I was struck by a weekend away with some friends recently when it slowly dawned on me that in their eyes, my status as a mother was way below their own as ‘biological’ parents. The experience hurt and surprised me. I had expected that there would be lots to catch up on and share between us all about being new parents but it quickly became clear to me that in their eyes I was in a very separate camp to them. There was an element of pity and fear for the future when the subject of my son came up and an absence of the sheer joy I had expressed out the birth of their daughter. Maybe I’m being unfair. Maybe it was not pity but uneasiness. They simply didn’t know how to talk about and enjoy my adoptive motherhood in the same way that they did their own.
Why I wonder does adoption do this to people?
The birth of a child into a family is generally marked with cards and unfettered celebration from family and friends, but as new adoptive parents we don’t seem to warrant this. Some of our friends and relatives don’t know how to behave around us and it makes me sad. Not just for us as parents but for our children too because surely they will pick up on it in some way.