Am I starting searching right?and how long does record take?

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Am I starting searching right?and how long does record take?

Postby roke » Sun Jan 09, 2011 10:51 am

Hi guys,
After many years of will I? won't I? I have sent off for birth records but I am unsure what I have sent off for and whether this is the correct first step? and am hoping someone can help?

I have sent off the form called 'access to birth records' that can be downloaded on the DirectGov website - its a very simple form (I can't believe how simple it is!) that you send back to the General Registrars Office.

What does the birth records that I have applied for contain? - Is this the same thing as an adoption file? and is this the correct first step? Also, how long does it take to comeback - are we talking weeks or months? I sent it off about 3-4 weeks ago and I'm watching the doormat every morning hoping it will arrive.

I already know my original birthname so it won't just show that will it?
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Postby ladyarcher » Sun Jan 09, 2011 3:41 pm

Hello and welcome roke

As you have only sent to the GRO for birth records, I would think that all you will get is a copy of your birth cert.......or possibly the cert which looks like a birth cert but which is in your 'new' name. A copy of your original birth cert. should have the word 'adopted' written on it. If it is a true original then of course it won't have that, as you would not have been adopted the moment you were born and registered.

From reading other peoples' posts on here, the birth records eventually dug up by local authorities could be the adoption file, or may not be.......the file itself ..... what seems often to us adoptees to represent the 'open sesame' to all our questions about the missing piece of our pasts.........often does not open any doors at all, and can be very disappointing, and in my case non existent according to the local authority where I was both born and adopted. Having said all the doom and gloom bits........others have found that their files give them a great deal of information, even letters from their b.mother........there is absolutely no way of knowing until you get it.

What are you actually it just to know whatever there is to know, small or it to see how you feel about what you find, and then decide what you want to do with it... .....or is it a step on the way to a reunion that you have already decided that you want. Any one of these thoughts could be a 'final' or could equally well be a progress, with each one determining whether or not you move on to the next step........

If you want to get ahead on your own, as you already know your birth name, you do not actually have to involve the 'authorities' at all. You can back track from your birth cert. and from where your b.mother was at the time, and her name at the time.........then fast forward to see if she married, or had any more children etc. It will involve buying a few certificates, and possible travelling around to see if certain places are still there and have not been flattened for a ring road etc.........

If you want to have the 'buffer' of someone official, between you and whatever you may find, then that too is a way often chosen.......the only problem is that it may take a long time.........people often wait months, and longer for papers to be found and sent from one authority to another and for an appointment to be seen and talked through findings........what people find is that once they have decided that they want to search to whatever end, then the slowness of the official channels is unbearably slow, once one has decided, one wants to know NOW.......not in weeks or months

A lot also depends on your age, and how long ago you were adopted, and how efficient the local authority or adoption agency was or is about keeping records.........lots to think about.........

Keep coming back here for help and support and ideas...........

born 1944 - adopted 1946 - found b.mother 1972 - sadly missed b.father who died young, but who had told his subsequent children that they had two English when I made contact with them in Canada they were not 2008 finally found full sister - born 1945 and adopted separately - after searching for forty years, from when I found out about her when I was 25...........she did not know her, or that she had a full sister, or anything of our past.........
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Postby roke » Mon Jan 10, 2011 5:58 pm

Hi Ladyarcher and thanks,
How would I start searching if I only have my birthname? I do not have my birth mothers name.

I am still unclear about this adoption file and how I would get it or find out if there is one - who would I contact to find out?
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Postby ladyarcher » Mon Jan 10, 2011 7:43 pm

You say that you know your birth name,....I guess that perhaps means that you only know your Christian names, and not a surname as you say you do not know your b.mother's is less usual to know your surname, but some people are lucky and do know it.......

Given that the three weeks you have been waiting for an answer from the GRO were the most awful weeks in terms of the weather, and also of course have included the Christmas and New Year breaks, you might have to wait a little longer, you could 'phone them and see if they could give you any idea of how long you are likely to need to wait.

If you know the area in which you were born, and know your correct birth date, you could, if you had a lot of time on your hands, and were near enough geographically, go and search the birth might, if you were lucky, come up with your birth names and a date, and your birth mother's name............ I say if you know your correct birth date, as sometimes adopting parents were in the habit of using the adoption date as the child's birthday.........this is far less possible now as there are so many records and forms to fill in, that a simple declaration of a birthdate by the a.parents would not be accepted by a school, for example.........

Probably, at this point your best way forward is to go to the local authority and ask to see someone in their Adoption unit..........but be warned you may well have to wait months..........

Have your adoptive parents got any clues that would help you, or are you trying not to let them know that you are searching.........if they have any little clue, no matter how can help.......on the other hand a lot of people find that whatever their a.parents have been told is not always that full sister's a.parents were told that she was born in one town, whereas she was born in another about 30 miles away.......this may not sound important, but if she had tried to search hospital records she would have got nowhere, also they were not told that she had a full sister. I was the older, so I was known about, but her folks were not told there were two of us. if they had been, they would have adopted both of us.........instead we were separated for 60+ years....

You can also put yourself on the Adoption Contact Register, which is run by the Govt. It costs around £40.........they do not do any searching, but are simply a 'sleeper list' which would trigger if your b.mother, or any other relative also went on may never get a result........I was on it for years before my full sister decided to search ..........she went via the local authority, and when her social worker started looking, the register was triggered, and she was given my message that had waited there for her for 15 years........You could also try NORCAP who have a contact register of their have to pay one amount to join ....... if they do your complete search, it can be very expensive...........

To get access to your adoption file, if it exists, then the place you will have to go is the local authority, or the adoption society you were adopted through, if one was used...

......getting your birth mother's surname, age at your birth, and the area she lived is your first biggest hurdle.....once you have that you can spend many happy years following clues, buying certificates, visiting addresses, knocking on doors........and may, in the end, find her yourself........that is the way I did it.......and I was lucky......

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Postby AfterAdoption » Wed Jan 12, 2011 9:24 am

Once you have accessed your adoption records, you will then be able to apply to the General Registers Office (GRO) 0151 4714830 or for your birth certificate. Information given to you will ie your birth mothers full name, your birth name etc.....

Whilst you are a having your records shared, it may be a good idea asking the social worker if they are able to assist with a trace. We hear many times that records are shared, then the the adopted person leaves the office armed with lots of information (or not depending on the decade you were adopted in), but often not knowing quite what to do next. Often it is so overwhelming to receive details of your adoption, thinking about what to do next is not always at the top of the list of things to do. So ask the social worker whilst you are there. If your particular social services department do not offer a tracing service, maybe ask them why!! Depending on resources, many can not undertake a search.......but some explore how they can help.

If you get stuck, or do not know how to go about tracing, ask on here...or call the Actionline. Tracing can be difficult especially if your birth surname was for example Green, Ali or Jones :x don't worry, there is always some one to point you in the right direction.

Fingers crossed :lol:
Site Admin
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Postby roke » Sat Jan 15, 2011 5:29 pm

Hi Thanks,
I have recieved back the forms with BM's and BF's ond my birthname on. My BM and BF must have been married as they had the same surname. I have also found out BM's maiden name.

I chose not to see a social worker and received the forms through the post - surprised how easy it was!

Is there anyway I can do the searching myself - the maiden name plus the married name are extremely popular names though - thats the problem!
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