About Adoption Reunion
Finding loved ones lost through adoption separation is an important decision and experience one that comes with great rewards. Adoption reunions can be a time of anxiety and excitement. The reunion process has often been described as “an emotional roller coaster ride”. But it is a ride worth taking…
Judith S. Gediman and Linda F. Brown in their book “Birthbond” state that “There’s no such thing as a perfect reunion. Every reunion is built on the foundation of closed adoption, and the closed adoptions from which these reunions sprang were permeated with secrecy, guilt, shame and loss. It’s a wonder that anything good and healthy could spring from such a soil, but it has.”
Many adoption reunions have gone awry because of the approach or the way they were handled. Hopefully the information here will help you to go through an adoption reunion with more understanding of the process and also give you some understanding of the pitfalls which prevent reunions from being successful.
It is recommended that you consider and to have some knowledge of the complexities of reunion; and to prepare yourself for the challenges and indeed the rewards of reunion before you embark upon your journey.
What Am I Expecting From a Reunion?
You should consider what you are expecting from a reunion. What kind of relationship do you expect and/or hope will develop? If you are adopted, have you given thought about the fact that you will be finding not just your mother, but a whole family that may include other siblings and relatives? Have you considered the problems that might arise if your expectations are different from those of the person you are searching for? What would be your greatest desire? What would be your worst disappointment? It is important for you, as an individual to give some thought about what you might find and what your reunion expectations are.
For mothers it is important to remember that your child is now an adult and has no conscious memory of you in their lives…they have no experience of being your child so do not expect him or her to act as if they did. Although they do have an unconscious memory of you and have suffered the Primal Wound of being separated from you …they do not have a conscious memory of an actual experience of you. On the other hand, you DO have conscious memories of being pregnant, bonding with your child as he/she grew in your body, giving birth to your child and being your child’s mother since then. However, it is important not to expect too much right away and to give your now grown son or daughter sensitivity and time and space to settle in with this new experience of having you in their life.
Those that have very strong expectations of any type may be disappointed…it is best to try not to have too many expectations…just go with the flow…it is ok to have a “wish list”, but better to go slow and see if your wishes are realistic as things unfold.
Motivation for Reunion: Why Do We Want to Reunite?
It is simply natural for you to want to find your child or for your child to want to find you. You were bonded and that bond was broken…
For mothers, you have always been your child’s mother and you have thought about them and loved them since the day they were born and before…for most mothers, they have worried and wanted to know if their child is alright…if their child is ok in the world. They search because they are mothers and have lost their children. As a mother, you have a right to reconnect with your child lost to adoption. You do not have to feel that you may be interrupting his or her life. Some mothers feel they are unworthy to interrupt their child’s life. But remember, your child is an adult now, and can make those decisions once you make contact. You have a right. You are a mother.
For many Adopted Persons, it is important for them to find out the answer to why – why did their mother leave them? They also have the need to find a part of themselves that has been denied to them, their history, their medical history, their ancestry, their family. Adopted persons need to mirror themselves in others. They have lived their entire life without seeing someone that looks like them, or talks like them -who they are related to.