Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Rebelling and Adoption

One of the things that has been amazing for me during my reunion with my first mom is how similar we are. Our interests, our fears, our peculiar neuroses... I had long suspected that, in the nurture versus nature debate, nature had a lot to do with things.

That's not to say nurture doesn't have a role to play. I know that my (adoptive) family had an impact on the person I would become. That was never really in doubt.

But I have to admit I didn't fully appreciate the nature side of this until I reunited with my mom. I know that not every adoptee experiences the connection that I did. For me, though, it was huge. My mom noticed it, too, as she has said a number of times that she thinks she and I have more in common than she does with any of her other boys.

And I've thought about that. I know that often, when children are raised by their biological parents, they often go in very different directions than their parents. Academics often don't have children who are particularly interested in school. Very religious parents often find their children are somewhat apathetic towards religion (or vice versa).

Which has gotten me thinking... Am I so much like her because she wasn't around to rebel against? Instead of rebelling against those parts of me that are most like her in order to establish my own, separate identity, it seems as though I embraced those parts. Maybe as a way to hang on to whatever connection with her I had even in her absence?

I don't pretend to fully understand human psychology, or even my own psychology. I never really took an interest in developmental psych. But I have to admit this question fascinates me.

1 comment:

Angelle said...

My son is about your age and we have been reunited since the fall of 2007.

He thinks we get along so well because we are similarly educated, well traveled and just "nice" people. I think perhaps it is the nature thing.

Oh, and he is like his aparents too. Was that learned behavior? Or does he have my chameleon like personality? I guess we will never know.