Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Don't Keep Your Emotions Bottled Up

Do you allow yourself to express and experience the emotions you are feeling as a birthmother or do you try and hold them all inside?

There have been times in my life since becoming a birthmother when things are very overwhelming emotionally and sometimes instead of allowing myself to experience what I was feeling, I’d push it away. I would tell myself to be strong, thinking that crying and the other emotions I would be feeling pertaining to adoption were signs of weakness or perhaps even signs that I made the wrong decision. So, I’d hold all those emotions in and create a very unhealthy and destructive pattern. Then something would happen, and it could be tiniest little thing, and I would loose it, all those emotions would start rushing forward and flowing out of me like water from a dam.

Those breakdowns would end up being much worse than they would have been if I had dealt with the emotions as they came up initially. I have learned a lot about myself, my feelings, and how I process things since becoming a birthmother. I am learning that it is ok to experience the emotions and to release those emotions should it be crying, screaming, or laughing, depending on what I am feeling. Experiencing and releasing emotions is actually healthy!

So, my advice to fellow birthmothers out there is to let yourself feel! Don't keep your emotions all bottled up inside! Heck, we are women, aren’t we supposed to be emotional?

If you should become overwhelmed with your feelings, here are a few suggestions on how to deal with them.

1. Journal. I know I say this a lot but it really is a great release for many people.
2. Cry, yell, laugh – whatever release is appropriate at the moment.
3. Talk with a counselor or therapist if you have one.
4. Talk with a trusted friend or family member.

Emotions are healthy!

Do you keep your emotions bottled up or do you allow yourself to feel? How do you cope when you are feeling too much?

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1 comment:

  1. Right after my son was placed 19 years ago, I only cried when I was alone, which wasn't very often because I was still living with my parents and I took on three jobs to try to keep my mind and emotions off him. It made me sick in more ways than one, but I didn't know any better then.

    I thought that my mom was having to deal with her own pain, and couldn't handle mine too...little did I know, she and I could have been a healing support group for one another.

    OH, I did not journal either...tho I did write two poems, and wrote out my feelings in my letters to his family. Those things helped me get things out I normally tried to keep inside.

    Then, when my boy was 18, I made contact. He agreed to come meet me, then changed his mind. It was like losing him all over again. But *this* time, I wrote 10 poems, cried all the time, and sought comfort in friends and family. I healed better and faster that way. I also came here for help, and I got a lot of good advice and support. Yes, keeping it all inside will not only make you sick, it will delay your healing! You need to let it out, and writing is an excellent way to do that whether it be journaling, writing letters to the aparents (just keep them if your adoption is closed) or your child (save them for when you finally reunite), or poetry. Don't take on three jobs and screw on a smiley face if that's not how you feel. It will NOT help!!

    oh, and now...my boy occasionally writes me emails!! They are few and far between and very short, but contact is contact! There is hope for you all, even those of you in closed adoptions!!