Heartened

The whole kit & doodle!

And so it begins – “The Void”

The very first post I made on adoption.com was in response to a thread about "The Void." No irony there. LOL

I suppose this is what started it all, so to me, it is worth archiving.

I'm reading through this thread and many others and finding this feeling welling up inside of me. "Thank God I'm not the only one who…"

This is my very first post here. I guess it says something that it would be in response to a thread about the void.

That void has haunted me for years. It only seems to get worse the older I get. I'm almost 35 years old now. Yet my 'issues' around being adopted seem to grow.

I'm not quite ready to begin searching yet. The idea of finding my birth family stirs up a whole lot of fear. But I think I will try to find them soon.

I have another friend who is adopted who keeps trying to convince me that just because he doesn't feel a void, I shouldn't either. Of course, he has also met part of his birth family. He claims his lack of void has nothing to do with that but I have my doubts. It doesn't really matter what he feels, what matters is that I feel a void and I'm the one who has to deal with it.

My husband tries to understand. I think he comes as close as a non-adoptee possibly can. I've tried explaining to him what it's like to not have a single person you can look at and say, "Hey, that's where I got my (eyes, nose, mouth, chin,) from!"

How do you explain to someone that you have this 'disconnect' from whatever cultural influence you were raised under? It's all well and good to have recipes and such handed down from grandparents, but there just isn't that sense of "this is who I am" associated with it. My mother-in-law is very into geneology. I can't quite figure out how to explain to her that the geneology of my adoptive parents is NOT what I want in our family tree. I feel more connected to my husband's family than my own, maybe because I chose to emmesh myself in their familial identity. I did not choose to be plopped down in the middle of my adoptive familial identity.

I don't even speak to my adoptive family any more. Too many bridges burned over the years and a sense of apathy on my part about ever fixing it. I don't even know why they bothered to adopt me or any of my adopted siblings (not blood related to me). My adoptive father never missed a chance to remind us that he only adopted us because my adoptive mother wanted to so badly. Yet she chose him over us as well, letting him be as abusive as he wanted.

What a mess.

One of these days maybe I'll start to share more about my own story, but for now, I think I'll just chime in when I see something I need to say "Me Too!" to.

So about the void? Yes, me too.

This was a follow up response I made in the same thread.

I don't know if knowing the birth family fills that void or not as I haven't sought or found mine and am not sure I'm going to.

I suspect that for some adoptees it never goes away. There was a potential which existed the moment we were born which suddenly "disappears" when we're separated from our birth mother. That potential and that moment can never truly be recaptured because we are no longer the same person we were back then. We've grown up, we've changed and we've been influenced by our experiences in the ensuing 10, 20, 30, 40, 50, whatever years.

It's why I'm trying to work through my issues before I make contact. I want to be as whole as possible. If I look for someone else to fill me up, I'll be disappointed. But I believe I can fill myself up if I choose to.

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January 6, 2006 - Posted by | Adoption Void

1 Comment »

  1. Hello Heartened one,
    I love the way you write, first off. It’s…smooth and easy. I can empathize with some of the things you are talking about, and if I may, I’d like to offer some of my thoughts. I’m 27 and for several years had been struggling with the decision to contact my birthfather and 2 half-sisters. My birthmother had died when my brothers and I were toddlers and our birthdad felt he couldn’t handle the three of us. From the time that I had his contact info (I was lucky to have found it so easily!)until the time I did decide to contact him and his new family was about 3 years. Sadly, in this time frame, both my birthfather and my half-sister, Ashley passed away. In fact, they both died the same year. This was devastating to me. What we face is so complicated and our emotions are pulled in different directions. My advice to you, please take or leave it, is to err on the side of growth. What you have to gain is growth and what you have to lose is growth. If you get concerned about all that other stuff (and there is so much), you will fight with yourself forever. Time truly is precious and it is so heartbreaking when you discover how it was wasted. One more thing, my birthfamily waited for me to search. They did not want to intrude in my life, especially if I was not ready. It’s something to think about if you are feeling hurt by the fact they have not sought you out. Surely, they think of you often, just as you think of them.

    Best of luck to you.

    Jenny

    Comment by wtrfalling | January 13, 2006 | Reply


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