And while I could spend forever trying to explain to those NOT in the trenches what it’s like down in the trenches, I’m not going to waste my time. Others will swoop in to be your kid’s knights-in-shining-armor just when you’ve almost made it. You are scared because you never know what the day will hold—violent threats? Forget that you used to be esteemed as a wonderful parent.
You can’t go home at night and simply call it a day, because your home is no longer your home.
This is not a feel-sorry-for-us or toot-our-own-horns post. But if you’re reading this and already nodding, I’m trusting that you already get it. They have the relationship without the commitment (the very thing these kids reject). You’ve walked a painful road, but you didn’t have to.
It’s most definitely not a rainbows and unicorns post. There is not a week that goes by that I do not receive multiple emails, phone calls, Facebook messages, or texts either from someone currently in the trenches or someone who knows someone who is. That you know what it’s like to step out of your comfortable American Christianity and choose one of the unwanted ones. And you’re so damn tired of having to put your other kids on the sidelines while every ounce of your energy and every second of your time are devoted to the one who demands all. You’ve supposedly ruined their life before you were ever in it. You’re looked at with suspicion under a microscope. The world outside of your inner circle has painted you as a failure who just didn’t know what you were getting into. They have the hero complex without really getting their hands dirty.
That you’ve dropped everything for their redemption.
That you have spent countless hours and dollars on therapy and treatment and hospital stays and literature and counseling and so on. They don’t understand that adopted kids of trauma are often the most master of manipulators.