This past week someone close to me, a family member, asked me how old I was when I was pregnant with my oldest child. She was referring to the one lost to adoption and when I said I was 19 her response was
"you were old enough to make your own decision"
Last night I was chatting online with a friend of mine and he said -
"even the strongest rocks crack and erode from constant pressure- that's how we got the Grand Canyon"
He was talking about a situation that is totally unrelated to adoption but when I read those words, they resonated with me, not just in the case we were discussing but also in relation to adoption. It was interesting to me that these two conversations happened so close to each other. His comment reminded me immediately of the other one about me being old enough to make the adoption decision and I thought how strange it was that someone who has known me for so many years and who has had numerous conversations with me about adoption, still didn't seem to understand the coercion for what it was. I guess she still thinks I had a choice and freely made the decision to surrender my daughter.
My friend's comment about cracking and erosion was spot on. That is what happens to mothers being groomed to surrender their babies. They crack and erode from the constant pressure. The pressure may be subtle, the techniques slick and fluid as water, but it's still pressure. Sometimes it's blatant but still not recognized by the mother because of her unsupported and vulnerable position. I sometimes still see comments from people on articles about adoption that say to the grieving mother - "well, no one held a gun to your head". Well, that person would be right. No one held a gun to my head. But what the people around me did hold was......
the ability to help me but they didn't.
the information I needed in order to keep my child but they didn't share it.
the knowledge of how adoption affects mothers and their babies but they didn't share that either.
the financial support that would have enabled us to remain together, once again, no sharing.
the emotional support that would have helped sustain us until we could stand on our own but wasn't given.
the emotional manipulation tools that would steer me in their chosen direction and they used them well.
Guns are not the only weapons that can be used against someone. If something as simple as water can carve out a canyon then why is it so hard to believe that a young, vulnerable, pregnant woman can be coerced out her newborn child?