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find my birth father

“Nobody Should Ever Feel Like They’re a Mistake”

Elijah Thomas, who just turned 24, was determined to find his birth father. In a sort of reverse Gotcha,  he shares with us the story of his adoption reunion.

find birth father

Adoption is Never Totally Closed in Our Hearts.

First off, I am no adoption expert. 

I don’t recommend what I did for everyone.

Ultimately I think I did this so that my birth father wouldn’t have the opportunity to reject me (again).  From what I understood, he wanted no contact with me. 

Perhaps I was a bit angry with the idea that a person could father a child and then choose to simply ignore that fact for the rest of their life. 

Where was my say as the adopted child?

Even though I’ve been quite content with the life I’ve lived and my wonderful family, I still had thoughts and feelings of incompleteness and of being rejected. These feelings were creating a rift between me and those I loved.

I was lucky enough to have very understanding parents who agreed to let me find my father.  I think children of closed adoption often suffer in silence about these things.

Our adoption is never totally closed in our hearts. After stalking meeting John, (my birth father), I feel more a part of my family (my adoptive family) than ever, because I felt more complete than ever before.

Ending & Beginning, Open & Closed

I feel like this is both an end and a new beginning for me. Meeting my birth father marks the end of a lot of suffering, self doubt, depression, and anger. Now that my adoption is open, I can finally say that the case is “closed” once and for all in my heart. 

Life feels new and different now that I no longer feel like some mistake that was made 24 years ago.

Elijah Thomas is a 24 year old actor, musician, and filmmaker. He is currently an open major student at BYU. His claim to fame is his performance as Lord Voldemort in the YouTube viral video “Dark Lord Funk.” He believes that as long as communication, love, and trust, are implemented in an adoption from ALL PARTIES, the adoption can be successful.

Elijah’s  38 minute documentary, Lucky Bastard, is available for purchase on Vimeo. You can reach him by email or through his YouTube channel.

Lori Holden, mom of a young adult daughter and a young adult son, writes from Denver. She was honored as an Angel in Adoption® by the Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute.

Find Lori’s books on her Amazon Author page, and catch episodes of Adoption: The Long View wherever you get your podcasts.

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11 Responses

  1. Lori, you give voice to so many people who need to be heard. Thank you doe this. I am glad Elijah had the guts to go after what he wanted and what is rightfully ours as adoptees–acknowledgment as human beings. As the child of a man and a woman.

  2. Wow. Elijah, this took balls. I’m so glad you had support but also that you were able to find closure. Too many people dont find closure or resolution and the trauma that causes is life-altering. So bravo.

    And thank you Lori for providing the space for Elijah to share his story.

    1. Thank, you Christy.
      I appreciate your comment and support. I agree that Lori has been a hero for allowing me this space to tell the story. As you said, there are SO many people who never have the opportunity to receive closure about these things. It’s been my hope that trough this story/film will allow people to feel some measure of that vicariously. Thank you again!

  3. Elijah..I am 48 and though not adopted, I was raised by family members. My mother had an affair with a married man which resulted in my birth..I was told by my mother my paternity was “none of your business”, my father’s name was not on my birth certificate and she was not very forthcoming with details. I had a few clues to work with and reached out to my birth father..he never even contacted me back to reject me. He died 7 years ago..4 years ago I reached out to his daughter and a relative I found via and Facebook..again radio silence. 2 years ago I did the ancestry DNA test and my paternity is confirmed. The relative who I reached to 4 years ago messaged me on facebook to let me know my sister who is about 8 years older than I am is “not interested” in having a relationship with me. She also does not want this relative to tell me anything about my father. I read the comments left on his obituary by friends and family members saddens me that I read stories of him being such a devoted friend that he drove and picked up a child who was around my age in 1972 and kept her safe, changed her diaper etc…he could pretend I did not exist but took care of everyone else. Elijah I am so glad for you that you have family that support you especially on a journey as difficult as this..I hope you have some closure

    1. K, I am so sorry you were on the receiving end of all that shame and secrecy. It sounds so hard to be denied by people who, in the words of Jack Nicholson in that Tom Cruise movie, “can’t handle the truth.”

  4. Wow such a profound thought: “Now that my adoption is open, I can finally say that the case is ‘closed’ once and for all in my heart.” It speaks volumes to how important it is to have an open adoption for all members of the triad.

  5. Thanks for sharing this Lori. Thanks for your bravery Elijah. The truth is your friend. This certainly shines a light on why closed adoption can be so painful for adoptees. The not knowing is so very difficult. I look forward to watching the documentary.

  6. Thank you, Elijah. I am a birth mother, forced to surrender by newborn in 1965. This was the consequence of being an unwed mother with no resources and support. I found my son when he was 18. At first he was overjoyed. His adoptive parents were very angry, called an attorney.
    It has been a rocky road.
    I look forward to seeing more of your story and I thank you for having the courage to take this journey of truth.

  7. Elijah,
    I agree with other comments that it took a lot of guts to show up unannounced and take whatever came. You are fortunate that your bdad knew–at least– that you existed and who your mother was. And, I am very glad that you were able to have to have that initial, priceless contact and be received with graciousness. I hope that there will be next steps getting to know each other.
    However, if on the receiving end of such a visit and considering the import of this meeting, I know that I would want advance notice. Although I do understand that sometimes you just have to throw your bucket down the well. Luckily you had a buddy to accompany you to help support you, film the event, and ensure your safety.

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