Double loyalty

As a child I felt loyal to both my adoptive parents and to my biological parents – or rather, my biological mother. My biological father I did not think of very often (…). He never played a big role in my life. I didn’t miss him or whatsoever. I didn’t bother my adoptive parents asking questions about my past. They might think I was ungrateful. Ungrateful for everything they had done for me. That’s just what I thought. And the last thing I wanted was for my adoptive parents to think I didn’t appreciate them. That I didn’t see them as my real parents. Because I did indeed. At the same time I was loyal to my biological mother. The woman who had carried me for nine months. Who had brought me into this world. The unbreakable bond between mother and child … Although I had quite ambivalent feelings about the fact that she’d given me away, I loved her. And I felt guilty because I now had found a new mother in the Netherlands. A mother who took her place in almost all respects. Having those dual loyalties was – and still is – confusing.

My quest and everything that came with it. Finding out my biological parents were no longer alive. My (half) sister who still lives in my hometown, in the house where I would have grown up, in another lifetime. The other adoptees from Indonesia I’ve come to know. People from the past that I traced. The articles in the national newspapers. And for the first time in my life I’m actually beginning to consider a trip to Indonesia. Yes, everything has changed. No way back. The fact that this all would affect my adoptive parents also, on the sidelines, is something I honestly  only realized until later. When the storm had passed. They want the best for me. Answers to questions which they themselves could not answer. And yet it appears to be difficult somehow. Complex. A subject we don’t talk about, even now. They don’t keep a scrapbook with newspaper clippings. Which makes me feel I’ve been acting selfishly in a sense.

But how selfish is it when you do something that seems inevitable? When you act purely out of a desire to finally feel complete …

Related posts

Leave a Comment