Thursday, June 16, 2011

What are your motives?

I bought a father's day card for Brit's dad today over my lunch hour.  Talk about a tough undertaking.

There just aren't cards that say "Thank you for being such a great father to my child who I chose not to parent myself." (Thank heavens there are no cards that say that, because that would be plain rude. But self depriciating humor is OK when it comes from me.)

After much searching, I finally found an awesome card which had the perfect message:

You mean the world to both of us.
We don't say it as often as we should,
but we are so thankful to have you in our lives,
and today especially you're being sent
many wishes for happiness
and a Father's Day filled with love.

It was just perfect.  So I signed my name and BF's name and a quick note wishing him the happiest of Father's Days.

As I signed the card, I found myself thinking about why I send them cards on holidays like this. 

Am I trying to win their friendship? 

Am I trying to guilt them into expanding their relationship with us? 

Am I being honest when I tell them I am thankful that they are Brit's parents?

Am I just saying one thing, but feeling and thinking another thing?

I hope that none of those are true.  But it has made me do some serious introspective thinking.

After some thought, I came to the following conclusions.

  1. I want them to be friends with us.  Not because we are Brit's birthparents, but because they like us.  We really are funny, cool people.  I promise!
  2. I really do like both of them.  I would want to be their friends even if they were not parenting our daughter.
  3. I am glad that they love Brit as much as they do.
  4. They are really good parents to Brit.  No question about it.
  5. Yes, I am trying to extend the olive branch to them by sending cards and kind emails.  I want those efforts on my part to be an example of the relationship I would like to see extended to us in return.  But if they never choose to do those things, I will still send kind cards and emails.  Because even if they don't share the same feelings, when they adopted my daughter, they became a part of my family.  Forever.  Even when things are tough.
I wish we could have a super open relationship.  But right now, it appears I am the only one who feels like our relationship is not what it could be.

So, I will send my cards and write my emails.  And even if I have to love them from a distance, just like I do Brit, I will keep at it.  Because it is all worth it in the end.  Even if it is hard.


Janine said...

Lisa, you amaze me. I know how much you want the open relationship with Brit and her parents. your strength in continuing to reach out to them is admirable. I am an adoptive mom who trys her best to have an open relationship with our childrens birth parents, however they are so not interested in my husband or myself, only the children. It hurts to not even get a happy birthday, when I too do everything possible to show them how much we care. I will continue to pray for you all.

Lu Holt said...

I hope you save a copy of your posts so that one day when Brit is old enough to have those copies, she will know how you felt and that you loved her all along the way. That you wanted a more open adoption relationship with her, how hard you tried, how it was your greatest desire, but a struggle for what reasons you don't understand.
Never give up hope. You are a great person, I can tell by your posts.
It hurts to suffer consequences of other people's choices.
My hope is for their hearts to soften and realize that Brit will never receive too much love, the more people that love her the better she will feel. Good thoughts come your way in hopes that things will get better and more open.
Relationships are a two way street, funny how we try to make things work by ourself sometimes. You are the better person for your efforts.

Susie said...

Since reuniting with my son 2 1/2 years ago, I have also sent cards to his parents for holidays, including Mother's/Father's Day. Last month, I really struggled with "should I or shouldn't I?". In the end, I decided that I would continue ~ because that's what I want to do. Not knowing their feelings about it shouldn't stop me. I just hope that it's not offensive to them for some reason, that they know I do it out of love for them, for being the wonderful parents to Christopher that they are.

Reba said...

If we were ever to adopt, I think you'd be the best birth mom we could ever hope for. I think it is so sweet that you send Brit's parent cards. I love reading your blog--the ups and the downs. It's a world I have barely any knowledge of, but everything is so real through you. Every post is simultaneously heartbreaking, enlightening, and uplifting. Reading along and wishing you and everyone in your life the best.

Nan said...

Thank you for your comments on my blog. I am grateful that you reached out to me. I just spent the whole morning reading through your blog instead of tackling the many housework projects I am so behind on since our family vacation.

I have really enjoyed your perspective. I am sad that you have had some negative comments here (some even unintentionally so). But I am glad that none of them have stopped you from blogging. I think there is more value in this than you can even know now.

I will pray that you can have those things you need in your adoption relationship, and I appreciate your prayers in my behalf also.

Thank you.

A Life Being Lived said...

I mailed a Father's Day card to my daughter's dad this week (for clarification, not her biological deadbeat dad but the one who is her actual daddy). It was a lot easier to write that card than the Mother's Day card I sent to her mom in May! (It's hard to write a "thanks for being the mom that I couldn't be because of a boyfriend that ran off and hard life circumstances" card) I did the same questioning though, about what my motivations were and if I was feeling guilty, or what. I then realized that it was because I love and appreciate them as parents and wanted to send them a note. It's as simple as that. I think if you continue to work towards a good relationship with them and sending cards or emails or suggesting visits (even if it feels one sided) is a great way to build a bridge. These relationships are tricky to navigate but maybe you taking the first steps will help them grow closer as well!

Nicole said...

My adoption was closed from the beginning with not a single hope of openness, but now that I have found my son and am in the beginning stages of reuniting...I find myself feeling the same way towards his parents that you do towards Brit's.

I want them to like me. I want to be a part of their life. All these years I envisioned finding them and meeting them and us all laughing and crying together as people who all loved our son more than anyone else on earth. Who wouldn't want to be friends with someone who loved your child as much as you? Wouldn't it be great to have someone to call to brag about your child to that would NEVER get sick of hearing it? That is how I pictured our relationship being!!! Sadly, they pictured me NEVER coming back into their life ever.

With Brit, I think that while she is young her parents will do what they will because they feel threatened by your love for her. It probably scares them that you will try to take her back - even though no birth mother who loves her child like we do would EVER do that! They don't understand that. Once Brit is old enough to say what she wants, if you have kept the door open in the way you are doing now, they might change their minds and allow you to be more a part of her life.

Don't ever give up! I know you won't, but there is hope for your relationship with them and Brit as she grows.

gorsmom3 said...

Missing your blog, Lisa. Hope you're doing ok......