Colin, give a relationship with your first mother a chance. We read comments on FMF from adoptees about first mothers refusing to meet their lost child, mothers still too ashamed to step out of the closet. Your first mother is not only out of the closet, she’s professing her love on ESPN. She’s an amazing woman. Surely a man facing 300 pound linemen each week trying to tear his head off can handle two mothers. Grab the ball and run with it. Give Russo the chance to know you; learn your roots. And Teresa and Rick, try to overcome your fears and open up to Russo. The human heart has an infinite capacity for love. Russo can never displace you, but she will always be a presence in your life and your son’s life. Making an effort to know her may reduce tensions and fears.–jane
Been polite for way to long now. I am so sick of seeing mothers handing out advice to adoptees they do not know on how to conduct themselves and how to live their lives!! If the boot was on the other foot it would be unthinkable. No adoptee would tell a mother how to live and how to handle reunion or choices about reunion. So many assumptions have been made about the choices of this adoptee and his family. The question still remains about how this story got into the press in the first place and why Ms Heidi Russo gave an interview. Would that put you off, adoptees? Would you trust someone who professed to love you, but talked about it and this very private family matter to the world? And ‘articulated calmly with only a hint of emotion’?
The story somehow made it into the media, and this February she gave an interview to ESPN’s Mark Schwartz about losing Colin.
In response to Schwartz’s sensitive questions, Russo articulated calmly with only a hint of emotion what many first mothers feel. She described giving up her son as being:
“like having your heart ripped out … but it was best for Colin. …Those emotions and bond don’t go away. .. I think that’s one of the misconceptions. You relinquish your right to raise your child but you don’t relinquish your right to love them or to think about them or the bond you had with them, that doesn’t go away.”
How thankful would you be not to have Jane, or any other mother, beating you round the head with this stuff, a magic mix of guilting of every brand you can think of, with a good dose of patronisation and puzzlement thrown in. How many times do adult adoptees have to remind mothers that they are adults who make choices, their own choices according to what they know, their own experiences at the time of life they are living? How many times have we made the effort to bare our souls, talk about our lives and losses, so that they might understand and how many times can we keep on doing that without understanding happening? We are told that we had our adopters to comfort and love us, but mothers had nothing! Tell that to the adoptees who were abused, unwanted and unloved! Loss and trauma are not competitive extreme sports, although you might think so by some of the reactions to the comments adoptees have made on the blog post.
The adoption journey is a long one, the adopted life lasts all our lives…what’s the big deal about letting it evolve, letting events take their course? Isn’t it true that if we’re going to do something we may as well do it right? Why try to rush what takes time, needs plenty of time to assimilate and adjust to? There is little respect in this approach to reunion, little attempt to understand or accommodate other viewpoints, feelings or choices. Heading a post like this doesn’t help much either and it was not a post those adoptees who commented were happy with either.
Thank you, thank you Heidi Russo for speaking out on behalf of first mothers. And shame, shame on you Colin Kaepernick for not listening
I am so sick too of seeing Betty Jean Lifton and other adoptees quoted to prove a point in a mother’s argument about why adoptees should behave in certain ways or why adopters should behave differently! Reunion is a journey for them too and they may need time.
Check out how these adoptive parents handle Chai Li’s visit to discover her country. She was an Operation Babylift adoptee.