As the saying goes: "You can't know what you don't know." So we've put together a short list of the top most important things all adoptees should know when setting out to find their birth parents or other biological relatives.
We've seen it all here at BirthParentFinder.com. And it is because of our decades of experience helping locate and reunite people with their birth families—combined with the amazing feedback from our past clients—that we can pass on the following bits of wisdom to you. So here it is, your inside look at what to expect throughout the process of finding your birth family.
#1: There are two distinct, separate stages of the process.
Every case can be split into two equally important but very different parts. The first stage is the investigation phase, otherwise known as the "research" phase. (This is especially true if you have taken a DNA test and we are using research-heavy genetic genealogy to work your case.)
Depending on the information at our disposal from the start, the investigation stage can be extremely tedious and difficult or it can be fairly straightforward. Regardless, the goal of this phase is to identify and locate the person or people you are searching for. And we won't take on your case to begin with unless we are confident that we can achieve this for you!
The second stage is the contact phase. This is the part where we reach out to members of your birth family and attempt to make contact. Once contact is made, our ultimate goal is to then get you connected with your relatives.
#2: There is no predictable timeline.
This is probably the single most important piece of information in this post. Here's why:
The bottom line is that it is impossible to know what to expect from an investigation before it begins. There is absolutely no way to know how long it will take or how what unique challenges may pop up along the way. Most cases take 2-3 months to conclude stage one and stage two, and even still, I just hesitated to write "most cases".
There's really no such thing as "typically" or "most of the time" when it comes to these types of investigations. No two people are exactly alike, and so why would we ever expect two cases to be? Sometimes the investigation stage is the easy part and the contact stage is the hard part, and vice versa. Sometimes they take about the same amount of time.
Another thing to remember is that most people will be skeptical of anyone calling out of the blue to tell them they have a child/brother/sister/aunt/uncle/cousin they never knew about. It's a big reason why our clients trust us with this part of the process—we know how to break through that initial skepticism in order to give you the best chance of connecting with your relatives. This is what we do every single day.
Our best advice to you is this: Be prepared for anything and everything. Expect that your case will take time, because it will. Remember to trust the process (and us!) and breathe. We're experts for a reason and you're in the best possible hands.
#3: Patience, patience, patience.
AKA: waiting, waiting, waiting.
We know how difficult it can be when you decide to take the plunge and finally search for your birth parents or other biological relatives. Many of our clients have waited their whole lives for answers. So are we really telling you there will be even more waiting?!
Well, yes. That's exactly what we're saying! Why? Because it's the reality of the process. On your end at least...
...Meanwhile on our end, we are in a constant state of motion on your case, whether it be in stage one or stage two. We are constantly pursuing leads and tracking down relatives with the one goal of delivering you the answers you seek.
Trust us, we know the waiting is the hardest part of all. Remember that a few weeks or months is barely the blink of an eye compared to a lifetime without answers. So whether your case takes 3 weeks or 3 months to conclude, patience is the best gift you can give your BirthParentFinder.com researchers.
We are here for you at every step and we won't rest until you have found closure and peace. And best case scenario, a reunion with your birth family! It's what we do. And it's all well worth the wait. ♥️
If you or someone you know needs help finding biological relatives, we can help!