Dear Quentin, I will try to make a very long story short. At 66, I found out quite by accident via Ancestry.com that my father wasn’t my biological father. Nearly everyone involved is dead now, so getting answers has been difficult. The gist is that when my biological dad (he was 18, my mother 16) was confronted with fatherhood, his mother shipped him out of state (it was the early 1950s) and my mother was married off to an older family friend.
My mother’s partner “stole” me when I was 2 and I never saw my mother again until I was an adult. I lived a very difficult life with an abusive stepmother and a mostly absent “dad.” Fast forward through lots of lies and stories until the big surprise — the revelation that the DNA wasn’t adding up. I found out who my biological father was through a cousin I didn’t know I had. After a brief denial, he fessed up that yes, he knew about it.
“‘Here is a man who spent his adult life telling others how they should live up to their responsibilities, and yet he never did.’”
Turns out, he lived less than 100 miles from me, and he wanted nothing to do with me. He did not give a reason. His sister, my biological aunt, did contact me, and we had lunch a couple of times before he had her put in a home due to Alzheimer’s disease. Now I can’t reach her. My biological father died suddenly. He was a very wealthy man. He was an attorney who became a prosecutor and, I think, a judge. Everything, I’m sure, went to his wife and his two children who were born after me. My aunt told me his wife was the reason my biological father didn’t want to know me. Do I have any rights to what he left behind? What bothers me most is that here is a man who spent his adult life telling others how they should live up to their responsibilit …