerisms, gestures, tone of voice, shape of lips, height, weight, smile, eyes, etc., etc. Something reminds them that they belong. Adoptees, however, are super observant. They notice every discrepancy. They are trying to find likeness, but notice every difference. They notice this much more than their parents do. Unlike children in biological families, who go from sameness to difference, adoptees go from difference to sameness, as they adapt as best they can.
It should be noted that this isn’t easy for the adoptive parents either, especially the mother who from the beginning was the one who failed the sensory test. She, too, has to figure out how to be with her child without any genetic cues. In addition, she is dealing with a child who was traumatized by the separation from the first mother. So it is indeed a dance that goes on between the adoptee and her mother over and over again. The general public doesn’t understand how difficult it is to interact with someone where there are no genetic cues to help with the understanding of what is needed, or how to interact with someone who is afraid to get too close (or afraid to let go).
The discrepancy between what the adopted person thinks he must do to fit in and how he feels inside is a dilemma for him. As one adoptee put it, it is like being a dog in a family of cats. This genetic confusion is evident even for adoptees who found out they were adopted late in life. The feelings are there; the confusion is there; something is wrong. However, there is no context for their feelings or confusion.
Remember that the initial confusion of wondering what happened to mom was the first identity problem for the adoptee. The second crucial time is adolescence when again the adoptee feels alienated from her family. In most families at this time, the child identifies with either mom or dad, then pushes off into being somewhat different. It is difficult for adoptees to do because they haven’t yet achieved that sameness that seems to be required. After having blamed themselves most of their lives for not having done so, they now seem to turn the blame around and blame their parents, especially mom, for this problem. Of course, they don’t know they are blaming her for this; they are just blaming her for everything else. So, in order to avoid the constant reminder of those differences, many adoptees try to stay away from their parents during this time. They spend lots of time with friends, stay in their rooms, try to avoid family get-togethers, and so forth. This causes problems, unkind words, and hurt feelings. Some kids will delve into drugs and alcohol as they try to anesthetize themselves from the pain of it all. Because this causes such pain and consternation in the whole family, the parents may feel helpless and send the child away to a treatment center, triggering another feeling of abandonment in the adoptee, further alienating her from her family.
I believe many of the problems between the adoptee and his parents are rooted two things: the parents’ ignorance of their child’s loss and the differences in their DNA: their identity. And I believe this problem of identity and of feeling misunderstood causes the adoptee to be secretive with the parents. Adoptees become very withholding and accuse the parents of being intrusive if they ask a simple question such as “How are you doing?”!! (Adoptees, be honest!) Unfortunately, some of these resentments last into the adult relationship because neither parent nor child realizes that many of the problems between them are caused by the natural differences between them. If this can be recognized and acknowledged by both sides, the relationship can flourish even if they are quite different from one another. If not, resentments continue and the relationship continues to be problematic.
During his 20s, when the adoptee has moved out of his parents’ home and is more independent, he should be able to explore his own identity. However, he has to be careful not to be the chameleon, whose tendency is to adjust his personality, values, or opinions to whatever group he is in. After all, he is so used to doing this in his adoptive family that it is the familiar thing to do and seems like the right thing to do to be liked, to fit in, to belong. He doesn’t know how to look inside for the answers even to questions about personal preferences. I used to believe adoptees were afraid of being wrong, but they corrected me: “It is because we don’t know!” This not knowing who they are is a huge problem when forming adult relationships.
As an adult she will need to blend the nurture and nature aspects of her life in order to become more authentic. As the adoptee moves into new relationships in adulthood, this becomes crucial. How can one have a relationship with a false self? In the beginning of a relationship the two are still strangers and the adoptee can be more authentic (because it doesn’t matter). He can take the risk of allowing more of himself to be seen—coming from within. The other person genuinely likes or falls in love with the essence of the adoptee. However, as the relationship progresses and the friend or partner becomes more important to him, fear takes over and sabotaging begins. The expectations of being abandoned by the important person in his life cause behavior which will lead to that very thing. The adoptee becomes the scared, frustrating child. (See the top of page 324 of Coming Home to Self for testimony to this.)
If a mature, adult relationship is desired, a constant vigilance is required to answer: “Am I acting as an adult or as a child? What is true about me? How can I truly know?” The coping mechanisms the adoptee believed would keep him safe while growing up are not very helpful in adult relationships. They are just that: coping skills, not true personality. Each adoptee is a unique individual, yet those coping skills are quite predictable. Gradually replacing coping skills with the true self should be a goal. If some of the principles and values from the adoptive family seem congruent with what they believe about themselves, adoptees can adopt them, while bringing forth the genetic truth available in their DNA. Although difficult to discern, the DNA is all there. It didn’t go anywhere. It can be accessed. This is often easier if it is possible to meet biological family members because the mirroring and sensory aspects of oneself are available. But what if this isn’t possible? What if the adoptee came from a different race, culture, or country? Although this adds another dimension to the puzzle of identity which needs to be addressed, all adoptees deal with identity issues. For foreign-born adoptees an added burden is that, although their parents don’t understand it much of the time and just see them as their children, the rest of society identify them by their nationality, and they have to deal with the fallout from that. When minority adoptees, who are adopted by Caucasian parents, move away from the home, they have to deal with cultural identity for which they may not have been prepared. Parental support, rather than denial, is needed. For many adoptees, the environment in which they were reared may have been very different from that of the biological parents, so finding bio families, although helpful, doesn’t completely answer the question: “Who am I?”
There are many roads to an authentic identity. After years of adapting and denying the true self, it is not easy to find that road. However, remembering that coping skills, childhood behaviors, and the false self do not qualify, the search must change from the environment to within the self. Do I like, dislike, feel neutral about that? What feels true