Everyone is entitled to know…except those who are adopted

02 Apr

“Finding the truth behind the stories.” 

On the trail of a mysterious ancestor.”

“Who paved the way for you?”

Where did your family come from?”

“You too can solve a family mystery.”

How deep are your American roots?”

Catchy headlines from emails I have received lately from Ancestry.  Something that the majority of people would not stop and think about.  Just like the show Who Do You Think You Are? that follows celebrities finding out who is in their family tree and the impact it has on them.  Either you are into genealogy or not but even if you aren’t, the show can be entertaining because it has the celebrity factor. 
But when the show is called “Find My Family” or “Searching For” or “The Locator”…then people all have an opinion because adoption enters the equation, and quite simply because we not supposed to be intrigued or curious or want to know, that it’s not important…who we were born to be…who our ancestors were…what roads they travelled.
Of course there are those who agree we should be able to access our original birth certificates, those who provide the PC lip service but don’t really like the idea of us knowing where we came from, and those who simply think we should be grateful for what we have…and be happy and content to live life without answers.
This is what I was thinking about today as I was cleaning out my inbox.  And I realized that for 90% of my life I could not have answered any of those questions in the headlines, or had any hope of ever knowing anything.  For last 10% of my life I have been able to answer those questions for 50% of my family.  And realizing I am one of the lucky ones with that knowledge, some will go to the graves never knowing, some have already gone.  
A right everyone else takes for granted…

Posted by on April 2, 2011 in Adoption, Uncategorized


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6 responses to “Everyone is entitled to know…except those who are adopted

  1. Von

    April 2, 2011 at 10:48 pm

    So very true.I wrote to to complain about the way adoptees are not in any way made space for in their system.I had a very courteous reply saying they had not thought of it (!!!!!!!!) but would be working on it. Next step making the advertisng more inclusive perhaps? They’re probably wasting them time since in 4 generations American history will all be false due to false records given adoptees.


    • cb

      April 2, 2011 at 11:05 pm

      Good on you, Von!


  2. cb

    April 2, 2011 at 11:38 pm

    “And realizing I am one of the lucky ones with that knowledge, some will go to the graves never knowing, some have already gone. ”

    It is so sad that so many people will never know.

    I remember in 6th grade, we had an assignment entitled “what makes me me?” and knowing about family history has really helped complete the answer to that question.

    One of the most exciting things in my “search and reunion” has been the fact that I can look of pictures of maternal brelatives, eg bgreatgrandparents, and realise that they are part of how I came to be. I accept that I may never know anything about the paternal brelatives but consider myself fortunate that I do at least have a large amount of knowledge about the maternal side (thanks to a very active family history society for those descended from convict forebear and his brother – my bgrandfather is descended from convict forebear, my bgrandmother from his brother – I think everyone in the area they lived is related somehow lol). Also, knowing all this information has helped in understanding what life was like for my bmother and how she came to be who she was. It has also helped me to understand the circumstances behind my adoption.


  3. Fran Whelan

    April 6, 2011 at 12:43 pm

    I didn’t realise America was so far behind in releasing details to adoptees. Here in the UK we’ve had access to our details for about 25 years, so long as we had been ‘counselled’ before hand. But no amount of counselling can prepare you for the door to be opened a crack and then slammed shut again.
    I was lucky – I did get some details from my short relationship with my birth Family, which has led me to believe I am the result of history repeating itself – my BF doesn’t have a Father listed on his Birth Certificate either…
    One of the reasons I was so interested in finding my birth family is because I am passionate about animals, and horses in particular. It turned out my GG Uncle was a Farrier in the Royal Horse Artillery, and my maternal aunt had left school, like me, to work with horses, and was as passionate about them as I was.

    There are also some amazing coincidences in my family which I would never have got to hear about without being reunited (all be it briefly) with my Birthfamily.


    • The adopted ones

      April 6, 2011 at 1:33 pm

      Hi Fran,

      Welcome – glad you found our blog. I have always loved horses and there is nothing better than an afternoon spent riding but the other author here Shadow Adoptee is the real deal in my mind as she owns horses.

      Sadly the most of the states and most provinces in Canada as well are so far behind the rest of the world it is pathetic on allowing adult adoptees access to their records. The NFCA the industry spokesman actively lobbies against any bills to open the records….sad indeed when they claim to have our best interests at heart…but apparently only until we turn 18, they we are the enemy.


  4. shadowtheadoptee

    April 7, 2011 at 1:10 pm

    Hi Fran, and welcome to our blog. My Mom, adoptive for clarification, would always say to me, “If I didn’t know better, I’d swear, you were born on the back of a horse.” If there was a horse anywhere within reach, I was riding it, petting it, feeding it, or anything else I could do to be near a horse. After I reunited with my birthmother, I found out my sister, and all of my female cousins adore horses. We get it from our grandmother, who often told me about when she was a little girl and how much she loved going to her grandparents farm/ranch and riding the horses. You might enjoy a post I wrote about one of my horses titled, “My Garage Sale Horse”.

    I wasn’t allowed access to my OBC until after 2005, and only then because I had already reunited and could provide the state of Texas with my biological parents names. Even though I had already met both of them by then, I still wanted my OBC. I can’t tell you how it made me feel, or what holding it in my hand meant to me.




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