DEAR CHRISTINE: Son wants to find real parents
Twenty-one years ago my wife and I adopted a son. Four years later we had a daughter of our own.
We have always treated them as equals, but our natural child was always jealous of her brother, perhaps because we tried to over-compensate.
Recently our son shocked us all by telling us he wanted to find his natural parents, and that he planned to use all of his money I gave him over the years to go where he thinks his mother is living.
He tells us that he loves us, but it is very hard for my wife and me to believe he would do this if he loved us.
We are hurting and are wondering what advice or words of comfort you can give us.
It is normal for children who know they have been adopted to want to know who their real parents are – at some point or the other.
Not all children are like this, but even some who do not actually verbalise this desire has it hidden somewhere in the back of their minds.
No matter how much love adoptive parents sometimes lavish on their children, there is bound to be a certain amount of curiosity.
This is quite healthy and does not mean the child does not love the parents who have raised him.
Your son’s desire to search for his parents cannot possibly wipe out the years of love you have given him. When adopted children find their natural parents, it’s usually a relief to everyone.
After the mystery is solved, the child is willing to move on with his own life, but usually the feelings of frustration and doubt are diminished.
To me, the fact that your son is going to make the search and that he feels free to be open and candid with you, is a true indication of his love, trust and respect.
I think it’s important to give him all the help you can and not try to stop him.