Life’s busy. I am currently seeking an attorney or an adoption agency to help me complete an adoption reversal. There are so many factors that have gone into this decision and many long nights working through the “but what if’s” and “is it worth it’s?” I’ve written many pro-con lists and benefit-risk lists and it’s all come down to this decision, 100%.
Let me explain. My adoptive family is not a bad family. They are not bad people. They are good people with a good, strong family unit. Nearly 7 years ago, they brought me into that family by standing in front of a judge, despite the many warnings not to, and swore to be my family forever. 6 years ago, they sent me to school and 4 ½ years ago they asked me to never return home with the threat that I’d be institutionalized if I did.
While in their home, I did not connect with them but instead did what I knew how to and shut down. I shut them out because living in a family that I didn’t understand was just too big. To them my shut down looked like a lack of trying, disrespectful, and me not wanting to be a part of the family. That was hard for them and they shut down too. Things got bad and we all said some really hurtful things to which I was no longer allowed to talk to anyone in the family, for weeks. I shut down more, until I left for school and they were contemplating dissolving the adoption.
Fast forward a year and I’d moved to the other side of the country to work a job I was not fit for. Multiple times I reached out to them to ask them for help and to explain that I couldn’t do this job for fear of the people involved. I reached out because I knew that if I didn’t leave, I would become violent and I was unwilling to do that. Eventually I stopped reaching out for their help and quit the job and an hour later received the call to never return home or I’d be institutionalized. That they would not have someone in their family who has thoughts of hurting anyone and that I needed serious help; they were done.
Fast forward 4 ½ years later and here I am, sitting in my own apartment, 3 years into school with 2 jobs and doing really well. I’ve advocated for myself and for my healing for the past 7 years without their help. As a minor I looked for months for a residential that would take me and help me learn to manage what trauma still remained only to be turned away and told it was too late. I’ve moved to a new state where I’ve managed to find 5 people to help me walk through the trauma and hard times. I’ve worked everyday for 4 years to get rid of the demons that are inside of me and have learned in that time how to work within a family. I’ve done all of this without the help of my adoptive family. The little help I have asked for has been denied with the answer, “we did it, so can you.” All the while they continue to support their other adult child through his medical/mental health and schooling. When I succeed, their response is surprise. In the past 4 years, I have visited them twice on my own accord while they’ve yet to even offer a trip. All the while, they travel the same 14 hours to watch their other son play his sports. They don’t call, text or email and neither do I.
The one thing that has stuck out most from all of my adoptive mom and my conversations is her telling me that it’s not her job to help me through my darkness, that is what I have a therapist for. That she adopted a daughter to have a friend, a daughter, not this. As I left my hometown last month, I realized that statement has never rung truer, that now that I’ve worked through some of my biggest darkness’s she wants to jump back into a relationship. Now that the hard work is done, she’s ready to be in my life. But I can’t. I didn’t get adopted to have a friend. I got adopted because I needed a family that would stick with me through everything. Who would support me through my life and be there when I needed people to celebrate my accomplishments or grieve my failures. I got adopted because I needed a mom to teach me how to become a woman and a father to teach me the value of work and caring. Together, teaching me compassion, love, sorrow, and responsibility. I’ve learned those things in the last 4 years, but it wasn’t from them. They are good people, but they are not my people, and because of that, I’m reversing my adoption.