Do I Even Want to Know My Bio-Dad?

I’m surprised it’s so hard to decide.

Photo by Steve Shreve on Unsplash

My mom got married when I was ten and my step-dad promptly adopted me.

He became my real dad, and he’s the only dad I’ve ever known or loved.

It’s complicated, because I know there’s a bio-dad out there that I know nothing about, but thanks to the results from a 23 and Me kit that my sister got me for Christmas, I connected with a cousin on my bio-dad’s side and for the first time have the opportunity to learn about him and his family.

It turns out my ancestry is even more awkward than I thought when I first wrote about it.

My “cousin” that I connected with isn’t actually my cousin.

She’s my niece, and she’s a year older than me, because her mother is my half sister.

Her mother is older than my mother.

It’s so, so weird.

So, what I found out from my niece is that I have two half sisters from my bio-dad’s first marriage, and two half brothers from my bio-dad’s second marriage.

The affair that I came about from apparently broke up his second marriage, and then my bio-dad went on to have ANOTHER affair with someone else.

Dude gets around, and not in a good way, in my opinion.

The strangest thing of all is learning that my bio-dad is my grandfather’s age.

He’s 85 years old now.

An old man, nearing the end of his life.

I feel like I don’t have much time to connect with him and meet him if I want to, but I keep asking myself…

Do I even want to meet him?

At the moment, I am leaning toward NO.

I went radio-silent on my niece after learning what I did, because a part of me is just so shocked about it all that I feel like I need time to process what I’ve learned before I move forward and ask more questions.

For one thing, I’d love to find out if there are any significant health problems in the family that I should know about.

I wonder if anyone on his side of the family suffers from depression and anxiety because I’m the only one on my side who does.

Is there cancer in his family? Heart disease?

There’s no way to know if I don’t ask, but asking is going to open up even more cans of worms that I don’t know if I am ready for.

I’ve gone 36 years without knowing my bio-dad — do I really want to start that relationship now?

I just don’t know.

I can’t imagine how it would go down.

I don’t even know what to say to him, if I were to say anything at all.

Why didn’t you want to be a part of my life?

That is the question that most comes to mind.

He knows I exist — we even exchanged a few letters when I was little until he abruptly cut off communication.

But he didn’t care enough to keep on the conversation with me, his child.

How can I blame him?

I didn’t fight to keep in touch, either.

Now that I have the opportunity to get in touch, I don’t know yet if I want to take it.

He may be my bio-dad, but he means nothing to me.

I’ve never seen his face, I’ve never heard his voice, I’ve never felt his touch.

I’ve never heard him say I love you or have any reason to believe he would care to say it to a stranger.

He’s a stranger.

A stranger who, for whatever reason I don’t know about (yet, anyway) abandoned me and went on with his life with his other families.

There’s a lot I want to know — about him, and about his side of the family.

But, right now I’m leaning toward getting that information elsewhere.

Maybe from my niece. Maybe from one of my half-sisters, if they are willing to talk to me about my bio-dad.

But right now, I know I’m not ready to talk to him and start a relationship, and I don’t know if I ever will be.

It’s no joke when they say that these DNA kits can change your life irrevocably.

I was warned.

Nevertheless, I persisted.

And now a part of me is filled with regret that I went looking for something I didn’t know that I didn’t want to really find.

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