I decided to start looking for my birth family after the birth of my second child. This will be 15 years ago now. I didn’t really know how to start because I was living in Europe, while I was born in Canada.
I had NO knowledge of the internet and I didn’t even own an email. I quickly instructed myself in the hows of the web and now I find it pretty inconceivable nowadays trying to find anyone, let alone the birth family you have never met before without the World Wide Web.
After looking for almost 14 years and having done all that I could do to put myself out there, I almost gave up. But because of the grace of God and because of all the basic information I had I was able to be found threw a forum. I was found in November 2009 by my sister who had only spent 30 minutes looking for me before she found me.
We have since then reunited and I’m saving up money to finally meet my parents, brother and the rest of the family. This is a happy ending and miracles do happen.
By starting your search you must prepare yourself for any eventuality. Starting the search for your birth parents is half the battle. The other half is dealing with the outcome. There are many outcomes that can either provide you with disappointment or happiness. It is vital that you prepare yourself for any result. You might never find them, or you will but they will not want to meet. Whether your search provides no positive results or whether you find your birth parents only to learn that they did not really care for you and gave you up, you must anticipate this and make sure that if it happens, you can deal with it.
But if you are here reading this, you might be an adoptee like me and I know how you feel. You want to know why, you want to know who and you maybe want to know from whom you inherited some things that you wished you hadn’t. However you remember a reunion is not a magical cure for life’s problems, but it does have many benefits. There may be disappointments and difficulties along the way, but most who wander into reunion territory are glad they did. I am one of them and that’s why I would very much like to share with you what I have found helpful along the way.
- Talk to your adoption parents. First of all, they should know. You wouldn’t want them to find out from someone else, that would hurt them much more I think then just telling them that you would like to know more about your birth relatives. Plus, they might even be able to help you. With which agency have adopted you,? Where? Which hospital. Anything that could help!
- Search the web for some good adoption forumsor/and a Adoption reunion registry. Register and put as much info on it as possible, without giving out too much information about your current situation. Make a nickname that you find describes yourself the best. Like “boyToronto89” to describe that you’re male, born in 1989 and in Toronto. I do suggest you making a special email address for this purpose only and to never disclose online your real name, residence or stuff like that. You have mean people out there who would do anything for a bit of money.
- Join or make a group on Facebook. You have many groups on there. Just type adoption in the search space and maybe the town you were born in and voilà! Choose a couple and start posting your info.
- Contact the adoption agency. Personally, this hasn’t helped me. I first of all had to fill in forms, and then I received a letter asking me for what I considered a silly amount of money. Plus they couldn’t give me any guarantees. In the end, I think it’s best to just do it all yourself. I have though heard others whom agencies have helped.
- Google. It’s your best friend at times like these. Ok, I’ve spent hours typing my birth date, birthplace, birth name for hours without any result besides coming across all the forums where I posted my birth info on and that’s not bad thing. If I can find me, they can too.
These are all things that I have done and so I feel safe to post them here and obviously, it has helped but it all depends on where you live and where you were born.
Here are some helpful sites:
– Adoption.com : This is a very helpful site. It’s for adoptees, adopting parents, birthmother, birth family, foster family! This site provides you with forums for everyone’s needs, information, blogs, reunion registers. This is a great way to start. And I found it a great way to find others like me to share our stories and find comfort.
– CANADIAN ADOPTEES REGISTRY INC.: The name says it for itself. It’s a free searchable registry for anybody looking for anybody concerning adoption.
– Find my Family: Another searchable registry but only for in United States.
– Origins Canada : There is no register here, but you can find a lot of useful information helping you prepare the search and to guide you threw it.
– The International Soundex Reunion Registry: It’s a reunion registry. The ISRR uses the Soundex Coding System which takes the information off of the applications and translates it into a single line of code. This line of code enables the registrar to check over 1000 entries in approximately 5 minutes. Matches are confirmed by human registrars who are capable of comparing the fine details of an application, which a computer might miss or misinterpret. ISRR does not perform adoption searches, but will notify you if a match has been made from your application, so remember to keep your information current with ISRR’s change of information form.
I hope that this will help anyone who wants to start the search. There are no guarantees for finding someone and it could take a very long time if or when you will. Don’t despair and have a lot of patience. In the end, you have done all you could and if someone out there is really looking for you, they will! Once they decide to start, it might even take them just 30 minutes.
I would love to pray for you if you would like, just send me a note. Good luck!