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Wednesday, September 11, 2019

The New Normal: DNA & Adoptee Search

I feel like I'm a victim of a witness protection program called closed adoption , though I didn't ask to be... Trace
Reblog from 2014


By Trace L Hentz, Blog Editor

Whenever I have a birthday I think of all the years I searched for my parents. It's true that laws prevented me from ever finding them. Laws didn't stop me. I met my dad in 1995. We did a DNA test to prove paternity. It was 99.9% that Earl was my dad.


(2014) Patricia and I are still finishing up the new anthology CALLED HOME, very important history as a collection of adoptee narratives and the historical truths about adoption in Indian Country.  These voices of adoptees are at the heart of what I do. They are the reason there is a blog AMERICAN INDIAN ADOPTEES.

Right now Karen Vigneault and I are working with about 20 adoptees who are trying to find their families. Because of the adoption laws in the USA, we are seeing the “New Normal” for adoptees is having a DNA test.  They have no choice with the laws not allowing adoptees to have access to our own names, our parent’s names and our tribal nations, and we are still denied our basic rights as human beings and citizens of sovereign nations.

Our adoptive parents who raised us may or may not realize that we NEED information and our ancestry and medical background.  (An adoptee can love more than one set of parents and there is no need to panic!) Adoptees tell me they are afraid to search because of their adoptive parents! That fear has to stop because if you wait, you may never get to meet your mother or father!

One of the adoptees in the new anthology talks about finding new cousins who are trying to figure out who her mother is.

This is the new normal. This is not right but because of the adoption industry and their billion dollar earnings, we adoptees are still at the bottom of the totem pole as far as our rights.

I don’t know how many times I have said to an adoptee do not delay your search. If you do get a name or phone number, make the call. Have a friend with you to keep you calm. Write a set of questions. Just make contact then offer to send a letter explaining what you know about your first family. Send them your phone number so they can call you back.

Give people time to adjust to the truth that you are definitely one of their family members.

If you get your DNA results,  which is the new normal, make contact with cousins who share your DNA! Give them your birth date and let them help you try and figure out how you are all related.

The new normal isn’t fair but we’ll use this until the laws change.

Update: One of the adoptees in the book Stolen Generations is moving to Michigan to start a new life with his parents. He found them using a DNA test. Both his parents were looking for him but didn't know how. Drew found them. He's finally in reunion after 40+ years.

The 2nd Edition of Called Home: The Roadmap has a chapter about using your DNA results to do a court order to open your records.  ICWA has a provision for this. Please read this book.

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What our Nations are up against!

What our Nations are up against!

To Veronica Brown

Veronica, we adult adoptees are thinking of you today and every day. We will be here when you need us. Your journey in the adopted life has begun, nothing can revoke that now, the damage cannot be undone. Be courageous, you have what no adoptee before you has had; a strong group of adult adoptees who know your story, who are behind you and will always be so.

Generation Removed

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