5 Things I Want to Say to My Birth Parents

I really want my birth parents to understand these important things.

Tom Andriola May 24, 2016

I am fortunate enough to have met both my birth parents as an adult. Many adoptees are never afforded that chance, and some have no interest. Of those who do, some have great experiences, others have difficult ones, and the gamut runs in between. Regardless, I think there are often things left unsaid. Personally, there are some things I want to say to my birth parents, I just don’t really know how.  Here they are:

I have strong feelings about my situation.
1. I have strong feelings about my situation.

Adoption in and of itself is traumatic in nature. Being removed from your biological parents and placed with another family has an impact, regardless of the situation. When I was born 45 years ago (wow, time flies!), times were different than they are today. Out-of-wedlock pregnancies were strongly frowned upon. Women were often coerced into placing their children for adoption in such circumstances, and relationships that crossed race or religion rarely ended in marriage. So when my Catholic birth mother became pregnant by my Jewish biological father, my fate was likely never even a question. Although I do have strong feelings about being given up for adoption and have been reconciling its impact throughout the course of my life, I hold no ill will for the decision my birth mother essentially had to make, or for the lack or responsibility my biological father chose to take.

I’m worried about disrupting your life.
2. I’m worried about disrupting your life.

When I started my search as an adult, my curiosity was insatiable. I wanted to know all I could and just couldn’t seem to get enough. When I found enough information to be able to contact each of my birth parents, I wanted to make sure I was sensitive about how I went about it. I think I did a good job, and I hope they each would agree. But that worry, that hesitation, still persists. While it’s different for each, because I remain in contact with my birth mother, while my birth father is not interested in continuing contact, the tentativeness I feel is still there.

I’m not after your money.
3. I’m not after your money.

This one is especially for my birth father. He’s very wealthy. It’s not something I knew until I tracked him down, and I often wondered if that’s why he thinks I looked for him. It’s not. Like many adoptees, I’m curious about my roots and I long for some sort of connection. That’s all.

I don’t know what our relationship should look like.
4. I don’t know what our relationship should look like.

I’m not trying to replace the family I have. I love my parents and we have a great relationship. So I’m not looking for either of my birth parents to become my parents. But I’m not quite sure what I would want to see our relationship become, and I guess that’s another thing that makes me tentative about the situation.

I want my kids to know their cousins.
5. I want my kids to know their cousins.

When I found out that I had three half siblings on my birth father’s side, I was excited! I wanted to get to know them. I wondered what it would have been like to grow up with them, to be close to them. Unfortunately, they don’t have an interest in knowing me, and that hurts. I think it would be great if my kids could get to know their kids, and when I tell my son the little I know about them, he wants to know more - and he doesn’t understand why that’s not going to happen. Smart kid.

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Tom Andriola

Tom Andriola advocates for adoptee rights and shares his personal experiences about being adopted and his successful, independent search for both biological parents. To see more of his writing, visit Tom's Facebook page.

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