More on Dads

“Stereotypes are devices for saving a biased person the trouble of learning”

I have kept tabs on my daughter’s father for years. Through friends, the internet, or other I always knew where he lived, where he worked, and how to contact him.

My motivation behind this activity was definitely my daughter. My daughter was conceived via a deep love. A lengthy relationship (years) that ended abruptly when I was sent away to a maternity home. It was never a casual sex thing, never an unknown dad thing. Just love. I always wanted her to know that and I wanted her to know him – if she chose too.

In November of 2004, at the height of my search for her, I received an email from my primary aide.  This gent helps me a lot on my searches. He has access to information others don’t. He and I had been successful with other searches. It seemed natural to me that I would use him to help me with mine.

The week before thanksgiving, I received and email from him that had the subject line of “I got her’.  Upon opening the email, I learn that he is fairly confident he found my daughter. I gasped. I remember it was late at night. I was alone. My body seemed to catch on fire with anxiety. My blood began to pulse faster. My breathing became more rapid.

I.Got.Her.

He closed his email by saying he had one more thing to confirm but he was very certain it was her.

Days went by and I did not hear from him.  Filled with anxiety, I decided that I must “warn” her father. I hadn’t spoken to him in years but needing to do SOMETHING, I googled him, found his email and sent him a short note.

It was a simple note. Nothing highly emotional. It was addressed to him and his wife. I stated that I was fairly certain that I had found her. I intended to share his name and contact details and I thought it best that I let him know. That was it. Adios. Have a nice life.

More time passes and my friend writes me again.

It’s not her.

I am crushed. Floored. Destroyed. It’s like I lost her all over again. 

I write her father and give him the news. He is appreciative. More of the adios, have a nice life. Thanks for the info.

Six months later in June of 2005, I absolutely found her. On my own. Well, my sister helped and so did my husband.  The anniversary of that day is coming up soon. I remember it vividly.  I was at work and I fell off my chair. I vomited. Talk about an abreaction.

I emailed her father that day. We spoke via phone and compared sites, emails, pictures, all the detail I found on her (before I had even made contact). It seemed right that he was part of it. I was glad he was. Glad he could put aside the emotional pain of our relationship and relish the beauty of finding her. I still smile when I think of how supportive he was that day. How excited and pleased he was. He was happy.

Weeks after finding her for sure, he and I met for the first time in many years. We both needed to. We needed to discuss her, us, what happened, and do the best we could to heal the wounds her adoption had caused both of us.

We had never discussed these things following the loss of her and left to our own devices we filled in our own gaps. In many cases, we filled in those gaps with wrong, hurtful information about the other.

The actual meeting is still a bit of a blur to me. Most of my life following the first year in reunion is a blur. But one thing I remember, vividly, is hearing him cry.  I remember sitting across from him, my own tears streaming, and saying to him:

“I gave her away. I went away. I gave her away. But seeee, I found her. I brought her back. Do you forgive me?”

He began to sob deeply.  Moan even. A soulful deep, searing, aching sob.  I had never seen him cry like that. His body shook with years of pain and loss.

As father day approaches, I feel the need to say once again, it should not be assumed that a father who lost a child to adoption did not want that child. In many, many cases, they were not told, were not given a choice, were barred from “doing the right thing” by the mother of the child or by her parents.

Yes, yes, I know an equal if not greater number of men did not care, were indeed shits and creepos and dick daddies, but it doesn’t apply to all.

That much I now know.

5 Thoughts.

  1. Suz,
    I so needed to hear what you’ve written here. Your description of the day you met your daughter’s father again was so heartwarming.
    Your daughter is so lucky.

  2. So glad that you write about the fathers.
    I have not yet made any peace with my son’s father. I know my son’s father cared very much about his son. And I am sorry that he lost all those years with his son.

  3. I have a post, personal, brewing about Lincoln. Now that I’ve moved past that anger… I miss him. Not in a loving, run away to be with him way. I miss the friend I had. I also miss the man he was before this adoption changed us both. Forever.
    Thank you for sharing all of this. It really isn’t easy to dig into these emotions, is it?

  4. A beautiful touching and emotional reunion for you all.
    Thank you for sharing. I cant imagine how it feels to “get it all out”

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