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View Diary: People With Problems Have Problems (87 comments)

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  •  Your story echoes ours (20+ / 0-)

    Two daughters, adopted at ages 3 and 5, 35 years ago. It's been a journey. The younger, now 38 with a 14yo daughter of her own, is finally starting to make an independent life on her own. She is going to community college to learn a certifiable skill in the medical field - paid for by us. In a few months, she could have a decent job that pays the rent and then some. The older, now 40, has never been stable, in and out of 'facilities' as a teen, homeless and suffering from alcoholism for the past 20 years, had several children and many abortions, she has an apartment of her own but still drinks, she has a man that sticks to her although he's been tried over the past year. We, as grandparents, know of 3 of her children, take by the State and raised in foster homes. Don't have meaningful relationships with either, one is 21 and the other is 15. The 3rd is 3 now, haven't seen him since he was born, have no idea where he is.

    Both daughters and their progeny have been supported by the State, and I thank them. We adopted them in Texas, and years later found out there were stipends available to help raising them. But they weren't available when we adopted them, and they didn't track us down when they did become available. It was too late when we found out.

    But as you say in your piece, the damage was done by the time they moved in with us. We thought love would be enough. It isn't. It's essential, of course, but of itself, not enough. We found support through groups of adoptive parents, and that was helpful. It wasn't enough. The Texas state dept of child welfare (don't recall its exact name, but every state has one) sponsored picnics and get togethers. It helped. It wasn't enough. We enrolled them in Girl Scouts, it helped. It wasn't enough.

    One of them took all the pre-ordered GS cookies and passed them out to her friends at school. One of them stoled my coin collection and used the nickels and dimes for bus fare when she ran away at 14yo, there were coins worth 100s of $$. One of them locked the babysitter outside the house then trashed it.  I have a thousand similar stories, as I'm sure you do.

    So, now we retire, we are moving out of state. We will be in touch, but will no longer cringe when the phone rings. We won't be able to give instant fixes, emergency rides home, $20 for more cellphone minutes. It's another interesting experiment. I'm curious as to how it will play out. But it's time.

    All in all, it has made us, as a couple, stronger having survived the experience and incidents relying on ourselves. We had help, and appreciate it. It wasn't enough. It was never enough. And we still love those girls, now women. And it still isn't enough.

    Water is the oil of the 21st Century. -Jerry McNerney (D-CA09)

    by JohnMac on Tue Jul 22, 2014 at 09:08:08 PM PDT

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