Why is anger such a terrible thing? Perhaps it’s because it’s associated with acts of damage or harm. I argue wholeheartedly that most terrible things aren’t done in anger but they are done in the spirit of hatred, mean-spiritedness, revenge even.
I am angry when it comes to my adoption and I’m tired of pretending as though I’m not. I’m tired of having to simplify why I come across as angry, and I’m tired at the idea of even having to explain why. It should be a simple equation for most to put together, and yet, I’m called angry and bitter as though I should be insulted. I used to be horrified by those words, but no more.
I am angry, and to a certain degree, I am bitter.
If you had a church you trusted tell you that the best thing you could do is give your child away to strangers, only to find out that they weren’t telling whole truths, would you be angry?
Would you be angry at the prospect of being told the couple you chose could never have children, only to watch them go on on to have several of their own, one three months after you relinquished your child to them?
Would you be angry to learn that artificial twinning is a common, unethical practice within adoption agencies, instead of “normal” and an “act of god” like you were told?
Would you be angry to learn that open adoption isn’t just letters and pictures on a specific schedule? That there are families out there that actually view this adoption thing like an extension of family, and want to be fully open?
Would you want to scream in frustration when you learned that your child was diagnosed with a condition that goes against medical paperwork? Would you want to know why you weren’t consulted and be angry when you realized that it was simply because they would not have gotten a diagnosis if you had been involved?
Would you be insulted if you were invited to an event but told that you could be introduced as a ”friend” or nothing at all? Would you be insulted to go to their house and to be supervised as they let you “see” his room, like you were some criminal, as if this would bond you all together?
Would you be angry knowing that no one is advocating for what is truly best for your child? That when you do, when you push that he get to know his origins, his genetics, you are called selfish?
When you go to bed at night, and have no idea what sort of life your child is leading, whether he is safe, alive, or loved, wouldn’t your blood boil with anger? Wouldn’t it upset you to feel like you have to check the obituaries once a week, just in case, because you don’t know that you would be told if something were to happen to him?
When you learn of adoption coercion, and get your own file, and see line after line that tells of it, that reeks of how they were pushing you to adoption, even when you know you asked about parenting? Wouldn’t that make your heart break, and make you angry?
Every time the phone rings, when the mail comes, when there is a ding from the email, you feel another part of you die in anticipation that it could be him, but knowing it’s not. How could it be him when they don’t want him to know you that way?
Wouldn’t you be angry if the adoptive parents told you that reading your words was hard to hear, and knowing it was nothing you said, but everything they weren’t doing that was making it hard to read. Wouldn’t you be frustrated when they took the words of others and used them against you, as if you were trying to start a them vs us war. Wouldn’t you take a deep breath trying to explain that how they were acting was so abnormal, but know they weren’t willing to hear you because you were just the birthmother?
Wouldn’t you laugh with rage when they demand that you trust them fully when they have never done anything to prove that they are fully trustworthy? Wouldn’t you shake your head and wonder why your honest injection that you don’t trust them would ignite a state of rage within them, and cause them to insult your very being, your intentions, when they haven’t really taken a quality moment of time to really get to know you?
Wouldn’t you be angry when you see prospective adoptive parents laying claims on babies that are not really theirs? When they don’t understand the need for adoption reform, and how important it is for these babies, the ones that do end up in an adoption plan to know their families, their biology, but refuse that because they are insecure and possessive?
Anger would surely run through your veins as you realize that the family you picked to raise your child would rather erase you, condemn you, and condescend you, then step beyond themselves, think of the child, your child even. You would be sick as you realized that they placed up a facade, hoped that you would eventually disappear, and that when you didn’t their patience began to wear thin.
“You are given more than most birthmothers are given” would be a phrase that would make your stomach churn, right? Realizing that you may never see your son ever again because you know there is no importance on his origins, that would surely make you angry, disgusted, and disappointed.
Yes, I’m angry. I’m angry at me. I’m angry at LDS Family Services. I was angry at my family, until I realized they were just a product of the same deceit, their fear being amplified by a church that is supposed to focus on families. I’m angry that The Kiddo’s family has believed that my story is their story, and has insulted me time and time again, yet take no responsibility. I’m angry at a society that makes their disgusting response to me, acceptable. I’m angry that when I used my voice, and tried to explain my perspective, they took offense instead of hearing me. I’m angry for my son, that he will have to spend years trying to make sense of himself, feeling guilty for wanting to know where he came from, never feeling like he fits, and wondering if it’s okay to love two sets of parents, when one doesn’t acknowledge the other.
I’m angry that every May I feel like the world has lost gravity and I am free falling in a pit of complete misery. Like I’m lost but not at all. I’m tired of having to grieve the same thing, but something entirely different every.single.year. I’m tired of wondering, and waiting, of making birthday cakes that I don’t get to share with him. I’m exhausted of being in exile, and I’m tired of being the bad guy simply because I want to know my son.
I’m angry that you think you are doing what is best for him, when you know you are just prolonging the inevitable. One day he will find me, no matter how you try to hide me now, and one day you will be invisible, because it’s natural for him to want to know where he came from, who he came from. If only you were open enough to understand it would be easier if we were in this together, instead of separately.
Most of all? I’m angry that I can’t be angry without some label being slapped on me. I’m allowed to be angry, and I’m allowed to feel the regret, the sorrow and disappointment that has become a part of this adoption experience for me.
I’m angry. And that’s just fine, if you don’t like it, then you should figure out why.