Saturday, November 29, 2014

Dear Adoptive Parent #NAAM #Flipthescript

Dear Adoptive Parent  #NAAM #Flipthescript

(screenshot published with permission of How Does it Feel to be Adopted FB group)

Just when I thought I was done with my #Flipthescript efforts, this gem came across my screen.  So Adoptive Parent, this post is just for you.

Betrayal & Lies

 Dear Adoptive Parent,

I realize that after you asked your question, that you had a hundred responses on this Facebook page all basically yelling at you.  I know that you might have felt like you were being made into a villain. I’m sure you thought you might find some understanding from the adoptees on the Facebook page, and when you received such a raging backlash…maybe you thought denial would be the best method to deal with this…. and maybe you haven’t had this conversation with your daughter yet.

First, you have “carrot and sticked” your daughter all along with this promise of “when we get the money, we’ll get your records unsealed” when all along you know who her mother is.  I’m sure you think this has been OK, a way to gage her interest in seeking her family… But. It. Isn’t. OK. It. Is. Far. From. OK.

Why it’s far from OK

So the crux is this. You’ve lied to her every day of her entire life.  You’ve withheld information that is crucial to her, that is about HER- and NOT YOU.

The totality of what an adoptee loses because of adoption is something that you Adoptive Parent will never understand. Imagine if you will- that you find out you were switched at birth. You find this out today, you frantically call the people who are your biological family, only to find out that they are all DEAD. You never get a chance to meet them, to talk to them… You never get the chance to even start to form a relationship… you find they are so much like you, or really interesting people… people you’d like to know….. But this has all been STOLEN from you. 

Being an adoptee is much like this. We don’t know “who we really are” and that can be a very hard thing. We also don’t know why we were surrendered for adoption, the stories of our origins. And no matter what the narrative is of our beginnings, good or bad… we all have a right to know this truth… the truth of us.

You do not have the RIGHT to keep this information from your daughter. This is not your RIGHT.

I know you fear that this will destroy your relationship with your daughter, and maybe you haven’t told her the truth yet- out of fear. That is the very reason I am writing this post… because I fear you haven’t told her yet.


You have to make this right, and you have to do it NOW.


Because you’ve just robbed your daughter out of even starting a relationship with her family because of your own selfishness and insecurities. You don’t know who has died, who she’ll never be able to meet. And its every death of a relative… a relative she will never meet… never form a relationship with… this is what your lies and secrecy have taken from her.

Maybe she will be lucky, and no one has died yet. But in the very least you have robbed her of several years of being able to start a relationship with her family… because of your selfish actions and because of your own insecurities.

Will your relationship survive?

This is what you fear…. Who knows, but you did this… this was your doing. You know it’s wrong, otherwise you would have not posted the question on the Facebook page. Imagine for just one moment this was you…. How would you feel?

Action Steps
1.     Tell your daughter the truth- right now.
2.     Give her the funds and resources to find her family, and to visit them when she is ready.
3.     Stay out of the reunion- this isn’t about YOU.
4.     Get down on your knees and beg her for forgiveness.
5.     Hope that it isn’t too late… hope that no one has died.. that she hasn’t been robbed of the chance to meet a family member because of your lies and insecurities.
6.     Understand that if your relationship with your daughter doesn’t survive this, that it was your own actions that caused it. Back away gracefully… let her go.


  1. Superb answer. Based on personal experience, I'd add two more points:
    - If your relationship doesn't survive, don't play the martyr or turn your friends and relatives against your daughter.
    - If your relationship doesn't survive, don't cut your daughter out of her inheritance. That's her combat pay for living with your lie for 22 years.