I am adopted. I was abandoned a few days after I was born in a hospital in Moscow, Russia. My biological mother and father left what essientially translates as a “Jane Doe” and “John Smith” type name. The address they left didn’t even exist. Clearly, they did not want to be found. When I was in late teens, I did a DNA testing with the company 23andMe, desperate to find any type of information I could about my geneaology. Over the course of the next few years, I gradually did more DNA tests and messages over thousands of people across the different DNA websites, trying to find any bit of information I could about my family history. I learned that it is very likely that I have three specific surnames somewhere in my family tree and that I have Roma ancestors.
What does this have to do with a missing person? When a person goes missing, a person puts up a poster with as much recent information as possible about them and hopes someone will report that they found the missing person. For adoptees, it’s like working in reverse. Except we often have little to no information about the people we are looking for (or worse, the information is “fake” so back to square one, metaphorically speaking).
This “reverse missing person” case goes through the same stress and heartache for many as a person looking for an actual missing person. Many adoptees report feelings as though they grieve over the parents that they have no vivid memories of. And like many missing person cases, many adoptees are perpetually wondering “will I ever find my biological family members?” It is a stress that lingers in the back of many adoptees’ minds.