Sunday, March 25, 2007

I am Unworthy. Not.

After I started delving into the subject of adoption and its impact on my life and development, I discovered certain topics I simply didn't "get."

The first is grief. I didn't believe I felt anything like it. How could I be sad about someone I'd never met?

Finally, finally, I realized that it was grief and anger behind my lifelong struggle with anxiety. I've only recently come to understand that my adoptive parents made my mother so taboo that just thinking about her was not only the ultimate betrayal, but probably a mortal sin.

The grief was there alright. A big, shadowy monster covered with cobwebs.

The second is the concept of worthlessness.

I'd read that adoptees feel worthless because our mothers gave us away - but I didn't think it applied to me. I'm too well adjusted for that, I thought. Despite whining and moaning in the safety of my blog, in real life, I'm NOT a complainer. I'm a get-it-done kinda gal. Or I am when it comes to certain tasks. Tasks associated with some sort of external system of rewards, the higher and hotter the pressure the better. Nina leaps over tall buildings and fences topped with razor wire, but she will do the job.

EXCEPT when it's a goal important to just me...like finishing a book.

I actually caught myself all choked up, on the edge of tears and feeling all panicky because I'd just finished Kazuo Ishiguro's When We Were Orphans and thought, I'll never write that way. What's the point of even trying? And then there's Rose Tremain and Margaret Atwood and Jane Smiley and Mo Hayder (author of The Devil of Nanking, which was strange and amazing) and compared to their unique voices, what could I possibly have to say of interest?

I do this all the time. I read other authors and immediately get overwhelmed with toxic feelings of inadequacy and hopelessness and that stops me from finishing what I've started.

Where do those feelings come from?

If I'm really honest...like the other day...it comes from being given away by your own mother. Not a great way to start off life: unwanted.

It's not just a matter of feeling sorry for yourself. One has to acknowledge it's real before you can begin to deal with it...and figure out how to work around it.

Which I plan to do. Dammit. I just need a game plan.

Labels:

21 Comments:

Blogger Possum said...

You're so right Nina.
One can NOT move forward - without proper acknowledgment of what really went on.
And if you've never been allowed to even talk about what really went on............all the harder it is to know how to deal with it and move on.
Damn - I wish there was a bloody book that came with my adoption.

12:34 AM  
Blogger LeRoy Dissing said...

It is a very hard reality Nina that you face and it will take thinking this through and saying to yourself a thousand times or more that you are a worthy person because what was done to you had nothing to do with your worth. It was not your fault you were given away by your mother or adopted by people with less than adequate capapcity to provide emotional nurturance.

The script playing in your head differs from the one playing in your heart. Intellectually, you know the truth but you don't feel it. It has "sunk in" or integrated fully with who you are. You are still becoming whole.

I am here to tell you, as I am sure many of those closest to you, that you have infinite worth and that it is okay to grieve. We will listen even though we might not always understand and we will be present.

The two scripts (head and heart) can become one. How? By rereading over and over the new script you know to be true and receiving affirmation/validation for it, you come to not just believe it, but feel it too. You created the script your parents should have given you and didn't or couldn't.

1:48 AM  
Blogger Joy said...

One of the most damaging aspects of child abuse is how much the child blames themselves

10:55 AM  
Blogger Being Me said...

I really like the idea of writing a corrected script-- new & improved. Blogging has been validating and affirming for me. Putting my experience into words is validating.

You're such a great writer. I love reading the current script as it unfolds. It is exciting to think of what is yet to come.

12:15 PM  
Blogger Erika said...

i dont kno if you can work around it, you kind of learn to walk thru it. you have your good days and your bad days. you just try to be good to yourself because you deserve it :o) Grief is a strange thing - it has a way of creeping up on you even when the thoughts never came to mind. when you think hey im dealing okay with this adoption thing whammo it sneaks up on ya and knocks you on your ass

E.

1:19 PM  
Blogger Julie said...

While you're working on it, Nina, consider the possibility that your feelings of worthlessness may have been added to by the lack of validation you got for your loss. That sends the message that your feelings don't matter - or that you weren't important enough to have important feelings.

I think, really, there are SO many things that contribute to feelings of worthlessness, but I believe the one you mentioned and this are 2 biggies.

2:13 PM  
Blogger Ungrateful Little Bastard said...

A lot of it for me was feeling unworthy of feeling grief. So many of my friends had been though horrifying major trauma in their childhood, so for me to be miserable about being adopted seemed frivilous.

2:27 PM  
Blogger Nina said...

Possum, YEAH! Someone forgot to give us the handbook with a title like, "Your Guide to the 1960 model of the As If It Were Your Very Own Child."

Leroy, I think you pointed out one of the toughest challenges in healing...reconciling what's in our heads to what's in our hearts. Thank you, again, for your ongoing support and wise words!

Joy...Mmm. I tend not to think of myself as having been abused because my a-parents thought they did such a marvelous job and were so sacrificing. But when I read about narcissistic parents and seen in that light, yeah, they were and I guess one does take on all the guilt and trappings.

Thank you, BEING ME...I'm trying to treat myself more seriously...beginning today...I dragged myself to the library, hid in a corner and wrote unterrupted for 2 hours. Promising new start!

I hear you, Erika..Maybe it IS a matter of going thru it and not around. I also liked what JOY had to say about building ramps and stuff. I sort of pictured us adoptees as lone stuctures surrounded by all this scaffolding followed by what you just said..me imagining an adoptee as an earth mover blasting a tunnel thru rubble.

Julie, You are absolutely right...many related things DO contribute to feelings of worthlessness. In fact, that was an amazing thing you said because my a-father has repeatedly said it didn't matter what I thought about my adoption because, well, the details were not important to THEM.

Ungrateful Little Bastard...I think I understand that feeling. That everybody else's problems and feelings and traumas are much more important. How dismissive we are of ourselves.

6:25 PM  
Anonymous For The Lord said...

Nina,
My wife is adopted and is going through the the same thing but does not realize it. All I want to do is love her but she will not truly allow it, which causes in my eyes arguments that are not necessary. However I know that there is something deeper that she just does not know how to explain, so reading what you are going through answers a lot of my questions.
I must say that what is missing in not only this blog, but America any more is the fact that the Lord created everyone of us for a purpose and when we seek him that purpose is let known. Life is short and I pray and know that you will soon find love and peace within yourself. There is no doubt that it is an up hill battle but with the Lord by your side all things are possible.
Thank you for sharing your story which is helping me understand my wife in ways that she does not even understand.

2:21 AM  
Blogger Manuela said...

Nina, I'm starting to sound like a broken record here, but holy SMOKES... your posts are resonating SO LOUDLY for me, that I swear you must be hearing the clanging in my brain right now!

2:46 PM  
Blogger Eve said...

Nina, you have an amazing instinct for knowing the path toward wholeness, your own path. If you haven't read Alice Miller's classic book, "For Your Own Good," I hope you will consider reading it. It is about the subtle and not-so-subtle abuses to which children are subjected, and how the only path to healing and wholeness is through realizing what happened to us, and grieving everything we lost.

Everything. That's a tall order, not to be completed in one sitting, or in one decade, even.

Cheering you on, Eve

3:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

vincedelmontefitness -
vince del monte fitness -
warp speed fat loss -
wedding speech 4u -
windo fix -
your bill killer -
you will get paid -
zygor guides -
20 day persuasion -
advanced pc tweaker -
adware bot -
affiliate naire -
apple patch diet -
article submitter -
art of approaching -
burnthefat -
burn the fat -
carb rotation diet -
cold sore freedom in 3 days -
conversationalhypnosis -
conversational hypnosis -
copy that game -
cure for bruxism -
cure hemorrhoids -
cyber link pro -
dl guard -
driver checker -
driver robot -
drop shipping wholesalers -
earth4energy -
earth 4 energy -
easy backup wizard -
easy click mate -
easy photo biz -

1:06 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

eatstopeat -
eat stop eat -
epinoisis -
error fix -
error killer -
error smart -
evidence nuker -
fap turbo -
fatburningfurnace -
fat burning furnace -
fatloss4idiots -
fat loss 4 idiots -
final uninstaller -
fitnessmodelprogram -
fitness model program -
fit yummy yummy -
flattenyourabs -
flatten your abs -
flat to fab -
governmentregistry -
government registry -
heartburn no more -
hippo jaw -
homemadeenergy -
home made energy -
honest riches -
hot video squeeze templates -
instant website creation -
jump manual -
keyword research pro -
linden method -
malware removal bot -
maternityacupressure -
maternity acupressure -

1:06 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

meet your sweet -
micro niche finder -
musclegainingsecrets -
muscle gaining secrets -
muscle gain truth -
my traffic strategy -
nasty dirty money -
negative calorie diet -
no adware -
pc optimizer pro -
perfect uninstaller -
pergola plans -
pick the gender of your bady -
plr ebook club -
pregnancy without pounds -
profit lance -
publicrecordspro -
public records pro -
questions for couples -
quit smoking today -
ready made review sites -
reg genie -
registry easy -
registry easy download -
registry winner -
registry winner download -
retrievea lover -
reverse mobile -
richard mackenzie direct -
rocket italian -
rocket spanish -
roulette sniper -
rss ground -
secret affiliate weapon -

1:06 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

secrets book -
spam bully -
spyware cease -
spyware nuker -
spyware remover -
spy zooka -
starting a day care center -
tattoo fever -
team idemise -
the bad breath report -
the cb code -
thedietsolutionprogram -
the diet solution program -
the rich jerk -
the super mind evolution system -
turbulencetraining -
turbulence training -
vincedelmontefitness -
vince del monte fitness -
warp speed fat loss -
wedding speech 4u -
windo fix -
wrap candy -
zygor guides -
7day ebook -
360 fix kit -
advanced pc tweaker -
adware bot -
affiliate naire -
art of approaching -
beating adwords -
believe and manifest -
blogging in action -
body building revealed -

1:06 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

burthefat -
burn the fat -
carb rotation diet -
cheat your way thin -
cold sore freedom in 3 days -
conversationalhypnosis -
conversational hypnosis -
convert 2 ev -
cure for bruxism -
cure hemorrhoids -
digi cam cash -
digital media solution -
dl guard -
driver checker -
earth4energy -
earth 4 energy -
easy backup wizard -
easy member pro -
easy tv soft -
eatstopeat -
eat stop eat -
error fix -
error killer -
evidence nuker -
fap turbo -
fatburningfurnace -
fat burning furnace -
fatloss4idiots -
fat loss 4 idiots -
final uninstaller -
fitnessmodelprogram -
fitness model program -
flatten your abs -
gamers testing ground -

1:06 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

gov auction -
governmentregistry -
government registry -
gov records -
herbal hair solution -
homebre ware -
home job group -
homemadeenergy -
home made energy -
inteli gator -
joanas world -
joyful tomato -
kidney stone remedy -
learn digital photography now -
learn elements now -
linden method -
lose man boobs -
malware removal bot -
maternityacupressure -
maternity acupressure -
meet your sweet -
muscle gaining secrets -
muscle gain truth -
niche adsense themes -
ninety day powerseller -
pc optimizer pro -
pregnancy miracle -
pregnancy without pounds -
privacy control -
publicrecordspro -
public records pro -
quit smoking today -
reg genie -
registry easy -

1:06 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

registry genius -
registry smart -
registry winner -
registry winner download -
retrievea lover -
reverse mobile -
richard mackenzie direct -
rocket italian -
save my marriage today -
secrets book -
seo elite -
spyware cease -
spyware remover -
spy zooka -
stock assault -
talking to toddlers -
the action machine -
thebadbreathreport -
the bad breath report -
thedietsolutionprogram -
the diet solution program -
the rich jerk -
tonsil stones remedies -
top secret fat loss secret -
turbo cash generator -
turbulence training -
twitter online system -
uncle sams money -
underground hypnosis -
vincedelmontefitness -
vince del monte fitness -
warp speed fat loss -
water 4 gas -
wedding speech 4u -

1:06 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

wp goldmine -
wrap candy -
xsite pro -
zygor guides -
37 days to clean credit -
advanced defrag -
adware alert -
adware bot -
affiliate prophet -
affiliate video brander -
anti spyware -
art of approaching -
atomic blogging -
auction classified cash -
automated cash formula -
bbq book -
bloggers pay check -
blogging in action -
body building revealed -
burnthefat -
burn the fat -
carb rotation diet -
cheat your way thin -
chopper tattoo -
cleanup the profits -
cold sore freedom in 3 days -
commission blueprint -
conversationalhypnosis -
conversational hypnosis -
cure for bruxism -
declutter fast -
driver checker -
earth4energy -
earth 4 energy -

1:06 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

easy member pro -
easy tv soft -
eatstopeat -
eat stop eat -
fap turbo -
fatburningfurnace -
fat burning furnace -
fatloss4idiots -
final sync -
final uninstaller -
fitness model program -
fit yummy yummy -
flatten your abs -
forex ambush -
governmentregistry -
government registry -
healthy urban kitchen -
homebrew installer -
homemadeenergy -
home made energy -
instant article wizard -
jamo rama -
joyful tomato -
lose man boobs -
lower body make over -
maternityacupressure -
maternity acupressure -
maverick money makers -
meet your sweet -
muscle gaining secrets -
muscle gain truth -
natural cancer treatments -
niche review templates -
nyhms warcraft guides -

1:06 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

pappa pc -
pc booster -
pc optimizer pro -
pc secret formula -
pda flix -
privacy control -
publicrecordspro -
public records pro -
push button ecover -
reg defense -
reg genie -
registry easy -
registry genius -
registry smart -
registry winner -
registry winner download -
reverse mobile -
richard mackenzie direct -
rocket japanese -
rotator cuff training -
save my marriage today -
secrets book -
silent sales machine -
silver lotto -
spyware cease -
super affiliate handbook -
the 11 forgotten laws -
thebadbreathreport -
the bad breath report -
thedietsolutionprogram -
the diet solution program -
the power pause -
tmj help -
tonsil stones remedies -

1:06 AM  

Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home