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Trust is a big issue in the lives of many people, but this is especially true for adoptees. Much of this lack of trust goes back to feelings of abandonment. In the words of Nancy Verrier, “It is difficult to face the fact that by definition every adopted child is an abandoned child, who has suffered a devastating loss. No matter that the adoptive parents call it relinquishment and the birth mother calls it surrender, the child experiences it as abandonment.”

Because this abandonment happens so early that there is not a conscious memory of it, many adoptees aren’t really even sure why they feel that way…they just know that they do. Keep in mind that although this memory may not be accessible to you, the adoptee, it is stored in your subconcious, and our subconscious has a lot to do with our normal day to day behavior.

You may not even realize that the memory is present until something happens in your life to trigger the subconcious, bringing that feeling to the forefront. Maybe as a child, your best friend deserts you to play with someone they like better. Maybe as a teen your first boyfriend tells you that he wants to break up. Any situation is which you feel that someone has abandoned you is going to trigger the feeling. Suddenly you find yourself intensely sad, or maybe intensely mad. You know this feeling….you’ve felt it before…you don’t like it. Unfortunately, there is no way to ‘turn it off’. The memory is a part of your past, whether you’re aware of it or not.

Some adoptees go through their entire lives without being able to trust the people in their lives. This is incredibly sad for all concerned. Sometimes the fear of being abandoned again is so intense that the adoptee would rather not get involved in a relationship than to take a chance on opening up to someone and then being abandoned…again.

The good news for anyone who is dealing with this issue is that EFT can help. Through EFT you can access the memory of abandonment, and you can tap your way through releasing those negative feelings. EFT can help you to get to a place in your life where you can trust others and open to relationships. Your life will be richer and fuller, and all because of a bit of tapping. Don’t take my word for it…try EFT yourself.

Rejection. It’s a word that nobody involved in an adoption search wants to think about. Unfortunately, rejection is something that every searcher needs to consider. It happens. It’s terribly sad for all concerned, and can emotionally deeply wound the person being rejected, but it is one of the possible outcomes of any search.

Having personally been through a 7 year search myself, and having held the hands of hundreds of searching adoptees and birthmothers, I know how common it is for searchers to say that they’re prepared for any outcome in their search. The reality is that you can never truly be prepared for rejection. If you’re an adoptee, how can the woman who abandoned you once already abandon you still again? If you’re a birthmother, how can the son or daughter to whom you gave birth totally turn their back on you? There can be so many reasons, and knowing those reasons can help to better prepare you for whatever outcome your search may have.

In my 17 years of working with adoptees, it has been my experience that adoptees most often reject their birth families because of guilt over their adoptive parents, or direct pressure from their parents. There seem to be 2 distinct flavors of adoptive parents, those who understand their child’s need/desire to search, and support it, and those who go into a panic at the very thought of their child searching for their birth family.

Supportive parents understand that by standing behind their son or daughter in their search and possible reunion, they are strengthening bonds of love, and showing that the needs of their child is important to them.

Unsupportive parents have often not had close and loving relationships with their children, and they feel threatened by a potential reunion. Out of fear of losing their child to his/her birth parents, these adoptive parents frequently lay a heavy guilt trip on their kids. Their goal is to strengthen their relationship, but in reality their actions often alienate their children from them, and put up walls of resentment that may never be torn down.

Birthmothers have very different stories. Based again on my experience in working with birthmoms, the reason most often given for a birthmother rejecting her child is that the birth of that child has always been a deep, dark secret. Birthmoms are sometimes so shamed by what they’ve been through that they never tell a living soul about the baby they had and relinquished. They marry, and don’t tell their husband. They have more children, and don’t tell them. To these birthmoms, it’s like it never happened.

Suddenly, out of the blue, a son or daughter calls them on the phone, and they go into instant panic. To tell their husband after so many years that they weren’t honest with them is unthinkable. They can’t figure out any way out of their situation, so they turn away the son or daughter that they desperately want to know, because they’re afraid their family will be torn apart if they don’t.

There is so much pain for a person being rejected that it’s nearly unbearable. No matter how well you may think that you’re prepared for any eventuality in your search, you are not prepared for rejection. I personally lived with this kind of pain for 5 years, before finding an EFT practitioner that could help me to work it through. Thanks to EFT, I can discuss my rejection by my son without emotionally falling apart. Prior to those sessions, I couldn’t even bear to think about that subject.

If you’ve been rejected too, and are feeling that unbearable pain, there can be relief for you too. In situations like this, the relief is so intense that afterward you can’t imagine how you got through each day without EFT.

Don’t do what I did if you’ve been rejected. Get your life back, get your emotional balance back, and learn to smile again.

For far too many adoptees, the title above describes accurately how they feel. All the paperwork may have been done, the court appearances may have been made, and all the legal technicalities may have been worked out, but none of those things makes an adoptee feel that they are truly part of a family.

So many adoptees that I have worked with over the years have never truly felt that they are part of the family that adopted them. This is particularly true for adoptees whose families have had children of their own the old fashioned way.

Adults may not think that the things they say are noticed, but children have a way of hearing things at family gatherings like, “Oh, that’s their adopted daughter Mary”. Emphasis on adopted. They aren’t saying “That’s their daughter Mary”. Very different! That kind of thing tells a child immediately that there is something different about them. They may not have any idea what that difference is, but they know that they’re not quite the same as the rest of their family members.

Then there’s school to deal with. Neighbors talk. Their children hear. Those things they hear are then repeated at school. “Mary, I know that’s not your real mother! Your real mother didn’t want you and gave you away!”. Hearing something like that goes a long way toward improving that adoptee’s self esteem and confidence. How can you feel good about yourself if you think you’re a “throw-away kid”? And you know that your school mates think that too. Painful stuff there.

There are so many things that can contribute to an adoptee’s feeling of not fitting into their family that I couldn’t possibly talk about them all, but starting out with the feeling that you’ve been abandoned, as so many adoptees do, certainly doesn’t help. Sadly, this is not a topic likely to be discussed with parents, who might offer support. What child would say to their parents that they don’t feel like a part of the family? None that I know.

What I do know, however, is that adult adoptees who are still dealing with this issue can get relief through EFT. A few rounds of tapping can most likely turn around that feeling of not fitting in, and make you feel more comfortable with yourself and who you are. Turn that discomfort into a feeling of comfort and peace with EFT.

Example Setup Phrase:
Even though I’m so sad that Uncle XXX said things that made me feel like I wasn’t part of my own family, I deeply and completely love and accept myself, and I choose to consider that I might actually really be part of this family.

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