All the branches fell off my family tree!

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Anne McEncroe  

New South Wales, St Margarets Hospital Sydney

I was horrified when at the age of 70 I found out I was adopted! It was purely by chance - my sister had had a baby adopted when she was 17 and spent the next 50 years looking for her. The daughter was eventually reunited with my sister. They were looking through the welfare papers and found a pencilled note in the margin which read "Mother adopted but they don't think she knows!" My 'sister' rang to see if I knew anything about it. I was mystified but rang our 'brother' who muttered 'mum and dad and a promise' and said he would email details. This he did and it ensued that my sister was indeed adopted. I was processing this startling information when, the next day, my brother informed me that it was 'me too!' He was the natural child of our 'parents' and my sister and I were both adopted. I was 70 and my sister was 68. She was surprisingly not too perturbed (She had 18 great grandchildren and said she did it need any more relatives. She said she would find out all about it when she died). However for me the world moved on its axis. My identity flew out the window and I was shattered that my adored parents, particularly my dad, had lied to me all my life. They were both long gone by then. A black cloud descended on me ...


Being a Historian by profession, I Iwas able to track down my original birth certificate (being aghast that what I thought was my birth certificate, in fact, was a 'bodgied' but legal version with my adopted parents shown as real! 4 years later I have found families on both sides. All a bit late though..