April 13, 2019 at 9:58 am #288943
I’m a sixty year old woman who was recently matched to my biological mother thru an online genetic site.I always felt like a part of me was missing and that I never truly fit in with my adopted family ,but they were lovely people and raised me to the best of their ability.They were considerably older parents and both of them had multiple health problems which led to me becoming a caregiver throughout their lives.They both passed under hospice care at my home(my mother age 80 in 2004 and my father age 92 in 2015.)Needless to say ,we were extremely close and I have boundary issues that have impacted my life in unhealthy ways.I can’t handle confrontation at all and I lack the ability to say “no” whenever asked to do something.I have just started therapy to finally deal with those issues ,but some thing has happened to make me feel such anxiety and fear that I’m posting here to try and make sense of it all…
At the beginning of the year I received a notification that a genetic match had been found and my adult daughter made contact with a female member of my biological family.the two of them corresponded back and forth about medical history and such and about six weeks later my birthmother finally called.I was pleased to finally hear from her and I made it clear from the first minutes of our conversation that I bore no hard feelings for the adoption and that she should absolve herself for any feelings of guilt or shame that giving me up might have caused. She replied that it had been her mother and sister who demanded that she give me up or that she and my sister would be unable to live with her parents.I discovered that she ‘d had a girl eighteen months before my birth and a younger brother eight years younger .Each child had a different father (although she married my sister’s father)but she lied to the adoption agency about her marriage and child.
We continued to talk and eventually I began talking to my sister as well.I invited my mother to meet my family and I since she would be traveling near our home state .She called back and told me it would be four hundred dollars for a ticket and then there was a long pause.I said that maybe my daughter and I would fly across the country and meet them near the end of spring. I didn’t want to go by myself and we decided to go for the weekend and to get a hotel room and car for ourselves.They wanted us to sleep on the floor on air mattresses, but they both smoke and my daughter and I have asthma.Then things just got weird and I freaked out big time!
during a phone call with my sister she asked what my blood type was and I told her.Turns out we have the same blood type and she asked if I had both of my kidneys.I replied yes and she said ,” great- if I need one you can donate yours to me”.She lost one of hers in a DUI years ago.I thought at first that she was joking,but she wasn’t.
Then on another phone call with my birthmother I asked about my father.She said that she never told him that she was pregnant and she gave me a name and the places where he worked. My son and daughter tried to locate him but had no luck whatsoever.It was if he never existed!In the meantime I was receiving alerts on the testing site that matches from my father’s DNA were found.Totally different name than what she said!Why would she lie to me about that? Don’t I have the right to know the truth?I needed medical history – for my kids and grandchildren and myself and I began to feel hurt and angry.
Whenever we spoke it was always about her.She never cared about my feelings or was interested in me.She never accepted her part in my adoption-it was someone else’s fault.She showed no remorse for her actions and proudly told me that she did whatever she wanted her entire life.
I began to feel like the two of them expected something from me and it made me really uncomfortable.They knew that I’d taken care of my parents and I felt like they expected that from me as well.Then they asked me to check into section 8 housing in the state where I live and klaxon bells started going off in my mind.All the talk of their wanting to move to a warmer climate,no car to drive ,limited income,etc.became to much for me to handle.I began to have panic attacks and had to go on medication besides starting therapy.Asked them for space because I was going thru a tough time and they agreed -then they turned around and started calling and texting nonstop.It turned into harassment and I reacted by ghosting them.My kids think that I’m doing the right thing and that I should listen to my gut,but my husband says I’m being cruel and that I owe them an explanation.What,if anything do I owe them?April 13, 2019 at 10:27 am #288947
You owe your biological parents and sister… nothing at all.
If you owed your adoptive parents anything at all, you paid your debt in full: “both of them had multiple health problems which led to me becoming a caregiver throughout their lives”.
Your adoptive parents didn’t do a great job parenting you and now you are attending therapy to heal best you can from what lacked in their parenting of you. It is a bad idea that you will now burden yourself with genetic mother and other genetic relatives who are strangers, really.
Nothing wrong with helping strangers, if the help you give doesn’t harm you. I suppose you can join a program to help the homeless, a program that will call for you donating your time and maybe the cost of a few meals, but not one of your kidneys! And such volunteer work will not include a start up donation of $400 or a resuming of your life as a caregiver.
No, you don’t owe them anything. Besides, why help people who not having met you yet, are already exacting a price for a meeting, your money, your kidney and your services, reads like they see you as an opportunity to benefit themselves. It is not rude to not accommodate them, it is not rude to say: no, I do not wish to be taken advantage of.
anitaApril 13, 2019 at 11:25 am #288953
What Anita said.
This is what is called setting boundaries
Best keep them out of your life from now on.
They are toxic.
MarkApril 15, 2019 at 10:11 am #289129
Thank you for bring such clarity in your response.I wholly agree with everything mentioned and I intend to begin setting strict boundaries starting now.I appreciate you taking the time to respond.
cjApril 15, 2019 at 10:22 am #289133
thank you for sharing your advice on the situation and I agree that it is best that we not have a relationship.
I’m learning all about self love and boundaries.
cjApril 15, 2019 at 10:26 am #289137
You are very welcome, cj. Post again if you want, anytime.
anitaApril 17, 2019 at 1:30 pm #289481
Is it absolutely and for sure you have found your birth mother, because I’ve read of several cases where the DNA results alone could only point to first and second cousins… and only from there, these people found their genetic parents. Have you double checked with a different company?
Even if this is 100% certain, I also think that what Anita and Mark have said is absolutely right. They have no claim on you, and it sounds like they are simply trying to use you. I’ve never heard the like! Frankly, I wouldn’t give people who wanted from you what they seem to want from you a moment more of my time. You would only dig yourself into a deeper hole if you tried to give them an explanation, because then you open up more lines of communication with them, which would lead to further harassment and persuasion. I think you were right to ghost them, and in your position I would have done exactly the same thing.
I have also been a carer for both of my parents in the past. It leaves a big gap in your life when they are gone, or someone else has to care for them because you can no longer do the job, as happened to me. For a long time, your adoptive parents took your life away from you and you had to live theirs, whether out of a sense of duty or simply because that was the way it had to be.
You are free now to live your own life. It takes some time to get out of that role of caregiving. And you deserve a life!
Don’t be seduced back into that role for one moment with this ‘newly found’ family. Like Anita and Mark have said, they are not only opportunists, but toxic. Decent people wouldn’t ask that of anyone! You say there is something there that is making you feel uncomfortable, listen to that inner voice. It’s your inbuilt intuition and gut instinct for avoiding danger that is telling you there is something wrong there.
Give yourself permission to live your own life – love your immediate family – your children, your husband – go out, make friends, go to social events, join a club, take up a new hobby. Live your life for yourself now.
with best wishes