Searching for true
Irish Times Letters, Irish Times Fri, Apr 16, 2010
– I was one of those babies “given up” for adoption (April 12th)
and I believe it must have been a heart-rending event from which the
mothers never fully recovered. I salute the mothers, the “lucky”
ones who got away to England and those who spent a lifetime in the
I tried to find her the agency did not help. Eventually I found her
family and was welcomed by them, but I never met her since we parted
over 57 years ago. So I know half of who I am. I want to know the rest.
Who am I?
this secrecy is denying me my human right to know my genetic origins, my
identity. The laws of Ireland do not allow me to know what is on my
file, although this right has been in place, for over-18s in the UK and
Wales since 1975 and in Scotland since 1930. The UN Convention on the
Rights of the Child, Article 8.1 states: “States Parties undertake to
respect the right of the child to preserve his or her identity,
including nationality, name and family relations as recognised by law
without unlawful interference”.
is my father? For a while I thought I had found him, I even saw his
death notice in your paper, Madam, but his relatives tell me I’m
wrong, the ages and other details don’t match.
I went back to the agency 27 years after the first attempt – Barnardos
told me “things have changed” – but they haven’t. The nun
didn’t even bring the file into the room, in case I’d try to snatch
it and run out the door. “Only the mother can tell you who the father
she is dead, so what do I do now? I’m sick of it – I just want to
know what corner of Ireland I’m from, and have a little bit of history
to pass to my son, and maybe a photograph, because my father is probably
dead anyway. It’s time to open up the files under Freedom of
Information legislation. –
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