Posts Tagged ‘adopters’

I had started to talk to my adoptive parents about my life and family in Korea as soon as I had learned to to speak their language. It was a year after my arrival, but I would have talked sooner if we hadn’t moved  to Quebec seven months after my arrival to the USA, which forced me to learn their mother language, French, and forget the little bit of English I had learned in the US.

I would tell them how and when my mother died (in a bus accident when I was six years old) and they would usually listen without saying a word. When there was any response,  my adoptive father’s  response was something that came out of his twisted or pervert imagination, “hmm, maybe she commited suicide?” or worst he would imply that my biological mother could had been a prostitute.

Maybe that was the reason why I talked more to my adoptive mother than to him, although her reaction was not better than his.  Her usual response was, “No, your biological mom died when you were four.”  When I told her how I lost my father, she replied, “No, it’s not true. He abandoned you to his landlord, and after three or four days he was gone, the landloard took you to a home for abandoned children.” I could feel the anger and the frustration rising in me, but  I would control myself and patiently repeat my story again or explain her how things really happened or what age I was when they happened. I felt that she wasn’t listening to me  or that she believed I was a liar. She even asked me a few times if I hadn’t imagined everything.

She would sometimes say, “I see that from what you’re telling me, Korea is late by thirty years” or “from what you’re telling me, Korea is like Canada was thirty years ago.” The latter response encouraged me to talk about my childhood in Korea.  I realized  many years later  that she listened to me and believed me only when I talked about my life or general life in Korea without specifically talking about my family, otherwise she treated me as a liar. I didn’t know then that that she believed the lies the adoption agency had told her or wrote on my adoption papers. She loved their lies.

A few years later I was in deep depression.  The only thing that made me hold to the life was my little hope of being reunited with my family. The nun of my former orphanage (from which Holt processed my adoption) put me in contact with a Qubecoise nun who had worked with her in Korea.  I brought my memoir (which I had began to write  to search my family when I was teen and that I resumed as a therapeutic mean encouraged by my doctor) and I read her a part of it. My intention was to ask her to help me find my family after reading her that part of my life growing up with my siblings (I had thought she could help me with the searching since she had lived in Korea recently), but she suddenly cut in with the question, “are you sure you didn’t imagine or invent everything?” I swallowed my anger and sadness and I said calmly, “of course not, how could I?” and again she asked, “are you sure you didn’t invent this story?” She loved their lies too.

Adoption agencies’ truth is made up with lies. And adoptive parents love their lies.

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