mother

Why is abortion illegal???

“Why is abortion illegal??? In my opinion all birth mothers who gave up children WILLINGLY belong in jail. I would rather have been aborted. This existence of not being apart of two families and being unable to have children of my own is unbearable.”

This is a post on one of the adoption related groups I belong too on Facebook which really got my back up.  I have been a member of various adoption groups and forums since late 2004 and am saddened that education is still as bad now as it was 16 years ago.  The problem is this person knows exactly what they are getting at but from the point of view of a mother, I’m not the only one, that ‘willingly’ gave up my son as that’s how the adoption industry portrays.  I do know there are mothers who really didn’t want their children and haven’t wanted reunion but they are a minority.  My point is that I’m still willing to speak out that willing surrendering of a child isn’t that common and people should educate themselves.  From my son’s point of view he knows what it’s like to be rejected by his father and to a certain extent by a family member.

The reality is we didn’t willingly give our children up, they were taken away / stolen because of the greed of adoption agencies and our mothers didn’t want us to be single mothers / it was shameful to have a baby out of wedlock.

Of course these days there is a big difference between the UK and the US these days as private adoption stopped in the UK.  With mothers having access to benefits saw the decline of infant adoption in the UK although forced adoption still continues – forced adoptions are illegal but extremely difficult for parents to stop.

I shouldn’t have responded to the post as I still get attacked for telling the truth because people accuse me of not reading properly, in denial that I ‘chose’ adoption, I regret the ‘decision’ and so on,  My response was because of the amount of people who haven’t believed the truth over the years and they will never understand the pain they cause.

“….. …. I am one of those mothers who you reduce to the act of giving birth. I, like many other mothers, chose life for my son, I wanted to raise him but he was stolen from me because my mother didn’t want a daughter to be a single mother. It was harder to adopt babies by the time my son was born as mothers knew their rights. I lost my son because my mother and the adoption agency lied to me and it was 23 years later I found out the truth. I don’t even know who signed the Consent to Surrender when he was 6 weeks old as it was very conveniently lost yet I was able to have all the other relevant paperwork post reunion which should have been given to me 23 years previously. None of the information was given by me and the only truth was a description of me and his father. It was that bad that there was two completely different jobs down for his father but he had never done either of them. Instead of spewing out your ignorance try educating yourself.”

Maybe I should have made myself crystal clear that to the world I ‘willingly’ gave my son up and been more polite at the end but I’m tired of being polite.  I’m tired of people coming across as ignorant, not educating or show that they have educated themselves.  I’m tired of mothers are made out to willingly getting rid of their children.  On the other hand he could have been more specific – how do I know if he knows that not all adoptions will done willingly.

The response I got back was from a female:

” …..   I re-read the original post. No where does it say that all mothers gave their babies up willingly, only those that did should go to jail. Adoptees have the right to their feelings on this.”

That just got my back up as I never said adoptees don’t have a right to their feelings on anything let alone this one thing.  She didn’t get my point that people assume mothers choose adoption then think it’s okay to attack a mother for telling her truth for the reasons already given.  So my response back I thought she would accept even if she didn’t agree with me:
“…. I completely agree you and I have had many conversations with my son which have been painful. However, mothers also have a right to our opinions and I found the op hurtful as it comes across as all mothers. I have also got to know many adoptees over the years which includes ones that have been rejected by mothers and/ or fathers. They have been left devastated and I haven’t had the words to explain why a mother will do this because I don’t understand why a mother will reject her child. I may have misunderstood the post but at the same time you have no right to put me down.”
Second mistake and got back this response which left me even more frustrated:
I didn’t put you down, just pointed out you misread the post. Telling an adoptee to “educate themselves” on adoption is the height of arrogance. We lived it every day of our lives.
I didn’t actually say that and she made an assumption – what I meant was educate themselves on why mothers ‘surrender’ and it’s not always what adoptees or anyone else believes.  No social worker will write in the paperwork that the mother wants to raise her child because that means they can’t force the adoption through unless it’s in the best interests of the child.   Obviously, if a parent not just the mother is a real threat to their child they shouldn’t be allowed to parent.  Must have touched a nerve for her to accuse me of arrogance.  I have opinions and if someone doesn’t like it that just makes them human and they can agree to disagree with me.  I have spent too many years of being a people pleaser, allowed myself to be put down, walked over and made to feel worthless.  I have a right to my opinion and I will give it so again if people don’t like it they can ignore me.
My final response was this:
“…. you don’t know me so you have no right to call me arrogant, you don’t know how evil my mother – she told my son I didn’t want to be found amongst other things, and, one day a couple of months before he moved in with us she didn’t understand why he wanted to know me as I was nothing to him and his only family was his adoptive family – she was extremely cruel. I don’t know your situation so how would you like to be told that you are nothing to a natural family member? Would you be happy with that? There are some adoptees that I have known over the years who have continually come out with hurtful comments towards mothers but I took the time to get to know them and why they said the things they did and yes they have the right to do so based on their experiences. Guess what? I learned to respect them and have explained to other non adoptees why I haven’t said anything, can you think why? They got to know me as well and have said their comments aren’t aimed at me personally. Yes adoptees live adoption every day, I haven’t said they don’t. What I’m saying is adoptees should accept that mothers have a right to say how they feel. I spent 23 years living in shame, then, being constantly being put down by adoptees and adopters who didn’t have a clue what I or others have been through.  We, mothers, have as much right to tell our truths as adoptees. If you don’t want to know ignore every mother who wants to tell the truth. Oh and you’re the one who is being arrogant but if you want a civilised conversation with me stop putting me down. One good lesson I learned is if you want respect give it. Unless you want to be civilised I will listen like I have with every adoptee I’ve known which includes two adoptees who are legally 2nd cousins of mine. If you think your life has been tough think about adoptees (international adoption) who are very unlikely to find their natural families.” …. “…  I forgot to add that my son believed I chose adoption so technically I had every right to post my response.”

Disliked adoption phrases Part Two

Over the years family (my in-laws) and friends who found out, I had a son and we had connected have made ‘uneducated’ comments.  I got sick to death of the ‘how wonderful’ it was that we reunited comments in particular.  Other comments have been ‘it was for the best’, ‘you were young’ and so on which, in turn, has meant that I have had to be extremely calm and explain that I could have raised my son. I shouldn’t have to explain myself but it’s the only way to explain the dark side of adoption.

It’s been far easier to explain to the adoption community of the dark side of adoption.  I’ve had my battles and it’s been worth me standing my ground.

I hate it when anybody says ‘it was God’s plan’ because it’s never in God’s plan that newborns are adopted.  If that was true every parent would be surrendering their baby for adoption and adopting somebody else’s baby.  It is as bad as saying God put a baby in another woman’s womb just so a couple can adopt him or her.

I remember my son asking me not to say anything negative about his adopters.  My response back was on the lines of ‘Why would I as I don’t know them?’

Over the years I have been irritated by the DNA/nature doesn’t matter but nurture does and even a few adoptees have said that to me.  If they don’t matter why do mothers feel profound feelings of pain and loss, why do adoptees want to know who they look like?

I’ve been told a few times that I’m not a mother as I didn’t raise my son with my mother being one of them.  She and the others didn’t ‘get it’ that

Thankfully these days I don’t get so involved in adoption in real life online unless I feel up to it.  It’s really not worth the aggravation, arguments, bad feelings or the effect on it has on my mental health.

Flawed

My life ended the day I was told I couldn’t stop my son’s adoption.  Unless you have been a victim of forced (illegal) adoption you cannot begin to understand the profound feelings of loss.  It is heart-wrenching and for me, I emotionally broke down and from that day forward I mask.  I also lost my trust due to what my mother and the adoption agency did to me.  To the outside world, I was fine but inside I was an emotional wreck.  My friends used to joke I was an ice maiden towards men and kept them at arm’s length.  I vowed I would never get married or have any more children as I was so scared that I would be forced to surrender again.

I became very lonely as I was too scared to tell anybody how I was feeling nor did I understand I was severely depressed.  For too many years I was accused of being a drama queen, moody and that there were people who were far more in need of support.  In the early days, the closest my mother came to showing she cared was when I received a letter from my son’s adopters.  I broke down in tears and my mother hugged me tightly until I stopped crying.  Even then I couldn’t talk and suffered in silence.  Adoption is like an invisible amputation and every part of my body ached for and missed my son.  It was another 23 years before I could start talking about my son’s adoption.

It wasn’t until more recent years that I realised that I suffer from P.T.S.D. although I have never been formally diagnosed with suffering from it.  Doctors don’t seem to understand the trauma of forced adoption or make a connection.  My son will be 39 years old this year and I still suffer from the trauma of losing him, sadly it will be with me for the rest of my life.  I also have a history of self-harming as it was the only way to release emotional pain and I have tried overdosing over the years.

Since opening up about forced adoption I started educating people about the effect of forced adoption on mothers.  It really was tough going for the first couple of years particularly when I got the courage to state that the term birth mother is offensive.  I had never heard of the term until 2004 having joined up with adoption forums and groups.  It is a stupid term because mothers don’t just give birth they go through nine months of pregnancy.  Fathers don’t go through pregnancy or giving birth so it’s a ridiculous term to give them.  It’s also stupid to give the extended family the ‘birth’ title as they can’t collectively go through pregnancy and childbirth.  The real truth is it’s a term invented in America to make adopters feel better about themselves and came over to the U.K.  A couple of years ago I had a disagreement with a friend at bible study as she referred to herself as a birth mother.  I asked her not to as it’s offensive to mothers who have surrendered a child and why the term was created.  She really didn’t ‘get it’ and used the argument that as she had had children that made her a birth mother.  I explained why the term was invented but if all mothers had always been referred to as birth mothers it wouldn’t have bothered me.  In the end, I got so annoyed I had to walk away from the situation.  We have never talked about it since.

I am still friendly with other mothers who have surrendered babies. adoptive parents and adoptees although these days we keep in touch on Facebook.  We all still learn from each other for all sorts of reasons.

In the beginning ….

I was pregnant at the age of 19 years old and knew I was pregnant after I had split on bad terms with the father of my son.  Even so, I knew I wanted to raise my baby and I had a job so I knew I could afford to raise my child.  I was scared and didn’t know how to tell my parents but eventually, they had to know.

It went badly and my mother was determined that my baby was to be adopted but I refused to agree to it.  My father didn’t say much at all, he simply let my mother get on with it.  It was a horrible time and I suffered from low self-esteem and lacked confidence.  I didn’t even see a social worker from the adoption agency until after my son was born.  All I knew was that I wanted to be a mother and raise my child.

Infant adoption was slowing down by the start of the 1980s but it didn’t stop social workers from being pushy over babies being adopted.  I was one of many mothers over the years who were pressured to surrender without knowing my rights.  My mother made me feel worthless, I wouldn’t be a good enough mother yet I was capable of looking after my niece.  She was born just over two months before my son was born.  My mother continually put me down and made threats such as;

I would be kicked out

I would lose my job because I would be homeless

I wouldn’t be able to get rented accommodation

I wouldn’t be able to get any benefits

My son would be taken off me because I was homeless so I may as well agree to the adoption.

It was relentless brainwashing to try and convince me adoption was the best option.  The first time I saw the social worker I told her I didn’t want to give my son up and it was my mother who was all for adoption.  She said she would put a stop to the adoption but ‘it would be a good idea for my son to go into foster care until I got myself sorted out’.  I did manage to see my son once before I left the hospital and I will never forget that.

 

June 2021
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