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How do I make my mom understand?

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Guest alyssadrake

Hello everyone my name is Alyssa, I'm 19 years old and I'm from Galveston, Texas. I'm in the worst postion in the world right now. Hurricane Rita and my UNPLANNED PREGNANCY. I'm 7 months and I'm due on 12/5/2005. I'm interested in making a OPEN ADOPTION PLAN and my mom is totally against it. I grew up with out my father and I don't want the same for my baby. Does anyone have any advice on what I should do to convince my mom to support my descion? I've really thought this through and this is what I want. Can someone please help and give me some advice.

Love,

Alyssa..

P.S. I did get out of galveston and I'm staying with my grandma is kingsville, texas. Thank god I am safe unsure.gif

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Hi Alyssa,

I would contact Abrazo. The girls there can help you with talking to your mom about adoption. We adopted our little girl almost three years ago. Our birthmom's Mother was very against adoption of any kind for her granddaughter. Abrazo invited her to come to the birthparent support group. After the meeting Abrazo sat down with her to help answer ALL the questions that she had about open adoption. My husband and I were matched a week later with our wonderful birthmom.

I can't say that our daughter's birthgrandmother was ever thrilled about the fact that her grandbaby was going to be adopted and raised in TN, but she has come to see that Grace Ann is loved and taken care of(spoiled tongue.gif ).

I hope you connact Abrazo and let them help you. They are wonderful!

You will be in my prayers.

Melissa

P.S. I am glad that you are safe and sound and away from Rita's path.

Edited by melissamerritt

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Welcome Alyssa,

I am happy you got out of Galveston! We are in Katy and staying the storm out. I will keep us all in my prayers, this storm is very scary.

As for you queston about your mom. I think one thing that would help is if she meet the parents you choose for your baby. I have contact with my daughter's birthgrandparents and I love the stories they share with me. Plus my children just have more grandparents than other children. If your mom could see your child with the parents you chose and have continuing contact that might make her more supportive. I know in the begining with our daughter's case the birthfathers mom didn't want birtjhmother to place but after she met us her attitude changed.

I hope this helps some!

Be Safe

Jennifer

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Hi Alyssa,

I am so glad you have made an adoption plan that will allow your child to know you and your family as he or she grows up. As the child grows and starts to wonder who he or she looks like or why he or she was adopted, he or she won't have far to look. You will be available to help him or her deal with these questions. The adoptive parents you choose will communicate how much you love him or her, but the child won't have to just take the adoptive parent's word for it - He or she can hear it SEE it from you directly.

There could be a variety of reasons your mom is oppossed to open adoption - maybe she is struggling with the what she sees as a "loss" of her grandchild in general or maybe she is trying to protect you and herself from more emotional pain. Maybe she believes that being in contact with the baby after adoption will only continually reopen wounds and not allow you or her to continue with life. Maybe if she knew that you REALLY understood that, yes, this is going to be painful, but you know it is in the child's and your best interest. I also think that allowing her to speak with the Abrazo staff and her meeting the adoptive parents could help her also.

I hope you will keep in contact with your forum friends and keep us updated. smile.gif

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Hi Alyssa,

As the mom of 2 children through the blessing of adoption, I welcome you to this forum. I know w/out a doubt you will be give lots of support here.

As for the desire to make an adoption plan, please contact Abrazo & talk w/ them. The ladies there can give you very sound advice about how to approach your mother. Does your mom know how open adoption works? And the beauty of it? The way Tim & I feel is that our children have more people love them & in todays world you can't have enough love for children. It takes work to make a plan work out & if you decide to make an adoption plan there are marvelous families at Abrazo who you can talk to & decide which family YOU want to raise your child.

Hang in there & call Abrazo....they want the best for you & the child you are carrying.

All my best to you. Keep us posted on your decisions & we are so glad you are out of harms way. Stay safe. God bless.

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Hi Alyssa,

First of all, I'm so happy to hear you and your baby are safe and sound and made it out of Galveston. Sounds like you have some angels looking after you to get you out of there - this is all so heartbreaking to see so many people having to flee with so little and not knowing what they'll be coming back to. I'm so glad you're okay.

Next, I just wanted to comment that you are doing so well - you have obviously given this so much thought (you seem so mature) and are trying your best to do what you believe is best for your baby (it's very obvious you love this baby very, very much - so much you are trying to make all the right decisions for him/her - that is such a difficult thing to do, especially when you know what you're doing is right for you and your precious baby but you're not getting as much support as you'd like from someone you're close with, your mom. I'm trying to put myself in your shoes and I think it would be very difficult to stand firm in my decision and not doubt that what I'm doing is right, but you're doing that and good for you for reaching out for help to assist your mom in better understanding things from your perspective.

It is possible that on this thing, you two may have to agree to disagree and you may even have to just tell her that you respect where she's coming from but this is a lifetime decision (making the decision to have an open adoption plan rather than a confidential adoption plan) and one that is nearly impossible to undo if a confidential adoption is the route taken so you're just going with a gut instinct on this and you know this feels right and to just trust you on this.

I couldn't agree with you more for your reasons - you've experienced what it's like to have a part of you absent from your life and how mature of you to think about how this could effect your baby. The parents you choose for your son/daughter are going to be so fortunate to be in a relationship with someone with such insight and consideration.

There are a million possibilities why your mom isn't in favor of open adoption, it's so hard to know - even she may not know exactly the reason why other than it is something she isn't familar with (because honestly, who really is unless you've actually been faced with a situation like this?) and doesn't know a lot about - other than maybe what she's heard from family, friends or on TV. I'm sure part of it is to try to protect you from what she knows will be a very very painful time in your life - some people think that out of mind, out of sight is the way to deal with things in life that are difficult and painful - I placed my daughter for adoption almost 17 years ago, at that time, almost noone did open adoptions so hers was a confidential adoption and I can tell you that although I don't know what it's like to place a baby in an open adoption, I've read enough on here to know that the severity of the pain whether it's an open adoption or closed/confidential adoption seems the same - it hurts whether you see your baby and get updates on your baby and have contact with your baby's parents and visits, etc or you go through year after year with no contact, few updates and always they are with non-identifying information (I've had 2 major updates in almost 17 years). Anyway, I'm not trying to scare you, I know you're also aware that placing isn't easy (nor are any of the options available to someone facing an unplanned and untimely pregnancy)...I just personally think that your mom thinks she is protecting you in some way by trying to persuade you to not do an open adoption.

Open adoption can be very unnerving for anyone who isn't familiar with it and how it works and all the benefits it has (I think it is truly one of the greatest things you can ever do for your child - to be committed to an open adoption, with no secrets, no lies, allowing your child to always grow up with truth being a big part of his/her life and having access to you and his/her roots anytime they want - it's just awesome. It works and soon, someday, people will have the sort of reaction toward confidential adoptions that they do toward open adoptions - they'll think they're weird and wrong and they won't understand why anyone would even consider doing things that way). Many adoptive parents and their families find themselves unsure about open adoption (including my husband and myself when we began our adoption journey (we adopted our daughter in December 2002 from Abrazo) and as they become educated on it and what it's all about, how it's healthier for everyone involved, they become advocates and strong-believers in open adoption and committed to spreading the word.

Your mom may never fully appreciate open adoption, but she will learn to accept it and she will even appreciate that she will always know how her grand-son/grand-daughter is doing and she will be happy knowing that her daughter also has a peace, knowing that she was a part of choosing and getting to know the parents of her child and knowing that however difficult the days will be while you're trying to heal from the loss, you'll also have comfort knowing everything is okay with him/her and knowing that your baby will always grow up, knowing who you are and where they came from and who they look like and y'all will be able to have a very special relationship.

I hope you can stay strong in your decision to go with an open adoption (if adoption is ultimately what you decide to do) and that even if your mom isn't in agreement, you can convince yourself that in time, she will see for herself what you were talking about all this time. You are a really wise girl, I'm just in awe of your maturity - I know you're not the only one out there who has gone through all this thought process, it's just not often we see birthparents posting on here sharing with us what they go through to get to their decision (and the challenges they face in doing so).

Please keep in touch (and I agree, if you haven't contacted Abrazo, you will find yourself in a very comfortable place among great friends and family if you decide to give them a call - they are just amazing and are the real deal - they put birthparents and the children first and will make you feel so comfortable). Let us know how you're doing - we'll all be thinking of you...I know I will!

By the way, December 5th is a very, very significant date for me! It is my mom's birthday, my sister's birthday and it is also the day that our daughter, Kayleigh was born - December 5th, 2002! It is also the day my grand-mother passed away (I've said this a million times on here so I'm sure everyone is like, yeah, yeah, yeah but my grand-mother was the angel who helped Kayleigh find us and us to find Kayleigh - she passed away 18 minutes before Kayleigh was born, I am just sure she had something to do with everything - she knew how much we wanted a baby and ours was a match made in heaven. Sadly, Kayleigh's birthmother isn't comfortable with open adoption and has requested that we not have any contact - this haunts me every day - I can't tell you how much I want her to be a part of our lives - I honestly would do just about anything to have that happen - it literally keeps me awake at night sometimes because I just want it and need it so much. Kayleigh is only 2 1/2 so right now, she doesn't understand what she's missing out on but I know it's only a matter of time before the day comes when the questions begin and I don't know a person out there better able to answer those questions than her birthmother. Anyway, just another example of how difficult it is living with a confidential adoption on a daily basis).

Lisa

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Hey, Alyssa! Now that you've weathered Rita, how are things going with Mom?

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Out of Maine comes this tragic tale of two parents' bizarre (and criminal) efforts to impose their preferred "solution" to their daughter's problem pregnancy on her, against her will: Couple Charged With Kidnapping Pregnant Daughter for Forced Abortion.

Abrazo frequently gets calls from moms and daughters who are diametrically opposed to each other's ideas of what the best option will be, once an untimely pregnancy is discovered and want us to help "convince" the other person that their plan is best. Those calls are tough to handle.

We all want our parents' approval, no matter what our age is! Yet we are each entitled to our opinions, as well, and what our parents want for us (or our pregnancies) may not be what we feel is right. That's when moms-to-be have to make their own best choices, hard as it may be if your own parents don't approve of your choice. They don't have to like your decision nor agree with it, but they do have to accept your right to decide for yourself how to handle an unplanned pregnancy.

The Kampfs, though they surely love their daughter and wanted the best for her, didn't "get" it, and as a result, their lives, their daughter's life and that of their future grandchild will be forever scarred by their terribly-misguided attempt to make her choice for her.

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That has to be the strangest story I have every heard.

I just need more information, where they embarrassed, why not just kick her out of the house instead of ruining their lives. Are people (even the well off people) just that off center in the mind that they can't determine right from wrong. What do these people do for a living? How do they live to thing stuff like this is ok?

Why on earth would someone drop to this level to get their way?

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Guest BeachMama

If race was a factor, then this crime is even more insidious than just two misguided parents who wanted the best for their daughter. Sounds like they might have devalued that child even more because of the color of the its father's skin. Disgusting people.

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You know, I hadn't thought of it before, but this story is a strange twist on "the girls that went away"... who were often forcibly taken by their parents to maternity homes or adoption attorneys or agencies to "give up" babies their parents didn't think they should have... :huh:

Sounds like they might have devalued that child even more because of the color of the its father's skin. Disgusting people.

It's a sad truth, but it happens in adoption every day, when babies of color wait in foster care for a family "willing" to adopt a child labelled "special needs" merely because of his/her racial background... and when (in a world full of infertile couples longing to adopt), birthmoms expecting black or biracial babies find so few "parents-in-waiting" willing to match with them because of their baby's skin color...

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You know, I hadn't thought of it before, but this story is a strange twist on "the girls that went away"... who were often forcibly taken by their parents to maternity homes or adoption attorneys or agencies to "give up" babies their parents didn't think they should have... :huh:

Sounds like they might have devalued that child even more because of the color of the its father's skin. Disgusting people.

It's a sad truth, but it happens in adoption every day, when babies of color wait in foster care for a family "willing" to adopt a child labelled "special needs" merely because of his/her racial background... and when (in a world full of infertile couples longing to adopt), birthmoms expecting black or biracial babies find so few "parents-in-waiting" willing to match with them because of their baby's skin color...

I just had to reply because as much as it is sad to label a child special needs because of color, Marcelo and I look at it like, Wow we are the lucky ones. Being able to adopt over and over at a less cost for the child we REALLY want! Ouir children of COLOR will NEVER be special needs in our eyes that's all I can say. And, for the rest of my life I will preach how unique our diverse child Dante is and how he taught us to see COLOR in a different light!

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I am so amazed at how over the top some parents can be. From the kidnapping of a woman due to a preganacy or a wedding... this is nuts. I feel for this young woman to have been in such a hostile enviornment for her life, I am sure this is not the first over-the top thing in her life. I will keep her in my prayers and hope that the prison system will be swift and that this will be publicized enough that it discourages this type of craziness and maybe will be a wake up call to all parents. May this show those controlling pushy parents out there that your decisions are not always right, nor sane, and if you think forcing your children to undergo this is ok, maybe you are in need of help.

To all the ladies who are expecting and considering adoption I would like to say this. Please know you are not alone, and that if your feel pressured or are being forced into a decision you are not okay with SAY SOMETHING!!! Call your dr, Abrazo, a trusted friend or family member. Do not be around those who are forcing you alone. Be sure to have someone else with you. It will allow you the reassurance to make a decision on your own.

I also hope that God will deal with the hearts of all who impose upon others their own beliefs. May their misguided attempts to do whats best be thwarted. May all who believe a womans choice is not her own be reckoned with by all lawful means.

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Sorry for the second post- but yet anoither wacko who forced his opinion on a pregnatn woman who refused his ideas.... Craziness

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Here's a painful reminder that HOWEVER upset your mama might be to learn about your pregnancy or your adoption plans, NOTHING she could do or say would be as tragic as a baby losing its life because you COULDN'T tell: 14-Year-Old Arrested For Death of Baby (Secretly Born Within Same Month Her Younger Sister Also Delivered).

Please know: in Texas, there is no law requiring the mother of a child to inform her family of her pregnancy and/or adoption plans, regardless of her age. (Parental consent is required for abortions, but not for adoptions.) If you choose not to tell your family, that's your right. But keeping secrets from those you love can be painful, and sometimes, even the family members you thought might be most upset about your situation can become the most supportive, with time.

If you're too scared to tell but long to do so, call Abrazo: 1-800-454-5683 (in Texas; if you're outside of Texas, call us collect at 210-342-5683.) Let us have one of our counselors help you out. We can talk through your options with you, and even help you break the news to your family, if you want us to (but not if you don't, of course.) The important thing to remember is: you're not alone!

And never forget that every problem in life is time-limited. Life is precious. Help us help you make the most of yours-- and that of your baby!

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I am not sure if anyone watched Oprah last week when she interviewed Jessica Coleman, a girl who is now 21 and serving 6 years in a maximum security prison because at the age of 15, she delivered a baby boy at home, alone in the bathroom after hiding her pregnancy and tragically, this little guy just never had a chance - she hid his body in a duffle bag in her closet until her boyfriend arrived (the next day I believe) and dumped the duffle bag in a local quarry (the bag was found a few months later by divers - however, Jessica lived 6 years with her secret (just she and her then-boyfriend knew) until one day, it was too much for her and she confided in her current boyfriend at a public place, someone overheard and placed a call to the police and Jessica subsequently confessed to what she did to her son. Jessica Coleman (link to story on Oprah's site)

Whew! I wasn't sure whether or not I could actually watch this program - it hits very close to home with me on many levels. I Tivo'd it and started it one day then couldn't finish it, then when Lance was home, we watched it together and I made it through the program.

I personally don't think anyone in that situation will actually find themselves reading the forum or this thread (nor am I entirely confident that the Safehaven laws will save children who otherwise would have been disposed of (for lack of a better word) by their mothers) and the reason I think that is because I believe these girls are in such denial about their pregnancy, to seek help through browsing the internet for adoption information or by learning about safe places they can turn to once they deliver would mean them confronting something so terrifying to them that their very existence in this world is at risk. I hope I'm not misunderstood, I am not in support of this type of thing, although at a deep level, I can relate/understand (I'm not sure either of those are the words I'm looking for) to the mindset someone may have in order to go through with ending the life of their child, after they are born. I don't know that they even allow themself to consider that the baby is real and is a human being, the denial is so great, it overtakes any logic or rational behavior - this is why I think "good girls" (as Jessica was described) are at a greater risk for this than a drug addict or "girl with a reputation" (one of the things the investigator commented on when he first met Jessica was how different she was from who he expected would be the baby's mother (because the community had known about this child for the 6 years that Jessica lived with her secret and had come up with their own conclusions of what kind of monster could do this to an innocent child). I looked at Lance and said I totally disagree with him (the investigator), I think it's those girls who are trying desperately to please their parents and maintain a certain image at home and at school who could convince themselves that if they can just get rid of the baby, it will all just go away and their lives will continue as usual - they don't have to confront their parents and risk ridicule or disappointment.

When I suspected I was pregnant, before anyone knew, I was in so much denial - I just couldn't possibly allow myself to acknowledge &/or accept that my life was about to change and that my parents (mostly my mom because my dad and I didn't have a close relationship) would feel betrayed by me and angry with me and would say things to me that I was already saying to myself and I didn't want to have to hear from them. I just couldn't accept that "this" had happened to me. I honestly felt that death (my own) would be better than having to confront my mom about my problem - I prayed to God every day that the reason my period didn't come was because I had some sort of cancer - that seemed easier to deal with than being pregnant. I even would move heavy furniture around hoping that the pregnancy would just go away (not realizing that had I miscarried, my parents surely would have found out ). I don't know how long I would have or could have kept my pregnancy a secret but I know that I could never, ever tell my mom - and my mom and I had a very, very close and personal relationship - we talked about everything, we had gone through so much together - but that, I just couldn't tell her that I had been sexually active and that I thought I was pregnant....and I just can't emphasize enough how close we were...anyway, had it not been for my mom's persistence...I don't know what would have happened. I gained 80 pounds when I was pregnant so I hardly believe that I would have been able to hide my pregnancy forever but I just couldn't tell her.

I had gone to visit my mom that summer in July (because I was living with my dad - I got pregnant in May 1988) and after 2 or 3 weeks, my mom began asking me if I needed her to buy me any female products (for my "monthly visitor") and I kept saying no, I didn't need any. After 2 weeks of me saying I didn't need any, she began asking me if I was pregnant. I emphatically said "NO! Because to be pregnant meant that I had been sexually active and I certainly wasn't sexually active so no, Mom...there's no way I'm pregnant." It didn't matter to her, she just kept bugging me, day after day - every evening - she'd start bugging me about whether or not I was pregnant - and I almost even told her that yes, I did need female products and I was going to put the empty wrappers in the trash can so she'd quit asking me but I also knew that doing that would only prolong it and I guess I just wanted her to know but I didn't want to have to tell her or admit it. Finally, one night - she went through it again with me and this time she told me, "Lisa, this is your last chance to tell me if there's any way you could be pregnant because tomorrow, I'm taking you to the doctor and he's going to find out and we'll know if you are". I seized the opportunity to tell her and sure enough, she took me to the doctor and I was pregnant. And once she knew, I suddenly realized that I was still alive and my life had not ended and she was not as angry or as disappointed as I thought she would be - she never even started lecturing me on how she just knew something like this was going to happen - she never said that...she just told me that it was okay and we'd get through it, just like we'd gotten through everything else.

I am not blaming Jessica's mother or the mother of the other girl that Elizabeth posted about because the responsibility clearly (in my opinion) lies with these girls who did the unthinkable - but I will say that I think these mothers (as well as Kayleigh's birth-grand-mother who also never knew that her 17 year old daughter was pregnant even though she saw her every day) must have been in as much denial as their daughters - they must have been just as terrified of the reality of the situation as their daughters were because they did not pursue the truth - they may have suspected it but because they did not want to know or think that their daughter could possibly be pregnant, because the truth was so unimaginable for them and painful for them - they kept their blinders on and just believed that everything was normal, when there must have been opportunities to realize that possibly, it wasn't. I'm not saying that these people ever imagined or expected their child to do this, but I am just so grateful to my mom for being so brave and for pushing me and pushing me, to the point of me being so frustrated with her and angry at her for not believing me (because a part of me also didn't believe) and for being brave enough to seek the truth and follow her mother's intuition, even though she must have been so scared of what the future held.

So anyway, those are my thoughts on this - if any of you have the opportunity to watch this or see it as a re-run, I would recommend viewing this because if you're ever wondering what a scared expectant mother goes through (not all, but some) emotionally when trying to confront the truth, this will give you a glimpse. I totally think Jessica is still wrestling with denial based on her reactions and responses to some of the questions Oprah asked her. To me, she may have remorse, but there also still seemed to be a part of her that is still choosing to not believe this ever happened to her (because the truth is just far too painful to confront and accept).

-Lisa

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Excellent post, Lisa. I am not able to watch Oprah (schedule, no Tivo, etc) but through your words I feel as though I have gained a bit of insight into a frightened expectant mother's world. Thank you for being brave enough to post this. I know it takes much courage to "put yourself out there" and I appreciate it. I think you are probably correct in your conclusion as well. It is very difficult not to feel sorry for her and at the same time to feel anger about the path she chose to take as well. I'm glad Lance is such a supportive mate and will be there for you. I thought it was such a sweet and powerful statement of your love and trust for each other that you asked him to watch with you and that he gladly complied. Give that hubby a gold star! Once again, thank you Lisa for putting an issue in a new light and helping us to better understand what might have been going on in this case.

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If there is anything positive that we as mothers can take away from all this....is to make sure we demonstrate that type of unconditional love for our own children and to let them know that they can come to us with anything. We don't necessarily have to approve of their decisions, but I feel we do have to let them know we are there with our love and support.

We need to let our daughters know that we will love and support them through all types of personal crisis, to include an unplanned pregnancy. We do not want our own daughters to ever have to face this situation, alone and desperate.

Thanks for sharing, Lisa.

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Yes, absolutely Martha...that is definitely a message I was hoping would ring out through my post. Noone is immune to this, this type of act is not reserved for murderers/evil people, i think there is something very different going on here. And I don't know the answer as to how you ensure that line of communication is open, because as i said, my mom and i talked very freely w/one another and i did know my mom loved me more than anything, no matter what, i was fearful of disappointing her and her expectations she had for me and i was fearful of getting in trouble and being lectured to. I know i certainly never want to send a message to kayleigh that teenage sex is okay, but i also want her to feel comfortable talking to me if that is something that happens.....oh brother, i'm glad that's a few years off before i need to worry about it...yikes!

i do know, what i learned from my experience and how my mom handled it is i will not keep my head in the sand and kayleigh will probably complain that i invade her privacy because as a mother, i will be all in her business and will do more than just ask questions and accept her answers.....i don't know how yet, but i am going to make sure i am very, very involved....even if it makes her mad, it's my responsibility as her mother.

lisa

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You're welcome Jean & Jill....it had been on my mind and I had meant to post sooner but just hadn't found the time to sit down and collect my thoughts (and after re-reading it, I probably could have done a better job but oh well, if I wait to do something until I think it's perfect, I find it never gets done...)

Another thing that struck me during the interview was something Jessica said in response to Oprah - I think Oprah asked her what she'd like to say to everyone or something like that, she said several things (which I don't really remember, other than I thought to myself - "Gosh, here's your chance...say something profound, and I didn't feel she did but she was probably put on the spot and hadn't prepared for that question (although that question is a no-brainer - what interviewer wouldn't ask that???) Anyway, what she DID say that really stuck with me was something like how she can understand how people look at her and say what they say and how they can't believe she did such a horrific thing and what kind of person is she to do something like that? She said that had this not happened to her, she would be one of those people saying that too, to whomever it was sitting in the chair she was in. I am glad she said that - so often, people think "Oh, I could never do that" and you know, I also don't think I could ever do that either but at the same time, I do not feel I have a right to judge her because I was not standing in her shoes, in her situation at the time that she was.

And something I thought of later, when I re-read the part about my mom is there was a time when my mom did have her head in the sand when she shouldn't have...but boy, did she ever make it up to me when I was pregnant. When I was about 14 years old (probably the worst years of my entire life was when I was 12 - 14), I was very unhappy, to the point where I just felt sad and hopeless all the time - I don't know exactly why but at the time, it made sense to me, I would take a cigarette and burn my arm until I couldn't leave the cigarette there any longer - I wanted to feel the physical pain because it would somehow shut off the emotional pain, if only temporarily, but it was better than nothing. There was a lot going on in our lives at that time, my mom had a boyfriend who was a horrible person and she was so co-dependent on him, she became someone I don't even know - a completely different person than the mom I had before him and the mom I have now - anyway, all her time and energy was put into him (which went completely unappreciated by him) and when she wasn't with him, she was working because at that time, she worked 2 jobs. I guess she just didn't want to have to deal with whatever was going on with me because to do that, would mean taking a look at her life and realizing that she needed to make some changes and down deep, she didn't want to make those changes - she had even said, at one time when my sister (one of the many times my sister went round and round with her) told her she needed to stop paying so much attention to her boyfriend and start paying more attention to her child that needed her mom (me, not my sister because my sister was nearly 30 at the time and had her own family and kids) - my mom's response was that she had already raised 2 kids, she was tired of being a mother all the time and wanted and needed time for herself and this made her happy)...anyway, she (my mom) asked me about the marks on my arm and I told her they were mosquito bites - she said, "Oh, okay" and we never had the conversation again. My sister came over one day and sat me down, in front of my mom and asked the same question, "What are those marks on your arm?" I told her mosquito bites, and my mom even took up for me - she insisted to my sister that they were mosquito bites, just like Lisa said because Lisa wouldn't lie about that....my sister went ballistic and told my mom to wake up! Those aren't mosquito bites - she said she knew what mosquito bites looked like and they didn't look like the marks all over my arm - she finally got me to admit that I had been burning myself and my mom seemed genuinely shocked. I think she was - I think in her heart, she wanted to believe they were mosquito bites because it was easier to do that than to face the reality if they weren't. This was the first time I went to live with my sister and her family (I lived with them twice, this time only lasted a few months, the second time, when I was 15 lasted 2 years, then I moved in with my dad and step-mom and that lasted a year, then I got pregnant and by the time I delivered, my mom had broken up with her boyfriend and was "ready to be a mom" again and my life gradually improved.

But anyway, I know it took a lot of courage for her to face something she didn't want to face (when she suspected I was pregnant) and I'm not sure why she was able to at that time but not the times before that but probably the time when I needed her to be there the most, she was.

-Lisa

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Dearest Lisa,

Yet again you have reminded me that with each situation that comes our way, we always have the opportunity to re-choose. We can always be different, react different and change to help our children and/or ourselves. Bravo for your MOM for becoming your MOM again....I am just sorry that it took a pregnancy for her to come around again. But I shudder to think what you all would have missed out on had she not been willing to embrace you in that exact moment

I watched the Oprah episode today. It was heart-breaking to think that any young woman would need to go to such lenghts for acceptance, for a boy friend....for any thing. But looking back on my past, their are some things that I did for acceptance that I am not that proud of.

I would agree with you, that there seemed to be a disconnectedness, Jessica said all the right words but emotions or facial experssions didn't really add up. And the opportunity to make a HUGE statement was missed. My prayers are with all the young girls tonight hiding something from those that love them.

Heidi

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