Find Your Missing Past
Use Genealogy and Genetics to Discover Your Place in the World
a-dop-tion (a-dop-shen) noun: The act of transferring parental rights and duties to someone other than the adopted person's biological parents. The practice is ancient and occurs in all cultures. Beginning in the 1970s, a growing adoptees-rights movement in the United States called for the repeal of confidentiality laws in most states that prevented adoptees as adults from viewing their adoption records, including their original birth certificates.
Finding Your Birth Parents
In the winter of 1980, a girl was born in Mesa, Arizona. We adopted her within hours of her birth. We showered her with love and support and raised her as our own. We always promised her that if she wished, we would do everything in our power to help her learn about her birth parents. When she turned eighteen, she wanted to know more. It was the beginning of an amazing, enlightening, and rewarding trip for all of us.
We hired a certified "Confidential Intermediary", a trained investigator authorized by the State of Arizona to access the original adoption files. We discovered it merely opened the door to bigger mysteries. Even if the records showed the names or the genetic mother and/or father, the task of finding them would be daunting.
I enrolled in classes and became a licensed Confidential Intermediary myself. My husband is both a scientist and a former investigative reporter. With extensive study of genealogical tools and techniques and with the study of the science of DNA, we immersed ourselves in genealogical research for the next twenty plus years.
Not only were we delighted to find our daughter's birth mother and birth father, we put together reunions on both sides of her birth family. The process was so rewarding to all parties involved, including ourselves, we have continued to dedicate ourselves to solving genealogical challenges of many kinds.
Since diving headlong into the field, we have helped dozens of adopted children and birth-parents find families, learn about their histories, and solve mysteries that have haunted them for many years.
For some, they wanted health histories. Others wanted to learn about their ancient roots. Many wanted to learn "the story". Why were they adopted? Many of the searches had happy endings; some didn't. But in all cases, there's some peace-of-mind in finally having the answers.
In recent years, between the liberalization of some of the state laws on adoption file access and the incredible advances in the area of DNA research, I have elected to let my Confidential Intermediary certification lapse. I find I can be more effective without having the constraints the State of Arizona put on me regarding information secrecy. However, in some cases, the use of a C.I. may have merit. I retain my list of other C.I.s and - if necessary - can bring a good C.I. into the picture.
We perform this research as a labor of love. If you feel we may be able to help you find your roots, we'll be happy to discuss the many possibilities with you via phone or Zoom. Contact us if you have any questions. We'll be delighted to help.
Email Liz@MyMissingPast.com or Howard.Jones@MyMissingPast.com or call (480) 459-5974 for more information. All inquiries are strictly confidential. I look forward to hearing your story and helping you better understand your missing past.