Brothers, Sisters and Bastards

I don’t watch a huge amount of TV but there are a few shows that I watch regularly. I love Boston Legal, Greys Anatomy, Brothers and Sisters and The Office (for much needed comic relief). For as little as I watch though it always amazes me how much adoption related issues permeate the airwaves. Maybe not directly adoption related but the residual scum of society’s views on the Bastard Club (or BC) of which I am a card carrying member.

On Brothers and Sisters the main family finds out upon the death of their father that he had an affair with a woman for some 20 plus years. The woman has become a main character in the show, even making her way into the family business (yea right) . Recently it was discovered that this hussy and the adulterous schmuck had a child together! GASP!!!!!!!!!!! I really don’t think she’s a hussy nor he a schmuck but it adds dramatic flair don’t you think? Although, I suppose if it were my husband involved I would have used a far stronger word than schmuck. ANYWAY, the love child of this illicit affair has made her way into the story. Her name is Rebecca.

So I am enjoying the show on Sunday and toward the end one of the brothers is talking with the mistress about going into business with one another (yea, right) and in walks Rebecca. This poor girl has been lied to her entire life regarding her father’s identity so she has no idea that she is standing before her brother. As a matter of fact when he leaves (without saying a word about it) she comments to her mother how CUTE he is. Ugh. BC members: this is where we do our official club move-The Furious Forehead Slap.

Now of course I am super sensitive to this whole lying about identity thing. And keeping secrets? Forget about it! Here is this poor unsuspecting girl walking around with the bulk of those she associates with KNOWING more about her than she does about herself. One would THINK this is just good TV drama, but alas it definitely is not. It happens every single day. I am Rebecca.

As the show ends they play previews of next weeks episode. It goes something like this; “NEXT WEEK ON BROTHERS AND SISTERS…..A SECRET IS REVEALED THAT COULD DEVASTATE THE FAMILY AND TEAR THEM APART FOREVER.”

Never mind that the mother already KNOWS about the affair, oh no, it’s the GIRL that will devastate the family. Tearing the foundation of their existence to the ground. This eighteen year old, beautiful girl is the secret with the power to destroy. Not the affair. The girl.

This infuriates me so much that I throw my entire bowl of popcorn at the television, screaming, ranting, throwing a hissy fit the likes of which have not been seen since………..well, yesterday………when some other equally infuriating situation captivated my attention. Wasting a perfectly good bowl of Pop Secret makes me think I should really consider becoming a Prozac princess, but I digress.

At what point did we as a society think it was OK to take the bulk of blame off of those directly responsible for their actions and place the weight of the matter squarely on the shoulders of the innocent? When my own mother told me she was advised to abort me but chose to give birth to me instead, I thought (among other things) that she was seeking praise for making the right choice. It’s not that I am ungrateful (heaven FORBID) for her chosen option but I have to wonder if that was meant to completely eradicate the former choice she made….you know, the one where she has sex? And at what point do her choices become my burdens to carry?

As for the rest of you non card carrying members- All of society has deemed illigitimacy to be some horrifying disease. If you don’t believe me just watch the face of someone who happens to get a glimpse of my Bastard Club card which I proudly carry in my wallet. Sometimes I whip it out at parties for the shock and awe factor. Nothing livens up a party like an outed bastard! I think that’s why Secrets and Lies is the motto for the BC. The rest of society is trying NOT to give us an opportunity to make them squirm in their seats. Again it would seem others choices have become my burdens. Yes I am talking to YOU non BC member! It IS a choice to deem bastardy a disease. Have you actually heard any one of us say: “Please save us from ourselves!” ” Make us legit!” Ummmm…no.

When can we look forward to these bastardly burdens to begin for us? I will tell you. It is the day we are born. On that day our foreheads are stamped with an invisible BC symbol. It’s special ink, only BC members can see it. This way we don’t walk through life making non-members uncomfortable unnecessarily.

Bastard Club members take heart! I believe in all honesty non-members give us this brand on the day of our birth with the true intent of generosity and kindness. You see the brand is to act as a bullseye so we can more easily learn the official BC move. They must know that we will be furiously slapping our foreheads for the rest of our lives.

Now don’t you feel special!

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18 Comments

Filed under Adoptee Family, Uncategorized

18 responses to “Brothers, Sisters and Bastards

  1. Haha Mia, you’re great. I’m still not sure if I’m an official member of BC (pending that elusive dna test), but your post had me laughing and getting pissed off at the same time.

  2. Hopefully you were laughing more than getting pissed off. ;o) It’s good to “see” you Sume! I hope your move went well!

  3. I think I truly became a member when I saw my original birth certificate just last month.
    “Father: unknown”
    Yikes!
    It is kind of funny because I don’t see myself that way but if anybody ever called me that, I’d probably punch them.
    Maybe I need a little therapy.

  4. Who doesn’t need a little therapy Beth? lol
    If someone comes right out and calls you a bastard (in a derogatory way) you are obligated to punch them AND take pictures to share at the next BC meeting. It’s in the rules.

  5. kim.kim

    I think that it’s in bad taste to have something like that in a tv show and sensationalize it. Was she adopted and comes back or she grew up not knowing he was her father? Excuse my slowness here (hey I’m pretty – I don’t need to be smart too…….)

    As mothers, I don’t think our choices are ever the burden of our children. I remember being told time and time and time again by my mother how she didn’t want to have me. Like I am supposed to be grateful to her that I am alive? She said she tried to miscarry me by playing tennis extra hard which is kind of weird and comical and ought to be in a book I know.

    I chose not to have an abortion because it was never an issue, I only had protective feelings towards my baby which is why it really in not correct to put abortion and adoption in the same basket.

    It wasn’t the pregnancy that was the crisis, it was the fucked up family situation that was the crisis. The pregnancy and the existance of L. is a blessing.

  6. Mia,
    Im new to the blog world, but I somehow relate totally to this post, as I am also the dirty little secret bastard that someone forgot to tell her subsequent family about and therefore would prefer for now that I stay away. essentially i have siblings i cannot meet, nieces and nephews as well. But according to the world as seen on tv–i should just mind my own business.
    oh and my bc states father as XXXXXX, so if anyone out there knows a Mr. XXXXXX please let me know.
    cheers, bijou

  7. OMG Bijou WE’RE SISTERS!!!!!! MY father is Mr. XXXX TOO!!!!! ;o)
    Welcome. Thanks for stopping by!

    Kim it was in bad taste as always. And I totally agree about putting abortion and adoption in the same basket. It is a stupid thing to do. It’s comparing apples to oranges….no, actually it’s like comparing apples to pianos.

  8. Mia,

    What I want to know is this: Do you “bastards” have special flashlights that illuminate the “BC” on your foreheads? And besides that, can I be an honorary bastard, pretty please? All the cool kids are so I want to be one too!! *whine* *whine*

  9. I can recall my mother telling me one day that during their divorce, dad told her he only knew that two of the kids were his for sure (there were five of us and I was not one of the two even though I was the oldest). My mom told him and I quote, “How the hell do you know if any of them are yours? I am the only one who knows who I slept with!”

    That clammed up his jaws and he never said another word about it. So like mom2one, I guess many could get “honorary mentions” – lol.

  10. Mia, For some reason, this post reminded me of the drama my firstmom’s mom caused shortly after we origianally reunited. She said “We dealt with THAT 18 years ago, do we really have to deal with THAT again?” I’m sure that my mother meant well by telling me. She wanted to be sure I knew it wasn’t her idea. It feels awful for someone to try to keep you out of the family. It’s been ten years and she hasn’t directly had anything to do with me. I have to send things to my Papa at his PO Box and noone is sure if I’ll be able to attend my sister’s HS graduation because she’ll be there. At one point, she had the balls to tell my firstmom “Either she (me) goes, or I go.” You’re a parent, can you even fathom telling your child that? Oh…but wait… I forgot that she was the one who forced my mother to give me up…

    I think I need to go blog now. Hugs, Rebecca

  11. (Mia, I send crazy hate mail to the networks and to television shows all the time. I’m quite sure no one reads it, but it makes me feel better. I don’t watch Brothers and Sisters but now I wish I did so I could send them some hate mail for you.)

  12. (Not that that would solve the real problem, but I am so helpless to help in this case.)

  13. I love the burden of responsibility we carry. Keep adopted parents happy happy by being grateful and not searching. Keep the half-siblings who don’t know about us happy by keeping our existence a secret and not TEARING THEM APART FOREVER!

    Hand forehead. Repeat. Repeat.

  14. Oh yes I am one of those She Who Must Not Be Named in my natural father’s family. Only his twin sister knows about me (he passed away a few years ago), and I must not dare to speak and “tear the family apart forever” (she doesn’t get that we have been torn apart since I was born).

    I had to laugh about the invisible BC symbol. I had surgery last month, and one of the nurses in pre-op came over to me and swiped a wand across my forehead. I did not know this is a new way of taking a person’s temperature, so I said incredulously, Do I have an invisible bar code on my forehead??? OMG I would have died laughing if I had read your post before they did that.

  15. I think I just peed a little Julie. I can’t believe that nurse was so careless! She could have blown EVERYTHING!

    (((Rebecca, Abebech)))

    Mom2one and LeRoy please see the next post.

    Theresa I think it’s Hand, forehead, rinse, repeat.

  16. Yeah – I’m a home wrecker too.
    (I should have just stayed in my box and kept my bloody mouth closed)
    DOH!!!

  17. Mia, I just read this post for the first time and all the comments plus the post of course are resonating so much. I get it, I get it.

  18. Peach

    We should market this. “Dirty Little Secret” Club/Bastard Club ~

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