My Long Lost Sister

During WW2 my mother, now deceased, had an American serviceman based in England as a “friend”. This friendship resulted in the birth of a baby girl.

My father who was on active duty in the Western Desert returned home after being slightly wounded and understandably was a bit pissed off to say the least.

Before his return to active duty he issued my mum with an ultimatum “Put the child up for adoption or it’s divorce”.

The kiddy was adopted but good old dad still divorced mum in 1946, he never forgave her and I suppose all things being equal he couldn’t be blamed.

Mum married again in 1948 to a really decent man who as far as I was concerned was my dad, I’d never met my natural father altho’ I did know of him just as I knew all about the circumstances of the divorce.

Just last week I received a letter from my long lost sister and so did my brother.

Curiosity had got the better of her and she had decided to track down her relatives. My brother has spoken to her but as yet I have not, I’m a little apprehensive…don’t ask why, I have no idea.

She lives in Middlesborough which is only about 90 miles away from me so meeting would be easy…and yet?!

It turns out that she has 3 other sisters all resident in the USA, 2 of them are in contact with her but the 3rd won’t entertain any contact at all.

She is married, has 3 grown up children and 5 grandchildren so it seems my family is much larger than I ever thought.

What advice do you have for me, I need it

Well, having almost zero family, I tend to think that having more family would be a good thing. There could surely be no harm in at least meeting her and her family once.

My husband has a similar dilemma. His son from a teenage indiscretion recently contacted his birth mother, who then contacted hubby.
He’s going to arrange to meet the boy, but it is causing a good deal of anxiety.

Meet her. Don’t expect anything, then you can’t be disappointed.

Meet her. Is it possible that she’ll be a crazy stalker? Well, yes. Is it probable? No.

My own long-lost relatives weren’t the bestest ones I’ve ever met, but they weren’t the craziest either (that honor still goes to Dad’s youngest bro, even though Mom’s parents produce enough drama for a Telenovela). I’ve know people for whom meeting their long-lost relatives was an absolute high point (of course, for the twins who’d been separated at birth this is quite understandable… and why the fuck do custody judges like to separate twins?).

I guess I will meet her but where and when I have no idea.

First on the agenda is plucking up the nerve to phone her

Definitely meet her, if you don’t you’ll always regret never really knowing who she was.

What’s the birth order Chowder? You mention your brother (as well as a ‘new’ sister)…was she the first born or did you and your brother come before and/or after her?

You mentioned too that you had known about the circumstances of your parents divorce from an early age…did you know that you had a sister, and if so, did you ever feel a desire to find out about her?

And you also noted that your sister has three other sisters…from the context, I’m guessing they are all the progeny of her father but with different mums?? From the sounds of it, he must have been a bit of a stud, going 'round getting all these young ladies pregnant then nicking off for another tour of duty so to speak. :smiley:

Your sister sounds like she is out on a limb, genealogically speaking. The need to be part of a family is an incredibly strong urge for human beings, and her efforts to locate you and your brother should not be dismissed lightly. That’s not to say that you are going to immediately fall in sibling-love with her, nor she with you. But that’s what families are all about really. We love some, we hate some, we ignore the rest if we’re lucky!!

In other words, make contact wi’v yer’ sister ya chump.

They’ll be sisters from the adoptive family, surely?

That’s what made me confused Struan

It sort of implies that the other sisters were not part of the original adoptive family, well to my reading anyway.

In this order:
My bro
My sis.

Yes I did know I had a sister, my mother told me and my bro when were where old enough to understand why the divorce came about. I never had any strong urges to find out more about her, I reckon it was a case of letting sleeping dogs lie and not wanted to cause or open any wounds.

Not to put to fine a point on it…in the UK during the war, food was rationed, my mums US serviceman was able to supply good 'ol mum with cans of ham/fruit and other stuff which was impossible to obtain other than on the black market.

Mum explained to my bro and myself that her main concern was feeding her family, if it meant she had to “put out” well so be it. Neither of us held her to task for this altho’ some of you out there may think that it was immoral of my mother.

My sisters other 3 sisters are all from the same marriage, sisters father married an American on his return to the US, maybe he was a stud but we’ll never know.
My brother did manage to find out that he lived all his life in Minnesota and died 9 years ago, his wife 2 years before that.

I shall make contact and more than likely meet up, after all she has been trying to trace us for something like 6 years according to what she told my brother.

Thanks to all for your input, I’ll keep you updated

My dad’s father was a bigamist who had four children by his other wife while still married to (albeit separated from)my grandmother. The siblings weren’t supposed to know about my dad, but eventually found out and obsessed for 13 years about meeting him. Dad was about 50 when the oldest sister contacted him and it’s been absolutely the most wonderful thing to happen to him ever. Twenty years later there is no sign of anything but love, generosity and acceptance. Who among us can say that about family?

Meet her. You never know.

What does your brother think?

If it were me (my brother and I are very close) I’d definitely want to take my brother to the meeting.

Definitely meet her at least. You can always choose not to maintain contact.

And anyone who’s lived through the war or knows anything about living through it - especially in the UK - will not think less of your mum.

Another vote for meeting her. Even if you’re not crazy about the idea, it’d be a nice thing to do for her. Karma points and all that.

My husband’s daughter gave up a baby girl for adoption when she was 17. When the girl was 20, she decided to find her bio family, just to let them know that she’d had a good life, things had turned out okay for her. We went to her wedding last spring and have a new great-grandson as of last month.

Talk with her on the phone, and if everything goes well, set up a time to visit. If you have any old family photos or info. she might like, make a copy of them and take it with you.

I too had a long lost sister, from differing circumstances but in the long run that’s immaterial. Never as long as I will live will I forget that first call to her. Nervous, apprehensive, curious and then once we heard each other’s voice we just melted into each other’s hearts and, eventually, lives.

I can’t begin to tell you what a wonderful experience it’s been for us. I strongly hope you experience the same.

Michael, my brother , is all for it and I suppose I am also.

I’m just a bit nervous, call me chicken I don’t care :stuck_out_tongue:

She probably feels the same apprehension, it will most likely be forgotten very soon after you meet.

Or maybe he was a married man with a family back in the States? Not as dramatic, I guess, but probably more likely.

Good luck, chowder, and please come back and let us know how it works out. Like others have said, maybe you’ll just meet once and decide not to do anything more, but maybe you’ll have a whole new branch to add to the family!

As I said in post #10 he was unmarried until he returned to the US. Obviously after marriage he kept his todger under control :stuck_out_tongue:

I intend making the phone call tonight, I’ll report back tomorrow, my fingers are crossed