There is a phenomena that continues to show up repeatedly in abusive adoptions. This is known as the Narcissistic Adoptive Mother or NAM, who adopts for self serving reasons and has no ability to empathize and lacks a conscience. These children are used to maintain a “happy family” image, but behind closed doors the fury is unleashed. Adoptive families are *supposed* to offer a “better life” for adoptees. This cannot happen when a selfish narcissist adopts pretending to be a selfless saint! We need more and better mental health professionals involved from beginning to end in the adoption screening process.
“The secretly mean mother does not want others to know that she is abusive to her children. She will have a public self and a private self, which are quite different. These mothers can be kind and loving in public but are abusive and cruel at home. The unpredictable, opposite messages to the child are crazy-making. True narcissism is a serious disorder that harms children. Narcissists are truly all about themselves and cannot show genuine empathy. They have a limited capacity for giving unconditional love to their children.”
From Korean American Story
Michael Pulliam endured racism and hate starting at the age of 5 in kindergarten where he was punched in the face and all throughout his school years every day. At 13 he was entered a psychiatric hospital for the years of mental abuse, grappled with suicidal thoughts and endured the loss of his former girlfriend to suicide.
“This is the seventh installment in the Love/Hate series of the Legacy Project, highlighting the Korean Adoptee experience, and the connection to mental health.” ~ Korean American Story
From Dear Adoption “My adopted parents loved me the best way they knew how and did the best they could. I went through years of therapy, anti-depressants, anti-anxiety medication, investing in the wrong relationships, always seeking approval from others and hoping I was “enough,” trying anything and everything to fill the loneliness and inadequacy I had felt, hoping that I’d just “grow out of it.” I had learned to put my feelings aside and bury them.
It all felt so easy and so natural compared to how I felt with my adopted family, where everything felt forced. I felt relaxed and elated. I finally felt like I fit in. People walked past us and knew we were family. A mother and her two daughters. Is this what family felt like?…….I thought back on the last 29 years of my life and how quickly things had changed. I realized I felt whole. The emptiness and longing was no longer a part of me. I loved and felt loved.
Adoption and trauma are not said in the same sentence. It’s a new concept, even for most adoptees. It’s a breakthrough moment when we finally get that critical piece of what “adoption” involves.
From the I Am Adopted blog:
“The more I speak with adoptive parents, the more I am learning that adoption agencies and adoption professionals rarely educate or prepare prospective and hopeful adoptive parents about adoption trauma, leaving many adoptive parents struggling to understand their child’s behavioral and identity issues, and inability to attach to their adoptive family.
Knowing what adoption trauma is and understanding the effects of the separation between a child and his natural mother is vital for adoptive parents to create a healthy relationship with their adopted child. Having an understanding of adoption trauma will help adoptive parents recognize their child’s issues associated with adoption trauma and find the necessary help by seeking therapist trained in adoption trauma to help their child be the best version of themselves as they grow up.
In the event that you were not educated or made privy of adoption trauma, I have put together five of the best books for adoptive parents, natural mothers, and adoptees to learn about adoption trauma and themselves. These books have the power to unlock identity issues, grief, PTSD, depression, anxiety and find validation in issues that many adoptees struggle with.
Top 5 adoption Trauma Books
입양아 출신의 입양아 전문학자 월튼 박사가 제기한 21C 한국 해외 입양 실태
매년 한국으로 돌아오는 해외 입양아는 2,000여명으로 추산됩니다. 대 부분 친 가족들을 찾기 위해서인데요. 그 가운데는 미국에 입양 됐지만 입양 가족과 구조적인 실패로 한국으로 추방된 몇몇 경우도 있었고, 수 천명은 시민권을 획득하지 못해 추방의 위험이 있는 이들도 있다고 합니다.
월튼 박사는 지난 30년 동안 성인이 된 입양아들이 자신의 권리와 해외 입양 후 지원 서비스 그리고 미혼모들의 인권을 위해 싸워왔다고 설명했습니다.
지난 해 촛불 시위를 한국에서 직접 지켜 본 월튼 박사는 한국이 변화를 맞은 만큼 입양과 미혼모 문제에 대한 지원도 이뤄지길 바란다고 밝혔는데요. 평창 올림픽으로 전 세계의 관심이 한국에 있는 지금, 1988년 서울 올림픽 부터 2018년 평창 올림픽까지 지금까지 한국이 거둔 성과와 더불어 한국이 해결한 사회적인 문제는 얼마만큼인지를 살펴볼 시간이라고 지적했습니다. 그리고 월튼 박사는 한국은 진정한 사회, 문화적인 변화를 감당할만한 능력이 있는 국가라는 점을 강조했습니다.
This blogpost from Adoptee Restoration addresses the tremendous pressure, societal programming and isolation that adoptees grew up with as their only reality: “be grateful you were saved, and adoption is beautiful” is what society, family and friends told us to believe as adopted children in our families. Even as adults many adoptees find it hard to go against that belief system because there is a heavy price to pay or backlash from family and friends.
“In the past, adoptees were isolated in their realization of truth, surrounded only by other, perhaps otherwise-trustworthy adults all claiming things about adoption that we suspected in our hearts to not be true, or certainly not the complete truth, or even our own truth.
They all desperately wanted us to go along with their program, and many of us did try, to our own detriment. We may have doubted ourselves as there was no real adoption support network for us then. Some of us figured it would be easier to simply not make waves. We are still learning that waves are what make positive changes for other adoptees and for ourselves. Our lone voice, if we dared to speak up in the past, would be diluted or dismissed.
Then something happened – adult adoptees found each other and began to compare notes, bond, and support each other. We now know if we don’t speak out and help one another, nobody is going to do that for us. Things that should not continue on, would.”
“Adoption to me in Korea was just like a fantasy…. in America everyone is rich, has a car, a nice house…..so you believe the fantasy.”
What is coming to light is how extreme and pervasive the abuse in adoption was and sadly continues to be. On the extreme end of deviant behavior, adoption has been used to purchase manual labor and to sexually exploit children; where adoptees were essentially treated like slaves to do farmwork and chores and/or sexually assaulted as children and teens. I’ve heard this all too often told to me in private by numerous adoptees, but Anna was brave enough to publicly talk about her sexual abuse.
나를 세상에 있게 한 존재
이제 난 조국과날 버렸던 어머니께로 돌아와
무엇인가를 찾고 있다
하지만 난 말할 수 없네
난 벙어리, 난 귀머거리
그들은 내 입과 귀를 도려내었다
그들은 내가 버린 아이옆에 누워있다
이 고통을 어떻게 달랠 수 있으리?
내 사지를 절단한 이에게 내 상처를 치유해 달라고 해야하나?
날 피흘리게한 살인자에게 입맞춤해달라 해야하나?
이 비통함이 정녕 어머니의 사랑인가?