A reader discovered my blog by typing in a Google search, “How to Forgive My Birth Mother.” Google has all these analytics that show you how people arrive at your blog. When I read that, I froze for a second because I remember being there. I remember being in that stage where I needed to release that anger and sadness built up inside of me due to my birth mother abandoning me.
I wasn’t that adoptee that had an adoption plan created. Perhaps that is what hurts the most. I was that adoptee where an ad was published in the newspaper in hopes that my birth mother would come forward and relinquish her rights as my parent for me to be placed for adoption and become adoptable.
I don’t believe there is a word in the dictionary to describe the pain that I felt from my birth mother abandoning me, although it has gotten better as I have gotten older simply because I now have an understanding that sometimes “life” happens. And sometimes you find yourself with your back against the wall, and the only thing you feel you can do is to duck and run.
But it still doesn’t take that sting away that flares up every so often.
As angry and hurt as I have been for years, I still needed to know who she was. I did not want to yell or curse her out. I did not want to be angry or mad at her. I only wanted to see her face and look into her eyes.
I will never forget looking into her eyes (with my shades on of course because I was scared as hell). I didn’t want her to look into my eyes and see my pain. I wanted her to see that I was strong without her, but my eyes would tell a different story. I knew they would. What I saw from her eyes was pain, embarrassment, anguish. What I saw was her young self in a grown woman’s body. At that moment as I walked up to her for the first time, I saw her eyes fixated on me with shame as she went back to the day she abandoned me.
What I saw was that she made a terrible mistake years ago and she was paying for it day after day. I saw it in her eyes.
She had yet to forgive herself.
What was the sense of me beating her up after life has beaten her up for years? Her face said it all.
I would never say I had a better life, but I surely had it better than her. My life is a testament of that.
Forgiving my birth mother seemed impossible for years. Impossible! I would think of all the torment I had to endure wondering how someone that carried me full term and gave birth to me that is supposed to love me and protect me, just left me. Just like that. But what I learned over time and through talking with birth mothers is that there is always a story. You have a story. I have a story. Birth parents have stories, too. A story that is sometimes worth listening to and having compassion for before we judge.
I don’t have the answers as to why my birth mother abandoned me, even though I am in reunion. What I do have is a heart. I have learned to extend grace and mercy to my birth mother despite what she did to me. We all fall short, just in different areas even though this is a huge area.
I had to forgive my birth mother for myself first to have peace. I had to release that anger and pain that was taking over my life and prohibiting me from being happy, productive, confident, and successful. Secondly, as a Christian, I knew I had to do it for God. Lord, when I think of the many times He has had to forgive me. Goodness.
If you are reading this right now and you feel hurt, angry, or betrayed by your birth mother, I encourage you to find peace by forgiving her. Do it for yourself if anything. And if you have the chance to hear her out, try to if possible. I am not a mother, but I know that it must take lots of courage and faith to place a child for adoption.
I am in a place right now preparing myself to hear the truth even if it hurts concerning what led to my birth mother abandoning me. It may require me having to forgive her another time or 100 more times. I will do what I have to do to keep my peace because I matter. Remember, healing from adoption is a journey. It won’t happen overnight or tomorrow. The first step is letting go and allowing yourself to LIVE and LOVE past the pain.
Have you felt the need to forgive your birth mother to move on in life?
Have you received an apology from your birth mother? If yes, and if you are comfortable, I welcome you to share your story in the comments.
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