I know I’ve said this before, BUT parenting is the most difficult job in the world- seriously, I think it’s harder than being President of the United States! AT least with that job whatever mistakes you have made , in 4 yrs you get to quit. Everyone thinks it’s harder when the kids are smaller, younger. I think it’s harder when they get older. If you have to work do it when they are young, preschool is good. You need to be home with them when they start middle school. That’s when all the fun really begins. Until then, they love you, they like you.
Someone asked our oldest son once “what’s it feel like to be adopted?” His response – “How would I know? I don’t have anything to compare it too?” I thought that was a pretty good answer. The same really applies to being an adoptive parent, if you aren’t parenting any biological children. But in my experience as both an adoption educator and an adoptive mom, there is a difference. Somewhere in the back of my mind no matter how far back I tuck it, or how well the day has gone, is that little thought ” does he wish I weren’t his mom” “does he feel like he got the shaft” “am I second best”. I know that there of some of you adoptive moms out there thinking to yourself – “I’ll never feel that way” “I’m completely secure about how my child loves me” Rather than trying to discourage those thoughts (or roll my eyes and laugh, with that -ya wait till you get into adolescence) I’m going to let you keep them for now, because I remember them, and I remember how powerful I felt when I had them. Now don’t worry too much , or feel that sorry for me. I don’t feel that way all the time, but I’m honest enough to admit that it does affect some of the tough decisions I have to make, tolerating certain behaviors from our children and I’m almost always the parent who gives the benefit of the doubt (what might they be going through right now that made them make that stupid, stupid decision) I spent a yr in therapy talking about my co-dependency issues and still I struggle. You ask now, is it just her personality…..maybe? I’ll never really know, because I am who I am, which is a daily work in progress. I do know my children love me, I do understand my limitations and my perceptions, and my abilities. What I have found helpful with my insecurities, is talking with other adoptive parents, reading as much as I can and considering how I could use the information with my family – and I encourage you too as an adoptive parent, to reach out when you need to. To talk with someone else who will understand how you feel, when you have doubts. Our boys are grown now and our daughter has not. Most days I know we have done a good job. They complain, but they are all still here , under our roof at the end of the day.