November 16, 2008

Revelations

I once joked with an online friend that our blogs would never be popular because we couldn't write a good rant. I rant rather decently in person, if I know you well enough. But I can't write angry.

Not that I don't try every now and then. In fact, I've been trying this week, writing and rewriting this post since Tuesday night, hoping to find some catharsis. But I could never bring myself to publish it.

Then I read Erin O's challenges for knowing when to speak about a difficult situation: "Is it kind? Is it necessary? Does it improve upon the silence?" And I realized that publishing what I had written would be little more than an attempt to make me look good at someone else's expense. Chastened, I erased it all and started over, trying only to leave what was necessary and removing what was unkind. Whether it improves upon the silence I will leave up to you.

Here is our latest family news: Puppy has a new baby sister, born to his first mom a week ago.

Puppy took in the surprising information in the same matter of fact way we presented it to him. "OK," he said. "Let's play trains."

I admit I'm not taking the news as well. Not because of the new baby (how can you be angry about a baby?) but because of some lies the birth revealed. It probably goes without saying now that the story I shared awhile back about K acting as a surro.gate was not true. I apologize for unknowingly giving you false information. I work very hard to be honest when I write. I believed it at the time, enough that I went through much heartache and fretting for K and for Puppy.

The surro.gacy turned out to be just one of many interwoven falsehoods told to us over the past several months. Stories I was expected to pass on to Puppy. Stories I am still expected to believe.

I once had a mentor who insisted that anger is never a primary emotion. There is always something underneath the anger and only by facing the thing beneath can you find release. When I dig down right now, more than anything I feel betrayed. Open adoption takes such a huge amount of trust to work the way it is supposed to. Over the past three years I have sometimes pushed myself to extend the benefit of the doubt when my initial response was skepticism, to trust that we all would put our concern for Puppy ahead of our own self-interest. Now I don't know if I'll be able to do that for awhile, or even if I should. I am unsettled and unsure about a relationship that seemed much more solid just a week ago. And so very sad about so many things.

20 comments:

luna said...

wow. revelation indeed. I can only try to imagine how you must be feeling. how difficult it must be to face that betrayal of trust. I have every confidence that you will deal with this in the best way possible. heavy though.

Erin said...

I understand, and I'm so SO sorry :( If there is a silver lining it is that this "surrogacy" story happened before Puppy was old enough to really understand what was going on.

Erin said...

Wow! That is hard to find out :(

I'm not sure what I would do either.

Hugs!

a Tonggu Momma said...

I'm so sorry.

Dawn said...

Oh Heather. :( I'm sorry. Were the intentions behind the story understandable? I'm sorry you're hurting right now and feeling betrayed.

Yondalla said...

Hurt and betrayal, I get it.

The adult in my life who has the power to disappoint and hurt my kids is my father, their grandfather. So it is very different, but I struggle so often with wanting to shut the door to him. I think that maybe it would be better for them if I had. But I don't, and they get hurt. I want to spare them from that.

I'm sorry you have to go through this. I know it makes going forward confusing and painful.

motherissues said...

Oh, Heather, what a difficult thing for you and your family. I'm so sorry K has been misleading you but relieved you're able to find out some of the truth. I hope whatever is causing her to think she needs to lie can be resolved. I'm even more impressed than ever at how well you are truthful, loving, open with Puppy without shielding him unnecessarily.

cynthia said...

i'm so sorry heather. it sounds extremely complex and challenging, and i send you a big hug this morning.

Karen said...

Heather,
You have been such an amazing advocate of open adoption, and certainly helped me to decide that it was right for our family, as well. Right now, by sharing this information, you're continuing to help others. I'm totally in awe of your selflessness. I can only imagine how painful it is for you to process being lied to by someone you trusted. Yet through your pain, you're still letting us all know that there will be unexpected twists and turns that are out of our control, but we're doing the best we can to help our sons and daughters. Thank you for your honest and incredibly thoughtful posts about all the highs and lows. It takes a pretty amazing person to do what you do and to report on everything.

Take good care,
Karen

Megan said...

I'm so sorry you are having to deal with this.

mama2roo said...

Wow. Wow.

Its all so complex, and this just makes things harder. But you know as well as I that it is the right thing to do, this open adoption thing.

Hugs and wishes that baby is healthy.

Clementine said...

I don't know what to say, other that I'm thinking of you all. Best wishes esp. to Puppy and Baby Girl.

Natalie said...

I'm so sorry. We've had similiar issues of betrayal of trust with Hannah's birthmom. It's hard. I pray that you and your family will get through this and you will be able to make decisions that are best for Puppy.
Natalie
Fellow Adoptive Mom

Anonymous said...

I'm confused, do you mean that your sons birthmom had a child the ordinary way and now you are adopting that child??? I have soo many questions!! Do you know about this birthmoms life? Do you know her motivation? I am confused as to why people are sorry for you. Yes, it would be a betrayal to learn this, but why is it your business anyways? Why do you need to parent this baby, are you? I think you are probably a very postive person. I like your blog. I wish you would post all the stuff that you feel you can't. I just want to say, because noone else has, that my heart goes out to this women who is suffering another loss in her life. I am sure that there is more to the story, that she was not intent on hurting anyone, least of all you. Birthmoms are just people, people make mistakes.

cindy.psbm

Heather said...

@cindy.psbm - No, no one has ever said anything about us adopting his sister. She is not being placed for adoption at all.

I am not upset that my son's first mom had another baby nor that she is raising her. Why would I consider that a betrayal? I was writing about my feelings about being lied to and my sadness over realizing that we don't have the level of trust I thought we did.

Lori said...

I'm sorry Heather. I know you've worked hard to build an open, honest relationship and to not receive the same respect in return is heartbreaking. I know you both will find a way to get through this and hopefully come out stronger on the other side.

Anonymous said...

oh.. I am sorry heather. I didn't understand. I just read 'puppy has a new sister' and thought it mean that you have a new person in your family to raise. Now I have another thought. Maybe she was afraid of what you think and thought a lie sounded better than the truth?? I hope that you can be friends with her still. I know how you feel about being told a lie and telling it to others thinking its the truth and then feeling like you are guilty of lying. It has happened to me before and it really embrassed me alot. I would put my blog address here but its not working, thats why I posted 'anoymous' but left my name.
I forgot my password. sorry for assuming the worst.
cindy.psbm

Kendra said...

This hit home for me this week. We're still struggling with some pre-adoption issues as new information keeps emerging. I'm trying to imagine a scenario in which I can ever trust this person to tell me the truth...

Kohana said...

Oh that is really hard. I know we've experienced some twists and turns that challenged me, but our situation is not nearly as open as yours so the affect on actual relationship was less. I hope you all have the wisdom to navigate the next steps. Hugs.

Lisa said...

:(

That's tough. We've also been lied to a few times in our open relationship. I've even told our daughter's birthmom, "you can tell us things and we're not going to judge you or think you're a bad person." But still we get half-truths. Maybe that's just a natural human reaction.

It's hard because you try to be honest and your want a good relationship for the sake of your child, but then you have a relationship based on making one party look good and not on what's best for your child.

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