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Advice Needed Please

  • 03-08-2018 5:09pm
    Registered Users Posts: 1

    Hi everyone.

    I’m just looking for some advice or opinions, maybe someone has been in a similar position and can help me to try and work through this?

    I’ll try and keep a long story relatively short here. I’d like to try and deal with the situation (if it’s even appropriate for me) in the next while.

    I found out that I have a half-sister who was adopted in around 1974.
    My Mother told me this the night my Father died around 3 years ago. My Father died after a long illness.
    She was completely grief stricken at the time and just blurted it out. My Father knew about the adoption.

    She told me the pregnancy was the result of a rape and that it was a few years before she met my Dad. She was very upset so didn't really go into loads of detail. I think the adoption was arranged by a local politician and I'm sure the church had something to do with it.

    I have one Brother who is a couple of years older than me. He knows nothing about it at all.

    I am close to my Mum, so I guess this is why she confided in me.

    I could not really process it when I was told, as I was grieving for my Dad. I was initially quite angry that she chose to tell me about it the very day I lost my Dad.

    I mentioned it to a cousin of mine that I am very close to and it turns out she knew about it. As do all of my Mum’s sisters.

    I asked her on the night if she would like to make contact with her daughter and she said she would, but not right now.

    It was only discussed between us one other time since, but no progress was really made.
    My Mother tends to bury her head in the sand a bit, as do I a little, I’m afraid. I haven't really had the courage to bring it up again as it's such a difficult thing and I don't want to upset her either.

    I feel very guilty that my Brother does not know, but I made a promise to her that I would not tell him yet. She has her own reasons for him not finding out right now, I don’t agree with them but it’s not up to me.

    I am naturally very curious about my half-sister and would like to think that some day I would get to meet her and possibly have some sort of relationship with her, if she was open to it.
    I also think it would be great for my Mum too. She is only in her mid sixties and could have many years with her daughter if they were to find each other.

    Just interested in what people’s thoughts/opinions are and how I can try and deal with this very sensitive issue.

    Thanks so much!


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 942 ✭✭✭Ghekko

    Tell your mum that firstly she, or you, could register your details with the National Adoption Contact Preference Register. Who knows, maybe your sister may have registered too and ye would be matched. Other than that your mum (or you on her behalf, with her permission) could contact the adoption agency who arranged the adoption, assuming it was legal. You can contact the Adoption Authority of Ireland to find out which agency dealt with it at the time.

    Yes it was bad timing telling you when your dad died. Perhaps he was the only person who ever spoke to her about that time and she just needed to blurt it out. Now at least she has you to talk to. It has to have been a hugely traumatic time in her life and she may need counselling if she is to pursue searching for her daughter. It will no doubt bring up a lot of bad memories of being raped and subsequently having her baby taken away. Balance that against the joy she may feel at hopefully finding her daughter again. Hopefully things would work out positively but of course there are cases where things don't work out so well and you would have to be prepared for any scenario.

    There are also ways of doing your own search. If your mother was to request the adoption order number from the AAI you could possibly find your sisters adoption certificate by looking through the books at the GRO and this would give her new name and the adoptive parents names/address. Have a look at the tracing guides on adoption rights alliance website.

    I know my husband would have been very open to contact if someone had looked for him over the years. He decided in his early 40's to look for his birth mum and it has worked out well so far. As you say, your mum is young and it might do her the world of good to persue this but do be prepared for waiting times etc with social workers if you go that route.

  • Registered Users Posts: 17,394 ✭✭✭✭fritzelly

    Did she ever tell your dad? Makes me think she didn't and with his death some kind of weight was lifted where she felt she could say what happened - don't know how telling a prospective husband about such a thing would have gone down nearly 50 years ago.
    Wouldn't be surprising her sisters knew about it

    Go for it and try and find her but very tactfully and thru one of the third parties, she may know why she was adopted and for her own reasons wants to seperate that from her life today or she may not know and could be quite a thing to discover. This all needs knowing beforehand

    Hope it goes well and is something that is joyous - some of those reunions on Long Lost Family are real tearjerkers but show a lot of times people do crave a sense of where they came from.