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On Lesbian Motherhood...A Story about our relationship with our MOMS!

Dear MOM,

I renamed myself tainadelsol, thats a big name for a little girl born on May 6th, 1975. I wonder where you are right now. Do you think of me the way i think of you?. Do you wonder like me what life would be like if I was in your life? Do you wonder where I am? , what I look like?, how I am doing? Do you want to reach out but don't know how to find me? Do you lay in bed at night, guilt consuming you, wishing you could take it all back or do you cry yourself to sleep like I do? Do you feel me running aimlessly in your blood, not ever finding peace or un- settled?

I find myself constantly searching for you in the face of the women I love. Does you have bruises that will never heal? Do you have one bruise for every child you gave away-like me?. I followed you, your every move, you paved the way on my body leaving footprints for me to follow and I have. Step by Step i fit perfectly in your shoes. I wonder, do you feel me inside of you still becuase I have never left!

35 years later, 101 questions and a letter to my mom later.... I went to find her!

During the year 2008, I went to find my real mother in the Dominican Republic. Finding my mother at such a late age was very important to me as I was witnessing how my relationship with my children and my partner was being affected by my issues of abandonment. You would be surprised that instead of feeling like I gained something, got clarity or sanity instead i had one hundred and one questions about who I am , my existence, what I’ve learned, parenting etc. I felt as if my head was going to burst.

One of the things I thought about was being a lesbian mother and what that means in this world?

You know I found my mother for a lot more reasons than I thought. I was watching a show about brothers and sisters and everyone pulling together to save a daughters life. And I think about my own children who are living the same lie I lived for so many years because they don’t know I’m adopted.

At the same time I know that my birth moms gift to us was another family and now i have an abundance of family but she also took away from me and my children the gift of life and spirit choosing its own family. I know what everyone is going to say and I can play devils advocate too and say that spirit knew exactly what it was doing.

My mother gave me away to a women who could not have children (that can be spirit choosing too, fate, destiny). And at the same time, as I look at this show, I think, if something was to ever happen to my children(if they ever get sick) and they would have to find someone that has their blood type, they would be fucked because they don't know who that would be if I wasn't here. They have no access to my birth moms family, my brothers and sisters. They don’t know their family health history because mine has been a lie up to now. I remember every time I go to the hospital and they ask me my family history, its a lie, I am not susceptible to breast cancer, or ovarian cancer, alcoholism, blood pressure etc, those are illnesses that belong to the family that raised me and I don't know my birth moms family history. My dad is dead and so who is left?

Damn this adoption thing is crazy, it has so many impacts on so many levels. But being a lesbian adds to the challenges in my life as well, it complicates this even further.

Now that my dad is dead, I look around New York and I’m like oh shit besides my adoptive mother, its me and my kids. My family tree according to my birth certificate is real little, just us three. If and when I decide to take my partnership with a women to the next level it would have to be faster than heterosexual marriages because there is no time to waste in a world that does not recognize same sex partnership.

If I was to die my children would only have me. No real relative that is" blood" related to take them in. Since they have not been recognized or adopted by my partner and since I am not married, my partners would have little to no access to my children.

If I die then my partner has no right to inherit anything that I leave, unless I write it in a living will right now.
If I I get sick , she cannot make decisions for me and would probably have a hard time accessing my chart since she is not my wife or recognized partner.

The more I analyze this, the dimmer the light shines on my situation and same sex relationships overall. .

Its especially hard us as we work so hard for everything we have and then when you die or something happens you have no right to any of it. If your partners family has no love or compassion for you and is homophobic at that—your partner is left in the dark, as if they never exsisted. And the children suffer more. Because the state will send them to their biological fathers if they can find them and not care that your partner raised them, if not they become wards of the state.

So where does being an adopted lesbian leave me, well, It feels like there is only three people in my family, me makes four. My dad passed and my mom is getting old. If I happen to pass before her or even after her, who will my children have?  Who do I trust that could take them and make sure they are okay? Who will make decisions for them if they get into an accident? How will anyone contact my birth mom if they need blood for any reason?

35 years later, 101 questions and a letter to my mom later.... I am a lesbian single mother.

Comments

Mei Li's picture

Ah!

Have you ever seen If These Walls Could Take 2?

Your post just reminded me of the first story in the movie. Two women who had been together for decades and one dies...the other is left with nothing.

I have thought about this so many times. I am not adopted, but my family does not really know me. By that, I mean, I would trust a lover to make decisions on my behalf if I were hospitalized and about to die, over my family - or even a friend over my family. My friends and partners have all been intricate parts of my life. I was often neglected at home, so all of the reasons I feel I shine now, were never recognized. I am have built my family from strangers, from all over the world.

This does not solve the problem though, does it?
I have thought the same thing about children. The adoption process for lesbian mothers and their partners is tedious and legally isn't possible in many places. So if I had children, and I died, they would go to my family and that worries me.

I think the "best" we can do...in addition to continuing to fight for complete equality - is to prepare. Living wills, that is all we have at this point, right? Sadly...

Thank you for posting this...something so personal I think many lesbians may think of regularly - often addressed on large scales, but the personal stories and perspectives are so important.

What can you do in your community to be an active leader in reforming this?

"...our compassion is the practice of unconditioning." Jakusho Kwong Roshi

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