Sunday, September 21, 2008

Silent No More

Silence is golden.

Such a simple - well known - statement. And yet, so very untrue in so many situations.

My silence here has been anything but golden. It has been a reaction to the turmoil shifting inside of me. The pain and anger I have struggled to get a hold on, make sense of.

It's been an avoidance of what my life faces. A plain and simple refusal to stand up, take my anger, and use it in the way I swore I always would . . . . for the benefit of all that was good and right.

I've been angry. So very, very angry.

And that heated, powerful emotion has ruled so much in my voice being heard lately.

I had figured out a way to use my own pain to strenthen my voice, to give me a resource to grasp on to to make my story known, heard by all. But what I never counted on, what I never thought I would face, was how different that determination would be when it came to the pain and suffering of my oldest son who I lost to adoption.

Seeing, and now experiencing, what he has gone through during the short twenty years of his life has set me on a spiral of confusion, rage and denial I never imagined I was capable of feeling. His hurt is my own. Felt deep in my heart just as every mother would would feel the pain of what her child has gone through. The situations from the past that are so wrong and yet can never be changed.

My son was abused. Mentally and physically. That is the open, bared soul, gashing wound, fact of what he faced - and still faces to this day under the hand of his adoptive mother. What he has faced, an innocent child deserving the best of all his adoptive mother had to offer, is a terror I can never make up to him. Never make right or somehow erase from the childhood he faced.

How could I ever make it right. Ever change the fate he was set on the moment I placed him in the arms of his adoptive mother and walked out of the nursery.

Yes, I have learned so much more about what was done to me. Yes, I understand I was an easy target. A frightened, naive girl who they played every trick on. Made sure, to the best of their abilities, that I would not dare change my mind. I can acknowledge the vulnerabilites they used against me. The lies they threw around like confetti, never caring about the consequences of them.

But that still will never change that my son had no choice and in return was placed in a life of hell.

And why?

That's what I want to know. That's what I struggle to understand. They told me that I would be the one to abuse him, neglect this wonderful baby boy. They claimed I could never give him the life he deserved and if I loved him I had no choice but to lose him.

So I did. I lost him and he lost me. And what came in return . . .

A childhood of physical abuse from his adoptive mother and his first of two stepfathers. Years of mental abuse in the most horrid of ways from his adoptive mother and extended adoptive family. He faced sitting in a court room hearing his adoptive father proclaim he never wanted him and only agreed to the adoption to keep his adoptive mother happy.

He's been told that his adoptive family does not see him as worthy of carrying on their name. Shown, in more ways than one that he didn't "behave" well enough for them to treat him with the love and understanding he deserved. If he upset his adoptive mom he was denied the inhaler he desperately needed as a chronic asthmatic (a trait inherited from his father.)

If he did wrong, angered his adoptive mother, she left the house, leaving him alone while proclaiming she was never coming back to him because he didn't deserve her as a mother.

My son never deserved that! He is an amazing, special man who is worthy of all the love and care every child should find in their life. Why would his adoptive family treat him like this. Why couldn't they just love him for who and what he was instead of insisting he be and act like somebody he wasn't.

And why . . . of all things in this hell . . . did they tell me I would be the one to abuse and neglect him when that was never true. And they did it only to place him in a family that did just that. But they didn't give a damn because his adoptive family were the ones to sign the check, pay the next salary. Keep the money rolling in.

My son was given hell so others could profit off of his pain.

And it's wrong. So very, absolutely, completely wrong.

And nothing will ever be able to change what he went through. Nothing will ever make up for it or make it better. He was treated terribly. That is the simple fact. And nobody gives a damn. Because . . . hell . . . it was adoption and nobody gives a damn what happens to a child as long as adoption is tagged on to the end of it.

And I hate that. I hate that so many "happy, rosy, adoption is great" believers out there want nothing more than to push my son's story under the rug where it won't be heard, acknowledged. They want me to shut up because adoption has been so great for them and they aren't about to take my son's terror and give it any justice.

What does he matter, right? It's adoption. His experience doesn't count. Not when it's associated with such a disgustingly favored action that supposively saves children from bad childhoods.

But where did it save my son?

My son who now lives with me, his father and his siblings. My son who still suffers through the cruelty of his adoptive mother. Who can still be brought to tears by the ugliness she slings his way.

It was supposed to be about him. About giving him the best life he could ever have. And yet, it never was, and still isn't to this day. What matters is the gain some receive through the adoption industry. The dollar signs on the checks that are deposited. The fullfillment of the families who desperately want a child to call their own.

That is all that matters in this ugly twisted reality of adoption. It's there for those outside the children who have no voice. Outside the realities they might face by being taken from their families who love and cherish them for everything they are.

I put him there over twenty years ago. I placed my poor, amazing son in the life he faced and there is nothing I can do now to protect him from that. And so many out there want me to simply shut up and ignore what he went through.

But how can I? How can I ever ignore his hell? His pain?

And who the hell would ever ask me too except for those who have and will continue to profit from the loss of children seperated from their mothers?


  1. Dear Cassi,

    For what it's worth, I run an on-line anti-adoption campaign, which may yet, hopefully, work in your favour sometime. You may be interested to know that seventeen out of twenty adoptees chose to trace their roots when birth records were first opened in New Zealand. Some trace for inforamtion gathering and some for sonmething deeper over time. My heart goes out to you. Here is the link >

    Best wishes, Stella.

  2. Oh wow, this had me in tears. I can relate to so much of how you feel and my daughter is not being abused (that I know of)

    I am so sad for your beautiful son that he went through so much pain and is still suffering. I am sorry you also have been through this pain and continue to go through it with him. I hope, over time as he becomes part of his real family again, he will at least find a little peace; to know that he is loved and wanted by you, his mother and the rest of his family.

    Thank you for sharing something so painful, so raw.

  3. Thank you so much for sharing. I know what you mean about finding your voice and hopefully your son will also be able to navigate the emotions and heal and find his voice to empower him. I'm so sorry you and he went through so much and so happy that he has you now.

    I just got back from a conference where my heart was beating out of my chest because I KNEW I needed to speak up ~ once I did, the anger and frustration disapated and I felt more relaxed in sharing. I think alot of the frustration we feel is because we feel "gagged" by society but once we continue to speak up and each time can breathe a little better ~ then we feel more free inside, more esteem about ourselves and valid in our experience. And others need to hear it. This was a conference not about adoption, but was a medical conference about prematurity. Yet my experience as a preemie mom and an adoptee is SO connected, due to closed records and medical history, etc. and I was amazed at the EXCELLENT reception I got after I became vulnerable and shared. I think we need to share in venues that are not related to the adoption industry that we feel silenced in, and share in EVERYDAY opportunities that will help us and others who truly want to hear, without the brainwashing myths that try to silence our voices. Sorry for venting. I so want to blog about this stuff, but I, too, have been frozen and exhausted and it takes a lot just to keep our voices going~ Thank you for sharing and writing, because you never know how many people you are reaching here!!!!

  4. I am very sorry about your son's experience but I hope you remember, through all of this, that, no matter what, she still is his mom and deserves that respect. I think if you can at least be grateful that she raised him to the best of her ability when you could not, it might make things easier for you and your son.
    As an adoptive mom, I think it would be so very hard if my children's birthmother disregarded my role as mother to my children.

  5. For anonymous poster above - thank you for this post. Your words have gone a long way at giving proof to the very meaning of what I wrote here.
    I find it hard to believe you actually want me to be grateful in any way to a woman who has harmed my son with not only words but physical pain as well.
    Trust me, I try in every way possibly to try and make this easier on my son but I won't do that by giving a false respect to a woman who has and still is causing such harm to my son.
    I can't even believe you would suggest such a thing.
    If this is your attitude I worry about your children's NATURAL mother and about your children. I suggest you study the effects adoption can and does have on adoptees before you decide what you "expect" from their NATURAL mother.


  6. Peach - I was thinking about what you said, talking about adoption outside of the triad and you are so right.
    We need to reach beyond the boundaries to those outside this circle and make a difference.
    I commend you for speaking out. For facing your fear and sharing your story.
    You have an amazing strength!

  7. Someone left your site and came to mine. I'm so glad they did. Even though my daughter got a good home with great parents, doesn't give me the right to assume all adoptions end the same way. I suffered for years over how she was. I try to get that through to the people who seem to think that I should not have anything to say. My worst nightmare did not come true, yours did, and I am so sorry for you, your son, and your family. I will continue to tell stories like yours and your sons in the hope that one day people will wise up and see what a crap shoot adoption really is.

    Thank You for sharing this story.
    Lori A

  8. Cassi--
    I've been reading through some of your earlier posts. I don't think I realized that your son was abused by his adoptive parents. I just wanted to say how sorry I am. I know you've been through so much; I didn't realize that this too was part of your family's adoption experience. So important for young women to read your blog and consider that a prospective adoptive family might look good on the outside, but ultimately, be abusive on the inside.