Sunday, February 03, 2008

The Powerlessness of Adoptees

This evening, I had one of those moments.

As usual, it was triggered by talking to my (narcissistic) adoptive father. Actually, he does all the talking. I do the listening.

And while I've learned to emotionally detach, mostly, I was suddenly overcome by a feeling of helplessness. Powerlessness.

My mother gave me up. I had no voice. A social worker placed me with a totally unsuitable couple so desperate for their very own baby that they made me pretend I wasn't adopted. I had no choice. I had no choice but to play along with the whole I'm not adopted sham.

And here I am, in middle age, still pretending to be the good, dutiful daughter when I feel like an abductee and not an adoptee.

I call the shots in the rest of my life. I'm a take charge kind of gal, maybe to make up for the fact that I was never really in charge of the big stuff. Being transferred. Ending up in a home I didn't like, where I felt like an outsider. Pretending to love parents I secretly couldn't stand. Smiling all the way. What other choice do you have when you're a kid? Where else can you go? It's survival. When I hear of other adult adoptees who've drifted away from their aparents, I wonder, what happened to them? Did they feel like that, too? Do these intermittent, yet powerful feelings of powerlessness ever fade?

15 Comments:

Blogger Suz said...

Hugs. I know the feelings only from a different view.

I have no answers. Just hugs. I feel much the same way lately.

5:55 AM  
Blogger Nina said...

Hugs to you, Suz...

The flip side to those feelings of powerlessness, I forgot to include, is rage. Rage that I find myself in this situation.

Take care.

8:04 AM  
Blogger EnzGrl said...

I understand, I feel the same way. I attended my first adoptee/birth parent support group meeting last Sunday, and I was surprised at how much anger I had to stuff down while there. I am furious at my situation, that I was powerless, that I still am powerless: powerless over my aparents, whom I can't stand either, powerless to get my own personal information that any fool can see for free(except me, of course!), etc. Rather than be a take-charge person, I use learned helplessness more often than I would like... I guess we all cope in our own way!

5:28 AM  
Blogger heart&soul said...

I am really interested in hearing your stories. I have never sent a blog message and basically the reason I navigated through this site is because I am looking for help in understanding my daughter's behavior. Her's is an incredible story. She was a foreign adoptee at 7 months. Her adopted parents both passed away. Her father who she was very close to died when she was 5 and for the next 2 years she watched her adoptive mother sick with cancer. She passed away when her daughter was 7. We received her with an enormous commitment to provide her with a life of love and joy - as much as we could. And we succeeded. Our daughter was adopted by us and she in fact became very very close to me - her second (third) mother. People were amazed watching the two of us. Women later on commented how envious they were at our loving, fun, good solid realtionship. Our adopted daughter had very good relationships with her father and her 2 older brothers. We spoke openly about her life, her losses and her having been born overseas. I was very careful not to overwhelm her with her story because she frankly did not show any interest in looking at the past. When this beautiful child turned 17 everything fell apart. She became involved with a very violent boyfriend. Together they ran away, she left school, his parents enabled her truancy, etc. After not hearing from her for 2.5 months which were pure nightmare for all of us, she called and asked me to get her. I did but I was assaulted by her violent boyfriend. She returned home but only stayed 2 weeks. She has now been gone for a year. I am heartbroken, worried, going insane wondering where we went wrong, how we can help her - as I am positive that our daughter needs to sort things out for herself. I just wonder is any of our devoted love still with her? Will she be able to use it to take care of herself?
Thank you so much.
I hope it is ok with all of you that you are being asked questions by a adovtive mother - I know you probably want to keep this venue open to others who are in similar situations.... I would love to hear from you.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am an adopted male over 40.
I have a narcissistic mother.
I also have an enabling father who always had gone extended business trips to escape her, leaving us to her tender mercies.

You have not blogged for a while I hope things are OK.

Married with two great kids. Gone no contact for two years: happiest I have ever been. Still angry. Still sad. Turns out my mother's side is riddled with narcissists so it is "exciting".

I find strength in being adopted: no-one can lay claim to my accomplishments by inheritance. I am unique and will be found to be a lost prince of a kingdom some day...
;-)

Hang in there, wish you well.

10:01 PM  

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