This Redditor broke away from a life of abuse and pain and became successful in her own right. However, she recently found out that there’s something her mom and dad are keeping hidden!
A Painful Time in Her Life
OP (Original Poster) is now 39 years old, but she never had it easy. She grew up in a family “marked by domestic violence and child abuse.”
Her dad, Hank, used to hit her mom until one day, when OP was old enough, she stepped in front of him. She said, “From that day forward, he took out all of his anger on me, and my mother was all too ready to let him.”
Hank had been arrested for domestic violence, and their family moved every two to three years or whenever CPS in their area was called.
As a young girl, OP would beg her mom to leave Hank, but she would always tell her that she had three kids, no education beyond a high school diploma, and no work history because Hank made her a stay-at-home mom.
No One’s Brave Enough
Years after the fallout, OP hadn’t seen anyone stand up to Hank aside besides her. Her mom and Hank are still together today.
A Strong and Independent Woman
Fortunately, despite having a troubled childhood, OP became successful in her own right.
She shared, “Growing up watching my mom in this relationship made me never want to be financially dependent on a man. I earned two full-ride scholarships to college and took out student loans to put myself through the rest of my schooling. I am now a doctor with a large practice living 1,000 miles away from them, and I have been in no contact with Hank for almost 10 years.”
In Need of More People
Since the pandemic, the need for services in OP’s line of work has risen to an all-time high. So, she’s been hiring “pretty much nonstop” since 2020.
However, there’s a shortage of available providers in her area, and it’s been difficult for her to find qualified people to hire within the vicinity. She shared, “I belong to an online group of other practice owners in my area who are also in my particular field of work. This group has been so valuable and supportive through the stress of the pandemic and its aftermath on our community.”
A New Service
A couple of months before this story was posted, OP was scrolling through the group and saw that someone had posted about a new, free background check website which was supposedly very thorough. Because it was free, she figured she’d run a background check on herself to see how good the service was.
She thought she already knew what would come up and mentioned that the site was “thorough as f***” since it found her parents’ marriage certificate.
However, when OP saw the document, she immediately thought something was off. The marriage certificate was dated three years after she was born, which didn’t line up with the story she was always told while growing up.
She said, “For reference, my parents had always told me that they were high school sweethearts and got married right after graduation and had me one year later. My parents were never affectionate with one another, and they never celebrated their anniversary growing up. So, I never suspected anything was up.”
Confronting Her Mom
OP called her mom and asked her when their anniversary was. She then noted that her mom paused and took a long time to respond—almost as if she was trying to do the math in her head.
Her mom tried lying her way out of it, but OP remained firm and asked her to try again. Then, when she mentioned a date, March 12, 1986, her mom “tried to play dumb.”
Being Lied to Her Whole Life
After this, her mom told her that she and Hank never wanted OP to know she was “born out of wedlock” because of the “stigma.” However, OP’s furious that she’s been lied to all her life and thinks there’s something more her mom’s hiding from her.
She wrote, “I hung up the phone and immediately ordered both an Ancestry DNA kit and a 23andMe test to be overnighted to me. The next morning I took a picture of both tests and texted it to my mother. I told her I was too angry to talk to her just yet, and asked to schedule a phone call with her that Friday.”
OP told her mom it would be her last chance to come clean. If not, and if OP found out about more lies, she would start reconsidering her relationship with her.
When Friday came, OP’s mom told her that she got pregnant in high school and her then-boyfriend’s family moved to Florida after that. OP was happy that Hank wasn’t her real dad, but at the same time, she felt betrayed that her mom would let “some man” adopt her and then “treat her so cruelly her whole life.”
She said, “Emotions were high, and I berated my mother for this.”
After finding out the truth, OP’s PTSD from childhood came back “full-force” and pushed her to find a support group or community to help her come to terms with what was happening. However, she soon decided that using her private and personal Facebook account might be more effective.
She wrote, “I’m not the type of person who tends to post negative or personal stuff on her FB page. Thankfully, it paid off, and I was put in touch with a researcher out of California who specializes in ‘identity trauma’ and found an online group of individuals who have experienced finding out they were adopted later in life, and many of them had traumatic childhoods as well. It was such a relief to not feel so alone. I’ve also been connecting with DNA relatives in search of my biological father, and I am in the process of changing my last name.”
More Problems and More Lies
With that, OP gained new information and basically found out that her mom had been lying about her biological father, too. So, she reached out and asked for more details about her biological dad.
However, her mom started to get mad. OP wrote, “She became defensive and angry with me for wanting to know more information about my biological family. She called me ‘ungrateful’ and then asked, ‘What do you want to know? That I was a s***? There. Do you feel better now?’ I lashed back out at her for letting Hank do all of that horrible stuff to me over the years and asked her how she could sell out her own child like that. She then told me that I was a ‘difficult child’ who needed ‘discipline’ because I ‘couldn’t be controlled.’ I told her she should have terminated her pregnancy with me, and she ruined my life.”
As soon as OP ended the conversation, she blocked her mom. However, a week before this story was posted, she was surprised to receive an eight-page cease and desist letter threatening to sue her for defamation for her posts on Facebook if she didn’t take them down.
OP wrote, “To be honest, I’m still scared of him, but I’ll be d***ed if I will let him get away with bullying me and preventing me from speaking my truth. I have had them blocked on Facebook for almost 10 years, but somehow they had screenshots of everything I’ve posted. I never posted anything that wasn’t God’s honest truth. I’m upset and nervous, but I won’t back down, and I won’t let him control me anymore. I’m in the process of retaining a lawyer. So, I’m not looking for legal advice. I just needed to rant.”
The Community’s Pieces of Advice
Redditors tried to comfort OP and told her she wasn’t doing anything wrong to her mom or Hank.
“There is no way they can hold you legally responsible for telling your truth. You aren’t harassing them. F*** Hank and your mom. I’m so sorry,” commented one Redditor. Another said, “My heart breaks for you for all the years you went through, and you deserve better. Yet you have my respect for turning out to be someone who gives back and contributes to society. Mad respect to you! Doctor OP, I am sorry that you are now facing the nightmare of being sued by your adoptive dad all because you told the truth. Stand your ground, and don’t let him frighten you into silence. No more.”
Leave Them Be
Some also advised OP not to countersue because Hank and her mom are already digging their own graves.
“As a person that’s been through a lot of s***—not OP’s s*** but a lot of it—I recommend just letting it go. People like Hank and her mom dig their own graves. No reason to grab a shovel and help. Oh sure, giving karma the occasional nudge is fun, but in most cases, it winds up being way more trouble than it’s worth,” advised one user.
What would you tell OP to comfort her? How would you deal with something like this?
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This post first appeared as She Found Out She’s Adopted After Years of Abuse. Now Her Adoptive Dad Is Threatening to Sue for Defamation, but She Won’t Let Him Get Away With Anything! on Quote Ambition.