National Adoption Week: My Early Years

I was born in December 1969. My birth mother (‘BM’) was a 20 year old Irish girl who had moved to England. Both her parents had died. She already had a son who was 11 months older than me. My birth father was married to someone else (she didn’t know) and wanted me aborted. She couldn’t financially raise me alone and thought she was sending me off to live in America with a doctor. I wish.

I didn’t know this information growing up. I was told by my adopted mother that BM didn’t want me because she was a prostitute who wanted a boy, not a girl. I know.

Up until just before I was born my AM had been fostering a young girl for three years until Social Services gave her back to her natural parents. I spent 6 weeks at a childrens’ home and AM was then presented with me. But she resented me. Growing up she would always tell me about Tracey and how she’d wanted to keep her but wasn’t allowed. 2 years after I was born she adopted a boy and we stuck to each other like glue.

Now I don’t know this for sure but my BM and BF apparently had addictions. And I was a very difficult, screaming baby (so AM says), cold turkey or possibly separation anxiety might not have helped but AM would put me in a pram and leave me crying at the bottom of the garden all day. She told me this like its something to brag about.

At age 2 I stopped eating. She took me to the doctor who said hide biscuits around the house and she’ll eat when she’s hungry. Can you imagine that now? A 2 year old who stopped eating would surely set alarm bells ringing? Or at least some medical investigation would be carried out.

I had an adopted dad (AD) but only a few memories of him. He legged it with a neighbour when I was 5. He’d been trying to leave AM for years but divorces weren’t really a thing back then and she wouldn’t let him leave. So he ran away. Brave, but can’t say I blame him.

The only memory I have of him before he left is not a good one. I was 4 years old and had wandered to the bottom of the road. When I got back he took the belt to me and I wee’d all over the living room carpet.

When he left life got even worse.

To be continued…..

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