Wednesday, July 14, 2010


Thanks to my friends for your support and advice and opinions. Even when it differs from my own, I appreciate it! It's great to hear other opinions because it's not just babies that don't come with instructions. Moms don't either. Neither do bio-moms or siblings or grandparents or cousins, etc. We've all just got to figure it out as we go... with the help of those around us.

Recently a smart friend pointed out in a comment that I'm trying to change my mom. And that's completely true. We're both trying to change each other actually! She wants me to not have bio-mom in my life so much. She can't understand why I want to get to know her, why I want her at the wedding, or would want her to meet my hypothetical children, etc. I know my mom's not the only one. I know plenty of people who don't have any desire to know their biological father or mother or grandparents or whatever. And they each have their own reasons for that, as I have my own for what I am doing.

As for how I'm trying to change my mom... I'm trying to "make" her be okay with how I want bio-mom in my life. I use "make" because I can't come up with a better word. Persuade isn't right. But I don't mean "make" as in "force" - I hope that is understood! I'm trying to make (encourage?) her face things she doesn't want to face. To do things she doesn't want to do. I'm trying to shape the situation - that's a more accurate statement. It's partially for selfish reasons because it will make my life better, more harmonious to not have discomfort and upset and anxiety around me. But it's not really fair to call me selfish here because I desperately want to (and believe I can) help her decrease her anxiety and upset. If only my mom would just muster up the strength to do what I'm asking her to do! And if she would just trust me when I tell her that everything will be okay! Also, as pointed out in a comment, I'm looking for a little bit of approval here. For my mother to actually show her support of me in my endeavor to develop some relationship with bio-mom.

All of this comes down to the basic idea that we all never stop growing up and both parents and children never stop evolving within those relationships. It's very difficult to grow up and realize that your parents, caretakers, mentors, etc. are not perfect. Not ONE of them is. Not only are they "not perfect" but they are completely flawed (to one extent or another). They tell lies, don't know how to handle money, have poor vocabularies, are sexist or racist, some are criminals, some are all of the above! And this is hard to take. But it's not only children who have reality to face when they grow up. Parents do too. While as grown children we struggle with realizing our parents' flaws, our parents (probably painfully aware of our flaws) have to at the same time deal with letting go of their expectations of us. The expectation that we will be a certain way or do a certain thing, exactly how and when they want us to. I do not (probably won't ever) see the world, react to it, and interact with it the way my parents do. And that, from my experience, is generally disappointing to them. So it looks like there's just disappointment all around!

These are challenges that no one prepares you for. I'll just add it to the list of things I think should be taught in schools! My biggest problem with these challenges is not that they exist, but in how we all react to them. Sometimes our relationships need to change. Sometimes we have to let go of toxic people. But that's the easy part. The bigger picture, the bigger lesson, the bigger change, is in how we move forward with these lessons learned. Changing our expectations and our definitions of success, achievement, happiness, beauty, perfection, joy, etc. so we don't make the same mistakes again in clinging to unrealistic expectations. I am no longer the teenager who gets annoyed when my parents don't meet every single one of my expectations. In return, my parents need to stop treating me like a teenager and accept that I will make decisions they disagree with, and they are going to have to come face to face with those decisions because that is a part of being in my life!

1 comment:

  1. All I can say is WOW! I like this new path your starting on; way to go Christina