HISTORICAL FACTS – The History and Facts Surrounding your Adoption
Before I start, just a note. I meant to say in Step 1..a word of caution; It is really tempting to jump into this with both feet and past experience and speaking to others has shown this is fool hardy and destructive all round. Promise me for now you will resist the Facebook Search Temptation..from here on known as FBT. I, for one pretty much stalked someone on Facebook (metaphorically, privately and in my head, not actually but you know what I mean :-/..I convinced myself this woman was my Birth Mother, tracked her families posts, pictures and damn near drove myself nuts squeezing everything about her into the mould of who I believed to me the right person.
Sadly after some 9 months or so this person was proven to be the WRONG person! IN my Journey Diary you will laugh about the tale but for now BE WARNED…FBT IS OFF LIMITS , at least for the time being. Leave FBT alone until I tell you it’s safe to do so!same goes for LinkedIn and any other social media platform for now.
So now you are or should be equipped with the following:
1) Your Original Birth Certificate
2) Confirmation of your Interest to be contacted on the Adoption Contact Register
3) Hopefully, a bit more courage building within you……
4) You may also have come across your Adoption Certificate. If its tricky asking for this from your adoptive parent , apply for a replacement adoption certificate here
So next we need to go backwards and see what history we can actually use to help us..you would be amazed the bits of information you always felt were of little or no consequence but now have a real value
The first thing to focus on is what information ‘came with you’ ie Do you know if you had siblings? Did your Birth Mother live overseas? Which town were you born in, which hospital ? Much of this information could be in any paperwork your Adoptive parent has given you many years ago.,Scour through it now.
For Example, my search lead me to look into the following Historical Facts:
My birth mother had another child…who was that child,how old? Her occupation was a Seamstress, where? Who for and what did she make?
Your initial discussions with anyone in the Social services will have shown you that there is a mountain of paperwork ‘somewhere’ about YOU!! This paperwork was drawn up at the point of your Adoptive parents applying to adopt a child way back when. Your ‘Adoption File’ you may already have from the Social Worker but there is more out there, trust me , a whole heap more!It will likely be at one of the many local authority councils from which your adoption took place. In my case Warwickshire council had the main file and apparently 22 letters were needed to obtain it (not entirely convinced of this but nevertheless it appeared). PACT may have the additional information as they did my second file so tell (don’t ask!) your council to get hold of any paperwork they can pertaining to your adoption. Its yours!
Please be aware also that it is written without the expectation that the adoptee (you) would EVER read it, so it can seem blunt and cold but it is a ‘professional opinion’ NOT fact in many cases and NOT sugar coated
Towards the end of my search I obtained much of the information pertaining to my actual adoption BUT the initial documents will outline and detail the following , and some of it may hurt you so be aware, (deep breaths!) this aint necessarily gonna be a fairy tale people, but warts and all, black and white stuff that is REAL and maybe not too nice.
Write these questions in a little book as you go along and scribble answers as you find them, I still have mine from day one and its helpful I promise.
The kind of information you are looking for in this file and in the resources listed below is:
♥ What was the relationship between my biological parents?
♥ Did she marry? Genes Reunited have all this and more if you follow a logical search, If so look for who did she marry and when. Marriage certificates can be obtained as can marriage records fairly easily
♥ Were there Siblings, older or younger ,dead or alive?
♥ When were these siblings born and where was their birth registered, ie which District
♥ Last known addresses or contact details..look at the Birth certificate or adoption application forms. Someone lives there now unless its raised to the ground but that’s unlikely .
♥Work Backwards….Birth Mothers Date of Birth may only be available to you as a year but it’s helpful anyway. Find her simply on Genes Reunited using the year and full name, assuming you have it.
♥Were you placed in the city/town of your birth, or did you move away?
The resources open to you are the likes of:
Find my Past
The National Archives
So in summary and to outline where I was at this point in my own search..
I knew my BM date of birth and popped it into Genes Reunited…unhelpful as she was not born in this country but came here in the mid 60’s! Bad News! The good news was all her children were born here ! So I traced from the scant info I had about a sibling, the siblings’ place of registration and the exact date of birth for the sibling. Then I could see the District in which they were registered. Same as me!. With your BM full name at the time of YOUR birth you will see yourself registered in GR with her Maiden name as Birth Mother name to verify the correct record. Marriage records lead to show me two marriages also , so I again could cross reference the district where the marriages were registered and determine the county in which she lived at the latest date recorded. At this stage Genes Reunited is still free if you are savvy. If not, pay, it’s worth it in any case.
Then I knew that the sibling born in UK could potentially be found in the marriage records if male as same surname. From here it’s important to keep notes as trust me, its gets confusing. I found about 20 siblings and worked through the list until the cross references matched. ie, Correct Maiden name for their Birth Mother matched Date of Birth for Birth Mother matched Sibling District of Registration etc etc…you will do a couple and then fly through, get the hang of it in no time. If you get really stuck with this send me a message through the blog and I can post a note to clarify any points.
Now I had another name to Google! Hurrah! Seriously it all adds up to the end result, keep the faith and keep focus
Now please remember Google is not God but it is a wonderful tool for digging..the watchword is DIG …DIG DIG DIG and when you finish digging DIG some more!
Hope you are enjoying my blog….comments and feedback welcomed….