My Birth Siblings Aren’t My People…
Dear Woo Woo Girl:
I am adopted and I recently found my birth siblings. I reached out to them while I was searching for my birth parents. They were completely blown away that I existed, but have welcomed me. My birth parents are no longer alive and my birth siblings have been able to fill in the blanks to a past that was somewhat murky, which I am grateful for. So what’s my problem? They are overly enthusiastic and not really my kind of people. They want to become closer and send me messages with little emoji’s. There is talk of Christmas dinner. I feel guilty that I’m not that interested. Satisfying my curiosity was all I was doing when I started to look for my back story and I don’t know what to do.
Signed: Curiosity Killed The Cat
Dear CKTC: Sharing a gene pool that produces a similar nose and facial expression to a sibling is no guarantee that they are your people. You took a walk in search of your memory lane and got a little more than you bargained for. It’s understandable that you are a little stumped. They want to fill in their gap by getting to know you better and your gap has been filled. The problem really is one of cross purposes.
But lets look at the big picture.
We become who we were meant to because and in spite of family history. It has a huge pull and hold over us. Adopted children have a different history. It is yours and your birth siblings will never feel it or get to know it intimately. You might be able to make a future history with them if you stick it out for the long haul, but are you looking for a morph of a non-existent past into a future? Are you pulled to make a new version of your history? Only you can decide.
It does take time to know someone.
To truly know what they are all about takes work. Ask yourself are you losing out on an opportunity to go deeper in a relationship that can offer “aha” moments? I often look at my brothers and see me in their smile, their hand gesture, and their thoughts. They reflect me back to me. It’s frightening and funny at the same time. But they like to think they know me yet they don’t. I don’t give of myself easily as I am a surface rider even with my family. It takes curiosity, and a belief that the person is worth the effort to break through. People have depth if you look for it, and if you want to do the work. They may not deliver it in the same way which is why the emoji sends shivers down your spine, but they may surprise you too. Besides they are curious about you. They want to get closer to the brother they didn’t have. Perhaps they don’t know how.
Am I the kind of person who knows who their tribe is-plain and simple? If you don’t venture comfortably out of your circle then don’t hang on. Guilt serves no purpose here and sets your siblings up for a disappointment. If you have enough information to put your curiosity to rest then have a yearly get together and leave it at that.
Then there is the old nature vs nurture argument. You have no need for their history; you are who you are because of the way you were raised, and your birth siblings are the same. If you met them at a party you wouldn’t go out of your way to connect. They are not your tribe, your history, your circle. Just an abstract notion of family that looked through the looking glass at and put to bed.
To hold on out of anything but pleasure does them and you a disservice. Every situation has a time and a place. Your purpose of finding answers was served, and you really don’t need it anymore. It’s really that simple. It is your journey. You don’t owe them anything. While you rocked their world by landing on their doorstep, and opening the book of family secrets, it had to come out. You can give it a beginning and an end. Gently.
Spiritual Practice: Meditate along with video on Letting Go.
Dear Woo Woo Girl xoxo