I was a baby when I was adopted. I was fostered to start with, but when I was 6 months old, I was adopted. I was a happy child and was given all the things a normal child would have been given in life. I enjoyed going to church and nursery and I felt happy in myself. I was diagnosed with autism at a young age, so from that I have always felt I was a bit different and I found it difficult to form friendships.
When I was 8 my birth mum died, and that led to my mum telling me I was adopted. At the time I did not understand, it did not make much sense to me, and I thought my mum and dad were my real parents.
When I got a bit older and went to secondary school, I began to realise that I came from another family. This started to impact on my mental health, and I used to imagine I was living with my mum again. I did not behave very well in school and I used to cry a lot as I did not understand why I was adopted. It caused a lot of negative feelings such as confusion, anger, upset, and anxiety. It also gave me a lot of stress, and this was on top of the other issues I was experiencing through my autism. I felt so alone and thought that I was the only member of my family to be given away.
My anxiety got bad and eventually I was given a social worker who I went to for meetings to discuss what had caused me to be adopted. They told me my mum had found it very hard to look after my sister and brother and when I came along, she could not manage.
I started to look up to see if I could find my birth mum and dad and brother and sister. I found out that my dad only stayed around for a short time, and my brother and sisters’ father was not very nice to them, so they were also adopted out but together. I had the option to see them however I chose not to see them as it caused a lot of stress to me.
Unfortunately, social services did not hold lots of information about my family, but what they had went into a life story which they started to do with me. Because of COVID, it took a bit of time.
The social worker eventually came to my house and gave me my life story so I could take time to look at it and understand. However, I still have not managed to start, as I have mixed feelings on how it is going to make me feel.
“..it does get better.”
I was told my situation when I was very young and had a lack of understanding, and I thought the childhood trauma would destroy me. It did cause me a lot of anxiety trying to figure it out but as time has gone on, I have got stronger and able to cope more with things that are thrown my way. I have begun to feel better about myself and wanted to share with other people it does get better.
Families are not always about blood, its about the care and time they take to make you feel good about yourself. I am really happy I was adopted out to the family I have, I feel more special and loved, and glad they chose me.
I would, however, love to meet up with my brother and sister who are several years older than me and this is something I would like to happen.