Birthmom is now "Mom"

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Nancy, Mar 22, 2008.

  1. Nancy

    Nancy Well-Known Member Staff Member

    difficult child started a letter to her bm yesterday, could have been predicted.

    "Dear Mom,

    My name is Blah Blah and you are my Mom. I grew up with 2 pictures of you holding me."

    That's as far as she got.

    The 'Mom' was like sticking a dagger in my heart. I thought about it all night and finally told my difficult child this morning that I was not mad that she was writing her bm a letter and that I thought she should finish it, although she needed to take out her last name and couldn't put any identifying information in it until she was 18.

    I then told her the bible story of Solomon and how both woman claimed the baby as theirs and Solomon was going to cut the baby in half until the real mom said the other woman could have it. I told difficult child that I loved her so much that I am telling Solomon that she can go and that we have spent almost 17 years now loving her and making her our family but that she has spent all those years rejecting us. I asked her to write a letter to her boyfriend also because he too was involved and she has a Dad downstairs who gave her his heart but she never took it.

    I reminded her that she has only 14 more months to have to live here and that by next June she could decide for herself where she wanted to live and perhaps her bm would put her through college or help her get her start in life.

    We have been nothing more than babysitters for 17 years. If you ever wanted to see what a difficult child can do to a family and a marriage one needs to look no further.

  2. tiredmommy

    tiredmommy Well-Known Member

    I'm fighting back tears, you deserve to be treated better. Unfortunately, I doubt that difficult child will ever behave any better until she realizes just how much you and husband have given her and how little BM & boyfriend have. You truly are her real mother, and I'm sorry for the way your mother's heart feels today.
  3. Josie

    Josie Active Member

    My difficult child's are not adopted so I understand that complicates things but difficult child 1 sometimes talks about running away. If she had a BM somewhere, I'm sure that would be part of her fantasy. I would think it is typical to wish for different parents at times but when they are adopted, they really do (in their minds) have an alternative. I'm sure she knows who her real mom is. I didn't appreciate my parents at that age and I wasn't even a difficult child.

    I certainly understand the toll a difficult child can take on a family and marriage.
  4. DazedandConfused

    DazedandConfused Active Member

    I'm so very sorry. Your heartache is palpable through the computer screen. I hope that one day difficult child will realize just how fortunate she was to have such loving parents (yes, you ARE the parents).


    (((gentle hugs)))
  5. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    Oh Nancy, I am soo sorry. This must feel like your heart is being ripped out. I have no advice, just hugs and a cyber shoulder.


  6. Star*

    Star* call 911


    You never need identify yourself to anyone as difficult child's Mom. A Mother is the person who cares for you regardless of where you come from. A Mother the person who quite literally wipes your butt, your nose, your tears. A Mother isn't the person who gave you life, a Mother is the person who gave you a life. A Mother is the person that despite how badly she's treated, stands strong and still loves and hopes that someday maybe a tiny portion of what she's invested into the live of her child will return to her. A Mother hurts when you hurt, she smiles when you smile, she makes you feel beautiful and keeps you close to her heart. A biological parent - Gives you up because she loves you so much she's willing to live her life without you for you to have the things she wanted you to have, but couldn't give you. It doesn't necessarily mean that 18 years later you go running back to this stranger, calling her Mom and expect things to take off from where you left off. That would be impossible, and she's moved on. No doubt the love will be there but not like a Mother that raised you. There is no greater gift from one Mother to another than a child. Somewhere along the line you hope that the child figures out that where she is - is exactly where her biological parent wanted her to be. Otherwise she would have found a way to keep her. That it's not important in any way where she came from - but it is life altering if she doesn't know where she's headed.

    Nancy - your daughter is who she is because you raised her to be just that. She became what she has become because she believes she wants something different. To her - those pictures of her biomom holding her must mean she was wanted and had to be given away forceably. That there must be a connection - why would she hold her if she didn't wnat her. I think in difficult child's head this is all a huge mistake and she's angry to her soul about it. She needs to know that no matter where she goes she'll always be unhappy until she figures out what it is in her head that makes her unhappy. And sadly that may not be for years and years.

    What if - she finds her bio-mom and the woman is just the most fantastic person in the world, outgoing, rich, beautiful, well-off and welcomes difficult child into her house only to find out that difficult child is a difficult child? There is a potential for huge hurt. Or what if difficult child finds this biomom and she is beautiful and not so rich and willing to meet difficult child but has moved on in her life, has gotten married, has a family - and never told anyone about her? Has difficult child considered that for her biomom? And last but not least my favorite fantasy - where I meet my biomom, and she's dirt poor, is on drugs, lives in squallor, is mentally ill, and I have brothers and sisters, but they are all thieves, addicts, and I lead them back to MY family and put them in danger? We (as adoptees) rarely ever consider anything other than the gleeful running into each others arms at long last with flowers, and rainbows and joy and welcome - what if biomom doesn't want you? It is a possibility - and now I've hurt my MOM, my own self and dug a wedge so deep in my family that I don't know if I can ever go back.

    The grass is always greener until we're standing on that farm looking back at that distant greener hill that was our home.

    Take the knife out of your heart, take the sadness out of your life - present difficult child with her other options - maybe it will make some sense to her.

  7. ML

    ML Guest

    What Star said! You are a great mom! I know how you are feeling. ((((Nancy))))
  8. everywoman

    everywoman Active Member

    Hugs. I remember being your difficult child and thinking that if only my mom and dad had wanted me life would have been so much better. I had a pain inside of me that no one could heal. It took becoming an adult and a mother myself to begin to understand how selfish and immature my parents really were. I still loved them, but I loved and appreciated my grandparents more. One day...she will understand. Right now---she hurts too badly to. I'm sorry you are being forced to hurt with her.
  9. Nancy

    Nancy Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Oh Star you make so much sense and your words make me cry. Truth is difficult child has no siblings, birthmom has had several failed marriages and to our knowledge has not progressed much past the trailer she was living in years ago. She is a self admitted difficult child in her own right who has made all the same mistakes that difficult child is making now and many more. We have shared most of that with difficult child, trying to be as sensitive as we can and letting her draw her own conclusions. But as you probably know that hole in her soul is deeper than any reality.

    What are your feelings now about your parents, not your birth mother, the Mother who wiped your butt, nose and tears? Have you tried to locate yours? Do you have any desire to do that?

  10. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I'm so sorry for your hurting heart. (((((hugs)))))
  11. Big Bad Kitty

    Big Bad Kitty lolcat


    my heart is in pieces reading your post. I wish I could take your pain away.

    I have hugs to offer, prayers to give, and a big shoulder to lean on. I am so, so sorry.
  12. Steely

    Steely Active Member

    Oh, boy, how this must just rip out your mommy heart. I am so, so sorry.

    I know from my own difficult children quest to find and reunite with his bio father, (which he finally did) how painful it is to hear how much better the other parent "could" be, or "is". If it helps any - my difficult child is finally able to look at his dad and see his faults, and that he is a person with many, many problems - but this is only after 1 1/2 years of being around him. For 15 years there was so much hope placed in finding his dad, so much idealistic, fantasyland rhetoric in his mind, that it took him this long to finally come back down to reality - and there is still a long ways to go.

    I know your situation is a bit different - but I do understand the bitter, hot tears shed over the sacrifice of literally giving everything to help your child succeed, only to have that thrown by the wayside in their childish attempts to play out a fantasy. It stings.

    Big, big hugs.
  13. dreamer

    dreamer New Member

    any possibility difficult child simply did not know how to address letter to bm? (as in useing bms name, or a title or Ms. whatever?)

    I know it is not just difficult children who are not always appreciative and grateful for what their parents have done for them etc. LOTS of people never stop to realize.
    And some rationalize it out by saying to themself "hey I was the child and I had no vote in whether or not to be born, or anything, I did not ask anyone to be my parent" A good number of people do not realize until they themself become parents and are then in those same miserable shoes, and THEN they have a litebulb monet, oh wow, I am grateful for what my parents did for me.

    If you know bm is likely not in a position to help difficult child or provide for her, or send her to college etc, than be careful. Bm seeems to have already made HER decision- many years ago, made her stance clear----how she lives her life now really is her own business..she did not subject difficult child to that life, she gave difficult child up. Really, it might not be fair to permit difficult child to grow unrealistic fantasies and it is not fair to bm, either, whether you like her as a person or not....Perosnally I would NOT encourage such a fantasy as difficult child might have about her bm suddenly becoming "perfect"
    Yes, MANY adopted kids DO want to find a bm - they want to see from where they came.....and maybe they do want to get an answer to their "why mom"? That is not GFGness, thats pretty "normal" even if everything in their REAL family is perfect.
    I am sure your difficult child is still haveing some ...issues....over the incident with your sis and bro in law. She prolly is angry at you for you doing your job as her mom. (I can picture her wondering why you are angry at her for what your sis and brother in law are doing right now) DOes that have anything to do with her decideing to write bm now?

    I am confused about why difficult child should write to boyfriend?

    I dunno, from where I am, I am wondering if difficult child is simply hurting inside herself, and grasping at maybe trying to hurt you.....(misery loves company) Maybe she is feeling like well, if you do not love her, maybe bm does? It can be hard for kids this age to understand we as parents have a JOB to do, and we do it becuz we love them, not becuz we are mean or cold. I would be careful not to send her a message that she might not understand. Give her other options....such as..well at 18 you CAN move out. And leave bm out of it. DOn't encourage unrealistic fantasies re bm but be careful not to bash bm, either. (after all, difficult child has bm genes and to bash bm could be taken by difficult child as bashing her for her genes that she got from bm)

    It is almost Easter. I am hoping you may have changed your mind and your easy child is coming over. For your happiness, I hope husband decided to go to church with you anyway.but if he didn't, perhaps you can go anyway, even if you go alone. It is not uncommon for people to be upset and question their faith when things get difficult. But maybe he can still go with you if he views it tomorrow as simply a tradition, ritual, or social outing for now?
    When we feel most abandoned and let down by our faith is when we need our faith the most. and when our children behave in a difficult way is when they most need our unconditional love. It is easy to have faith when things are going well, and it is easy to love unconditionally when everything is good.

    BUT if husband still won't go to church- go anyway! Maayyyyyyyyybbeeeeee (with some luck) while you are at church, he can begin brunch prep or do breakfast cleanup or something nice?

    SOrry you are hurting. Try to look at it all a lil differently. Maybe it will not feel the same way looking at it from a different point of view? Good luck. Happy Easter.
  14. Nomad

    Nomad Guest

    I'm so sorry.
    When my daughter was a teen, she once said I was not her mom.
    I replied (in a not very happy tone), "Then who AM I?"
    I a sked if I was her aunt, friend, sister, neighbor, etc.?
    If I wasn't her mother...someone who has taken care of her during thick and thin, during sickness and some VERY (and I do mean very) difficult experiences for her entire life, then WHO WAS I?
    She never mentioned it again, at least to me.
    It has come up briefly with her therapist, but she always drops it relatively quickly.
    I have told her that when she is 21 (and I explained to her that 18 year olds in my humble opinion are not mature enough to deal with this stuff) if she wants to find her bm, then I will give her some help, but before then, it is not a topic that I am particularly open to discuss.
    She seems comfortable with it.
    My guess is that your difficult child is just trying to yank your chain. Try not to let it get to you. (Hugs) for your hurting heart. Try to get this kid to a therapist. Yikes.
  15. busywend

    busywend Well-Known Member

    in my humble opinion, the very fact that she wants to get away from you proves you are her mom. My difficult child told me yesterday she could not stand me and wanted to never live with me again, blah, blah, blah. I really think it is part of the teenage h#!! years. She said it is not 'worth' it to live here. Not sure what that means, but I think she thought it would be hurtful to me.

    I am sorry for the pain you felt when you read the 'mom' addressed in that letter. If BM was a good mom she would be doing all the things you are doing and then difficult child would hate her, too.

    Sigh....this is just so much more difficult than people imagine before they have a teenager.
  16. Nancy

    Nancy Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Dreamer I am encouraging no fantasies. We told her recently the status of her bm, that she has had several failed marriages, has had no other children(so the fantasy of a big happy family to run to is gone), that she has had a very very difficult life, that she has had and probably still does severe problems with alcohol and most likely drugs, that she was living in a trailer when she gave birth, that the boyfriend wanted nothing to do with the bm once she was pregnant, that we asked her to write difficult child a letter two years ago and help her want o get her life in order and she promised she would and never did.

    And why not write a letter to boyfriend, Imean seriously why not? Is he not a major contributor here? I have always found it unfair that us Moms get the brunt of everything. They don't understand or stop to think that there is a man out there who got their bm pregnant and then walked away. Where is the anger at him? Why not want to meet him? Where is the fantasy that he is a fairy godfather and will take her away to live happily ever after. She has rejected husband as much as she has rejected me. Why then does she not want to find boyfriend since she thinks those that left her are so much better than what she has. Maybe he has the eight siblings and castle and lovely stepmom for her.

    Those are rhetorical questions of course. I don't expect answers. I expect her to start thinking about the reality of things. I'm sure difficult child is hurting inside and taking her anger out on us. I told her the other day to think about why she is always so angry, who she is angry at, and do something about it before she pushes everyone in her life away. She needs to grow up. She's had years and years of therapy and has seen her life completely out of control several times now. She sees the life she can have and yet can't stop herself.

    easy child did come home and has been a great source of comfort. husband has decided to go to church and we will let difficult child decide for herself whether she wants to be with us or not.

  17. Penta

    Penta New Member

    As a parent who has raised 2 generations of children with 1 adopted daughter and 1 granddaughter who both had serious grief, loss and anger issues, I can relate to your family situation.

    My small bit of advice is: Don't give up on your daughter yet. My daughter, died suddenly at age 23 and was just then beginning to turn her life around. I do believe our relationship would have gown, had she lived. My granddaughter went through horrible behavioral disorders that included violence and extreme risk taking behavior in her early to mid teens. She hated me with a vengeance for all that happened in her life and harbored great fantasies of her bio father rescuing her, even though she knew he was a homeless drifter. Long months at Residential Treatment Center (RTC) caused an awakening in her. She came to realize who her family really is and how much we love her.

    It may take your daughter years to come to terms with her life, to recognize the childhood she was given by you and all the love and support you offered. Try to look back and focus on those times of joy you all had...her soccer games, her flag team and all the other good memories you often wrote about on this board. Human beings are multi faceted and your daughter has many sides to who she is. She is trying to sort it all out, unfortunately, in a way that hurts herself and others.

    I hope that you all can reach some common ground for the benefit of everyone in your family.

    Take care.
  18. mstang67chic

    mstang67chic Going Green

    You know, sometimes I SWEAR that all of our difficult child's are sometimes psychically linked. I don't know if you've seen some of my recent posts but we're going through something similar with our difficult child and his desire to be with his egg donor as well as the rest of his "real" family.

    Ours is a slighty different situation as we got difficult child when he was 9 and adopted him when he was 10. I sometimes wonder if he and I would have a better bond had we gotten him when he was considerably younger. Then I look at him, living in his heavily rose tinted world that is full of entitlement, narcissim and fantasy and snort.

    Of course, I'm sure I had a pair of rose colored glasses myself when we got him. Especially after taking the classes required though the agency we went through, I knew that love wouldn't be enough. There was going to at least be a honeymoon period, and then a testing period. But I thought (hoped?) that once we got through that, we would be a "real" family. Of course, reality came along fairly quickly and whacked me upside the head. Had I known about these things at the time, I should have heard warning bells when difficult child started calling me mom 3 hours into a 2 week stay the day after we first laid eyes on him. And at that time, he had no idea that he was going to be living with us. All he knew was that we were keeping him while his foster mom was on vacation. Ahhhhh....the total bliss of complete and utter ignorance. Sometimes I miss those days. :rolleyes:

    When these kids get this idealized fantasy in their head, there's nothing we can really do but guide them, and be there to catch them when they hit the ground with a teeth jarring thud of reality. Granted, that's only if they come to us after that happens. She may continue to treat you in the same dismissive manner or she may actually open her eyes to what she has. Even being in the middle of this myself, I really don't know what to tell you. I understand, I empathize but I don't know what to say. Sending lots and lots of Hugs. Hang in never know what will happen.
  19. Martie

    Martie Moderator


    I am sorry I have not been reading posts on the General board recently, so I have missed your latest posts---it happens when I become overwhelmed.

    I understand you are hurting but this is about difficult child not you as a mother. No one could have tried harder or done more than you and husband. difficult child is looking for something that her bio mom will not provide but she has to go through that. If you get behind her "search," then there is nothing to fight about with you.

    I have a child who is adopted also who wants to search for his birth family in Korea...I hope he finds them; it will answer questions that I cannot answer; and he is quite serious. It is one of his major motivators for becoming fluent in Korean. However, he is still an American kid who was raised in our family not in Korea. Your child was raised by you, not her bio mom no matter what is happening now. I know you have information that I do not have, so it might seem as if your difficult child shouldn't need to discover information that is likely to be unpleasant and that you already have given her. However, for a difficult child who is an adopted adolescent, "knowing" isn't enough; sometimes it takes "seeing" as well.

    I wish you the peace of the season. One way or another, this too shall pass.

  20. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    I never adopted difficult child 1. For this reason, I had to spend years dancing around that tiny little bit of a chance that either bio parent might go off on a drug-induced or girlfriend/boyfriend-induced sudden desire to come yank difficult child away. As much as I love him, my fear was mostly for him, not me. Neither of these people are capable of raising a child.

    In hind sight, tho, that was a blessing. I hauled difficult child to very infrequent events at his bio mom's or dad's house to appease her. And we're talking once every couple of years, max. The bio's(neither married), of course, promise this and that and never come thru, and difficult child learned how they really were. It hurt him, and it hurt me to see him hurt, but what could I do?

    He still held onto those dreams. Even just a year ago said he wished he was born into a "real" family (not angrily, just a fact). Tho the words hurt, I know what he means. He had a dream, and that dream can never come true.

    However, now that he's stationed 1000 miles away. After telling me he hated me and was never coming home. After doing his best to alienate this family before he left for boot camp. And after we let him throw his fits and answering all these "challenges" with a simple "we'll miss you, but we'll be here", who does he call every week? And sometimes, he doesn't even want to talk. He just sits on the phone and listens to sounds of "home" - literally, me interacting with difficult child 2, or doing dishes, or cooking dinner. And tells his buddies to turn the music down so he can talk to his "mom". That one tugs the heart strings every time.

    Of my kids and their challenges, difficult child 1 is the one with the best handle on this particular situation. I had a dream that he'd be part of my family and never question it. That wasn't real. He had a dream to be born into the Cleaver's. That wasn't real, either.

    He's learned, thru the school of hard knocks, where home is and who mom is. It took some letting go on my part and trusting it would happen. As many challenges as we've had with him, this isn't one anymore.

    I think all teens go soul searching around this point. They're trying to figure out who they are and where they fit in the world. They know enough to know that you are who you are partly because of your past, yet their past has a big unknown in it. For kids who aren't adopted, they look at their family tree. For kids who are adopted, they look at a fill in the blank test.

    This is a tough age, but if bm is the way you say she is, I'll bet difficult child will realize, in time, like mine, where home is and who mom is. But hugs for your hurt until then.