julisuz (julisuz) wrote in adoptees,

meeting birth mom on 12/16

I'm meeting my birth mom whom I've had no contact with my entire life on 12/16. We're meeting at the adoption agency; she's bringing her husband & I'm bringing mine. Over the summer I received 16 bday cards (all but 9 years of my life) and a letter that she wrote the day after they took me away. I'm nervous but I'm meeting her the week after finals so I haven't really let myself think about it too much. Any advice? This was kind of sprung on me and I wasn't sure I was 100% ready but what kind of preparation do people normally do for this kind of thing?
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I haven't done this yet, so I could be talking out of my arse, but I'd say the biggest thing is TRY not to go into the meeting with too many expectations. This woman might be your bmom, but you're grown adults now (I'm assuming you're an adult), and may have entirely different perspectives on the world. Heck, even if you've got similar perspectives on the world, it doesn't necessarily mean you're going to get along.

Like I say, I haven't done this myself yet, but I reckon the best thing I can suggest is treat it like a blind date. You both know you're going into it hoping to get something out of it, but you have absolutely no idea whether you're going to.

Meh, I'm sounding all depressing. Just don't be too optimistic, and don't be too pessimistic either.

Good luck, and hope you both at least enjoy the meeting.
I met my birthmom a year ago, after she had sent me 21 birthday cards to make up for lost time :)

Be prepared for awkward silence! Some people have no problems talking, but Michele and I just couldn't stop staring at each other, in awe that we looked exactly alike! Looking back, I would have brought an index card full of conversation topics, lol! I brought childhood photos, and she brought her childhood photos and we talked about those for awhile. I hope everything goes well for you :
Both of the above comments are correct. If you're like many, you've got a whole speech rehearsed in your head - not to mention visions of what it may be like to finally meet your birth-parent(s). It never goes quite as we envision it (this is not necessarily a bad thing).

Just remember that nervousness, excitement, fear, confusion... those are all normal - and that goes for both sides of the encounter. Don't push them towards anything they're not ready for yet, and don't feel obligated either.

When I met my birth-family, we sat and talked quietly in a small restaurant. It honestly wasn't until years later that we became even remotely close.
I was really fortunate to have met a few mothers who had relinquished children to the same agency I was adopted through. This allowed me to ask questions that might have been uncomfortable to ask my mom right away and to hear about what happened to them. It worked well for me and this group of moms to share the perspectives. I totally recommend learning about what the moms went through and their perspective.(There are also some really good books about what the birth moms went through, like The Girls Who Went Away and also some good blogs written by moms on like blogger and typepad)

If you aren't ready to share something, don't. Consider what you need to feel safe and comfortable and don't waiver on that. For instance, when I met my family my boyfriend drove out with me (from Jersey to Wisconsin) and I told him not to leave me alone, except for bathroom trips until I felt okay. This made me really comfortable. We also had an agreement, since we were talking before meeting that if it got overwhelming we would end the day and call the next day to talk first. That never happened but knowing it was helpful.

I also drew up a list of my worst fears and biggest hopes about reunion. For example, I was terrified that I was either a rape baby or that my mother had died or that she would be mean. I was really hoping on the other hand that the family also had interest in visual arts and that they shared traits with me. I totally recommend this because it helps you to get in touch with what you are really feeling about reunion, adoption, etc. I needed to know I could handle absolutely anything before I jumped in, and I'm really glad I did this. I know its really hard when you have college and exams. I found my mom in April and met in July so I didn't have to worry. After finals sounds like a great time though, it allows you to digest without having to worry about school the next day.

Lastly, I had someone help us reunite, but once it came down to meeting I had them step back and let me do my own communicating. I'd use caution with allowing the adoption agency to stay involved after the meeting. It's always best to hear something directly from the person rather than playing telephone through someone else.
thanks everyone! I think I'll bring some questions on a card and I was planning on bringing some pics of myself as I was growing up. My hubby will be there with me the whole time and so will hers so that'll help I think. And luckily, I do know some info from the letter she gave me as to why she gave me up, so I won't have to worry about too many speculations but I think I'm just going to go into it with no expectations and see what happens. Thanks for sharing all your stories, I really really appreciate knowing that others have gone through the same thing!
this is so exciting, I'm really happy for you. My dream is to meet my birthmom sometime, if i can ever find her.

to prepare yourself, just be yourself. one thing I've done is collected photos (schools pics) from each year & all my sport pics, and kept them in a folder to show her. maybe bring a photo album or your fav book to share wit her.

good luck! :)