This is one story of a young woman’s experience in reunion.
Janet was ecstatic when she received the phone call saying she and her original mother had been found by a private searcher. Her lifelong dream was finally coming true. Two weeks later she sat in a park awaiting the arrival of Carolyn, her original mother. The meeting was everything she hoped for. Carolyn was open, warm, willing to talk and answer any questions. She wanted to know everything she could about Janet and her life. For weeks, Janet floated on a cloud of happiness and could not believe how good she felt. Finally, she was learning about all of who she was and the pieces were fitting together.
One evening, several months later, Carolyn called to invite Janet for Thanksgiving dinner. As Janet started to accept, she felt scared and realized that her hands were shaking. Puzzled by this reaction, Janet asked if she could think it over and promised to call back the next day. She spent all evening wondering what was going on. She knew she was a bit nervous about meeting Carolyn’s husband for the first time and that she would have to arrange it around her meal with her adoptive family, but neither reason felt like they fit her reaction.
She decided to accept, went, and had a good time. Much to her surprise though, she found herself feeling shaky and upset several times later in the week. Within a few weeks, she could hardly stop crying. She would get up in the morning and go to work, returning home to spend her evenings alone and upset. She told both her original mother and adoptive parents about what was happening but was unable to feel comforted by them. The tears, upset and periodic episodes of fear and shaking continued.
Experiences such as Janet’s are not unusual as reunions occur and original parents and adult adoptees enter reunion relationships.
Read more about Search and Reunion Experiences
Peer Support Groups for Search and Reunion:
⚠️ ACO UPDATE ON COVID-19⚠️
At the Adoption Council of Ontario, we are committed to the safety, health and well-being of our staff, clients, volunteers and community partners as we all navigate the impact that COVID-19 is having on the world.
The ACO is closely monitoring federal, provincial and local public health guidance and WHO guidelines and would like to provide the following update at this time. ACO staff will be providing our programs remotely at this time and our approach will be re-evaluated in light of developments and public health guidance.
The ACO is extremely fortunate to have strong remote and virtual capabilities so all AdoptOntario services and ACO education and support programs will be available throughout this time. Further information specific to programs is being provided on our website and through program specific emails.
Our staff will not be attending any large gatherings and will be supporting the larger community in healthy practices and social distancing.
ACO Board, staff and volunteers join in encouraging everyone to be safe, healthy and compassionate as we support each other through this challenging time.