The Day I Earned my Mom Badge

Mother’s Day Story: “Real Mom”

My children didn’t come to me in the usual way. I was there to receive my daughter Tessa when her first mom delivered her many years ago. Two years later I became mom to Reed thanks to his first mom.

Because I missed out on pregnancy, sometimes people wonder when I felt like a “real” mom.

I have loved them both from the the moments I knew of their existence. But the lovin’ wasn’t proven until Tessa was about 3 months old.

My Admittance to the Sisterhood of Mothers

Roger had a conference in Costa Rica one summer, and I didn’t want to miss the chance to travel with him. So we recruited two babysitters — the kind who buy their own airline tickets and hotel room — a/k/a “parents.” My parents.

Listen To Your Mother Show in Denver, 2013

Stuff

Three-month-old babies have a surprising amount of stuff. Clothing, diapers, wipes, and (in our case) formula, bottles, washing paraphernalia and drool cloths. One of the bulkiest things a baby needs is a bath seat that fits in a bathtub or over a sink. Bulky!

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I am a Product of Rape & Incest. Should I Contact Birth Family?

Letter Writer: Hello, Lori. I just read your post about rejection by a biological mother, and I was hoping you might be able to give me some input. Recently I discovered I am a product of both rape and incest.

In the early 1970s I was adopted as an infant. Three months ago a geneticist confirmed that my biological parents are either full siblings or a father and daughter.

I had always known I was adopted, but had no idea this was my story. In fact, my adoptive parents had been given a social history about my biological parents that was a completely fabricated. The truth? My birth mother was raped and got pregnant with me.

A Shock, To Say the Least

The geneticist used public records to put together a family tree. I know my biological mother’s name and where she lives. Using this information, I discovered that my birth mother worked at a sexual abuse support center and even participated in a board of inquiry into sexual abuse in her community. That was about 20 years ago.

I am seeking input on whether a woman in her situation would want to hear from her child. As well, I found out she has children who aren’t much younger than me.

If I make contact, it could feel like a lot dumped on the plates of my birth mother and for my siblings (who are also my nieces/nephews). A complicating factor is, as I said, that their community was the site of a governmental inquiry into systemic sexual abuse in religious institutions and in families. Their mother (my mother!) has been public with her story of abuse.

I’m in a Facebook group for NPE adoptees ( Not Parent Expected — people who get this type of unexpected DNA results). This happens more commonly that anyone would think. Unfortunately, there aren’t that many resources. So let me ask:

Is it okay to reach out to my mother and siblings? I’m not sure what to do.

— Millie

Much to Integrate and Navigate

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adoption, parenting, mindfulness, open adoption