You’d think I’d be all over any changes to Adoption Laws and Regulations but apparently not, so it was a surprise to me when a fellow adoptee told me that an adoption law has been updated and now allows adoptees access to birth father details IF they were recorded at the time of the adoption. I assumed all along that my birth father’s name wasn’t recorded as it wasn’t included on my birth certificate or any other information I’ve applied for over the years.
It’s like a bloody onion peel, little by little over many years a bit more information is allowed to be drip fed to us. I feel like a spoon fed baby.
The new Adoption Regulation 2015 which came into effect 1 September 2015 is as follows:
The new regulation requires an adopted person to sign an undertaking that the adopted person will not contact a person who an information source reasonably believes to be the birth father of the adopted person (the putative birth father) or a relative of the putative birth father if the information source supplies information relating to the putative birth father to the adopted person.
Through ignorance I didn’t know there was still a restriction on providing a birth father’s name in the first place. And let me be clear, his name- my birth father’s name MAY NOT BE RECORDED ANYWHERE and I’m assuming this to be the case because nothing has gone my way since my journey began for over 33 years ago and I’m not expecting it to change now.
Anyway, immediately after hearing this news (like IMMEDIATELY) I was onto the Department of Family and Community Services who explained what forms I need to complete, including a form I need to sign away my right to contact the ‘putative birth father‘ if his name is recorded. She explained to me if there is a name provided it doesn’t mean he is my birth father (I did know what putative means). I explained to her that through the many DNA related Facebook groups I belong to, not a month goes by where someone who’s not adopted finds out their father isn’t really their birth father – so I was fully aware IF any name is provided it may not be my birth father.
So here I go again another long wait, 12-14 weeks apparently. Each time I do this I do so with much less enthusiasm but with much more patience which is a trait I certainly wasn’t born with. I’ve been beaten too many times on this journey but I find the resolve to dust myself off, pick myself up and just go forward albeit with a heavy heart.
I can’t help but ask myself, if I wasn’t on this journey how would I fill my time? Answer: I try not to think about it!
Here is a link to the full Adoption Regulation 2015 under the Adoption Act 2000.