Friday

A real Nanny Dilemma

opinion 2 I have kind of an unusal situation to discuss. I have been working as a nanny from Virginia to Boston for the past nine years. In my first nanny job, I became pregnant by my employer. I subsequently left the position and put the child, a boy up for adoption. I was only 20 at the time and worked as a live-in nanny, I had no home, family, etc. My employer is now widowed, his wife having passed to cancer and he used a private detective to find me. He now wants to find the child that was given up for adoption. I had told him I was pregnant. I had told the agency that I did not know who the father was. I am still working as a nanny, still a live-in. When I think about the fact that I have a seven year old son out there, I get overwhelmed with sadness. There is no benefit for me to get involved in this. I also have a job I like very much now and I am marrying a very religious person who does not know about the pregnancy and adoption. Do I tell him? I think I should. I think I want a restraining order against my former employer because I dont want any involvement with this. He has only been nice in contacting me, but this is too much to handle. Can I get a restraining order quietly? I don't want people to know about the reason behind it because it will reflect on my character. I was young and stupid. I live a decent and principled life now. I try to.

39 comments:

Bostonnanny said...

What were you going to do when the child became an adult and went searching for you? I'd give him the number to the agency and let them deal with it but ask not to be involved. The agency would have to get premission from the adoptive family and prob a blood test before giving any information. And since it seems like its a closed adoption, the adoptive parents have the right to refuse.

No matter what the happens, you need to tell your future husband about it. Lies kill a relationship and if your on the right path, you wouldn't withhold this information.

Nanny S said...

I understand you made mistakes in the past and would not like them to affect your future, however, the way you're going about this will only make matters worse. First, I am not a lawyer, but I do know that you must have a good reason to get a restraining order against someone and your situation likely does not qualify, and no you cannot "get a restraining order quietly." Court records are public and permanent (even if they are expunged) so I suggest you do not go this route in attempting to sweep this matter under the rug. You are better off writing a cease and desist letter (google it) to your employer and the investigators.

Personally, I think you are better off dealing with your past employer in a direct manner. If it were me, I would concisely state my position in writing or better yet, only talk to the Investigator and not him directly. Say that you do not want any contact with him or the adopted child (if applicable) and then give him the Adoption Agency's information and anything else relevent. You are only thinking about yourself in this situation--your biological son may or may not want to know his father, and I think you have a moral obligation to help them make that connection.

Last, you mention that your current fiance knows nothing about your past and that he is "very relgious." I think you're setting yourself up for future disaster by not disclosing these things to him. You have no idea if your biological son will contact you when he's 18, and not preparing your finance now-before you are married-and allowing him to make an informed decision on if this is okay with him, is not very moral of you. I suggest you tell your finance everything and then hope for the best.

Dr. Juris said...

I agree with everything Nanny S has said. I'd tell your future husband, religious or not, because if he truly loves you, he will eventually be able to move past it. I'm not saying it won't suck for a little bit, but I'm saying it's important to be honest.

Since you've said your former employer has been nice, I'd say he probably has no idea how you actually are feeling about this. He didn't carry the baby for nine months, and he didn't deliver it, so he has no idea about how difficult that decision was for you. I'd explain it to him, and tell him what you know. Tell him that's all the information you have, and from now on, you'd like for him not to contact you any more.

You cannot get a restraining order quietly. You'd get a temporary order granted immediately, but for a restraining order, you will have to show up in court and tell the judge why you need a restraining order. It will be public record. You cannot lie. You must tell the court everything. Even then, the judge still may not grant it. If he continues to harass you after you have asked him not to, I'd approach the police about the matter.

Finally, I'd recommend you find someone (doesn't have to be a therapist, but SOMEONE) you can talk to. Giving a child up for adoption can be traumatic, and it sounds like you need someone to talk to about everything that is going on right now.

Good luck.

alex said...

I am glad you have moved past this but you still must own up and deal with it (I don't mean that to sound harsh at all, just matter of fact)...
If you wrote to dear abby she would definitely say you need to tell your future husband. This will come out eventually and think of how painful it will be if he finds out when a child comes looking for you instead of from you yourself? So please, do yourself the favor of heartache, issues etc. down the road and tell your future husband.

As for the restraining order I echo what others say that you cannot do it quietly, that isn't how it works and honestly I feel like that would be a really mean thing to do. You said he was being nice about the whole thing and that would be a slap in his face. You both obviously made a mistake with getting involved with each other but by having a restraining order it would just show that you don't want to deal with things and would not speak well of your character.

As for the husband trying to find the child, I really hope he decides to give his information to the adoption agency and allow them to release that when the child is 18. He cannot do anything with the child now and to try to would just disrupt the child.

You should have a nice long talk with your former employer, tell him the agency, allow him to give his information and part on good terms. I hope he understands finding the child now is more than likely impossible (since I am guessing it was a closed adoption) and maybe he can write a letter that the agency can give to the parents.

But again, please, please, please tell your future husband! If he loves you and is religious he will forgive you and I promise you hiding information that will more than likely come out down the line is not good to start a marriage with. I can't believe you haven't told him yet.

Dr. Juris said...

You're apparently new to the site, Anon. All stories are first sent to the moderator for approval. The MODERATOR'S name is MaryPoppinPills. And it's satire.

Ellen said...

@ Anonymous

Bahahaha I really needed that laugh.

Additionally, "Not to be high and mighty"...while being high and mighty.

Awesome.

Adoptive Mom of 3 said...

My daughter is six, and if her birth father took action to find out about her, I would want to know. Your son and his adoptive parents deserve to know who the birth father is. Now is your chance to make things right. Please contact the lawyer or agency and inform them of who the father is. Don't sit back out of fear. Your employer is not out to hurt you. He seems genuinely concerned about his son, and it is your duty to help him.

Texas Nanny said...

If your former employer is a nice man with a good job and was good to his children when you worked for him, don't you think your son deserves a chance to know who his father is, and to have him in his life if possible?

Give the man the agency's information. Contact the agency and inform them that this man is the father. And tell your fiance before he finds out some other way. It was 7 years ago. 7 years is a long time. If your fiance truly loves you, he will realize that you made a mistake and that you have changed and matured since you were 20.

♥♥ Leslie ♥♥ said...

I think you should tell your future husband about the pregnancy/adoption. Just tell him what you told us, you were young then and when we are young, sometimes we do things that we would never do later on. I think it is best to tell him now vs. him finding out later which it sounds to me like he will, based on the Father all of a sudden re-appearing in the picture after all these years. If your future husband truly loves you, while he may be disappointed, he will still love you enough to marry you. But if he finds out later that you deceived him by not telling him, you risk losing him as he will (understandably) feel betrayed.

Regarding the Father of your child, I do not think a judge will even grant you the restraining order since you say he is being "nice" now and not really harassing you. If you do not feel your safety is being jeopardized, then you may be out of luck. Sounds to me like you are more concerned w/your secret coming out and hoping the restraining order will help. Perhaps not so.

Anyway, good luck and I hope things work out. You have been through a lot already and deserve a happy ending.

A Mommy Nanny said...

I am crying B.S.!! Summer is ending get out and enjoy it instead of cooping yourself up with a lap top making up crap!

MissMannah said...

I agree with all the previous posters who say you absolutely have to tell your fiance. I am in shock you haven't told him yet. You can't just make things from your past magically disappear, which is what you seemed to want to happen when you gave the baby up for adoption. And you seem to want the same thing to happen now by asking if you can get a restraining order. You can't do that either because restraining orders are only for people who are in danger of getting hurt. You aren't, you just don't want to deal with your ex-boss. Grow up.

MissMannah said...

Seriously? You would withhold something that big from your fiance? Jeez, I don't know about the rest of yall, but I just don't believe in LYING to my husband.

i_got_a_name said...

Can't some of you READ?? In big bold letters it says to not post anonymously yet people still do it! lol

Tales from the (Nanny)Hood said...

Yes, you need to tell your fiancee, if only for the basic and practical reason that if you don't tell him you have had a child you'll have to either ask your OB/GYN to lie to your fiancee/husband if the two of you become pregnant or have to try to become pregnant, or YOU will have to lie to the OB/GYN and deny any previous pregnancy. Which won't work and will make you look foolish.

More importantly, WRT the child you surrendered, and the ex-employer/birth father: if I am reading correctly you lied about knowing who the baby's father was when dealing with the adoption agency. Is that correct?

Because if it is, you may have left a ton of hurt hanging over the heads of that child and his adoptive parents. When a Birth Mom (BM), knowingly lies about the Birth Dad (BD), that can lead to a disrupted adoption, custody battle, or other horrors for the adopted child and the adoptive family.

In other words, the BD might be able to take legal action to find the child he NEVER LEGALLY SURRENDERED for adoption, and that means the crap may very well hit the fan.

So, you need to tell your fiancee the truth, and you need to find a lawyer who is an adoption expert to advise you on how to contact the adoption agency and how to try to fix the big messy issue you created. Not next year, not next month, not next week. Talk to your man today, call lawyers tomorrow.

And after you find a lawyer, you would likely benefit from finding a therapist who is an expert in helping birth moms. It sounds like you tried to ignore what happened, and that you are in significant pain because you never resolved the huge issues surrounding your pregnancy and decision to surrender your child.

I wish you the best, and I hope that you can work with a lawyer to fix the issues at hand and avoid disrupting your son's life with his parents.

Nanny of One ALSO AN ADOPTED CHILD! said...

Dear OP:

As you have experienced in life sometimes things happen. First and foremost I would like to commend you on having the courage to put your son up for adoption, as from being an adopted child whom has had an abortion during my 20's I understand where you are coming from and that is a very noble thing to do given the choices out there and your circumstances.

Speaking as an adopted child I would like to explain to you the importance of giving your son all information pretaining to himself. I am in my late 20's and have spent most of my life with questions regarding how I arrived in this world and via whom. It was only after years of searching that I found my biological parents and the paper work I was provided with was false as my birth mother (like yourself) claimed she did no know my birth father as well as lied about her own information.

This was extermely hurtful, as an adopted person you get love and support from your adoptive family however at the end of the day you need the biological information to fulfil your own questions and secret wonders about your own identity. Please do your seven year old son a favor and contact the adoption agency, provide information for the father, as well as information about yourself perhaps a picture of yourself from a while ago so your son can see his mother, even if its not in person. Tell your son the truth about your relationship with his father and allow his father to be a part of his life if he so does choose.

When you give up a child up for adoption, you never know their circumstances later in life. Your son may grow up fatherless as he may wish he was able to contact his biological father or perhaps he wishes to meet you as well.

I am not sure where you are located but in various States and Provinces (Canada) open adoption records are legal and as adults adopted children are able to access their biological parents information if they so wish. Save your child the time and money spent doing a search and provide him with the means necessary. At the end of the day it was your personal choice to bring a child into this world, so take responsiblity for this action and give your child the option of knowing his true self and the circustamces of his adoption.

It may not matter now, but when your child gets older it may make the difference between him having a positive or negative life in the future.

Best of Luck with your situation.

Ps. You should tell your husband as one day if your child comes knocking on the door you do not want it to affect your marriage then. Honesty is the best policy just ensure that when you explain it your both in a situation to being open, and honest. Perhaps, make an appointment with a couples therapist and have them help you tell him.

Best Wishes!

Phoenix said...

you shouldn't be asking advice about this issue over a nanny blog. This is some serious shit. I think you should tell your man and since he is a religous he can take you to a preacher/priest/reverand or whatever and you can get some counseling.

My advice is this. Stop lying. Stop lying. Stop lying. Don't compound your original lie with new ones. Come clean and think about your child. You did the best thing for your child at the time and you need to continue to do the right thing. He needs to know his dad.

True story - My grandma had my dad with a man with the last name Larson. My grandma left that man and married my grandpa Brooks. Grandpa Brooks adopted my dad and took him in as his own. When my dad was 18 he found adoption papers and questioned my grandma. She said that she left my real grandpa and hid my dad from him all these years. My dad had no idea he had a real father out there. He started to look for him and he looked and looked. My grandma finally told my dad that his real father just died of a heart attack and she knew where he was the whole time and didn't tell him. Now that is messed up. Don't be a bitch and give your little boy everything. All the infomration you can.

MissMannah said...

My grandparents have a similar story. When Grandad was in the hospital, literally on his deathbed, my dad and his brothers and sisters were all around his waiting for the inevitable when a man walked in. They were like "Who the hell are you?" And he said "That's my dad." Apparently Grandad had impregnated a woman before marrying Grandma and they put the baby up for adoption and this man had spent the majority of his adult life looking for his parents and when he found them, Grandad still didn't want anything to do with him and refused contact. But my dad and them still invited him to the funeral and they all keep in touch. It's like something out of a soap opera. And the moral is, give your children the resources so they can make their own decisions about whether they want to know about their past.

Adopted Anabelle said...

I am adopted and do not see how it is a "courageous" act. Us adopted children grow up w/no identity whatsoever and do not have the benefit of knowing what health problems run in our families. We grow up feeling abandoned by our parents and carry loads of emotional baggage all through our lives. I would NEVER give away my own flesh and blood to complete strangers. If I had to live on welfare, I would.

Dr. Juris said...

Adoption is a courageous act because a woman literally feels her child grow inside of her and gives it up because she wants better for that baby. Even if she decides to give up that child because she just doesn't want it, she still gave it life then gave it an opportunity to grow up with a family who dose. It's a difficult decision for any woman to make, and while adopted children may feel like they don't have an identity, please don't speak for everyone when you talk about your emotional baggage. Plenty of adopted children are happy and emotionally healthy. And while you may speak from the place of being adopted, you've never been in the position to give your child up for adoption.

Adopted too said...

Annabelle - not every adopted person feels the way you do, and I find it offensive for you to imply that everyone does. I was adopted...and do not have one feeling of abandonment. I feel incredibly fortunate that my birth mother had enough strength to carry me to term, give birth, and then realize that they were not ready for a baby, and found a family who they thought would treat me well. I tell my parents (my adoptive ones) all the time how thankful I am to be adopted because they have given me an amazing life. I have no emotional baggage caused by my adoption. I am constantly reminded how much my parents wanted me and what they did to get me. They love telling my adoption story. I think I'd have more emotional baggage if I was stuck with a mother who treated me as a "woops". I know there are some people who had issues with being adopted, but not everyone does. I consider myself extremely extremely lucky.

adopted too again said...

Sorry for the typos. I just get very heated when the gross generalization is made that all adopted people have issues.

bluebell said...

I have to disagree with some of the things Anabelle said. I gave up a child for adoption, and his parents have a full medical background on me in case of any health issues; he also has a scrapbook which I made for him, so that he knows all about me and the fact that I did not 'abandon' him but chose to give him a better life than I could have done had I raised him myself. (the pregnancy was the result of very traumatic circumstances, and it would not have been fair to either of us to live our lives with that hanging over us) Adoptees only carry 'loads of emotional baggage' if the issue of their adoption is not handled in a sensitive and honest way.

MissMannah said...

Annabelle, I'm sorry you felt that way growing up, but I assure you not every adopted child feels like that, as previous posters have already said. My first nanny job was for two beautiful children adopted from Guatemala. The older boy came from an orphanage so unfortunately the parents didn't learn anything about his past but the baby's birth mother hand-picked the parents. She was 13 years old and I think she was very courageous to carry her baby 9 months, give birth and then hand her over to my former bosses. The mother wrote a letter to C telling her how much she loves her and how she wants her to have a good life and all that. My bosses framed the letter and a picture of the mother and hung it up in C's bedroom, it was really sweet.

Lissa said...

On a personal level, I would NEVER give away my own child from my womb. It awes me that this is an acceptable practice here in the U.S. I think it is cowardly to do so and it just puts responsibility on another person.

I understand adoption is controversial and that not everyone sees things as I do.

Why don't people view abortion the same way? It is very traumatic for a woman to make the decision to terminate her pregnancy. The guilt she will carry the rest of her life will never ever go away. However, she chooses to do so because she does not want to bring an unwanted child into the world. Every child deserves to be wanted and every child deserves to be planned. That is why I love Planned Parenthood's philosophy so much.

Shayla said...

I agree with you Lissa.

Every child should be planned and those that are not will have a tough time in this world no matter if they are adopted out or if they live w/their biological parent(s). It is unfair to bring a child into this world unless they can have the type of life that they are entitled to. Usually adopted children do suffer. The only type of adoption I am okay with is an "Open Adoption." ♥♥ This type of adoption allows the child to have two sets of parents as well as know their medical family history. I have a friend who has an open adoption and her son's biological mother visits often and it is a win-win situation for all. ☼

Bostonnanny said...

Not every person feels guilty about adoption or having an abortion. There are plenty of families who can't have children and adoption is the only way they can. In different countries children are put into orphanages not knowing who their parents are and minimal hope of growing up with a family. So I don't know how you can criticize adoption, it has given many child a chance at life.

Not every unplanned pregnancy is caused by carelessness, birthcontrol is only 99.9 % affective. There are parents who can afford and plan a child but are lousy caregivers. A child to them is an accessory or an added stress they didn't expect. These children grow up with emotional issues stemming from trust, abuse and neglect.

I believe your high and mighty logic doesn't quite take into account all the different circumstances.

Dr. Juris said...

I agree with Boston Nanny.

Teddy Westside said...

"The only type of adoption I am okay with is an "Open Adoption."

The way you phrased this bothers me. As if all adoptive parents in the world are looking for your approval?

Avril↕ said...

Unless one has been adopted, then it is very difficult to understand the true dynamics of what an adopted child goes through.

My best friend was adopted and she has told me first-hand the struggles that she has gone through. (Emotional.)

Unless you have walked in an adopted child's shoes, then you cannot even imagine what it is like.

Theoretically, adoption sounds like such a courageous act on the biological parent. But how can anyone praise someone who gives away their own child just because they don't want the responsibility of raising them themselves?? The reasoning of "I just wanted my baby to have a better life.." doesn't resonate well with me as I don't believe giving your own child to complete strangers is an act of love. ♥

Bostonnanny said...

Avril,

That's just one persons adoption story not everyone's. So until you can walk every adopted child's shoes then don't make assumptions you can't back up.

Children are put up for adoption for many reasons not just because the parents don't want them. Many parents can't afford to raise them and thought they deserve better then living in poverty, some were underage women with no family support, others were raped or in a bad relationship etc. You have no idea what a person goes through to give up their baby nor do you know how it feels to be adopted. You have no right or even any real valid points that would prove your statements.

An act of love is doing everything in your power to provide the person you love with every oppuntinity in the world to live a happy love filled life. If a mother doesn't think she can personally give her child that then searching for a family that can is the best thing she could do.

Usually the birth mother picks the family from interviews and references before they give their child up. They normally don't just give their child to anyone.

No Electricity Here in L.A.....but still online....LOL..... said...

Bostonnanny: Are you adopted? If not, then you have no right to speak on the matter. Only those that have been adopted do. You have never walked in those shoes, so what gives you the right to speak out on the subject? You are only speaking from a third person perspective. Who knows? Perhaps if you were adopted, you would feel differently. Why sugarcoat something you know NOTHING about?

Anyway, we are waaaay off topic here. Sorry OP.

Dr. Juris said...

It doesn't matter if Boston Nanny is adopted or not by your logic. If someone who has been adopted is allowed to speak for EVERY SINGLE PERSON who has been adopted (when they clearly are only familiar with their own stories/thoughts/feelings), I fail to see how BN talking about it is any different.

oh well said...

I am with BostonNanny here. She essentially said that everyone's story and circumstances were different. It is so easy to blame women for the choices they make. I am sure that most of the time it does not feel so much as a 'choice' as the only option.
I don't think you need to be an adopted person to understand why someone would resent their biological mother for letting them go (did she experience relief or guilt?), and I am not trying to downplay these emotions, but there are many ways to get hurt and feel rejected, including by one's own biological parents. We all need to feel loved and to be able to return this love. Most of us (hopefully) find it, but sometimes it is in unexpected places.

Mrs. Billy Lamar said...

I think it is only natural to have feelings of abandonment and emotional baggage if they are adopted. Who wouldn't? The family dynamic is so much different as opposed to knowing who you really are and who you really came from.

I cannot believe many of you cannot see this. You are missing the point altogether here.

Mrs. Billy Lamar said...

By the way, thank you to the moderators of this blog for the interesting articles to the right of the posts. I don't ever hear anyone comment on these articles so I wonder if any of you read them?!

If not, you should as they are very interesting in how they relate to Nannies and Parents. ☺ ☺ ☺

Elena ♫ said...

Bostonnanny, I see logic in both arguments here....it's unfair to say your argument is the only the correct one. Both sides raise valid points and it's a cheap shot to attack one's logic.

Truth Seeker said...

I agree with you Elena ♫.

Nanny of One ALSO AN ADOPTED CHILD! said...

Hello All:

Regarding adoption being a noble decision...

It takes a lot for a woman to carry a baby and then give that child up not knowing what will become of them in the future or if they will ever see them again. When I met my biolgical mother last year at the age of 23 I told her "thank-you", and it breaks my heart to know to this day she carries the "guilt and shame" of giving me up for adoption so that I can have a better life- which in fact I did/do have.

Regarding abortion being commendable...

I am an adopted child whom has had an abortion at the age of 20, and trust me when you are put in that situation and have to make a choice for your self and your baby many thoughts run through your head. For me the decision came down to, Can I parent this child? Do I want a child with this individual? What kind of life will this child have? What kind of life will I have? I thought about it and decided at 3 weeks in the pregnancy that I wanted to wait and that wanted better for myself. Since then I have two university degrees, a fantastic job and met the man of my dreams, as well as travelled the world. None of this would have happened without being pregnant in the first place as it opened my eyes.

Women we have come so far! We have choices for our bodies, so please make the best decision for yourself. However, beware, that your personal decisions in life at times do effect others and be prepared to deal with that. *** OP*** At one point in your life you are going to have to deal with your decision to engage in sexual intercourse with your past-employer so please prepare yourself emotionally, mentally for it and give your biological child the right to access his information...

Final note.. on the topic of adoption being horrible... adoption like anything else in life could either be negative or positive.. however, once the child reaches the adulthood the responsiblity for their own destiny is in their hands and they have to make the decision for themselves which path they wish their lives to go. If you have 'emotional baggage' rearding your adoption deal with it, as you cannot go on your entire life shifting blame on something that you has an baby had no control over. It was not until I was able to "let go" and breathe that I started living my life. Please, to those posters whom struggle with their adoptions, let go.

♥♥Leslie♥♥ said...

Whether a woman chooses adoption or abortion when faced with an unexpected pregnancy should be left entirely up to her. The decision is for her to make along with her Dr. and God. She is the one who will ultimately have to deal with the repercussions involved, not us.