Are You Adopted Too?

39 years ago as of yesterday, I was granted the incredible gift of not just two, but four parents: Two biological parents who were no longer dating and just weren’t ready to raise a child, and two parents who chose me as their first child.

I was 3 days old at the time, so I don’t remember any of this. But I’m eternally grateful for the choices made by my biological mother and my parents. I have my life because of those choices.

If you’re adopted too, your experience may be similar to mine or it might be quite different. I’m fortunate that my parents were always transparent about my origins, not something to hide and be revealed on a specific day. I’m also lucky that I had the option to connect with my biological mother whenever I wanted (I waited until I was in college), and we still correspond from time to time.

Regardless of your experience, if you’re adopted too, I hope it’s okay if I celebrate my kinship with you today. It’s perfectly normal that we’re adopted–there’s no stigma in it–but it’s also something special and unique that we share. I like how I said it in my post a few years ago:

“Old and young, men and women, humans and cats…your story is different than mine, but we share a common bond. It’s a badge of honor for me to share that bond with you.”

Happy adoption day!

10 Responses to “Are You Adopted Too?”

  1. Stephen Werness says:

    My wife and I became Forster parents (resource parents) to take in my wife’s nieces who I had not even met. We finally closed their case with permanent adoption. Just happy that we had the room to take them in.

  2. Monica says:

    I was adopted as an infant! I always love to hear stories of adopted kids who love their biological family for making the choice that was best for everyone.

    My biological mother found me around 15 years ago. I never thought I would know her, never mind have her as a part of my life.

    Happy Adoption Day!

  3. John says:

    I was adopted at 6 wks by my parents. I had an awesome upbringing. I found my birth mother at age 32 mostly for health reasons related to my own kids. I enjoyed 16 years with her before she passed. I gained 5 half brothers whom I see at least yearly. I have yet to learn of my birth father and the circumstances around my birth. I can live with that as I have been blessed with both my families. Thanks for sharing!

  4. Steve Power says:

    Hey Jamey,

    Your words are wonderful, and got me musing.

    I was born on August 23rd, 1977 – If I had been any more premature than I was (under 3 lbs – couldn’t breathe without assistance) There was zero chance I’d have lived. I finally went home on St. Patrick’s Day, March 17th, 1978. I don’t know any more than that about the circumstances of my birth. But I do know that my Mother and Father were the kind, loving, Irish Catholic Newfoundlanders who brought me home in mid-winter, who named me, and went above and beyond to raise me as best they could.

    It’s different for everyone who shares our unique gift, but for me, the life I had was my life, and I’ll eternally be grateful for the hand I was dealt. When I turned 18, my mother presented me with a document and a choice; I chose to sign the document, and seal my file. My mother and father gave me as good or better a life than I could have asked for, and whatever reasons my biological parents may have had, I’m happy they made the choice they did. I hope that whatever cards they were dealt in life, they were happy.

    So why cut them out? My own view has always been that parentage is not solely a question of biology, but of shaping a human from infant to adult. I try to take the same approach with my own kiddos and my own wonderfully unique family situation. It’s different for everyone, and I fully appreciate and respect the decisions others make in this regard, we all have our reasons (like John’s above). I chose that biology really doesn’t bother me and that whatever life throws my way, I’ll deal with it with patience and grace, just as my parents taught me.

    Cheers! To Jamey, and to all the others who were chosen, not born.

  5. Dave R. says:

    Thanks for sharing!

    Just over a year ago my siblings and I found out that my father was, you might say, “accidentally adopted.” He was accidentally switched at birth with another baby boy. He was born long before they had the kind of safeguards have now to prevent these kinds of accidents. My father died a few years ago, so he never found out in this life, but my siblings and I have found a lot of joy getting to know our “new” family. They are such great people and I look forward to getting to know them even better in the years to come. Who knows, maybe some day I’ll have a chance to sit down with them a share a Stonemaier Game with them!

    -Dave R.

  6. Tim Dolloff says:

    We adopted our 8 year old daughter under similar circumstances. Thank you for sharing your story and bond with her. We hope she feels the same way about her adoption story as an adult as you do.

  7. Jamey Stegmaier says:

    Thank you all for sharing your stories! It means a lot to see the connections I have to adoptees around the world. 🙂

  8. Jeff Hiatt says:

    I was adopted. Don’t know too much about my biological parents other than that they were students in San Francisco in the late 60’s. I was adopted by wonderful people that gave me a great life.

    I have always wondered about my bio parents. It is kind of weird that I could have run into them many times an not known it.

    As I am in my fifties now, I keep having this internal debate about going and finding them to see who they are (or were).

  9. Erin says:

    Hey, Jamey, I was adopted too. I was about a month old and never remember being told because my parents started explaining it even before my earliest memories. Even if I was never told, I would have figured it out! My older (adopted) brother and I are completely different in so many ways than my parents and my younger (both biological) sibs even have the same mannerisms as my parents . Weird nature vs nurture!! Are you totally different than your parents? I think this was one of the reasons I went into genetics!

  10. Adrian Brown says:

    Jamey, I respect and enthusiastically endorse your situation and the choices you made.
    My background was weird, I had a half-brother from my mother’s second husband, and both of us were adopted by a man who took being a parent as seriously and carefully as you could possibly hope for.

    My brother passed away last year. So I no longer have anyone with whom I can celebrate an adoption day, so I will happily pour a drink and celebrate yours. Hopefully we can each become successful enough to fund efforts to ensure committed parents receive the resources they need to continue parenting.

    Happy Adoption Day!

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