My name is Laureen Pittman. I’m a happily married wife and mother of two great boys. I also happen to be adopted. I’m turning 50 this year. This blog is about me and my adoption story. Every story is unique—and I love hearing about all of them. I have many friends who are also part of the adoption triad (either adult adoptees themselves, like me, or adoptive parents). I’ve learned over the years that people who are not part of the triad react to adoption in different ways. I used to be puzzled by that.
Obviously, every experience is different, but I have a family just like you. We do the same things your family does: we celebrate birthdays and holidays, we go on vacations together, we make mistakes and we honor and celebrate life’s milestones and successes. My family is also dysfunctional—just like yours. No one and no family is perfect. I’ve had issues over the years—in my youth and as an adult—with confidence, rejection, trust. Just like you. I don’t blame it on adoption.
I’ve always hated movies, soap operas and fiction that over-dramatize adoption stories, where the adoptee seems to always be the underdog—carrying around abandonment issues and feeling like he or she doesn’t belong—plagued by low self-esteem, lack of trust, and disassociation. We are not, as a group, poor lost souls. For the most part, we are strong, confident, and we have a deep, profound sense of self (probably even more so than many people who are not adopted—we only have the “self” to blame or rely on for most of our psychological make-up). “Self,” however, is not the same as “identity.”
I was born “Baby Girl ___________.” I’ve been known as Laureen Hubachek, Laureen Ashman, and now, Laureen Pittman. My Adoption Story has for the most part been a secret, considered a shameful thing that happened to someone else some 50 years ago. I’ve pretty much been denied a very deep layer of my existence–no family history, no ethnicity, no heritage . . . But here I am. Existing, thriving, in spite of the denial. Some people still believe that the past (my past) and history (my history) should be hidden and denied for all eternity in the name of “privacy” or to protect others from exposure to embarrassment, or exposure to a truth that would destroy some perfectly crafted life created out of denial of the past. Well, it took nearly 50 years, but I’ve decided that I am the one who makes the choices about what I need to do to fill in the blanks about my “identity” and I have made a conscious choice to offer my story.
If you have an adoption story, I’d love to hear it.