Son Meets Disappointing Bio-Dad For The First Time, Asks Internet For Advice About Meeting The Rest Of The Family
It takes a lot of work to go and find your biological parents when you're adopted, and how disappointing it can be if you find out they aren't who you think they are.
u/MuNaMunaHuman told his story:
I [14M] met my father for the first time yesterday. I'm really disappointed and I don't know if I want to met the rest of them anymore.
I just got home and I had a day to think it over, I dunno anymore. I really did not enjoy meeting my dad, Zack, and I am just not sure anymore.
Zack is really immature for a 39 year old. He told me he likes to go to night clubs, bars, talk to young girls, etc, he's a frat boy that never grew up. He's just not what I was expecting. He told me that he could give me pointers on how to get 5 girls in 1 night. He comes off as such a douche. He's so in your face and loud. I don't know if I want to meet the rest of the family.
TL;DR: I don't know if I want to meet the rest of the family.
Here was some of the advice he got.
Can I just say I absolutely adore this response? Congrats for being a sensible person.
You are under no obligation at all to see anyone in this ruckus, but who are the rest of the family members you would be meeting?
Regardless, if you do not want to meet them, for whatever reason, just say you are not ready to reintroduce 'family' to your life. Family are the people who you choose as you family - you don't earn being family by blood. You owe nothing to these people, regardless if they share blood with you or not.
By all means, don't if that's what you want.
I met my dad at 16, now 28. First meeting was okay. Met his mom, sister, and my niece and nephew not long after. Overall okay people that love each other. I spent a weekend with him for my birthday and it was a little awkward. I was being shy and wasn't ready to really open up to him.
I was suppose to fly out state to meet the rest of my family...it never happened. He completely cut off all contact. I wrote him a letter expressing my feelings, had a phone conversation with him after that. The gist of that convo was him telling me that he didn't think I cared (because of my shyness towards him). I started bawling, my mom got pissed and started yelling at him. It was bad.
There's more to it. We tried a few other times over true years to connect. But meh. The last time I saw him, his lovely mother was telling me that she doesn't blame my mom for me not being around.... puh-fucking-lease. They wanted nothing to do with me then as an innocent baby, and not now as a grown as woman.
Good thing is that I met my half brother...not through him, naturally. He told me about him at 16, I never forgot. At that time, he was telling me how he told my brother about me, and they were trying to find a gift to get me. I eventually found my brother on Facebook at 23. Turns out our dad lied to me, my brother never even knew I existed. His mom, which is a really awesome woman, let him know that it was true, she just never knew how to tell him.
Well, I ended up moving out of state to get to know my brother for half a year. He's awesome, his family is awesome and welcomed me with open arms, and I am so glad that I got him out of this ridiculous shit factory of a situation.
Oh, yeah, my own dad blocked me on Facebook after we agreed to meet and have a drink together. His lovely mother also makes no effort to be a part of my life either.
This was a learning experience.
If I were you, learn your heritage from him and get any medical history. Phone numbers, addresses, meet your family. The only reason why is because if some health issue happens to you or any children you have in the future, you can try to contact them if absolutely necessary. Other than that, go your separate ways if that's what you are feeling.
Lol was not trying to write a wall of text.
So, I'm 31. I met my dad when I was 13. I have been nothing but increasingly disappointed by my father's, well, everything since that time. I'm pretty sure he's a sociopath trying to fit in with the rest of the world. He treats my half siblings orders of magnitude better than he treats me. I cannot express to anyone how much I wish I could go back and tell 13 year old me not to meet him. I know all of his family, they're not that much different than he is, and they kinda explain him. All of my favorite people from that side of the family are in-laws and weren't raised in those environments.
I will say this, how: I got to meet my dad's dad, with whom my father spent very little of his childhood. He's passed away now, but the 13-14 years in which I knew him were some really good ones. I consider him to be the silver lining to the shit-cloud that is my family.
So, what would I do now that I know what I know? I would dive in, find the people worth their salt, continually have them in my life, and exclude those who aren't. I would be crystal clear to all people where they stand and why.
God, your dad sounds like my mom. I met her when I was fifteen, and she bought me thongs and cigarettes.
I got an amazing half-sister (though I never call her that) out of the meeting, and that was about it.
Few things, he has no clue how to be a parent because while a sperm donor he isn't a parent. Your reaction already at 14 makes you more mature than this guy, who is my age age by a few years and the rest of us cringe at this sad display of a 'man'.
I think you had a mental picture of what your dad would be and god he did not even get close to it. You were not wrong for this, it's natural and he is WAY immature for his age anyway.
The five girls in one night comment shows his lack of respect for people and I think that's part of the disgust! (Your mom did a good job you are mature and can spot a loser, lots of women can't do that :p)
You do not owe this man or his family anything. Have you talked to your mom about this? If he calls I'd tell him I was busy when he tries for future meet ups. The good news (?) is he flaked for 14 years so I doubt he would consistently keep trying, especially if you were the one originally reaching out for the meet up.
As a person who met my bio dad at 36, I understand. He was not someone I wanted to invite to my home or meet the rest of my family, but I did meet my 1/2 sister out of it. She is amazing! Neither of us has a strong relationship with him, I only talk to him maybe twice a year, she sees him and talks to him more than that. But without him I would not have my incredible sister who I can not imagine living without now. Do what makes you comfortable and don't feel pressure to have a relationship with anybody. If you feel adventurous, meet some more of his side of people and maybe meet a cool person that you might have a great relationship with. Remember you don't have to, if you don't want to.
It sounds like you're a bit more mature than the average 14 y/o and he doesn't know how to interact with teenagers at all.
I met my biological father when I was 16. I was super gung-ho because my mother had died a few years before and I was craving/needing a parent in my life. It wasn't bad, he had cleaned up his life and was a decent human, but he never filled the void either.
We took things way too fast and the first time I met him in person I also met his wife and 25 of my aunts, uncles, and cousins. It's a loving family but that was super overwhelming.
It's okay if this guy doesn't feel like 'Dad' to you and it's absolutely okay to not seek that sort of relationship with him. Don't try to force him into that position either because it just leads to frustration. It's best to take it slow. It's okay to say 'I'm not ready yet.' You don't have to meet his family alone. If your Mom can't go with you (when you feel ready, of course) see if another family member you like will go with you. Any decent human being would understand you needing that sort of safety net.
My biological father died last year, 14 years after I met him. At best we were acquaintances that talked on holidays. I don't regret having tracked him down. We found some common ground over the years and a couple instances of 'the apple didn't fall far from the tree.' I feel fulfilled in the sense that I know where I came from but still occasionally grieve what never was.
You've got time to navigate this. You can even take a break, try again later and reassess.
I had exactly the same experience when I met my Dad. It was such a disappointment. He also told me that he didn't see me as a child as he felt I should have made more of an effort... As small children often go out out of their way to book appointments with their father. He is a drunken, stoner loser who has never grown up.
I met up with him a few more times over the years, but decided it wasn't for me. I am almost 30 and haven't seen my father in over ten years now and I don't regret it. I know it's tough having your hopes shattered, but if he was a decent dad you wouldn't be meeting him for the first time at 14. You are under no obligation to meet him again, and if you change your mind you now know where he is.
Unfortunately this is so common (boys building up ideas of what their real father's are like and then being dissapointed) it's a common trope in media now. Fresh prince of bel air had an episode that was really emotional. Basically, there's a reason he wasn't in your life until now. Good men, no matter the circumstances would have made an effort to be in your life. Relationship with your mother non withstanding.
My mother is/was an abusive narcissist. My father left when I was 12. I don't blame him, not even a little bit. What I knew of her then was enough to say that, and that was thru a child's eyes who didn't have full understanding of the situation. It was still enough but I'm sure there was more.
I later found out a lot of what she had told me about him had been a lie. I had been lied to and brainwashed and turned against him. I contacted him. He was so happy he cried. He answered all my questions, and wanted to know all about who I had grown up to be. I was 24 at the time.
We went to dinner the next week and it was a little awkward but very nice.
Sadly, this has no happy ending.
He remarried and my stepmother did everything she could to push me away, convinced for no reason that I didn't like her. She was in the hospital once and I asked my dad to ask her if I could visit. He relayed that she said she didn't want people seeing her sick. I said I understood, because I did, and to let her know if she changed her mind and felt up to it, I would still love to see her.
Well, than I "didn't like her" because I didn't come visit anyway. After she had asked me not to.
They lived about a half hr away from me. They would mention they had been in town, and when I said "Hey, why don't you call, we could grab an ice cream or something" he said "Well we don't want to bother you, you're so busy with school." I would say "I'm busy now, but could we meet up Thur?" if I were busy when they called.
When I graduated, they came, took 1 picture, said "Well, you probably want to go be with your friends...." and left. My friends were all going to lunch. With THEIR families.
I tried talking to my Dad about how I felt I didn't matter and how I felt he didn't want to even try to develop our relationship. He said nothing. We were on the phone and I had to ask if he was still there.
It never got resolved. No acknowledgement I had spoken even happened. We plodded along for a couple more months until there was another incident where I wasn't even thought about. My step brother's bday. I didn't even get an invite because it was "just a small thing for family".
So I wasn't even a cousin anymore. I was his god damned child and I wasn't family.
I lost it that time. I screamed at him. That while I understood why he left, and didn't resent him for it, neither had heever made ONE overture to get in touch, he was so happy to have his only child back that he couldn't even consider her family, this was a mistake. He finally spoke. He said "I just feel like every time we talk all I get is a list of complaints. I've never been the type to drudge up te past, I was hoping we could just put that behind us but I guess that's not possible with you. You were raised by your mother after all, it shouldn't surprise me."
And that's when it finally hit me, if he saw my abusive, insane, manipulative, childish, substance abusing mother as a suitable partner, he couldn't have been healthy either. And he had onviously chosen another personality disordered manipulator as his second wife.
So f*ck em.
I'm not glad I tried to reconnect with him. I wish I had realized that even if he thought I still hated him, as the parent, if he cared, he should have tried somewhere in the span of 12 years. That very probably as an adult, I wouldn't be thinking like the 12 year old he knew.
But no. That would have required effort and he wanted me to just shut up and be his kid when it was convenient for him and call it "moving forward" even tho I got none of what I needed during our attempt at a relationship. I wasn't expecting Daddy. I was grown. I was expecting a Father, tho. An adult with whom I could have an adult family relationship.
I wish I had never called. I wish I hadn't envisioned some great reunion and making up for lost time. Because I should have known that wasn't reality.
We are told that, if you're not confident, you should just "fake it til you make it."
This is great--in theory. In practice, sometimes "faking it" can have extremely real and terrible consequences, which these people found out the hardest of hard ways.