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Adoption Research

Posted by maddielee (My Page) on
Mon, May 7, 12 at 10:01

I'll start a new thread....

My question is a little different. My parents were foster parents to infants in the 1960's when I was in high school.

In most cases, they would receive a baby shortly after birth and care for she or he until adoption was finalized.

We had one baby, known as George, who came to us at 6 months and stayed until he was 18 months. needless to say, it was heartbreaking when he was adopted. My parents wanted to adopt him but they knew it would not be fair for him because of their ages.

I have photos of him and even a 8mm movie of his first steps. My mother even saved his curl from his first haircut. I love to be able give them to him. Think there is any chance of ever locating him? I have contacted the agency, Catholic Charities in Tampa, and was told that no information was available.

thanks

ML


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Adoption Research

Maddielee, Thanks for doing this thread...I couldn't get to it yesterday! A lot will depend on what state this was in. But I would suggest you register on the ISRR registry with as much info as you have (do you have his birth date?) Then go to ISRRxchange (different site from the registry) and sign up there and ask for help. You can put in as much info as you have about George - there is always a chance he is searching for his birth family and will find you! You can join a group on ISRRXchange for your state where search angels specialize and ask for people to help and make suggestions about how to proceed.

You can also register on Adoption.com as an "other" with info that you have; you can also search there and see if he might be registered. ISRR isn't searchable by the public, but Adoption.com is. There are some tricks that help so if you want to email me privately, tubas3646 at mypacks dot net and I'll see what I can find.
I think it is wonderful that you want to get that part of his childhood to him. Most kids in foster care lose those years of their life.


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RE: Adoption Research

I'll try to get you some links later. There is a better site then ISRR called reunion registry.

Also make a post on city-data in the people search section; there are a lot of people that can probably help you quickly.


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RE: Adoption Research

Roselvr, I think reunion registry is the same as adoption.com, but thanks for clarifying where to go at adoption.com. It's http://registry.adoption.com/

But if you have a different site, I'd love to have that one, too.


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RE: Adoption Research

Yes; correct link sorry I was restarting my computer & scanned your post quickly before shutting down. They also have a message board that when I was looking for my 1/2 brother; was not connected to the registry site. I had a few posts on the message board when he was actually registered at the other section. I was also registered with ISRR which was no help to me.

Message boards - you really have to dig into this site because there are so many different ways to find people. Last time I was there; there were state topics as well as Catholic Charities.

City-data People search - the people here are awesome! Make sure you add as much info as you can; they usually take it to private message.


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RE: Adoption Research

roselvr..I've never used that site at City-data, thanks for that link. It doesn't seem easily searchable to see if someone else has posted - am I missing that? But what a great resource if you have some info and the people there can help fill in the blanks with their research. Thanks!


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RE: Adoption Research

Make a post there like you did here. The search feature isn't bad; not sure if you have to be a member to search. Whats good is that google picks up posts there & will then display it if he tries to search for you using one of the keywords. There is also an adoption section; but I would use the people one. I know the searchers there; they will give you a lot of help. I don't know if they hang in the adoption board


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Adoption Reunion

I keep forgetting to add my experience at reunion registry on the registry side..

Even after we added the information; we still were not being matched with my 1/2 brother because of the way we spelled things verses how he spelled things. If you'd like to see; I could probably redo the search results via email- it was stupid because it was the matter of 1 letter at the end of the name being off; correct spelling had a z while he had an s. I'm not sure but her 1st name may have also been spelled the American way verses Hungarian. This was all months before my dad was diagnosed with cancer. I still go back to the reunion registry every year to see if I ever get a hit but have not as of last year. I don't recall how we originally got the hit to begin with since I can't duplicate it.


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RE: Adoption Research

Here is a link to the thread where this discussion began - a tangent in the internet research thread. There is some good info here.

Here is a link that might be useful: Beginning of this thread on internet research thread


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RE: Adoption Research

Thank you olychick and roselvr, I will try the sites you shared.

ML


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RE: Adoption Research

ISRRxchange - What is the ISRRxchange?

ISRR Xchange main page where the message board is that you need an invitation to join

Documents sheets - SAMPLE Petition for Access to Adoption Records & Non-Identifying Information Guidelines & Booklist

Military archives just found the site & figured I'd post it here

I found a facebook people search site today; the fact sheet below is via this page; so please; if you save the information; give the gal a break & thank her by liking the page as she does not have a fan base. It's small sites like these that will get you results IMO

People Searching

Read first: When filing out the Fact Sheet, please fill out the form with as much information as you can. If it asks a date that is exactly unknown, narrow down our searching field by listing a possible range. Give assumptions if necessary, but please mark assumptions with quotations (Rick "Richard" Daniels). If you are giving a more detailed assumption please explain it on the form-for example (Place of Birth: "Oklahoma"- because he always referred to himself as an 'ole okie). All names, nicknames, akas, street names are wanted. Please put in BOLD TYPE the facts that you are absolutely positive about (not necessarily what they directly told you) For example (because you saw the birth certificate you could put on Place of birth: ARKANSAS). On all fields, if you know any information that you know is old and no longer good- please list it on the form. If there are names listed that you are unsure of spelling, mark with a *.

Fact Sheet:

Part 1: Basics
Name/ AKAs:
Place of birth:
Date of birth:
Place of known residences:
Place of death:
Date of death:
Driver's License #/state:
Social security #:
Vehicles/VINS/Tags:
Phone numbers:
Emails:
Occupations/Uniforms:
Military Service:
Club/society:
High school:
College/Tech/Other
Criminal History:
Jewelry:
Religion:
Any ties to the community/church:

Part 2: Physical Description
Photos available?
Race:
Height:
Weight: (and approx. when)
Hair: (color, texture, style, length)
Eyes: (color, glasses, contacts, colored- contacts)
Scars:
Tattoos:
Body Type:
Handicaps:
Amputees:
Health History:
Mental History:
Other:

Part 3: Family and Associates
List any information known about any family members or associates, use part one and two as a list, and include;
How they met:
Was there any specific quarrels between them:
Any correspondence (old letters or emails):
Any additional information:

Part 4: Client (your information)
Name:
Relationship to subject:
Information requested: For example-location, contact information, etc
Photo available?
Date of last contact:
Letter/Phone/Person:
Previously searched methods:
Additional information:


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RE: Adoption Research

I posted a little blurb on the Research thread, but, wanted to let you know the story of my adopted cousin. His birthmom was married, had two children, and had an affair, her husband never found out she was pregnant, weird, but true. She place my cousin up for adoption. Long story short, my cousin dug and dug until he found her. She had a big wonderful family that NEVER would have imagined this happening. This opened up a can of worms, and now her and her husband (who found out obviously) are divorced and family was devastated. Last I heard, my cousin and bio mom talk ever so often, but, bio mom's family was torn apart. In this case, bios family was pretty affluent, and could just not make it through the turmoil it caused. Hopefully they have resolved their issues, but, will never be the same.

Not saying, of course, this kind of thing will happen all the time, but, please think about the other family and put them first. After you find them, you will probably feel you have come this far, and your desire to meet may overcome any sanity you have.


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RE: Adoption Research

I'm going to post my blurb from the other thread..

One of the slickest ways they find names are via birth announcements because they used to get them from the hospital; whether the mother was keeping the child or not. This is assuming they know what hospital they were born at & the correct date. I think there's an article about it on one of the adoption FB pages explaining how to weed it out.

I was in my 30's when I learned the big secret that my "mother" gave a son away. I just happened to find the info (hospital bracelet; adoption receipt & photos) in a living room table. Back then; they took the baby home until a home was found; she named him & had him Christened & by the time they removed him; she did not want to give him up but had to. Enter me; child #3 who resembles him; my life was always pretty bad & I never understood until I found out about him. I learned this 10+ years after I had my son; who looks like me & since I was a young; single mother; living back with my parents; I think she saw it as her son that she'd given up 35+ years before. She slipped a few times by telling me to leave & to leave "her" son. Add another 10 years & we found him; plus I found out another secret & IMO; I should have been the one (or another one) that was put up for adoption. Keeping me was a huge mistake because I was treated like I didn't belong but thank God for DNA tests; I actually did belong. I wish I could find her affair so I could tell him he doesn't have a daughter out there. My 1/2 brother had a very good life & did the search because he wanted to thank her for giving him to a great family; not thinking he would have a match

I know of someone that gave a child up & they do not want to be found. I pray that the adoptee does find them because they regret not having more kids. I hope that they change their minds one day.

Most people that I know that gave their kids up for adoption was because they were forced to. I know the PC term is placed; but back then; they really weren't given an option.. some were minors or unwed mothers that very much did want their child but were forced to. Others had to because they could barely survive to support the kid(s) they had & did so to give all of the children a better chance at life. I do not know anyone that was raped & understand why some people do not want to be found because that is a wound that doesn't need to be opened.

I am for adoptees having access to their information but feel that in certain cases; the info should not be allowed to be given out.


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Olliesmom

Olliesmom is your cousin sure they're a child of the affair? I have a similar story that I found out at 40 years old when I was going to donate stem cells to my dad. In my case; they were pretty positive I was not my dads kid. From what I'm told; the affair wanted to take custody of me but my dad said that I looked more like him & that was good enough. I don't know how they got the affair to go away because he supposedly blew out the windows of their house with rocks. While they moved; my dad still owned the same business for a few years after.

It was November 2005; we just learned his cancer came back after a short remission. We ("mother & I") were sitting in a parking lot; getting ready to go shopping; when I said to my "mother" "I'll be a match as long as he's my father" & I said this because we didn't know what type of genetic markers they were looking for. I still vividly remember her saying "I don't know". I repeated it 3 times & got nowhere. I then questioned my dad in a Rite Aid parking lot as we were picking up his prescription & all he said was "it doesn't matter". How it did not matter is beyond me. No one would just come out & say she had an affair.

I had a horrible life growing up; was always treated like an outsider until I pushed myself on my dad at 11. I used to go to work with him at his station; so he was forced to see the real me & that I wasn't the trouble maker. While we got closer over the years; there was always something I couldn't put my finger on.. how I used to "turn up my nose" (his words) when I was right about something verses my siblings. When I had my son at 20 (he wanted me to abort & thank God I didn't because it's a huge piece of my story) things changed & I now understood why; because with my son looking like him; it was as good as a DNA test.. but there was still something there; where I could feel I wasn't a piece of this family puzzle.

While I knew my "mother" cheated on him as far back as I could remember; never in a million years would I ever think that my paternity was questioned. While I have blond hair & blue eyes; I look like my dad in every other way & my son (also blond/blue) was always called "little Matty" because he was the spitting image of my dad. To this day; I've never heard the story from my "mother"- my dad refused to talk about it. The only way I even know the story was because the oldest cornered "mother" & got the story. This is my life; yet no one thinks I have any rights to know. The man I've called my dad for 40 years is dying & if that isn't bad enough; now there is this drama. To this day; I have no clue how I lived through it. This is not easy to write; I'm hyper-ventilating typing it.

Here; I'm losing my dad. We're really close; yet he won't talk to me about it & he's telling me no when I ask for a DNA test & I asked regularly. My siblings turned against me & my kids & my dad finally agreed in January when the cancer spread. It took them a month to come out & even then it was going to be the day after he passed. I called the DNA place the day his body started shutting down; begging them to come. The day he passed they finally found someone to come out. He died 2 hours later; never knowing the results. If only he would have done it when I 1st asked. Friends of his say that they feel it didn't matter because I was his favorite but that he didn't want to know if the truth would be different. He's been gone 6 years; having to live with this is horrible.


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RE: Adoption Research

Roselvr, thank you for writing this. What a difficult thing for you to have had to shoulder your whole life. In the games parents play, the kids pay the price.

I once read a book called "Lethal Secrets". It was written quite a few years ago about families and children conceived as a result of donor sperm. It was fascinating how much these families were affected by the parents knowing the child wasn't the father's (this was in the day of two parent, mother/father households using donor sperm to make babies when the daddy couldn't). The now adult children in these families talked about their lives very much as you do yours...feeling like outsiders, not knowing why. Then learning why but having no avenue to learn who their genetic father was. It seemed it wasn't just WHAT the secret was that devastated the family, but also the fact there WAS a secret.

Olliesmom, while I am sympathetic to the story of the family you wrote about, it seems the problem was not the child who searched and found, but the fact that there was a big fat lie in the family. I think the "blame" for whatever happened shouldn't be the fault of the child searching for the truth, but on the dishonesty that came before that event. I didn't get on a soap box to announce I was a birthmom, but I did tell my husband before we married, so when I was found it didn't rip anything apart. I had to tell lots of people who were close to me that I'd held this secret - some had their feelings hurt that they'd thought they knew me, but most were as completely thrilled as I was. So I believe it was the dishonesty that is the problem, not the fact that this flesh and blood relative wants to know where they came from. It seems like a basic human right to me.


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RE: Adoption Research

My neighbor used donor eggs to get pregnant with her oldest child. I had no idea (I did know they were undergoing fertility treatments) but one night after she had too much to drink, she told me. She also told me that our neighbor also used donor eggs, a "secret" that she doesn't know that I know (and I wish I didn't know b/c it wasn't my neighbor's right to tell me). The neighbor who told me about her own child has not told her daughter or their extended families. I don't even know if she remembers that she told me - I have never brought it up in conversation b/c I don't want to embarrass her if she doesn't remember telling me. However, I can't imagine keeping this kind of thing a "secret" - while I realize that some people want to "protect" their kids, or perhaps she doesn't want her dd not to think of her as her "real" mom. But in most cases I've seen where secrets like this were kept, it has only come back later to cause an extreme amount of hurt. When my sister was adopted, she was told the truth as early as she was able to understand. It would have been hard for my parents to hide it though as she is biracial and clearly doesn't resemble anyone in our family (except one neighbor, upon learning years later that she was adopted, remarked that she assumed my sister was just a very dark Italian!). I think it was probably easier back in the day to keep these kind of secrets but with medical advancements and DNA technology, if something ever happens with my neighbor's dd, the truth could come out. And maybe at some point they do plan to tell her, but I think it's easiest to just tell them from the beginning.

My SIL used donor sperm to get pregnant when she was unmarried at age 40 and wanted kids. Her kids have known from the beginning, obviously, since they have no father in their lives. However, the donor was apparently very popular and my niece and nephew have at least a dozen half siblings. Apparently there is some website where you could "register" in order to find siblings from the same donors. And while her kids are reasonably well adjusted, they have been taunted at school for not having a dad. But, at least in the case of SIL, they have access to the donor's medical history. He also gave permission for any children to contact him once they are 18 y/o if they would like to. The whole thing is hard for me to grasp.

I'm so glad that my sister's search turned out to be a positive experience. Her bio father's family was so upset that the bio mom would not let the paternal grandmother raise her (story is on the other thread). I'm thankful that my parents were always very open about her adoption and very supportive of her search. They were secure enough in my sister's love and devotion to them and my sister with their love and devotion to her. The bio mom doesn't really have much of a relationship with her, but my sister is ok with that. My sister is just happy to know her story, and the fact that she now has a huge extended loving bio family was added bonus.


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RE: Adoption Research

fourkids; there was a show on TLC or one of those channels about the donor sperm & the registry. One guy has found over 100 of his "kids". He was getting ready to settle down & had to tell his fiance. They both were stressed that one day their kids could unknowingly end up with a sibling. The donor sperm/egg is a whole other can of worms & while we may think things like this; I never realized just how many offspring one man can have & it could be a huge mess!

----------------------------------------------------------

Make that paying the price. My life would be different if my dad would have done the DNA when I asked. Sibling 3 wasn't in his life for 10 years; then tried to push me out in the end. The only reason he finally agreed was because she planned to fight me in court for my inheritance; using the paternity as reason for me & my kids not deserving any. I begged my dad to split my share between my kids & nephew but he refused because I worked for him all of my life for minimum wage; gave up a hair cutting career when he needed me. I was the only kid that was always there for him & he would not back down on the will; especially after she refused to be tested as a stem cell donor because they did not want to use me because of medications I was on. She wrote him a nasty 2-3 page letter saying she didn't have a father & he deserved cancer & she'd let him die before giving stem cells. In the end; I asked to be tested as a donor anyway; that was all used against me too because they found I had something show up with my liver & my blood sugar was over 400; so the siblings said they didn't use me because I was not a genetic match even though I gave the Dr permission to speak to sib #1 when she finally flew out to be tested. I used to beg my dad to not take anything out on my nephew & before the paternity came out; told my dad that I'd give part of my share legally to my nephew after I got it & at one point he saw how strongly I felt & did change his mind; he was going to give the 3 grand kids similar but the drama exploded & they came out & changed the will behind my back writing #3 in.

#3 went as far as to contact my son about us not being related to them. My son & my dad were very close; he never had a son & spent every minute he could with him. My dad was a changed man with my son; used to take him for breakfast (McD's hash brown & toy) then they'd go & chase trains on the way into work. They even knew the conductors. We lived with my parents for close to 6 years; they were attached at the hip! Sibling 3 was jealous that he had such a special bond with my son & not her's. She very much wanted to hurt my son when she emailed him & it's a good thing my son had an idea of what was going on. I debated not telling him but felt that I had to because I knew the sibs eventually would. I told him the blood test from the cancer center showed I was a match. I was 99% sure he was my father; thankfully during all the heavy drama; I was able to keep my sanity enough to know that even though I'm blond/blue; that I'm a replica of my dad.

In the end; I was accused of forging the DNA results. Last time I saw any of them; they wanted me to give my dads ashes back that I had for 2 years because they said mine were bigger.. Funny because they picked theirs up 1st & told the funeral director which ones to give me. The mediator said they were the coldest people he's ever met & wished me good luck.

As I've said; I wish I would have been the one placed for adoption; the only reason I'm glad that I was not is because of the relationship I was able to have with my dad. The 40+ years of pain are still better then not knowing him. While they've taken everything from me & my kids; they can't touch my memories; especially the ones in his last months where he'd just moved 7 blocks from me; so we were able to see each other every day & those last 2 holidays meant more to me because my dad said they were the best holidays he's had in his life because the people he loved the most in his life were there. He would never tell me I was his favorite though; not even on his death bed; although I feel that's what he tried to tell me when he tried to speak & couldn't. Sib 1 had jealousy over the holidays because she came out for an early one but he was admitted to the hospital.


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Sperm donor show

Donor sibling registry

Sperm donor show he donated for 3 years & knows about 74 kids.


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RE: Adoption Research

roselvr, sometimes it is a small world. My cousin's birthmom was my best friend's mom's bestfriend. And my best friend's mom knew all about the affair of my cousin's birthmom. Caused a rift between my best friend and myself for a couple of years also, as she is VERY NOSEY, and always has been, and my best friend help him when she found out about him. Anyway, was not a good outcome, was just awful really....

In this case everyone would have been better off not knowing. Some secrets should remain secrets, when the outcome is going to hurt a lot of people that did not even need to know, IMO.


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RE: Adoption Research

I have been flipping back and forth between these two threads and Olychick has written some really wonderful posts. Thanks Olychick. :-)

I am an older adopted person who has always wanted to know about my family of origin, but has a) taken a very cautious approach to searching and b) not found any trace of my birth parents to date.

I was adopted during the Baby Scoop Era (1940s -- 1970s). Anyone who does basic research on this realises that many (but not all) adoptions in those days were indeed forced and the birth mothers treated terribly. Some of the birth mother's stories are so sad, and the heartbreak comes through -- even 50 or 60 years after the baby was relinquished.

The primary reason I started "searching" was because I felt it important to let my birth mother know that I was alright, and that she made the right decision to place me for adoption. I have never had any desire to disrupt her life, or even for contact other than a letter unless she really wanted it. It would be nice to have some family and medical background but that has never been essential to me.

My approach, after I got my adoption file -- access to these files varies from state to state and country to country -- was to register as willing to accept contact. I also do an internet search every few months to see whether anyone is searching for me under my first name or my adopted name, as these registers are not all that well known. That is about it.

I think the reasons for searching very greatly among adopted people. Some, of course, never want to search nor do they want to be searched for!

I firmly believe that an adopted person who does decide to search should get counseling regarding their motivation, intent and expectations to prepare them for what is ahead. Not all reunions are happy. Search angels, in my experience agree with me on the counseling, and are very sensitive in their approach to families of origin.

Olliesmom's story is very sad and that search/reunion badly managed, but that does not mean that no adopted person or birth mother should ever search. Far from it! I agree with Olychick that it is a basic right for an adult adopted person to know about their heritage, and that secrets are not a good thing to keep. Every adoption story is different and unique to the people involved.

Discussions of this type have a tendency to end up with debating the rights of the mother to privacy and the rights of the adopted person to know. It is a difficult and emotional subject for everyone involved in an adoption, and I certainly don't know all the answers!



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RE: Adoption Research

Cheen, if you haven't yet, please think about joining the new ISRRXchange. It just started in March and has taken off like wildfire. There are already 1600 or so people registered and lots of search angels and genealogists, too. You just never know who might be able to help you. With the 1940 census being released there is a lot of new info available to older searchers.

I agree with what you've written, it is very emotional, but I also hate that adoptees have to "justify" to anyone, even themselves why they want to search. I don't think you have to know why...you just have to know that you want to. Exploring expectations is a wise thing tho' and preparing as much as possible for any outcome will really benefit the searcher.

It makes me crazy that the govt issues a fake "birth" certificate, a counterfeit document that says a child was born to people s/he wasn't born to (I can see the need for this document for minor children so they have the same certificate as non adopted people), but then to have the audacity to withhold the REAL birth certificate from them when they are adults is just too much. I don't see how it can be anything but a denial of rights that are given to every other US born citizen.

There was no contract that the adoptee entered into that gave up their rights. They should not be bound by something they didn't agree to and I believe they have the right to know their origins and that trumps any "rights" of birth parents or adoptive parents. The birth parents can still refuse contact if they choose.

Ok, now I'll tell you how I really feel :)


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RE: Adoption Research

Thanks so much Olychick and Roselver (did I get that last name right?) I sent my email address to ISRRXchange last night for an invitation -- thanks to you two wonderful ladies.

I was delighted to see that there is an international component to this site because, although I am now living in the US, I was adopted in Europe. I am in contact with local searchers in my country of birth but the looking is harder. Everything helps and we should all work together, shouldn't we?

Olychick, I hear you loud and clear on "why should we have to justify our search." We should not have to - but the general public usually doesn't want us to search.

The reason I push counselling for all adopted people wanting to search is . . . simply to protect ourselves.

We may be the children of rape or incest, but we may also be the children of forced adoption. My research indicates that forced adoption is probably more likely.

We have the right to know either way. Counselling will help us to be prepared for a second rejection from our family of origin. It will also help us to have realistic expectations of our first parent(s).

I, personally, over the years have discovered that it is best only to discuss searches and the desire to search only with those within the adoption triad (they understand), and those closest to me. Those who support my need to tell my first mother that I'm doing well today and that I do understand.

For every ten positive reunions there is one that is negative. Somehow the negatives get priority in the minds of many, but that does not mean that we should not search.

My rights to my heritage were taken away from me 6 weeks after birth and without my consent. I, and most adopted people of my generation, have been lectured forever about NOT rocking the adoption boat. I, and many like me, do not want to disrupt my first mother's life. I also never wanted to upset my adoptive parents, which is why I took such a long-term passive approach on both fronts.

But we adult adopted children really do have a right to know, good or bad. We sometimes wonder why the onus is on us to "put up and shut up and deal with it."

Just my opinion -- but it is how I really feel too.

:-)


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