LIFE SEARCH: Beryl has finally found a photo of her birth mother.
LIFE SEARCH: Beryl has finally found a photo of her birth mother. Yvonne Gardiner

An adoptee's story: Mum found, still looking for dad

BERYL found out when she was seven years old that she'd been adopted.

In the years after that, having no original birth certificate or medical records caused problems.

With the help of adoption agencies, Beryl started looking for her birth parents.

She knew she was born in Sydney in 1950.

In 2012, Beryl found out her birth mother's identity, but too late to meet her.

"I lost both mums in 2005, not knowing my birth mother," she said.

"I now have my original birth certificate and my birth certificate which was amended, and my adoption papers which I got in 1992.

"All through, I needed medical records.

"When I had my children, my doctor said, 'I think you'd better start doing something about this because we need records'."

In January this year, Beryl made contact with a man who was married to her niece.

Her birth mother had entrusted documents to his care.

"I rang him and he posted photos. I sent him photos of me," Beryl said.

"It's been quite good to have this relative by marriage to have as support.

"He and I feel like long-lost friends.

"He's told me a lot about my mother and I got her medical records. She was actually a nurse.

"She went into the army for a period of time, in the nursing corps.

"She was 22 when she had me and unwed.

"I didn't have a photo of my mother till this year. In some ways, I look like

her.

"It was quite exciting actually.

"It was more exciting to make contact with a relative who had no idea I existed."

A briefcase containing the precious documents was miraculously untouched in a house blaze ... protected by "angels", Beryl's male relative said.

Beryl was missing from the family tree found among the documents.

She says looking for her birth parents has been a long and difficult

search.

"I'm going to keep going. I'll be 66 next month," she said.

"I'm still looking for my father. I feel I might have half-brothers and sisters through my father."

Beryl has been helped during the past two years by Post Adoption Support Queensland.

"(Adoptees) are carrying a lot of grief within themselves and can't talk to their families about it," she said.

"If they do find out something, it may be a comfort to them.

"The group is a comfort in itself. It does give you a certain type of hope."

PASQ runs workshops for adults who have been affected by adoption.

WHERE: The Benevolent Society, Labrador Early Years Centre, 57 Billington St, Labrador QLD

WHEN: Next group meets on Thursday, December 15, 5.30-7.30pm

CONTACT: Bookings are essential, call 07 3170 4600 or email paq@benevolent.org.au


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