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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I haven't posted here in about 18 months, but I have a question and haven't been able to get a really helpful answer on my other adoption board.<br><br>
Both of my children (ages 6 and 2) were adopted as newborns. In both cases we wanted a lot of openness; in both cases our children's birth mothers have not. DD's birth mother has disappeared. Ds's birth mother has quite firmly requested that we only do a letter and package once a year around his birth day. She did send an extra letter this year to answer the letter that he wrote her at birthday time; it was a really nice letter, and I was so grateful she wrote back to him.<br><br>
Anyway, ds really wants to visit her and has been asking to for some time. When he was younger, he would ask more casually, and we would always just tell him that she lives far away. But now, he is asking more seriously. I am not sure how to give him a satisfactory answer. She lives within a day's drive of us, and technically, we could visit her if we were invited to do so, so I'm no longer comfortable saying she lives far away.<br><br>
I understand the grown-up reasons she doesn't want visits or more contact, even though I feel sad about it too. Dh and I would love to visit her too! I just don't know how to explain this to ds. The only thing I can think of is to say that she misses him a lot, and a visit would be hard for her. But ds is just starting to understand that adoption involves sadness, and I don't want to put ideas into his head that he may not be ready for or hasn't thought of on his own. I also don't want him to feel guilty, like he is in some way responsible for her sadness. I don't want him to think "My birth mom would be sad to see me." I think that's complicated for a young child.<br><br>
I just keep telling him that we have to be invited before we can visit her, and we haven't been invited. So, for a school project where he was supposed to write a letter to someone special, he chose to write to his birth mom. And the only things he said in the letter were "Can we come visit you?" and "Can you come to see me?" Of course, we can't even send this letter until his next birthday, which is 10 months away (and that's another subject that needs to be discussed in more depth!)<br><br>
Some people have told me to just let him ask her about a visit and let it be between her and them. In some ways, I agree with this--it's their relationship. But I also feel that when we signed up to be adoptive parents, we signed up to deal with the hard questions like this, and I'm not sure it's fair to just dump that question off on her.<br><br>
I want to do the right thing. I want to be truthful. I don't want to introduce additional pain into ds's life, but I also know we can't avoid this, and probably I can't and shouldn't take this pain away, but help him face it and deal with it.<br><br>
Advice?
 

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I'm sorry<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"> I wonder what her reasons were for being so firm. Is it just that painful for her? Maybe you could write a letter to her letting her know that this is something that he feels very strongly about. Tell her that you would like for her to be a part of your family and be a part of his life, even if at first it's painful for everyone.<br><br>
I don't know her reasons or how firmly she requested once a year. Maybe she's more open to it now than before. I hope you find some kind of solution. If you can't get her to agree, then the truth that it's painful for her would be a better explanation than she hasn't invited you. One is rejection and the other is love that hurts too bad. I think that as a child, he can understand the love that hurts more so than the rejection.<br><br>
Good luck<br>
Lisa
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I don't know all her reasons for wanting things this way. I think it is painful, and I think her personality is such that she is dealing with it by trying to focus on the other aspects of her life. Since the adoption, she has gotten married and has other children, and I strongly suspect, from things she's written, that her dh has had a big impact on her choices in how to deal with this. I think he is uncomfortable with her having more contact. They are not planning to tell their other children about ds until they are teenagers or adults. I don't agree with that, but it's not my decision. When this was all decided a few years ago, I told her we would honor her wishes, but that when ds was an adult, I could not promise that he would not want to find her and see her.<br><br>
So I don't think there's any chance of her changing her mind on this. The first few years, she waffled about how much contact she wanted and at one point was considering breaking off contact completely. So we feel very grateful to even have a yearly letter!<br><br>
I think that I will write her a letter and tell her how ds is feeling. If I do that, I wouldn't want her to feel pressured into seeing him. But maybe she would have some ideas on how we could talk to him about it?
 
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