When Adopted Kids Ask, “Am I Unlovable?”

Posted February 13, 2009 by

Oh, how sweet those little faces looked as babies. They lit up when we entered the room, they smiled when we made funny faces, and they laughed, a deep belly laugh, when we played. Our hearts were full, theirs were not.

Adoption has many great benefits. Children are placed in homes where they are safe and cared for and deeply loved. And couples that can’t have kids or who want another to complete their family can do so. Emotionally, too, there are many holes in their hearts that are filled by adoption.  All but one.

Where is the hole?

A child is made to be loved by his biological dad and mom. Any change in that can cause holes in his or her heart. I used to think that our love as adopted parents could fill that hole. And what I have found is that it can — but not completely. There seems to be a continuous search for my adopted kiddos to know they are loved. It manifests itself in different ways for each child, but there is no denying that the rejection they experienced physically now affects them emotionally.

They wonder “Why was I not good enough to be kept; am I unlovable?” Then there are the questions of “Where do I fit, who do I look like, do they miss me like I miss them sometimes?” No matter how much we try, we cannot answer those questions. No amount of logic fills the void.

Don’t misread me here. This doesn’t seem to consume them. The majority of their hearts are whole. There are just moments when this mom’s heart aches for theirs as I get a glimpse of that void.

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Matt and Julie Hellstrom are Parent Bloggers for EP

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