Attending a CUB meeting
I attended a Concerned United Birthparents (CUB) meeting on Saturday. I went to share the good news of getting my memoir published. And I went to do what one does at support group meetings–get and give support. I was pleased to see that a CUB meeting is much like it was some years ago. A CUB meeting is not just for birthparents, but for adoptees, and for adoptive parents too.
My experience with CUB in the 90s
In 1990 when I was attending regularly, the group was huge. Thirty folding chairs in a circle with a couple of boxes of Kleenex making the rounds. Even back then birthmothers were joined by a few birth fathers, adoptees, and a couple of adoptive parents. Many attendees were involved in searching for their lost family members, but some were there to celebrate reunion. Others were there for support because it didn’t seem that a reunion would ever be possible. Still others were looking for guidance on their new relationships with mothers, fathers, or adult children. Every story was unique.
In our information age where it’s possible to find your birth family in 36 hours, (oh–if only it were always so easy!) the ranks of CUB seem to have thinned a bit. But the meeting I went to on Saturday was every bit as diverse as the ones I remember from more than two decades ago.
There was an adoptee about to introduce her siblings to each other (one from her adoptive family, the other from her birth family). There was a birthmother who’d attended CUB for years, searched found nothing, then years later came back and thereafter was reunited with her son who is now getting to know her other adult children. An adoptee read the letter she hopes to send to her recently located birthmother. A birthmother, back from the wedding of her son– the first milestone in his life she hadn’t missed. An adoptive mother sharing her story of her children’s inabilities to heal after their lives of abuse prior to their adoption. An adoptee with her toddler daughter describing what it was like to give birth and realize she’d just met her first blood relative. A birthmother announcing that the first meeting between her and her daughter is now on the calendar.
Each story told of an opened a door. Between birthmother and adoptee. Or adoptee and adoptive parent. Or between adoptive parent and birthmother.
Why go to a CUB meeting?
The meetings well-moderated meetings are a safe place where people listen. The Internet has made searching easier. But there are still plenty of reasons to go to a CUB meeting. If you’re a birthparent, an adoptee, or an adoptive parent, and you are looking for support or information, or a group where you can share your story and hear others, a CUB meeting is a fantastic idea. Check the website for the meeting schedule in your area.
I can’t even imagine the power of the emotions in that room. Well, I sort of can. I used to go to a sexual abuse survivor’s group and every meeting felt as if someone had laid their soul bare.