January 3, 2013 in Features

Annie’s Mailbox: Adoptee doesn’t feel equal in family

Kathy Mitchell
 
Contact Annie

Annie’s Mailbox is written by Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar, longtime editors of the Ann Landers column. Please email your questions to anniesmailbox@ comcast.net, or write to: Annie’s Mailbox, c/o Creators Syndicate, 737 3rd Street, Hermosa Beach, CA 90254.

Dear Annie: I am a 22-year-old adoptee. My grandparents raised me from 6 months old and officially adopted me when I was 10. They have three sons – my biological father and his two brothers. This is where the problem lies.

My “uncles” have never accepted that their parents are my parents. They never refer to me as their sister and frequently refer to my parents as my grandparents. Most of these things I ignore, but there is one thing I cannot. My parents are in their early 60s, and the subject of their death comes up often. Their sons have decided that when our parents die, I have no say in anything.

Annie, these are the only parents I’ve ever had. I am legally adopted, so I have a legal right as well as a given right. How do I calmly explain that they are my parents, too? – Their Child

Dear Their Child: You are not going to make your uncles treat you like a sibling. They see you as their brother’s child. And although your parents are not that old, it is never too soon to prepare a will and other necessary legal documents. Your parents’ wishes and the distribution of their assets are things they get to decide, and they should discuss it with a lawyer. They should also have a family meeting and make sure that all of their children are aware of how they want this to be handled.


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