When an Angel Offers to Help You Search

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Once you have made the decision to seek out your lost family – whether you are a biological parent looking for a child or an adult adoptee trying to find your genetic roots – your first step should be to complete a profile on an Adoption Registry . Providing as many identifying details as you know will help you to produce the best results in matching information with the ones you wish to find. Every registry varies in the amount of information it allows the public to view freely. Information listed is generally publicly viewable unless privacy preferences are selected. Memberships are usually required whenever contact information is listed in hopes of connecting you with your long last family member(s). You may not always be aware of who has accessed your profile, so remember to exercise a certain amount of caution when being contacted by unknown parties.

In the world of adoption, search and reunion, exists anonymous volunteers who have come to be known as “search angels”. These are people who donate their time to doing searches and making connections to help you find the person(s) you are looking for. Hiring a private investigator to do this work can get very expensive, very quickly so the time and resources that these volunteer searchers provide is an invaluable resource for adoptees or biological parents. Search Angels do not conduct any searches involving minors or offer to facilitate a meeting between you and the other parties. What they can do is track down leads and connect the pieces of your puzzle to give you the tools and information you need to connect with your lost loved one(s) – if that is indeed what you decide to do.

Search Angels sometimes use Adoption Registry boards or forums to find people they feel like they can help. Once your information is out on a Registry board, the first person to contact you may not be the person you seek but instead one of these Angels. If you are contacted by a stranger who offers to help you search, you should definitely proceed with caution.

First of all, you should not provide them with more details than you would be willing to publicly post. After all, this is a stranger with no credentials and although they present themselves as a kind volunteer, you really have no way to know who they are or what they may do with your information.

Second, you should not expect immediate – or any – results. They are volunteers who donate their spare time and often are helping multiple parties in searches at the same time. Last, and maybe most important, be prepared for how you will handle the information they do find for you. Once they have a result, it is up to you to follow up on contacting that person and actually making the connection and you may not know if you are ready for that until you have a name, phone number, email address, physical address, or other information staring you in the face. Just remember, that is the point where it is all up to you and they will step aside to let you proceed however you choose.

Search Angels do not ask for payment for their services. They may ask, or you may offer to reimburse for expenses such as document retrieval, phone calls, postage, etc. but paying them for their time would be a red flag and you should question if this is truly a Search Angel or someone trying to take advantage of you. It is always ok to question their motivation and intent and to be skeptical of information they provide. You should not feel guilty for trying to make sure that the service you are receiving is coming from a benevolent place and that the facts they find really match up with what you know.

This is another reason why it may be a good idea to hold back specific details you know about the person you are looking for, so you have something to verify information given back to you against. It is similar to investigations conducted by police when they hold back certain details that would only be known to their unknown subject to ensure that when presented with a possible suspect, they can verify this really is the person who was involved. There are many reasons why you might receive incorrect information so I would suggest taking whatever measures you feel necessary to make sure you connect with the person(s) you were indeed separated from.

Search Angels are a blessing to the adoption community. More and more well-meaning people are donating their time to help people affected by adoption find one another. Searching and reuniting is never an easy process to go through so be prepared to face the unknown and for the process to take time. Weeks, months or years may pass and there is a possibility of never finding the answers you look for. There are no guarantees and only you can decide when and how you will find your way through this process.

Just remember, even if you start searching – you can always stop anytime and ultimately the information you uncover is yours to do with whatever you choose. Never let anyone pressure you or give you false expectations. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Good luck and happy searching.

Credits: Adopted Abby

Visitor Comments (21)
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Mary - 5 months ago
Im 56,female,born 12-3-60,in wayne county,det mich, adopted from catholic social services,in herman keifer hosp. My mom was 21,5'6,128 lbs,brown hair and eyes. She was roman catholic. She was mexican and italian. She had 2 daughters previously,ages 1 and 2. She worked as a secretary n in a bank. She had an 11 yr old sister at the time. My dad was 22,5'9,135 lbs,green eyes,blondish brown hair. He was cherokee n irish. He worked as a truckloader,shortorder cook,dockhand. He had a sister,28,who died of pneumonia. He liked pool, n bowling. They were not married. They named me christina. Adoptio was finalized in 1962. Hope sumone out there knows something thatll help me out, ive been searching a long time. More info to tell if i sound familiar to anyone. Thanks #1
Julie Fernandez - 1 year ago
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I am looking for my mother-in law's first child. He was given to adoptive parents in 1947 in San Leandro, Mulford Gardens, CA. He was given to the parents by Maria Hines who owned the goat dairy where my mother-in-law, Evelyn Ida Borchard, an unwed mother,was staying. The father of the boy was Jesse Palmer Brown. Evelyn is 88 years old and declining in health. She would love to know the little boy she gave up is ok. She said Maria Hines "sold" the baby. So we are not sure if there are any legal adoptive papers to follow. Please help us find him. #2
Leo Camp Ryan - 2 years ago
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I am looking for any information on my birth parents. My birth mothers name is Margaret Ryan, born in Louisiana. I was born 12/2/1955 at Evanston Hospital, Evanston Ill. I was adopted out thru the Cradle March 23, 1956, also located in Evanston Ill. My birth mother was 38 yrs old when I was born in 1955. It does not list my birth father. I was recently diagnosed with cancer and my son was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer. really just need medical answers. please contact me if you have any information. #3
Teresa - 6 months ago
I am looking for a young man born Justin Lee Phillippi, born in Fairfax, Virginia in 1985 for a friend. Justin was adopted after birth and his adopted name is not known. I have contact information for the birth Father who is searching but had no idea how to search. Any information would be appreciated. #4
Michael Lee Jackson - 2 years ago
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Born in Cincinnati at Good Samaritan Hospital and given the name Michael Lee Jackson. My birth certificate says 10/30/69, but I am not sure if that is the right date. My adopted parents are Gene and Arlene Jackson. I am searching from by birth family. Please help! #5
Joy - 3 years ago
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I was born 12-21-1956 in Toledo, Ohio. I am sure I was put up for adoption right away. I was born in Toledo Hospital. My BM probably stayed at a home for unwed mothers called Florence Critten Home off of Central Ave in Toledo, Ohio. Looking to find my BM soon! #6
Andrew - 4 years ago
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I am looking for my birth Mother. I thank God for her having the strength to give me up rather than terminating me. I know she has two additional siblings that I would so love to meet. May God bless everyone here in their search. #7
Tammy - 3 years ago
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I am looking for my birth mother/grandmother. I was born in West Palm Beach,Fl on Sept 13,1971. I know my grandmothers name is Joan. I know I have a brother. I'm thankful for my moms gracious and unselfish act. I don't know her but I love her. Hope to meet her one day #8
Shelly - 3 years ago
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i am looking for the son my mom gave up for adoption.She stayed in Omaha, Ne at the Salvation Army for unwed mothers.He was born Sept, 13 or 14th 1966-67.She named him Dennis Michael or Michael Dennis.His name was most likely changed.My mom was born May, 1951, Her name Donna Dawdy at the time.Thank you and God Bless! #9
Chip - 3 years ago
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I am looking for my birth mother. The facts I know are she had 7 siblings. 5 bothers and 2 sisters. I was born August 18th 1967 in New York on Long Island in Huntington. I will take any help as I am desperate. email me at xxxx #10
Marie - 4 years ago
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I am looking for my sister that was giving up for adoption at birth by my mother and her boyfriend. I was told she named her Nina and she was born on October 25th, 1995 at Mercy Hospital in Chicago. Please if anyone has any information, please let me know. Thank you. #11
Guest - 3 years ago
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I am looking for my birth grandmother, my mom was adopted in California in like 1957 and she was born in 1955 in Santa Monica and was a preemie. My mother is in heaven now and for medical reasons, I would like to find her biological parents #12
Billie - 4 years ago
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I would like to thank my BM. The selfless act in giving me up, tells me so much about her. I am 59 years old, #13
Jennifer - 4 years ago
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I am looking for a niece. her mothers name was Rosiland Richard....baby girl born on may 22 1983 in new Orleans. This is my brothers daughter. I just found out that she exist. I hope I find her one day. im at xxxx #14
mary - 4 years ago
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I am looking for my brither he was born injan 30 1965 .my brith mother was betty joe hayes and birthfather is glenn r hayes my birth brother name was wayne d hayes. Im his sister mary Lucille hayes roper.I am 53 years old and would love to find hin before I die .I have a picture of all of us when we was small .please feel free to email me at xxxx I love him so much #15
Arlene - 4 years ago
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I am looking for my son Adam who was born October 30th, 1988 I just want him to know that I love Him and I hope to see him and tell him that in person before I leave this earth. #16
LS - 4 years ago
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I am looking for my birth cousin. She was born Oct. 1969 in Washington. I think it is possibly Topeka. I know information about the birth mother because she is my aunt. But know nothing of the father. They were in college and not married. #17
Mark - 4 years ago
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I would like to thank my birth mother. The selfless act in giving me up, tells me so much about her. She is revered in my heart. I will see you again on this side or the other. #18
William - 4 years ago
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I am looking for my wife's birth mother. She was born in Iowa in 1971. I have her birth mother's maiden name Charlotte J. Stewart and basic age at the time she gave birth but am still unable to find her. Any help would be great, email me at xxxx #19
Justin - 4 years ago
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I am looking for my birth mother. I was born in Lynchburg, Virginia on October 31, 1982. Please email me at xxxx #20

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