My birth mom did not have a father’s name listed on my birth certificate, and the man’s name she put on the court paperwork ended up not being him. I am doing the first, and what feels like the only step I can, to try and figure out who this mystery guy is. Let me start at the beginning.
The only name I had for a possible birth father was on court paperwork. My adoptive mom said she had no idea who he was. When I was 18, my half birth sister (we have the same mom but different dad) found this guy on Facebook. I shot him a message, and we started chatting. He had no biological kids, and we were both excited at the possibility of finally finding each other, father and daughter. He agreed to pay for a paternity test, and that time period in my life was so nerve wracking. I had just graduated from high school, was trying to figure out what I wanted to do when I grew up, and had a serious boyfriend for the first time, all while dealing with this life altering possibility of maybe just finding my birth father.
That negative paternity test shook me harder than anything else in life has. To have the possibility of finding my birth father, and to have him be so kind and excited to have found me too, and then to have that completely ripped away sent me into a spiral.
But I swept my feelings under the rug and convinced myself I would never look again; I couldn’t bear to feel that kind of hurt again.
I was adopted at two years of age with my half-birth sister. Her birth father got back in her life when she was about 8 and I was about 6. They were so kind in including me in all the fun activities they would take my sister on, even though I wasn’t their birth child and they certainly didn’t have to. I grew up thinking, “Man, I’m so lucky to have this bonus family. They are so kind to include me. How dare I have longings to have a relationship with my birth father when it probably won’t be as good as this.” How many other adoptees can relate to those feelings, we should feel lucky, and how dare we feel anything negative?
It was wonderful, but also EVERY SINGLE TIME we hung out with my sister’s birth family, I was reminded of what I was missing, wondering what if. My sister had part of her story redeemed, and I’m still wondering where my redemption is.
After a year of therapy that has caused enormous growth both as a person and in my walk with Christ, I am ready to start searching for my birth father. I have gotten in contact with my birth mom’s side of the family, and even though she passed away before we could reconnect, it has been so nice to connect with half siblings. I have asked everyone on that side if they have any idea who my birth father is, and none of them have a name or clue. So, my first step is sending in an Ancestry DNA kit that has been sitting in my pantry collecting dust, because I just wasn’t ready yet.
What if I can’t find him? What if he isn’t healthy, either mentally or physically? What if he’s dead? What if he wants nothing to do with me? These are all questions that have prevented me from even looking, but I’m finally ready to face those questions and potential hurts head on.
If my birth father, or anyone related to him, don’t pop up on my Ancestry results, I’m not really sure where I’ll go from there. I’m not sure if I will continue my search. But what I do know is I have a heavenly father who loves me, who wants me, and who will walk right beside me as I take this journey, along with an amazing husband and therapist.
I plan to keep ya’ll updated with my search, but please remember this is my story. What I chose to share is up to me, so please don’t prod. Sharing is terrifying, but as I’ve said before, God has given me this story to help others, and I plan to do that, while also keeping in mind my mental health.