“The story of adoption is a ghost story *
I am one of those ghosts.
I am an adoptee.
I am M.
I have a name, but it’s not mine. I’ve studied history, but I don’t know my own. I exist, but I don’t belong. I am a Steppenwolf.
I exist with my brotherhood in a sort of Ghost Kingdom, a shadowy underworld of bastards, orphans and other social outcasts from the past to the present.
Where is this Ghost Kingdom? George Orwell provides directions,
“… it was not death, actual physical death, that he wished for … He wanted to go down, deep down, into some world where decency no longer mattered … (with) the lost people, the under-ground people: tramps, beggars, criminals, prostitutes … that great sluttish underworld … a sort of kingdom of ghosts where all are equal. That was where he wished to be, down in the ghost-kingdom… just part of the slum, and, like all slum-dwellers, taken for granted. †
* Betty Jean Lifton Ph.D., Ghosts in the Adopted Family (2009)
† George Orwell, Keep the Aspidistra Flying (1936)