This is a post for other mothers of adoption loss. I have a question. If you're own mother had a part in the loss of your child, how do you reconcile that relationship? How do you deal with being part of that family when your own child was taken from you and your family played a large role in it?
The bond between mother and child is huge, primal, like no other I know. I mean you share cells with this other human being. A part of me goes on in my children just as a part of me goes on in her - my mother. On that level I can relate to my own mother because on one hand I think... surely she feels that same bond with me that I feel with my children. But, at the same time, if she felt the bond with me that I feel with my children, then why was I put in the position of having to lose my own child? What happened to mothers during that time period that allowed them to feel like they could coerce their daughters into surrendering their own children? I can't even conceive of doing to my daughter what was done to me.
This is some brutal shit. I've had a very complicated relationship with my mother for over 3 decades and just recently some of this stuff has come to a head. I have to take ownership in part of it. I've maintained the relationship. I've played the part I was expected to play, I've participated and allowed the relationship to continue. Why? Maybe part of it is because of fear. Fear of what would happen if I was something other than the dutiful daughter. I have to take ownership in not standing up and not standing strong against those forces that wanted me to surrender. A part of me will always feel the guilt of not being strong enough at the time. I feel strong enough now to stand up for myself but I didn't then. Of course I was 19 years old at the time. I'm 54 now. Maybe I can take some solace in that. Maybe I can give myself a break.
So, the question is.... how much of a break do I give my mother? How do I maintain a relationship with someone who doesn't see that they played such a large role in the loss of a child - her own grandchild? How much forgiveness is expected? How much forgiveness am I capable of? - not only forgiveness of her role in this tragedy but forgiveness for myself.