An Indian Adoptee Reclaims His Voice in the Desi Diaspora
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Tag: biological father

Father’s Day for an Adoptee

June 21, 2009

I have a father, who I consider one of my closest friends in the world.

But this post is not about the man I know, but rather my biological father, whom I don’t.

Who is my birth father? I’ve often wondered what he’s like.

Are we the same height? Do we have similar body types? Do we both have deep voices or long “good for piano” fingers?

Does he share my intellectual curiosity, my annoyingly bushy eyebrows? If I saw him standing next to me, would I recognize myself in him?

What would I say to him if I met him?

In the vernacular of the international adoption world, the birth father is rarely mentioned. You can find multitudes of writing regarding adoption trauma and biological mothers, but the bio-father remains absent.

Let’s look at a few reasons why.

  • He wasn’t the one who carried you in his womb for nine months
  • There isn’t the same emotional bond between a father and child, as with mother and her child
  • Mothers are considered nurturers, not fathers
  • Some women were raped and do not know the perpetrator
  • Many mothers were unwed women, who don’t want their parents to know the biological father
  • The biological mother knows her partner wants nothing to do with their child
  • Parents were unaware their daughter was sexually active

The arguments are many, but that doesn’t mean birth father discussion is unwarranted.

Furthermore, in some cases, when the biological father is present during the adoption process, the whole picture becomes cloudy and confused. He may even seek custody of his child. I know there are probably other grounds for why biological fathers are generally ignored in adoption circles, that was not an exhaustive list.

Regardless of who my birth father is, he biologically created me. That isn’t deniable.

For that reason alone, I’m giving him some words today.

He impacted me, whether or not he was actually at my birth. I assume he was not there, but I don’t know my personal details about this. But I have half his chromosomes.

Do we believe the falsehood that adoptees don’t wonder about who “their father is,” like they wonder about who “their mother is?” Clearly, we must, but why?

Aside for the reasons mentioned earlier, I think we bypass the subject because we don’t know how to discuss them. We’re afraid to talk about biological father’s because they are enigmas, difficult to explain.

Talking about birth fathers seems a messy proposition and most in the adoption community would rather shy away.

The adoption triad seemingly ignores the possibility a child may want to meet their birth father, or at the very least question who he is. Surely I’m not the only adoptee that thinks we excessively focus on biological mothers.

This Father’s day I will honor the man I call my father and who raised me. He is an amazing Dad, who influences who I am today.

But I’m also celebrating my biological father. I know nothing about him.

Tomorrow, I’ll return focus to biological mothers and issues that vein of conversation raises.

But today it’s ‘Father’s’ Day, and somewhere is the man who helped give me life.

This one is for you, my birth father, at least one adoptee want to bring you attention, if only for one day.