Category Archives: Reunion in adoption

I am a Product of Rape & Incest. Should I Contact Birth Family?

Letter Writer: Hello, Lori. I just read your post about rejection by a biological mother, and I was hoping you might be able to give me some input. Recently I discovered I am a product of both rape and incest.

In the early 1970s I was adopted as an infant. Three months ago a geneticist confirmed that my biological parents are either full siblings or a father and daughter.

I had always known I was adopted, but had no idea this was my story. In fact, my adoptive parents had been given a social history about my biological parents that was a completely fabricated. The truth? My birth mother was raped and got pregnant with me.

A Shock, To Say the Least

The geneticist used public records to put together a family tree. I know my biological mother’s name and where she lives. Using this information, I discovered that my birth mother worked at a sexual abuse support center and even participated in a board of inquiry into sexual abuse in her community. That was about 20 years ago.

I am seeking input on whether a woman in her situation would want to hear from her child. As well, I found out she has children who aren’t much younger than me.

If I make contact, it could feel like a lot dumped on the plates of my birth mother and for my siblings (who are also my nieces/nephews). A complicating factor is, as I said, that their community was the site of a governmental inquiry into systemic sexual abuse in religious institutions and in families. Their mother (my mother!) has been public with her story of abuse.

I’m in a Facebook group for NPE adoptees ( Not Parent Expected — people who get this type of unexpected DNA results). This happens more commonly that anyone would think. Unfortunately, there aren’t that many resources. So let me ask:

Is it okay to reach out to my mother and siblings? I’m not sure what to do.

— Millie

Much to Integrate and Navigate

Continue reading I am a Product of Rape & Incest. Should I Contact Birth Family?

Update: the Mom Whose Son Left to Live with Birth Mom

A year ago I published a letter from Charlene that explained her son had found his birth mother and they had all attended his college graduation. The reunion had gone so well that the son had decided to move to another state to live with his birth mom and get to know his biological family.

Charlene was happy for her son, yet also had many other emotions and was feeling confused by their coexistence.

That post resulted in a lively and helpful discussion. Charlene wrote in this week with an update, and she doesn’t mind that I share it with you. We both feel there is value in seeing what happens when a person has no choice but to trust the process (well, I suppose you can fight the process, but in adoption that rarely ends well).

adoption reunion live with birth mom

Continue reading Update: the Mom Whose Son Left to Live with Birth Mom

So Many Emotions About My Son’s Adoption Reunion

Letter Writer: I  came across your post “He Wants to Live with His Birth Mother. Now what?”  — because I’m living it.

I am an adoptive mother of three.  My son, now 23 , graduated from college this past May.  Throughout his upbringing his father and I would talk about adoption from time to time and always told him (and the other kids, too) if they ever wanted to search for their birth parents we encourage and support and will help in anyway possible.

None of our kids ever took an interest, until earlier this year when my son was in his senior year of college. It seemed from out of nowhere, but all of a sudden he wanted to reach out to his birth mother.  I knew her last name and the state she last lived in. With that information, voilà,  he found her on Facebook.

My son met with a counselor who specialized in adoption search and reunion and we met with them to navigate the process.  My son asked for my help, asked if I could message her  through Facebook.  At first I was hesitant but after composing what I thought was a thoughtful , acceptable letter, the message was sent.

That was February of 2016.  We held our breath. Will she open the message, will she be open to corresponding, will she reject him? What will happen???

Fast forward a few months. We flew her and her entire family to his college town to attend his graduation this spring. They stayed for a week. Four weeks later my son decided to move to another state and live with them.

So this has been a whirlwind. It has been such an array of emotions. I am so grateful his biological family accepted him and immediately loved him and were open and kind and appreciative towards us.

On my bad days I feel like….. what. just. happened.

mixed emotions of adoption reunion

Continue reading So Many Emotions About My Son’s Adoption Reunion