I have been watching several of your interviews and it feels good to know I am not alone in my beliefs and perspectives as a Christian and also as someone who has experienced childhood trauma, as well as an adult trauma of an NPE Discovery. For so long, I’ve felt I have been fighting to be understood and felt alone in my viewpoints of how children need to be heard.
I agree completely with you that children should not be denied access to their biological parents and that the intentional loss of that is horrible.
In my story, it is a bit complicated. My mom was raised in a home without ever knowing or having a father. The man listed on her birth certificate was not her biological father (thus my mom is also a DNA NPE). She is a non-paternity event because the man on the birth certificate isn’t the biological father. I was trying to help my mom find out who her biological father was when I had her DNA tested and I also tested my paternal grandmother because I was interested to see what I had inherited from my grandmother. As a child, I was mostly raised by my paternal grandmother because my mom wasn’t able to be a strong mother for me due to her childhood trauma.
When the DNA results came back, I discovered that my paternal grandmother wasn’t my biological grandmother. Thus, my dad wasn’t my biological father. So, in the process of trying to help my mother and try to heal my family tree, I opened a larger wound. I suddenly did not know who I was anymore. I had never been able to be close to my mother’s side because of the dysfunction and fatherlessness in that side of the family…and then I had just discovered that the only family I did know and have connection with was not biologically connected to me at all.
This brought back a flood of emotions and thoughts from my own past childhood traumas. I had never felt deeply bonded with my family. I had always felt out of place. I had always felt like I had to care more about the feelings of the adults in my lives and felt I was always trying to figure out how to be loved and keep being loved by them. My grandmother made me choose to love her more than my mom by telling me that my mom wasn’t fit to be a mother, etc. I felt like a child that was torn between loving my grandmother and my mom and as a kid I felt safer with my grandmother because she was better able to meet my needs. Then as an adult, when I discovered that my grandmother wasn’t biological to me…I felt deep woundedness and guilt for how I was towards my mother. I am still working through all this and processing it all as I write my memoir. It is very complex. The main takeaway in all of this though is that children’s rights matter and should always come first before adults. In my situation, my mom didn’t intentionally keep the knowledge of my true father from me. She actually really believed that my dad (the man that raised me) was my father. She had been dating him for at least a year before I was conceived and then they married when I was four months old. My dad also believed I was his child. My mom has no memory of my biological father. I found my biological father and he also has no memory of her. It must’ve been a one night stand. Maybe alcohol was involved. I will never fully know. What I do know is that family dysfunction and generational cycles of fatherlessness led to this DNA NPE situation in my own life. I also know that I am thankful for God’s protection over my life by providing me a father, but there is still loss associated with it, because my biological father and I do connect in a way that I don’t with my dad that raised me. I love my dad that raised me and feel close to him as my dad…but he doesn’t click with me in the same way or understand my temperament and personality the way my biological father does.
I am the one breaking the cycle. I am the one that wants to write my story fully to help people understand why it does matter and why it was a trauma.