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AIBU to wonder about biological parents

(18 Posts)
SingingInTheRainstorm Tue 24-Jan-17 04:41:38

I found myself off work and watching Jeremy Kyle, seeing Dad's who raised children that they knew weren't biologically there's, verses Dad's who didn't even know they had a child. Plus a few adopted children looking for their parents.

I wondered if you've been raised with a step parent or someone you thought was your parent, is there any importance to your biological parent? The same if you've been adopted I guess. Is it disrespect to the adults that raised you as their own? Also is it unreasonable not to tell your children that who they've grown up looking as family, aren't actually family, considering you know the impact it had on your life when told.

I ask this as I was told as an adult that the guy I idolised wasn't actually my Dad. Although he raised me, I was a total Daddies girl, I think this affected him and his family as much as it affected me. I totally respect him for the sacrifice he made, everything he did for me, but obviously such a revelation impacts things. I don't know who my biological Dad is either.

Strongmummy Tue 24-Jan-17 09:13:22

Hi there, what a profound shock for you to be told this about your dad!! My son is adopted. We became a family when he was 8 months (he's now 3) and we've always told him how we met. It is always best to be honest and I feel sad for you that your parents weren't (although I am sure they had their reasons). I am very aware that at some point in the future he will ask about his birth parents and at some stage may want to meet them. Of course that will be upsetting to me, but I totally understand that it would be natural request by him. I would help him on his quest and be there to support him if (when!) it doesn't work out. Adopted parents have training (of a sort) to expect this as part of the process. It is totally natural you want to understand who your birth father is and your parents really need to support you through this and give you the answers you need. Good luck

IronDuchess Tue 24-Jan-17 09:59:42

I'm a product of a one night stand. I was always told I didn't have a Dad, I accepted that, although couldn't quite understand why everyone else had one and I didn't. When it dawned on me that I had to have a Dad, I found it very confusing. I still didn't ask my Mum about it for another 6 years. When I did, she told me that she only knew his first name and is literally untraceable, she also didn't seem to think this was a big deal. I struggled with the fact I'll never know him for another 10 years, it had a huge detrimental effect on my mental health. I've been obsessed with Genealogy since around that time and suspect it's because I yearn to have some sort of history as I will never know 50% of my family. I'm older and wiser now and I've fully accepted the situation, it is what it is. Even if I could trace him now, I wouldn't. What would be the point of turning his life, my life and my family's life upside down? I might find someone I can't relate to or don't like and that would be worse than the situation I'm in now - continuing not to know is definitely the right thing for me.

SaorAlbaGuBrath Tue 24-Jan-17 10:03:29

I'm sorry you found that out, it must have been really tough for you and him.
I'm adopted, can't remember being told, I've just always known. My mum and dad are my parents, no ifs ands or buts.
I'd like to thank my bio mother one day, because what she did (carrying me, giving birth and then giving me up) was very brave and selfless and I'm grateful that she did that. But she's not my mum.

SingingInTheRainstorm Tue 24-Jan-17 13:55:09

I fear with DC's being so old, will they feel the same as I did when I found out? It was always bought up, if that side of the family went against my husbands wishes. You know if they had chocolate, sweets & general unhealthy food. But I have seen many joke that's what Grandparentsxare there for.

Ironically my Mum's family have little to do with DC at all. Each get a Christmas present, I don't think they did last year, just money to split between them, which wasn't much. DS is a lot more sensitive than DD as he cant even really remember my Mum.

I think this was a one night stand or very short fling. I have had a similar interest in genealogy, I know that just for a names same, you can have this DNA test which links you with cousins, 2nd cousins etc. If we share a common Great or Great Great Grandparent you could work backwards like that. But never really had the money to pay for the DNA test, even though via Ancestry, it's circa £70/80.

I worry I've left it too long to tell my children, Both being either nearly in secondary school, or in secondary school. Maybe leaving it till they're older could be an option, as they have a good relationship with my Dads side of the family, I worry it would upset that family, even though now we rarely talk that much, it's more for the children. Obviously things have been pretty strained.

I don't even know what you would call the biological parent, if you knew for sure that is. Since I think what my Dad did was very selfless, he didn't have to take me on. They have been amazing with me and still are amazing with DC's. It's not a subject that gets mentioned, although my Grandparents feel my Mum should tell me, for a number or reasons.

It must be hard being adoptive parents, I hope DC recognise what you did and have done for them. I admit it would have been easier to say something earlier, but didn't want to upset anyone even though things are strained. I really feel for you IronDuchess, it's like you lose your identity in a strange way. I agree in theory searching sounds amazing, but in practise it's been a long time and it would be a shock and the reception might not be positive.

Userfriendly Tue 24-Jan-17 16:58:47

You should never have been lied to. In the interests of public health, i.e. to prevent inbreeding, birth certificates should be completed truthfully. Paternity should be established by DNA test. The current practice of falsifying birth records for adoptees and sperm and egg donees should be abolished.

LateToTheParty Tue 24-Jan-17 17:15:28

OP that must have been hard to hear. I hope you are still able to have a good relationship.

Userfriendly* I'm an adopter, and my children's birth records have not been falsified! They have adoption certificates which legally supersede their birth certificates, but in no way are they false. The adoption certs, both long & short, make clear that they are adopted.

Willialwaysbelookeddownon Tue 24-Jan-17 17:20:40

I didn't find out my dad wasn't my dad until I was 11 and it was by a friend of my dads who made a stupid slip up and suddenly everything made sense.
It severely damaged our relationship I wish I had known from the start, I always felt like I couldn't ask questions too and it caused a lot of insecurity within myself.
However when I was 19 'real dad' tracked me down and turned out to be an even bigger nutter than my mum had said and I want absolutely nothing to do with him and tbh I felt satisfied once I saw a photograph of him as I didn't look like my mum or other siblings.
He holds absolutely no importance to me and since I have had children my dad and my relationship is very strong.
I'm sorry that you found out when you were an adult, it's a horrible feeling and I remember feeling so dazed and confused.

Seryph Tue 24-Jan-17 18:23:16

I was adopted (pre-'91 adoption act), and have always known that was the case.
It did come up in the horrendous teenage arguments with my (adoptive) mother ie. 'I bet you wish you could send me back and get a better daughter, don't you?!' But beyond that it's not really something that really came up too much.
I've always wondered where my people are from, I've got olive skin and dark hair and eyes so I always guessed at least one of my bio parents came from somewhere else. Mum told me a couple of years ago (I'm in my late 20s now) that my bio mum is Scottish and that my bio father buggered off before she knew she was pregnant. But that's the extent of my knowledge.

I think you should always tell the kids, and tell them young, it shouldn't be a huge shock as an older child/teenager/adult.

Strongmummy Tue 24-Jan-17 19:19:30

What on earth are you talking about Userfriendly?!?! Children who are adopted have a birth certificate, which is then superseded by an adoption certificate! They are both accurate records, no falsification!!

OP - being an adopted parent does come with added responsibility and it can be different to parenting a birth child. I do fear my son throwing the "you're not my real mum" line at me when he's older, although most teenagers can be shits. I remember telling my mum I hated her and wished I were adopted....nice

Natsku Tue 24-Jan-17 19:26:24

So sorry for the people that didn't find out until they were older, or by accident, that's horrible sad

My three oldest brothers are adopted, they've always known that (they were old enough to remember being adopted - parents fostered them for quite a few years before the adoption was finalised). Two of them sought out their bio-mum when they were adults, it was upsetting for my parents, especially as one of them changed his name back to his bio-mum's maiden name. The oldest one didn't want to see his bio-mum, and when he met her at brother's wedding he wouldn't talk to her or anything. In the end my brother changed his name back as he, and the other one, realised that our parents were their parents. All fine now, don't know if they still have contact with bio-mum but if they do its not a big part of their lives.

magictorch Tue 24-Jan-17 19:41:42

userfriendly my son is here thanks to an egg donor and after eight heartbreaking years of fertility treatment. The fact that I am named as his mother on his birth certificate is not a case of falsifying records. I am his mum. I carried him, gave birth to him and fed him for two years.

Try and walk a mile in someone else's shoes before being so offensive.

Userfriendly Tue 24-Jan-17 19:51:57

In the interests of public health, i.e. to prevent inbreeding, birth certificates should be completed truthfully. @magictorch Your son needs to know the identity of his biological parents.

The current practice of falsifying birth records for adoptees and sperm and egg donees should be abolished. @Strongmummy The comment is not specific to any jurisdiction.

Strongmummy Tue 24-Jan-17 19:59:06

What user friendly?!?! Stop trying justify your incorrect comment. It was offensive and incorrrct. You also owe magic torch a BIG apology. You sound like some eugenicist (look it up)

magictorch Tue 24-Jan-17 20:00:38

userfriendly we fully intend to tell him how he was made in a sensible way, as soon as he is old enough thank you hmm as per clinic recommendations (this is not a legal requirement). But the person who donated the single cell, the egg, is anonymous. My son will have every right to trace her when he turns 18, according to HFEA rules. Both she and I and every donor/recipient has to go through counselling to understand the implications. The clinic also makes sure that the donor is as far away geographically as possible.

Again, he is my son. I grew him. Please don't try and take that away from me.

magictorch Tue 24-Jan-17 20:01:22

Thank you strongmummy

Userfriendly Tue 24-Jan-17 20:35:02

@Strongmummy In most jurisdictions, adoptee birth records are still falsified. Regarding inbreeding, heed the warning:

Strongmummy Tue 24-Jan-17 22:45:47

I can't speak for "most jurisdictions" - and I seriously doubt you can either - but in the UK they're not, therefore your starting premise is absolutely incorrect. And thanks for the warning about inbreeding Dr Mengele!!!

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