April 30th, 2009
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Categories: Tough Stuff

When I read an email from a birth mother who had recently married the man that she considered to be the love of her life, my heart broke. The general feel of the email was that her new husband had finally come clean that he hated her birth daughter, her birth daughter’s adoptive parents, their two other children and the whole concept of open adoption. Talk about a bombshell. Here’s a snip-it from her email.

I am not quite sure why he waited to tell me until three months after we got married. I don’t know how to handle it or what to say to him now. My daughter, her parents and her siblings are a big part of my life. I chose their family for many reasons, one of which was that they lived so close by. And now he doesn’t want me to see them or interact with them or even send letters. I don’t understand.

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e email would so anger and depress readers that I can’t include it all. Suffice it to say that she is, three months into her marriage, considering leaving her husband. My heart breaks for all of them… even the grumpy husband with whom I could really have a few choice words.

So, what to do? Other than smack him with a wake up stick?

Obviously, this couple needs to hightail it to marriage counseling. Yesterday. In fact, in a follow up exchange, I learned that the Pastor that married these two did not require premarital counseling. I wonder how much of this could have been addressed prior to the ceremony and what heartbreak it could have avoided had it not been a surprising, big blow-up kind of discussion. But, as you can’t go back and redo things, that’s neither here nor there. (Just mentioning it for future readers who will happen upon this post!)

Now that things have been said and the damage has been done, the only option left is counseling. I don’t think that the hurt can be erased or that words can be unsaid but having a safe place to discuss how those words hurt, why the husband is feeling as he does and the pain both are feeling will be the only way to move forward. Right now the birth mother -slash- wife is feeling personally attacked. As any mother knows, if you insult the child, you insult the mother. (And Mama Bear tendencies may come out! Warning!) In essence, her husband has insulted a huge piece of how she identifies herself. Wounds need to be healed and they won’t be without some counseling.

Can this be overcome? Perhaps.

Does this husband have a history with adoption? Is someone in his family adopted and therefore he believes that it should work one way and one way only? Since he has stated that he specifically doesn’t like the daughter, is it because the daughter (and other siblings) act in a way that he wouldn’t “permit” if he was a parent? (Which makes me giggle because all children act out.) Why doesn’t he like the adoptive parents? Is he simply insecure in his role and therefore left feeling judged? I don’t know the answers. These questions are rhetorical but all possibilities.

I do know that this couple can make it through this horrible change in their relationship if they both commit to making it work. He will, of course, have to understand that, like any mother, a birth mother comes as a package deal. She will have to listen to his fears and reassure him that the adoptive family and all they bring to the table do not take precedence over him. Together, they should be able to make this work.

I hope so.

If you have endured something like this in a relationship, especially a marriage, could you please leave some bits of advice for this birth mother. I know she’s still reading as we’ve been continuing to email over the past week.

Photo Credit.

One Response to “My Husband Hates My Birth Daughter”

  1. star-car says:

    Aloha
    It sounds like he is afraid of loosing control. My husband seems to stay clear as much as possible of my open adoption situation,which is easy since we live across the ocean from my birth daughter. However when she had come to visit, he acted like a jerk until we had a full blown argument of why he suddenly was busy during the times we had arranged to see each other.He revealed his fears of not understanding the whole situation and control loss. By control loss I mean his own emotions. It was naturally decided that when I was to do things with my birth daughter on her vacation that he just was not going to be there. may sound like I gave in to his wishes, but patients paid off as as I got ready to take my daughter and her adoptive mother to a Luau, he decided to join us. The next day he took us all on a great hike. After surfing he and his friends took us on their boat and next thing I knew we ALL were spending time together. It was a short visit but our time was endless. My birth daughter and I are close and keep up with e-mail. My husband and my birth daughter are cool with each other meaning only if she says high he will respond back and vise-versa. But that is fine with me. My best thoughts are when we all got to talk about us being able to travel when she graduates high school, which he brings up on his own out of the blue every now and then. Especially when he and I are traveling out of the country. Scary just five more years.I think for him at first was a thing that can make any good person into a jerk, which is fear. Give the husband time, and show him that you are strong and independent which I know you BIRTH MOTHER. Men can be like a scare lost puppy who is new to a situation. Give them time and space to grow and hopefully he will come around to see what a beautiful soul you are and what a fabulous situation you have created. Happy Mothers Day Aloha Star-car Ps men are very emotional and protective over the ones they love even though the way they express it may not be they way we like. My shrink blames it on Men are from Mars and Women are from Venus. Ha Ha Hope this helps. Ps how old it the birth daughter?

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