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Contacting adopted children. Leave it alone?

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  • Pricivius
    Pricivius Posts: 651 Forumite
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    As an addition to my earlier post, in response to those who are not sure that a person deserves to know the truth or has a right to know or that any good could come of it...

    - I look very little like my siblings (both full sibs). It turns out I look very much like my father's side of the family whereas my sibs look like my mum's side. To the extent that I seriously thought I might have been adopted, and asked my mum when I was 14. When I met my Dad and his family, I fell into place. I am clearly straight out of his gene pool. At his funeral, lifelong friends of his who did not know I existed were staggered at the resemblance. At a base biological level, I finally belonged.

    - Taking a detached view, my upbringing has fascinated me in terms of the influence of nature and nurture. My character reflects my step-father and I see his influence in my persona every day. But I also now know that many aspects of my fundamental personality came from my father - my stubbornness, my temper and my tendency to obsess, for example. The very essence of who I am at a biological level is 50% my biological father and nothing can change that, although the subsequent influence of my step-father was huge.

    - I found another family - an auntie and cousins with families of their own, as well as wider family. In my experience, we have not kept in touch, but that's not to say that would always be the case. That connection may be important, helpful and comforting to some.

    - Medical has been mentioned but it is relevant to me, as both my dad and stepdad had hereditary illnesses. The decision to have children would certainly have been influenced if I was my stepdad's biological child.

    Just a few thoughts...
  • whitewing
    whitewing Posts: 11,852 Forumite
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    Maybe they meant half brother not step brother.
    :heartsmil When you find people who not only tolerate your quirks but celebrate them with glad cries of "Me too!" be sure to cherish them. Because these weirdos are your true family.
  • mumps
    mumps Posts: 6,285 Forumite
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    Pricivius wrote: »
    As an addition to my earlier post, in response to those who are not sure that a person deserves to know the truth or has a right to know or that any good could come of it...

    - I look very little like my siblings (both full sibs). It turns out I look very much like my father's side of the family whereas my sibs look like my mum's side. To the extent that I seriously thought I might have been adopted, and asked my mum when I was 14. When I met my Dad and his family, I fell into place. I am clearly straight out of his gene pool. At his funeral, lifelong friends of his who did not know I existed were staggered at the resemblance. At a base biological level, I finally belonged.


    Well, she'd've saved a lot of time and emotional energy if she hadn't known he existed, wouldn't she?

    Sometimes ignorance really is bliss.

    Pricivius explains what the woman I know was looking for. She is nothing like her mother or adoptive father, apparently she looks like her biological father and is like him in personality. She loves the parents who brought her up but she was looking for that sense of belonging, it might not be important to you but I still think she had a right to her feelings and I think she might have been even more confused if her mother had lied to her about it.

    If this young woman doesn't know the truth maybe ignorance is bliss but the trouble is you can't guarantee that the secret will be kept forever.
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  • TonyMMM
    TonyMMM Posts: 3,394 Forumite
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    Mojisola wrote: »
    That's not the case now.

    Correct - short certificates haven't been any use for a passport application for years.
  • pimento
    pimento Posts: 6,243 Forumite
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    So your children have a half sister? Do they know about their sister?
    "If you think it's expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur." -- Red Adair
  • seven-day-weekend
    seven-day-weekend Posts: 36,755 Forumite
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    edited 3 December 2015 at 4:44PM
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    Reading my story here may help. I traced my birth mother in my 60s and I have a good relationship with her.

    http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=3871947

    I would find out first if she knows about her birth father. If she doesn't, leave her alone. If she does, give her the choice of whether she wishes to have a relationship or not - if she doesn't then leave her alone.
    (AKA HRH_MUngo)
    Member #10 of £2 savers club
    Imagine someone holding forth on biology whose only knowledge of the subject is the Book of British Birds, and you have a rough idea of what it feels like to read Richard Dawkins on theology: Terry Eagleton
  • missbiggles1
    missbiggles1 Posts: 17,481 Forumite
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    mumps wrote: »
    Pricivius explains what the woman I know was looking for. She is nothing like her mother or adoptive father, apparently she looks like her biological father and is like him in personality. She loves the parents who brought her up but she was looking for that sense of belonging, it might not be important to you but I still think she had a right to her feelings and I think she might have been even more confused if her mother had lied to her about it.

    If this young woman doesn't know the truth maybe ignorance is bliss but the trouble is you can't guarantee that the secret will be kept forever.

    It hardly warrants being called a secret, does it?

    Before DNA testing became available, masses of people were brought up in this and similar situations and nobody thought anything of it - it's all modern day angst and first world problems.
  • Person_one
    Person_one Posts: 28,884 Forumite
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    It hardly warrants being called a secret, does it?

    Before DNA testing became available, masses of people were brought up in this and similar situations and nobody thought anything of it - it's all modern day angst and first world problems.

    With respect, I think that you have raised fostered/adopted children haven't you? So I think it's natural that your perspective will be slightly skewed towards thinking biology irrelevant, which is perfectly understandable.

    Not every adopted/fostered/raised by stepfather person feels that way. Many do want to meet and know about biological relatives. Plenty of us have experiences in our families that have shown this clearly. Some happy endings some less so. If you could see my relative sat around a table with his wife, children and grandchildren chatting and eating with his new-found siblings, nieces and nephews and see the happiness it's brought after 60 years of ignorance, you would never want to deny him that even though he'd have died perfectly happy none the wiser.

    None of us know how this woman feels, and whatever she wants to do with the information about her parentage is entirely up to her, no rights or wrongs, but nobody has the right to deny her the chance to make that choice for herself. She's a grown woman, she is owed the truth about her self and her life.
  • whitewing
    whitewing Posts: 11,852 Forumite
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    bio-mum may lie to bio-dad. I would still go through an agency, at least initially.
    :heartsmil When you find people who not only tolerate your quirks but celebrate them with glad cries of "Me too!" be sure to cherish them. Because these weirdos are your true family.
  • Poppie68
    Poppie68 Posts: 4,881 Forumite
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    If his name is on her birth certificate and she hasn't tried to make contact then she should be left alone... the father made the decision to effectively abandon her. If he's not named the mother should be the first point of call, there maybe some underlining reasons/problems which would make contact a very bad idea.
    In regards to birth certificates, myself, husband, 3 children and grandchild all have full birth certificates, all original, never knew short ones exsisted?
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