Today I am going to answer a question that I have been getting a lot lately from people I know when I have been talking to them about adoption. It's a series of questions actually, and they're all about Roo's birth father, H.
I've mentioned him before and I used to mention him a lot, particularly in years past when I was still angry at him and wanted to hurt him for hurting me. I don't think I've mentioned him in quite a while, and I only really talk about him in therapy every so often, so newer readers of this blog and more recent acquaintances may not know much about him.
Parenthetically, if you're dying to know more about him and you're emotionally buoyant you can go back and read the posts tagged "boyfriend" but for today, all you need to know is that we met on MySpace in 2008 and that he is to this day the only man who has ever told me I was beautiful. (I don't know if he meant it or if he had just been single for longer than he liked. I suspect the latter.)
Q (and Q, and Q, and Q, and Q): Do you ever hear from H? What does H think about the adoption? Does H get to see Roo? Do you want him to? Do you hate H?
A: I'm going to answer the last question first, because it's important, and I want to make it very clear: I do not hate H, and I never did. I used to be angry with him, and I used to want to hurt him because he hurt me and punish him for breaking my heart and leaving me alone and pregnant.
But I have an excellent therapist, and I have reached the point where 99% of the bad feelings are gone. I'm going to allow myself 1% because when I'm having a really bad day I sometimes still stew about how I had a baby with a guy and even that wasn't enough to make him stay, and what does that say about me? I must be completely unlovable.
Hey, we all have those days, right?
Anyway. I have actually had many moments wherein I simply felt grateful to H for giving me Roo, because she is the best thing that ever happened to me. It occurred to me the other day (Father's Day, in fact) that I am terribly grateful for every single one of H's character flaws. Because if he hadn't been exactly the man he was four years ago, I wouldn't have placed Roo for adoption, and that would have been a shame.
I have never thanked him personally, because I haven't actually seen him in person since 2008 and we have not communicated since right after Roo was born. This does not surprise me or hurt me at all; he told me when I was pregnant that if I chose adoption he would essentially disappear.
I don't know how he feels about the adoption. I don't know if it's something that he ever thinks about. To the best of my knowledge he has never met Roo or had any contact with her parents. Do I want him to? I'm going to play politician and give a non-answer. I want what's best for Roo, and I trust P and M to make that choice. If the time comes when they feel that a relationship with H is in Roo's best interest, I will support that.* She's their child and it's their decision to make, not mine.
I don't know where H is now or what he's doing. I told that to a friend the other day and he said, "Isn't it weird? Someone can be such a big part of your life for a while and have such an impact on you, and then you don't see them again for the rest of your life."
It is weird. It is weird to think that I had a baby with this man, H, and he's no part of my life and never will be again. It's weird that our genes are forever merged in Roo, but that our lives are so separate. It's weird, but it's okay.
I used to think that I needed to confront him to find closure, which terrified me, but I was wrong. I've made my peace with him, and I hope that he's made his peace with me.
*I'll confess to the odd sporadic desire for H to meet Roo, but it's a selfish one. I sometimes think that if H ever thinks of Roo or adoption, it might be with anger or bitterness towards me and how things turned out. In my more fanciful moments I think that it would be nice if he could see her - see what a fantastic little person she is, how smart she is, how happy she is, how beautiful. It would be nice if he could see what a good thing came of our relationship and out of adoption. I think it might be beneficial. But beneficial to him and tangentially to me, not necessarily to Roo at this point. I'm glad it's not my call to make.