baby daddy blues

July 11, 2013 § 14 Comments

It takes a lot out of me to update this blog. Especially when I have so little to say, except more of the same.

I had a conversation with David about the baby, finally. It was actually a couple of months ago and I never talked about it. I tend to update behind schedule anyway, and this took awhile to process. It had been so long since either of us had spoken out loud about it.

I am often visibly sad and when David asks what is wrong, I refuse to talk or I offer up something lame about my stressful workday. I know that’s unhealthy. I just hate being so obnoxiously sad all the time. And our last talk about the baby, in October, was an epic fight. We had not gotten back together at that time, but we were becoming close again until that. His horrible words were the reason we continued to stay apart until the New Year. Even after that, I was convinced that David was over the adoption, and why talk to someone who doesn’t understand my feelings.

Before anyone demonizes him, I’d like to reiterate that I don’t talk to anyone. Friends and family, they’ve all said ignorant things to me and were no more understanding than David. They all believe I did the right thing. What can I say to that?

The topic finally came up one night because David brought it up. He was sick of asking me what was wrong, when he already knew. And for the first time in months, we talked about it. There were good and bad parts of the conversation. I think he is heavily in denial. I was glad we at least talked even though it makes me sad we disagree on important things. I wish it was an easier topic to talk about so there would not be months of carrying so much pain on my own. And I’m curious to know what he thinks. After all, I never hear a damn word out of birth fathers. It’s easy to assume they don’t care.

I’ll begin with the differences. David thinks we did the right thing and we weren’t materially prepared to have a child. He also claimed that people who are starting a family should own a house or be able to. He also believes I will come to peace with the adoption and know it was for the best. David thinks being adopted is no big deal–the baby will have no problems, his parents will have no problems, nothing will be different for him, he will understand why we gave him up and he won’t hate us. I do have sympathy for this viewpoint. I used to think this way. David also thinks that, with time, C and L will be more open with us. I wouldn’t place a lot of hope on that one.

The good news is, David does know I am sad without me saying anything. He thinks I’m right to be sad. He thinks it’s criminal that we had no time to change our minds, that I signed away my parental rights in a hospital bed. And he said C and L should not have traveled all the way here, to sit in the maternity ward and make me feel pressured. I couldn’t agree more and I was happy he understood the smallest things.

It’s interesting his views don’t match up–like he thinks we did the right thing and yet I know he would’ve changed his mind quickly after signing. And financial security before family? Please. David’s mother quit her job, started drinking, squandered their savings, and went batshit insane when he was 15. Should she have given him up for adoption once she became financially insecure? Or when his parents divorced? It would have been the selfless thing to do.

I was fascinated by David’s perspective when he talked about being ignored by C and L at the hospital. “When we had lunch with them, I was ignored but you were the pregnant one, so that made sense they would care more about you. And then you were recovering from birth, while nothing had happened to me. But when we left the hospital, they hugged you as you cried. I just stood there and they didn’t say a word to me. It felt like I was the asshole loser who knocked you up and I wasn’t important.”

Birth fathers are absolutely treated like this. He is so right. I never realized before how true that was. The agency ladies told me many times, they didn’t need his signature. It was better if they had it, but it was unnecessary. How horrible that really is.

I’m not going to defend David back then. He did act like an asshole and a loser. We were not together when I was pregnant and he made it clear he didn’t care about the baby or me. He was far too busy drinking every night and dating other women. But he wasn’t some random guy I came across, either. He had been my boyfriend for 3 years. He had equal say in choosing the adoptive parents. And he cared enough to be at the hospital. He was in the room and cut the cord.

It was my body that did the work, but we left the hospital as equals. Two broken hearted parents. Genetics are 50/50. The baby wasn’t 80% mine.

It may not seem like it, but this was a huge conversation for us to have. And the fact that David was the one to bring up the subject of our ghost son–it blew my mind.

The really sweet thing he said was that he was sorry for not giving me a card on Mother’s Day. He considered it but didn’t want to stir the pot. He also said I’m responsible and loving, and when he says we did the right thing, it has to do with himself, not how I would be as a mother. I think he’s wrong either way. But that was all I wanted to hear.


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§ 14 Responses to baby daddy blues

  • Beautiful! I could feel every word. Thanks for sharing this. It has provided a new insight and more room for healing.

  • monk-monk says:

    I’m glad you were able to talk, though I can relate when your partner just doesn’t ‘get it.’ How do we deal when people we care about have vastly different views/opinions on things that deeply hurt us? Ya know?


    • I know. It’s like finding out your best friend is against gay marriage and you are gay.

      And speaking of which, david comments sometimes that he doesn’t want to get married or have kids. I don’t say anything but I cringe inside. We are both 24 and got together when we were 19, so please don’t tell me I can look forward to another 5 years of noncommital, wasting time “hanging out.”

      • monk-monk says:

        Ugh, that is HARD! Are you with him because it’d be hard to leave your baby daddy (like, because that fits into the lame adoption stereotype?) Cause girl, if you want kids and a family and he’s not on board with that…eek! Or does he already consider you guys ‘married’ but not legalled? :)

      • I’m with him because I love him and we are so close and understand each other. I’m not worried about fitting in or not fitting into an adoption stereotype. Besides I know very few guys this age who want to get married or have kids unless they are Mormon. Settling down is not the cool thing, until you’re 40. I think that’s another thing we need to have a conversation about but I’m not sure how to do it. I believe he is still figuring life out for himself and it seems harsh to give him an ultimatum right now.

        As for the last part, he certainly loves me and is committed to me but not in a married til death do us part kind of way.

      • monk-monk says:

        I totally get that! I was barely ready to get married at 27! But the uncertainty of whether he’s on the same page sounds hard! Hopefully he’ll be able to articulate that yes he is on the same page, but that it won’t happen for awhile!

  • All those people didn’t go through what you went through. If you want to be close with David, I think you should start sharing your evolving thoughts and feelings on everything. My pain is different- but I get how healing is not linear. Trauma is chaotic– it’s good to connect with people you care about.
    And it’s okay to say to those people, “I really just need you to listen right now…I can’t listen to what you think right now, I need you to HEAR me.” (Men especially) are big “fixers.” My husband sometimes goes into this weird fixing thing, when there is nothing to fix or change. The pain just *is*. I had to teach him how to listen quietly and just take it all in, minus any action, no frantic comforting or defensiveness.

  • Robyn C says:

    It sounds like David might be an optimist. I sort of am too. I don’t understand why adopted kids in general would hate their birth parents for placing them. I can understand why specific adopted children in specific situations – mostly abusive ones – might think that. But I don’t know… I know Jackson doesn’t hate S for placing him, although he sometimes gets mad that he can’t live with his siblings.

    I do think there’s too much emphasis on having the pre-adoptive parents in the hospital. I know some e-parents want them there, but even so, I don’t think it’s a really good idea. S wanted us there. Then, a few years later she told us how she felt kind of crowded and that she wished she had more time with him to herself. Laine didn’t want us there, so we weren’t there.

    • The hospital is difficult because many eps want the aps to experience as much as possible and share in that, and you don’t know your true feelings about it and how coercive it is until you’re there and it’s impossible to tell them to leave. I think it’s better to be on the safe side and just not have them involved.

  • freebairn says:

    I didn’t think about the birth father until many years later. I had a period of a few years, actually, in my son’s teen years where I allowed empathy for him to enter into my thoughts and feelings. That all went out the window, though, when I actually heard his voice, which wasn’t until our son was already embarking on his twenties. It was all fine and good and puffy pink clouds as long as all the dealings were in black and white (i.e., via email). But then I got a call from him, and hearing his voice just was just like gas being thrown on an ember that I guess had been burning for so long I hadn’t even been aware it had been there, smoldering. It’s a shame, too, because I was actually starting to develop a really great relationship with his wife (Lordy, if THAT isn’t a STORY…i.e., the finding out about her as the then girlfriend, 3 months away from giving birth – at a Christmas party — second hand!). I met her about a month or so after birth and relinquishment and didn’t want to like her, but all potential for that just went out the window the moment we spoke. After that blind side sucker punch, I had to tell her I really thought I was okay and ready to include him in our friendship with all goodwill but that when I actually encountered him, it made me realize I was so far from the reality of that it was scary! We haven’t talked much since, which is a real bummer because she’s really the only person I have to connect with in this world of relinquishment that shares in the unique perspective of losing the same person. To her, he is not just a child that was relinquished. He’s blood. He’s the son of the man she loves, a part of him, and, therefore, a part of her, so my son is someone she is invested in, personally and emotionally. I don’t have that relationship with anyone else in this world…not really. I am hoping that eventually our developing friendship will get back on track, but it kind of includes her husband by default. He is, after all, the baby daddy in my scenario, and there is the thing that they share the child who happens to be my son’s sister. Lordy!

    Lordy, Lordy, Lordy!!!

    I really am so encouraged and relieved for you that you were finally able to have an honest and open conversation about this thing that’s been hammering at you! It really is remarkable – spectacular, even – what a breakthrough this is! Truly! I celebrate this milestone with you. It’s important to celebrate whatever milestones we can. This is a treasure worth cherishing.

    All my love and best to you my sweet, sweet friend. You’re doing some really good work here, and I’m so happy and proud of how far you’ve come! I love you.

    • That is a lot to deal with! It all sounds good though–the wife seems like a lovely person and I think forming relationships with her, your son’s father and your sons half sis is a great idea.

      I was excited about my milestone, too. :) But now it’s been a while and I need to have another conversation with him and bring it up this time. We’ll see how it goes. I love you too beautiful. :)

  • shannon2818 says:

    I’m so glad you talked about this. Thank you for showing that this is not a black and white issue.

  • JessLif says:

    I have nominated you and your blog for a Liebster Award. Read my latest blog post to learn more about it…

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