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An Open Letter To My Lost Son

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If you read my previous article -– My Teenage Pregnancy -– you’ll know that I had a child I gave up for adoption.

[ADBLOCKHERE]His birthday recently passed and he is now almost the same age I was when I had him. I have been thinking about him a lot recently, wondering what he is going to do next with his life. I have also wondered if he thinks about me or if he would like to meet me.

I am in the unusual position of being not only a biological mother but also an adopted child. The thing I most often wondered (before giving my own child up for adoption) was why my mother had given me up. I thought I had done something wrong; maybe I was too fat or ugly or maybe she just didn’t want to be a mother.

I don’t wonder any more. And I don’t want him to either. I want to tell him why; I want him to know that I love him. So I wrote him a letter.

Dear Son,

I want you to know that I think about you every day.

You are now almost the same age that I was when I fell pregnant with you. Can you imagine how it would feel, at seventeen, to be a father? You would panic and feel that the world would never be the same. You may even think that your life as you knew it was over and you’d be right. No matter what decision you made or what action you took, your life could never the same again.

I made the best decision I could. I was a hurt, angry kid and needed to get my head on straight. I could never have helped you become the amazing person I have no doubt you are. I wasn’t strong enough. If I had kept you it would have been disastrous for both of us. It took a long time to come to the decision to give you up for adoption. It was the only choice for us.

I made sure that you were with a family that could love you and take care of you. I knew that it would be hard for me but it was best for you. You must understand that my decision came from love. My love for you drove everything I did during my pregnancy. I quit doing drugs, stopped smoking and even ate better, all for love of you. You saved my life. Without you I would never have been able to move on from the pain of my past. I only ever held you for five minutes and yet I felt more love in those moments than I thought was possible to feel. It was enough love to help me heal.

I remember you as you were the day you were born, the only time I have ever seen you, big round head covered in soft blonde hair, blue eyes and the clearest, whitest skin I have ever seen on a baby. I remember how soft and sweet holding you was. I remember your lovely baby smell and how you gripped my finger when I held your tiny hand.

I love you now as I have always loved you. As I always will.

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About A.L. Harper

  • As an adopted kid, I think this is beautiful. This shows the kinds of emotion that people don’t think about in relation to adoption.

    Thank you for this piece.

  • Nice piece Andrea. You do show the love.

  • Warren –

    Thank you. I know sometimes people don’t really understand how raw the emotions are. That rawness never diminishes. I keep thinking it will stop someday, that someday I will be able to think of him without the pain. But it’s been 17 years and that hasn’t happened yet.

    John –

    Thank you very much. You comment means a lot to me.

  • Andrea,

    Are you legally restrained from seeing him, or do you just not know where he is? When and how does an adopted child find out that those he has called mom and dad are not his biological parents? I hope that when he reaches majority he will he be able to find you, grow to understand, appreciate and love you, and share with you those things about his early years of life that you heartbreakingly have had to miss out on. Best of luck to you, O noble mother.

  • You did what you had to do, because the outcome would have been worse had you kept him.

  • chantal stone

    Andrea….you amaze me more and more every time i read something of yours. you are a beautiful person, and i have no doubt that the love you feel for your son transcends all distance, that he can feel it, and know deep down that his mother did what was best for him.

  • sr

    Andrea. Lord sweetheart you made my heart break for you. Do you have a name for your son? Will pray that you receive and answer and your son will find you.

    God bless you Andrea.

  • trooper_D

    I’m not an adoptive child, but I find your story very sad, but heartwarming. I felt your feelings, felt the hurt that was within your heart when you had to ‘give your child away’. But it was for the good… it was the best gift you could’ve given your son, a chance to have a good life with those who would be able to provide for his needs.

    I hope that someday, your son will seek you and ask the question that you so wish to answer. I hope that he will listen with an open heart, and understand the choice you’ve chosen so long ago.

    And I’m glad to see that you’ve made a choice to live your life right, that you’ve started to get back on the right track of life, and made something of yourself instead of wondering how you were going to survive day to day, had you stayed where you were at 17.

    Kudos to you, Andrea, for doing right with your life. Don’t give up hope that your son won’t seek you for answers. If I were in his shoes, I’d want to know the answers to the questions that’d be embedded in my head. I’d want to know why. Keep the faith!

  • That’s a gutwrencher and a half.

    You did the right thing back then and I am so glad it worked out for the better for you.

  • Richard –

    The type of adoption we had was closed, meaning that I didn’t know the names of his parents or any specifics about their location. I don’t get to see him because I gave him up. That’s what adoption is. More and more now there are open adoptions but that was fairly unusual when I gave up my son.

    If he wants to, when he is 18 he can go register to find me. I have my name down on several large adoption registers and hopefully he will chose the same ones.

    Thank you for your well wishes I really apperciate that.

  • Matthew – You’re right it would have been. I now have a beautiful daughter who I love and couldn’t be without and I wouldn’t have her if I had kept him. It’s a catch 22 really.

    Chantal – You’re pretty amazing yourself. My new best friend! *smile*

    SR – Thank you for your kind words and prayers

    Trooper – I’m glad it touched you. I really hope that it helps other people really. Knowing your not alone or maybe to know that giving a child up for adoption is really an act of love. It has to be.

    It has worked out better for me.

    Todd – Thank you very much!

  • Hey Andrea:
    Very nice piece, very nice.

  • Mary –

    Thank you.

  • Another wonderful piece.

    Ironically I was reading this piece while at a live concert last nite when the singer sang a wonderful song – and I’ll email you two and see if she can share the lyrics – about adoption adn reunions.

    And on a person note I’m a proud uncle of two nieces,photos here,of the girls adopted from Russia.

  • Great writing, again, A.L., thanks.

    *furtively wipes away tears*

  • Nancy

    Very nice, lovely writing, and so sad, but you did the RIGHT thing for him, and you don’t need any of us reassuring you of that.

  • Scott – Thanks for the introduction. I have seen the photos of your adorable little nieces. They are lovely I’m sure they are going to be very happy in your family. Adoption is such a good thing for everyone involved – most of the time. I do know of instances when it has gone horribly. But luckily for most families it works out so well.

    Christopher – Sorry mate didn’t mean to make you cry.

    Nancy – I didn’t write this piece for reassurance. I wrote it because there are so many kids out there, like me, who are adopted and wonder why their birth mother gave them up. Even when you get older and you kind of understand there is still that child inside you who wonders and worries.

    I decided to post this because I wanted to reach those people. I wanted them to know that this ISN’T the soft option. It hard as hell and ONLY a mothers love for her child makes it possible. They weren’t given up because they weren’t loved but because they were, very much.

    And who knows maybe my son will read this.

  • Scott Butki

    I hope he does.

  • Thank you for this piece, Andrea! I am so sorry for you.

  • Mark –

    Please don’t be sorry for me. Getting pregnant saved me. I am a happy well adjusted person now. I wouldn’t have been if I hadn’t gotten pregnant. Everyone has pain. Our pain makes us who we are.

    And you’re welcome.

  • Kathy Caudle

    August 9, 2006

    My son was born August 22, 1978 in Ogden, Utah at McKay-Dee Hospital. He weighed 5 pounds 15 ounces, and had red hair and blue eyes. During my pregnancy with my only child from my only pregnancy, I was a smoker. Such explains my son’s low birth weight.
    When he was born I was a young woman of twenty-four, and un-married. My son’s natural father’s name is Gary (last name withheld).

    Salt Lake City, UT is where I make my home, now, since I left my homestate of Illinois in September 1993. For twelve years, however, I lived in Ogden after my son was born. I missed him, horribly, and yearned for him to be with me.

    David McConkie and Colleen Burnham, the two people most responsible for ripping my child away from me always have demonized me for loving and missing my beloved. They both were employed by Children’s Aid Society of Utah.

    If the above physical description applies to you, I’d love to hear from you. Contact me through public records, since I’m not able to leave an e-mail address here. DON’T contact, if you’re not interested otherwise. Thank you.

    Kathy Caudle
    Salt Lake City, UT

  • Kathy,

    I’m so sorry. I’m female.