Searching for answers is often why people choose to find a person they have lost touch with.
My name is David Oates, I am the Head Researcher at Relative Connections, you can view my LinkedIn by clicking here. I am also the director of the adoption support agency which is regulated by Ofsted.
This week’s blog post is a bit different to some of our other customer stories of the last few weeks.
This one doesn’t end how you would expect but the outcome is really positive for all concerned.
This week the blog post has been written by Relative Connections customer Pamela Smith, she contacted us and tasked us with finding her husband’s birth father.
We would like to thank Pamela for writing up her experience with Relative Connections and wish her and her husband all the best with their new found family. Over to you Pamela…
Well here goes. My Story for your blog. It all started around August last year when I told my Husband that I was going to request his file from the Council that had him fostered out over 50 years ago. I found out through researching on the internet that you could ask for this information now.
I was very happy to have got it too as my Husband was never adopted so we could never go down that route. It took a few weeks to get the file which was very large so I sat down and after a week of reading I had some understanding of what he had gone through, the file was full of so many mind blowing things I cried for days.
Out of hundreds of pages of information that was sent to me, there was one page that gave me some information that was a real shock.
My husband was told by his Mother who he traced ten years back that his Father took him to a children’s home and said he would go back for him when they could afford it. Also that he was a violent man, So My Husband decided not to bother looking for him if he just dumped him, well one page of the file told a different story.
His Father went along with his Mothers wishes but he wanted to keep him. Also another struggle was my Husband always believed he had two birth certificates which I knew could not be right.
So at that stage my Husband asked me if I could find his Father. So that’s when I started. I did sign up to 192 and did some research which was expensive because once you have used your searches you have to pay again for more.
I didn’t want to throw good money after bad so I stopped. I then signed up to Ancestry UK to search for my Husbands birth certificate, I got that information and spoke to the registrar in his district who confirmed what I had suspected you only have one. So I sent off for that. Which is now first page of many in his file.
So many thing going through my head it was mind blowing what to do next.
So I watched a long lost family catch up and thought I could contact them? Oh no I couldn’t my Husband is too private for that. Then in the break I saw an advert of a company called Relative Connections. Thought and thought then sod it I picked up the phone. One of the best decisions I have ever made.
I spoke to someone who said they would get Dave to give me a call.
He did call me and I gave him some information to start the ball rolling, believe me it was not a lot. We emailed and had a few phone calls as you do to confirm a few things and one important thing was my Husband may have a sibling as one page in his file said that another baby was born the following year after my Husband was put in care.
Well I left Dave and his team too it and waited. Well blow me down about two weeks later I got a call from Dave saying I think we have found some information but I cannot confirm until I get a certificate back, but if I am right I’m sure that your Husbands Father has passed away. I was gutted but we had spoken and thought that may be the case, even though it didn’t make it easier to hear that. I was praying he would be alive.
Then the phone call came. Dave said he had found out my Husbands Father had passed in 2012 my stomach jolted, but on a good note we have found my husband had a Brother, also may be another younger on too.
So Dave emailed me a full report of everything he had found and a copy of all the certificates so I could see what work had been done and how he had arrived at the conclusions he had.
More things to take in. Dave also gave me some great advice for the best way to contact my husband’s brother. This was to write a letter, but me being me I decided to make the phone call instead.
I am a very diplomatic person and was confident I could handle it. So I picked up the phone and spoke to his Brother whom was shocked to the core. I told him about this one piece of information that I had from my Husbands file which was so black and white that you could not run from it.
We talked and he was very calm he asked me to email this page to him which I did. He also told me that my Husband has three younger Brothers who were left by their Mother with his Father. Once he has spoken to his Brothers he would call me back.
So I then phoned Dave at Relative Connections to thank him and tell him that all was correct.
That was on the Tuesday, on the Wednesday it was our 21st wedding Anniversary and we had a day trip planned to London so we went as planned, even though there was so much going on, I thought it would be good to get away from it all for a few hours. All we could talk about was his Brothers. I then said we need to get home as I know your Brother will phone. He did.
He spoke to my Husband both in shock but they talked. Then as we were on Holiday my Husband said I need to meet you so we will come and see you Thursday, here is me thinking OMG that’s a long way to go but we did.
So the meeting came two days after the phone call from Dave at Relative Connections.
He not only has three Brother but seven nephews and one niece. If I’m honest it was all very overbearing for everyone to meet up at once things go round and round. Emotions all over the place we left two days later.
They have spoken every week since and are also coming up to see us now in a couple of weeks so onwards and upwards. What more can I say but Thank you guys so much from the bottom of our Hearts.
I’m so pleased that fostering laws have now changed as well so young children that are fostered will be told they have siblings its cruel to find out years later that you have missed out through no fault of your own.
That’s it for this week’s blog post. We’ll be back next week with another story for you. Before we go we would just like to thank Pamela for her story and wish her and her husband (and his brothers, nephews and niece!) the best for the future. There is a similar article where we found a clients adopted brother you can read here.
REMEMBER : If you’re ready to start your story we’re just a phone call away 0113 282 5900